SPCO Liquid Music Series Announces 2018/19 Season

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SPCO Liquid Music Series Announces 2018/19 SeasonToday The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra's pioneering Liquid Music Series announces its 2018.19 season. Entering its seventh season this fall, Liquid Music has become known for developing innovative new projects with iconoclastic artists in unique presentation formats. Performances invite adventurous audiences to discover the new and the fascinating within the flourishing landscape of contemporary chamber music. The Star Tribune notes that "sellout crowds are the rule, not the exception." Each program features new works, world or regional premieres and new collaborations including many artists working together for the first time. Minnesota Monthly says "Liquid Music represents a glimpse into the future of both classical music and music in general" and Minnesota Public Radio's The Current asserts "Liquid Music melds genres and blows minds."

Liquid Music continues to stretch musical imaginations and facilitate the creation of emotionally-engaging contemporary chamber music projects featuring today's most exciting and expansive artists in the 2018.19 season, with six world premieres from artists with a diverse range of influences and musical perspectives.

Recent Grammy Award-winners Third Coast Percussion return to Liquid Music with new works by two incredible musical minds: the iconic American composer Philip Glass and the pop polymath Devonté Hynes, a.k.a. Blood Orange. Glass's new work, written for Third Coast Percussion and co-commissioned by Liquid Music, is his first ever for percussion ensemble. Hynes, who has also become a Glass collaborator in recent years, brings his "dense modern pop with roots in hip-hop, R&B and NYC culture" (The Guardian) to an entirely new sound world in his piece for Third Coast Percussion.

The Atlanta-based duo of vocalist/composer Hanna Benn (Son Lux, Boots) and percussionist/composer/producer Deantoni Parks (John Cale, Sade, T Bone Burnett, Flying Lotus) open the season with a pan-global, posthumanist sound. Their collaboration, Procession, explores the motion of ceremonial music in the form of a song cycle with new arrangements by Benn, incorporating an SPCO string quintet.

In March, French choreographer/dancer/curator and newly-appointed CalArts Dean Dimitri Chamblas joins forces with "one of the boldest women in rock" (The New Yorker) musician/songwriter/visual artist Kim Gordon for an intimate and highly experimental evening of improvisatory music and movement. Specially tailored to the unique setting of the American Swedish Institute's Turnblad Mansion in Minneapolis, the performance invites audiences to engage in an immersive, open-ended journey.

In double-header performances, two new music and dance duos make their world premieres in April at Minneapolis' Lab Theater. Award winning composer and pianist Dustin O'Halloran (Marie Antoinette, Lion, Transparent) whose "sublime" and "enveloping" (DIS) music creates "altered states" (Mojo) teams with choreographer and Company Wayne McGregor member Fukiko Takase to explore ideas of technology, humanity and mind-body dualism in a new electronics-forward existentialist performance, 1 0 0 1. Then composer, saxophone player and multi-instrumentalist savant Mike Lewis (Andrew Bird, Bon Iver, Happy Apple) and internationally acclaimed performer, locally awarded Sage Artist and City Pages' 2012 "best dancer" Eva Mohn (Cullberg Ballet, Johannes Wieland Dance, TU Dance) come together to explore the alchemy of their crafts in a composition about chance, daily mystery and meaning. Making their Minnesota debuts and offering a world premiere, one of the world's most sought-after organists James McVinnie and UK electronics duo Darkstar deliver a full evening of new music performed on Northrop's spectacular refurbished organ. They will explore how synthesis techniques from electronic music can be applied to the organ, using functionality, subtlety, automation and performance to create new music.

The "thoughtful and intense" (The New York Times) violinist Jennifer Koh brings Limitless, her most recent commissioning project to Saint Paul. Limitless celebrates the collaborative relationship between composer and performer, while also exploring the historical role of the composer as performer. This spirit of collaboration contrasts with the conventional notion that composition and performance are discrete and detached parts of the musical process. Koh will be joined by composer and multi-instrumentalist Tyshawn Sorey and composer and jazz pianist Vijay Iyer to perform the works they premiered in March of 2018 at National Sawdust in Brooklyn, New York. The Liquid Music presentation will see an expanded program of improvisations, duos and solos using Iyer's The Diamond and Sorey's In Memoriam Muhal Richard Abrams as concert centerpieces.

ModernMedieval, founded by Anonymous 4 member Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, brings together singer-experts in the fields of early and new music to create programs that combine the two in compelling ways. In The Living Word, ecstatic chants by 12th century mystic Hildegard of Bingen are interwoven with newly commissioned pieces by visionary composer-producers, featuring new music by Julianna Barwick, and world premieres by Ben Frost and Angélica Negrón. ModernMedieval (Horner-Kwiatek with Roomful of Teeth's Eliza Bagg and Abigail Lennox) will be joined by Barwick on Adder for four voices and electronics, and by Frost and Negrón for their world premieres. The works are copresented by Walker Art Center.

