An Evening with Nico Muhly and Friends -
Fresh off curating a weekend at the Barbican in London, our dear Mr. Muhly will be hosting an Evening, this evening, at New York’s Le Poisson Rouge, in celebration of his opera Two Boys appearing at the Metropolitan Opera as part of their upcoming season. There will be two sessions and the second will be streamed live (with video!) on NPR’s website at 10:00 PM EST. If you’re in a time zone in which watching is feasible, tune in! Q2 Music will also be carrying the feed.
If you can’t watch live, NPR and Q2 both typically archive webcasts, so presumably there will be a chance to watch later.
Tech rehearsal with ETHEL and Gibney Dance. For the piece, I created a tape part to “ghost” the live ensemble at certain moments. With the quartet performing to click, the “ghosts” emerge in synch with the ensemble. It’s working great. Free shows tomorrow and Saturday: http://www.gibneydance.org/company/performance-calendar.php
NPR First Listen: David Lang, 'Death Speaks' feat. Shara Worden -
Beautiful song cycle featuring the lovely vocals of Shara Worden.
Composer David Lang’s death speaks will be released on April 30th. The album features Bryce Dessner, Shara Worden, Owen Pallett, and Nico Muhly and was produced by Bryce.
If any of you in the Chicago area are attending the upcoming eighth blackbird concerts (featuring Bryce, Nico, and Shara), the composer and artists will be signing copies of the CD after the concert on Wednesday, May 1st. Tickets and more info for that event are available here.
Ivan Hewett's Classic 50 No 16: Steve Reich – Electric Counterpoint, third movement -
“His early pieces are more like demonstrations than pieces of music. They focus on tiny repeating patterns, varying them step-by-step with remorseless single-mindedness. Why? Because Reich loves the notion of ‘mystery’ in art, but not as something hidden away. He wants it to be right there, on the surface. Thus his lifelong fondness for dancing patterns which aren’t as simple and hard-edged as they appear. They seem to change their shape in one’s ear, like that well-known psychologist’s drawing which can look like a duck or a rabbit, depending on how you look at it. By subtly layering one pattern above another, Reich found he could magnify that effect, adding his own ‘mystery’ to the one already there.
That was his own self-chosen project. But then, over the following decades, something wonderful and unexpected happened. The repeating patterns and the hammered piano and marimba sounds remained as insistent as ever, but because he now softened them with familiar things like melody and harmonic progressions, Reich’s own kind of ‘mystery’ joined hands with the mysteries classical music had always had.”