Welcome to the first live blogging event on I Care if You Listen! We are at the World Financial Center covering the 25th Bang on a Can Marathon… The full program is here. I’m going to put the freshest stuff on top, OK? Just scroll down to see the previous sets…
Due to a loss of Wifi, I wasn’t able to live blog the 10 pm set but I will write down some notes later on… I will also publish a recap video soon. Thank you for following this live blogging post!
New set, new composer: Akiko Ushijima. Ushijima’s piece Distorting melody was receiving its US premiere and was performed by the BOAC All-Stars. Witty, colorful, brief–I’d love to hear more of her music…
The next piece on the program was sunray by David Lang, written as a birthday present for his father–present in the room tonight. Lang’s intro to the piece was a lesson in creativity: confronted with the approaching deadline, Lang decided to write what was in front of him: Sun Dry Cleaners, the dry cleaning place across the street from his composing desk in Massachusetts (this was during the BOAC Summer Festival). The piece was to be about a sunray made physical.
Kris Davis Massive Thread is now performing Massive Thread for six pianos. Although two might have been enough so far…
The initial chaos led to an almost Debussy-esque motif that grew as it got repeated by the 6 pianos in unison. The granitic structure collapsed and was replaced by shimmering licks. OK.
Maya Beiser is now about to perform Just Ancient Loops by Michael Harrison with film by Bill Morrison. An iPad on a tripod was just brought on stage and is now sitting in front of the empty stool. No paper for her tonight.
Brief introduction by Harrison and Morrison and a tambura (shruti box) is heard in the PA. Beiser walks in and start playing (she is actually recording) a line in pizzicatto. As soon as she is done, she picks her bow and starts playing a very modal and lyrical line on top of the pizz line… Harrison said that the total of cello lines throughout the piece will amount to 20. The first movement of this 25min piece is very lively and melodic so far. The movie projected behind Beiser is a collection of beautiful black and white shots of the moon.
The second, slower movement was a wonderful opportunity to enjoy Beiser’s gorgeous tone and lyricism. The third movement recalls the initial material and its raag quality.
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