Liquid Music ventures into a new venue for a work-in-progress conversation with Minneapolis-based Bharatanatyam dancer/choreographer Ashwini Ramaswamy at the Parkway Theater in Minneapolis. Her multidisciplinary original work, Let the Crows Come, features collaborator and "genre-busting" (The Guardian) composer/DJ/author Jace Clayton and Twin Cities dancer Alanna Morris-Van Tassel, who "embodies the power of dance to create deep and lasting connections where words cannot" (Dance Magazine, "25 to Watch"). The work-in-progress conversation is part of the SPCO's Tapestry19 Festival and will include video footage of Ramaswamy's Space Residency at The Baryshnikov Arts Center.

Let The Crows Come was born from Liquid Music's trendsetting virtual residency program over the 2017.18 season. Using a shared love of literature and interest in artistic explorations of social memory as a starting point, Ramaswamy and Clayton began to develop a portion of this original work. Ramaswamy stated, "I aim to create opportunities to access an unfamiliar culture yet appreciate its mystery. I gravitate towards concepts that have an underlying duality, and are potent with imagistic possibilities. The Liquid Music Artist-in-Residence program and the subsequent commission of Let the Crows Come has been an invaluable experience, allowing me the opportunity to further investigate the ancestral using a personal artistic compass." Clayton mirrored her sentiments: "A large part of my art involves creating connective space between different audiences, discourses, and media. So I'm thrilled with this opportunity to generate new work from the ground up with Ashwini."

In the 2018.19 Liquid Music season, musicians of The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra will continue to play an important role in the series, performing in Hanna Benn and Deantoni Park's Procession. In addition, SPCO Artistic Partner Pekka Kuusisto will return to Liquid Music, performing Tuning Meditation in Walker Art Center galleries (copresented with the Walker as part of its annual Out There Festival). Kuusisto's interactive performance invites participants to engage in listening as an act of peaceful activism in our tumultuous political climate.

The SPCO's Executive Producer of Special Projects and Liquid Music Curator Kate Nordstrum, celebrated by MinnPost as "the most adventurous curator in town," is thrilled to share the coming season. "Each new season I am amazed and humbled by the creativity before us. In 2018.19, artists of all statures are exploring new realms - Philip Glass at age 81 is writing his first work for percussion quartet; Atlanta-based composer Hanna Benn makes her Minnesota debut with the premiere of a new song-cycle featuring SPCO musicians; and Minneapolis-based choreographer Ashwini Ramaswamy is directing her first full-evening work of new music and dance. Every project represents artistic risk, which is exactly what Liquid Music seeks to support and champion. This is possible because our audience is every bit as adventurous, open and inspired as the art we present."

The most recent Liquid Music season (17.18) featured electric projects from Rafiq Bhatia with Ian Chang, Michael Cina and Hal Lovemelt; Patricia Kopatchinskaja; Emily Wells with Michi Wiancko and Greg Fox; Nathalie Joachim; Anna Meredith; Brian Harnetty; TU Dance and Bon Iver; Grand Band; Vijay Iyer and Teju Cole; and musicians of the SPCO.

LIQUID MUSIC SERIES 2018.19 FULL SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Hanna Benn and Deantoni Parks: Procession (World Premiere)
New duo collaboration between composer/vocalist Hanna Benn and percussionist Deantoni Parks with SPCO quintet

Sun, Sept 23, 2018

Music at 7:00pm

Machine Shop, Minneapolis

This luminous collaboration between Atlanta-based duo vocalist/composer Hanna Benn (Son Lux, Boots) and percussionist/composer/producer Deantoni Parks (John Cale, Sade, T Bone Burnett, Flying Lotus) delivers a pan-global, posthumanist sound - a combination of ethereal vocal textures with electronic flourishes, anchored by a percussion setup that is evenly split between analog and digital. A "sanctuary of sound" (Pitchfork), Procession explores the motion of ceremonial music in the form of a song cycle with new arrangements by Benn incorporating an SPCO string quintet.

Tickets: $25 ($20 Liquid Music subscribers)


Philip Glass and Dev Hynes for Third Coast Percussion
Co-commissioned by the SPCO's Liquid Music Series

Sponsored in part by Locus Architecture
Sun, Dec 9, 2018

Music at 7:00pm
Ordway Concert Hall, Saint Paul

Recent Grammy Award-winners Third Coast Percussion return to Liquid Music with new works by two incredible musical minds: the iconic American composer Philip Glass and the pop polymath Devonté Hynes, a.k.a. Blood Orange. Glass's new work, written for Third Coast Percussion and co-commissioned by Liquid Music, is his first ever for percussion ensemble. Hynes, who has also become a Glass collaborator in recent years, brings his "dense modern pop with roots in hip-hop, R&B and NYC culture" (The Guardian) to an entirely new sound world in his piece for Third Coast Percussion. More concert details to be announced.

