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Kate Soper's Theatrical Chamber Music Work IPSA DIXIT Coming to Dixon Place

Dixon Place and The Wet Ink Ensemble will present the NYC premiere of award-winning composer/performer Kate Soper's IPSA DIXIT for two nights only Friday, February 3rd and Saturday February 4th, 2017 at 7:30 PM. The evening-length work of theatrical chamber music will be performed at Dixon Place (161A Chrystie Street). Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door, $12 students and seniors and can be purchased by visiting www.dixonplace.org.

Developed over six years of intense ensemble collaboration and newly helmed by rising opera director Ashley Tata, IPSA DIXIT draws on texts by a range of literary voices to skewer the treachery of language and the questionable authenticity of artistic expression. In its synthesis of elements of monodrama and Greek theatre with blistering ensemble virtuosity, IPSA DIXIT represents the cutting edge of contemporary chamber music and vocal performance.

The Latin expression ipse dixit ("he, himself, said it") refers to an unproven statement that is accepted as true on the basis of the presumed expertise of its speaker alone. A nod to the difficulty of identifying truth in both music and language, as well as to the female authority figure at the work's center, the title Ipsa Dixit can be translated as: "she, herself, said it." Ipsa Dixit's six movements take as their starting point texts by thinkers such as Aristotle, Sophocles, Plato, Lydia Davis, Robert Duncan, Jenny Holzer, Sigmund Freud, and Ludwig Wittgenstein. Wet Ink members Ian Antonio (percussion), Josh Modney (violin), and Erin Lesser (flutes) perform these texts alongside Soper (voice) with dynamic presence and theatrical flourish.

In development since 2010 and first premiered in October 2016, Ipsa Dixit was performed in its staged version for the first time December 9, 2016 following Wet Ink and Ms. Tata's EMPAC production residency.

Kate Soper is a composer and vocalist whose work is notable for its engagement with rhetoric and theatricality. Her compositional style has been called "exquisitely quirky" by the New York Times, which has also praised her "lithe voice and riveting presence." As a co-director of Wet Ink, she regularly performs as a soprano on new works by emerging composers. She is a recipient of Guggenheim and Radcliffe fellowships, and is the Iva Dee Hiatt Professor of music at Smith College in Northampton, MA.

Ashley Tata is a freelance director working principally in the fields of new opera and multi-media performance. Recently: Molière's Don Juan (Fisher Center, Bard College); George Lam's Heartbreak Express (Rhymes with Opera); thingNY's This Takes Place Close By (Knockdown Center); Mojiao Wang's opera Encounter (National Centre for the Performing Arts, Beijing); Venture Opera's Don Pasquale (National Opera Center, NYC); Lainie Fefferman's oratorio Here I Am featuring Newspeak Ensemble and Va Vocals (Roulette); Morningside Opera Company's A Weimar Flute, (Housing Works Bookstore); and a multi-media concert staging of David T. Little's Soldier Songs with video by Bill Morrison (Atlas Theatre, DC and The Holland Festival, Amsterdam, Beth Morrison Projects). As an assistant she frequently works with Beth Morrison Projects and directors RoBert Woodruff, Daniel Fish, JoAnne Akalaitis, Jay Scheib and Michael Counts. She is a recipient of the Lotos Foundation's Emerging Artist Prize in the Arts and Sciences and received an MFA from Columbia University. Ms. Tata is currently directing and designing a series of pop-up performances for the Prototype Festival this January.

The Wet Ink Ensemble is a New York-based new music ensemble with a 16-year history of outstanding achievement in the programming and presentation of contemporary music, lauded by The New York Times for "Dense, wild, yet artfully controlled" performances. Wet Ink has collaborated with a broad range of renowned artists, from Evan Parker to George Lewis, and is equally committed to promoting the works of young and underrepresented composers, from today's most promising emerging voices to the next generation of artists. Wet Ink's core ensemble is a septet of world class composers, improvisers, and interpreters that collaborate in band-like fashion, writing, improvising, preparing, and touring pieces together over long stretches of time. Wet Ink is Erin Lesser (flutes), Alex Mincek (saxophone), Ian Antonio (percussion), Eric Wubbels (piano), Josh Modney (violin), Kate Soper (voice) and Sam Pluta (electronics).

The Dixon Place Lounge is open before and after the show. Proceeds directly support Dixon Place's artists and mission.

Dixon Place is located at 161A Chrystie Street (between Rivington and Delancey), in Manhattan's Lower East Side (By subway: F to 2nd Ave, J/Z to Bowery, 6 to Spring St, M to Essex St).

An artistic incubator since 1986, Dixon Place is a Bessie and Obie Award-winning non-profit institution committed to supporting the creative process by presenting original works of theater, dance, music, puppetry, circus arts, literature and visual art at all stages of development. Presenting over 1000 creators a year, this local haven inspires and encourages diverse artists of all stripes and callings to take risks, generate new ideas and consummate new practices. Many artists, such as Blue Man Group, John Leguizamo, Lisa Kron, David Cale, David Drake, Deb Margolin and Reno, began their careers at DP. In addition to emerging artists, Dixon Place has been privileged to present established artists such as Mac Wellman, Holly Hughes, Justin Bond, Karen Finley, Kate Clinton and Martha Wainwright. After spawning a salon in her Paris apartment in 1985, founding Artistic Director Ellie Covan pioneered the institution in her NYC living room for 23 years. Covan was a recipient of a Bessie, a New York Dance and Performance Award and a Bax10 Award for her service to the community. Dixon Place received two Obie Awards, and an Edwin Booth Award for Excellence in Theater. Dixon Place has organically developed and expanded into a leading professional, state-of-the-art facility for artistic expression. Visit www.dixonplace.org for more.

Photo Credit: Erin Brucker


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