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The Met Announces Concerts from the Asphalt Orchestra, 1/20; TENET, 2/3

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The Met announced concerts from the Asphalt Orchestra and TENET.

On Friday, January 20, 2012, at 4:00, 6:00, and 8:00 p.m., the Asphalt Orchestra marches through the Met.

To mark the final stage of the renovation of the Metropolitan Museum’s New American Wing Galleries for Paintings, Sculpture, and Decorative Arts, Asphalt Orchestra, the “radical new street band that brings ambitious processional music to the mobile masses,” in the band’s own words, will present a program, free to Museum-goers, in the American Wing’s Charles Engelhard Court choreographed specifically for that space by Mark DeChiazza and Susan Marshall. The performance features a world premiere arrangement by Ben Holmes of the hymns Cavalry by Daniel Read and Sons of Sorrow by William Hauser from the distinctly American shape note singing tradition, inspired by field recordings from the 1940s-1960s; Carlton by Stew and Heidi Rodewald, a work commissioned by Bang on a Can for the Asphalt Orchestra; an arrangement by Stephanie Richards of the Laneville-Johnson Union Brass Band’s Wild About My Daddy; and an arrangement by Peter Hess of Frank Zappa’s Zomby Woof.

The approximately 30-minute program will be performed three times in The Charles Engelhard Court, at 4:00, 6:00, and 8:00 p.m. Shortly before each performance, a few members of the orchestra will walk through nearby galleries to attract audience, Pied Piper-style, into the Engelhard Court.

Asphalt Orchestra liberates innovative music from concert halls, rock clubs and jazz basements and takes it to the streets. With movement direction from internationally acclaimed choreographer Susan Marshall and dressed by designer Elizabeth Hope Clancy, the 12-member band brings together some of the most exciting rock, jazz and classical players in New York City: Jessica Schmitz (piccolo), Alex Hamlin, Peter Hess and Ken Thomson (saxophones), Ben Holmes and Stephanie Richards (trumpets), Tim Vaughn and Jen Baker (trombones), Kenneth Bentley (sousaphone), and Adam Gold, Nick Jenkins and Yuri Yamashita (percussion). Ken Thomson and Jessica Schmitz are co-directors. For more information visit www.asphaltorchestra.com.

The concert is at The Charles Engelhard Court of The American Wing and is Free with Museum admission.

On Friday, February 3, 2012, at 7:00 p.m., TENET performs “Portraits in Song: Renaissance Italy from Ciconia to Petrucci.”

One of New York’s pre-eminent ensembles devoted in great part to early music, TENET, performs “Portraits in Song: Renaissance Italy from Ciconia to Petrucci,” a program of songs and instrumental music by 15th-century Italian composers in the Metropolitan Museum’s Vélez Blanco Patio. Jolle Greenleaf, soprano and the ensemble’s artistic director, is joined by Ryland Angel, countertenor; Jason McStoots and Aaron Sheehan, tenors; Jesse Blumberg, baritone; Grant Herreid, plectrum lute; Scott Metcalfe, vielle and harp; and Debra Nagy, recorder, douçaine, and harp.

This concert is inspired by The Renaissance Portrait from Donatello to Bellini, on view December 21, 2011 – March 18, 2012. The exhibition brings together paintings, medals, drawings, and sculpture that testify to the new vogue for and uses of portraiture in 15th-century Italy. The exhibition is made possible by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, the Diane W. and James E. Burke Fund, the Gail and Parker Gilbert Fund, and The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation. The exhibition was organized by Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Gemäldegalerie and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. It is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.

The program of Italian songs and instrumental music by composers contemporary to the artists featured in the exhibition is drawn from 15th-century sources and ranges from works by Johannes Ciconia (c. 1370-1412) to the pioneering collections issued at the turn of the 16th century by the first great printer of music, Ottaviano Petrucci. The concert will present various combinations of voices with 15th century instruments, including medieval fiddle or vielle, recorders, and the typical plucked pairing of lute and harp. Jolle Greenleaf says, “The repertoire might be called ‘Songs After Supper,’ in the words of the late Howard Mayer Brown: lyric poetry on themes of love, desire, and more, set to wonderfully expressive music, for the enjoyment of listeners and performers alike.”

Under artistic director Jolle Greenleaf, TENET is winning acclaim for its innovative programming, virtuosic singing, and command of repertoire that spans the Middle Ages to the present. It is the ensemble in residence at the historic St. Ignatius of Antioch Episcopal Church on New York City’s Upper West Side. Recent seasons have included critically acclaimed performances from Claudio Monteverdi’s collection of sacred music, Selva Morale e Spirituale; an eclectic program featuring music by the Renaissance master Nicolas Gombert and 20thcentury groundbreaker Francis Poulenc; a concert led by noted organist and choirmaster John Scott in a program of musical tributes and elegies from the Renaissance through the 20th century; and explorations of works from Renaissance Spain in a special program commemorating the 400th anniversary of the death of Tomás Luis de Victoria.

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