Tickets: $30 ($25 Liquid Music subscribers)


Jennifer Koh: Limitless with Tyshawn Sorey and Vijay Iyer

New duo works by composer-performers Sorey and Iyer for Koh, alongside solo and improvised work from all three
Wed, Jan 9, 2019

Music at 7:30pm
Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Saint Paul

The "thoughtful and intense" (The New York Times) violinist Jennifer Koh, "a prodigious builder of musical bridges" (Los Angeles Times), brings her most recent commissioning project to Saint Paul. Limitless celebrates the collaborative relationship between composer and performer, while also exploring the historical role of the composer as performer. This spirit of collaboration contrasts with the conventional notion that composition and performance are discrete and detached parts of the musical process. In an intimate set, Koh will be joined by the "radical and seemingly boundless" (Wall Street Journal) composer and multi-instrumentalist Tyshawn Sorey and "extravagantly gifted" (The New Yorker) composer and jazz pianist Vijay Iyer to perform the works they premiered in March of 2018 at National Sawdust in Brooklyn, New York. This Liquid Music presentation will see an expanded program of improvisations, duos and solos using Iyer's The Diamond and Sorey's In Memoriam Muhal Richard Abrams as concert centerpieces.

Tickets: $30 ($25 Liquid Music subscribers)

Pekka Kuusisto: Tuning Meditation
Copresented with Walker Art Center, a bonus Out There Music event
Sat, Jan 19, 2019
3:00pm

Walker Art Center Gallery 3, Minneapolis

"Supple, lyrical, virtuosic and intensely personal" (The Globe and Mail) SPCO Artistic Partner and violinist Pekka Kuusisto brings his craft to the Walker Art Center galleries for a rare solo performance inspired by themes of I am you, you are too, an exhibit that explores contemporary life through themes of citizenship, belonging, borders and barriers. Kuusisto will lead the audience in Pauline Oliveros' Tuning Meditation, part of a series of works written to provide healing in response to the political chaos of the late 1960s. This interactive performance invites participants to engage in listening as an act of peaceful activism in our own tumultuous political climate. Further exploration of the exhibit's themes will be presented through a set of virtual duos in which Kuusisto will be joined via video projections and sound recordings by international artist-collaborators who collaborate across time and space in the face of new U.S. immigration restrictions.

Free event with gallery admission (Liquid Music subscribers, Walker members and Out There ticket holders receive complimentary gallery admission)

Ashwini Ramaswamy: Let the Crows Come

Commissioned by the SPCO's Liquid Music Series
Work-in-progress conversation
Mon, Feb 11, 2019 at 7:30pm
Parkway Theater, Minneapolis

Minneapolis-based Bharatanatyam dancer/choreographer Ashwini Ramaswamy, celebrated for her ability to "[weave] together, both fearfully and joyfully, the human and the divine" (The New York Times) discusses her multidisciplinary original work Let the Crows Come featuring collaborator and "genre-busting" (The Guardian) composer/DJ/author Jace Clayton and Twin Cities dancer Alanna Morris-Van Tassel, who "embodies the power of dance to create deep and lasting connections where words cannot" (Dance Magazine, "25 to Watch"). Using the mythography of crows as a framework to explore memory as a source of guidance and dislocation, the work layers Ramaswamy's visceral interpretation of ancestry, ritual and tradition with a genre-defying evolution of movement and music across cultural and corporeal boundaries. Presented at the newly-renovated Parkway Theater in South Minneapolis, the work-in-progress conversation is part of the SPCO's Tapestry19 Festival and will include video footage of Ramaswamy's Space Residency at The Baryshnikov Arts Center.

Tickets: Pay as you wish in support of this project

Kim Gordon & Dimitri Chamblas

Copresented with American Swedish Institute

Mon - Tues, Mar 4 - 5, 2019

Turnblad Mansion, American Swedish Institute

6:30 - 7:30pm: Patrons arrive, grab a drink, explore the Turnblad Mansion and current exhibits

7:30pm: Performance

Post-performance - 10:00pm: Mansion and bar remain open

French choreographer/dancer/curator and newly-appointed CalArts Dean Dimitri Chamblas joins forces with "one of the boldest women in rock" (The New Yorker) musician/songwriter/visual artist Kim Gordon for an intimate and highly experimental evening of improvisatory music and movement. Specially tailored to the unique setting of American Swedish Institute's Turnblad Mansion, the performance invites audiences to explore the new ASI exhibits and engage in an immersive, open-ended journey. The evening features ASI's signature hospitality and developing collaborative work by the masterminds, both of which have flooded their fields with distinct innovation and originality.

Tickets: $50, limited availability

ModernMedieval: The Living World (World Premieres)
Copresented with Walker Art Center

Ecstatic chants of Hildegard of Bingen, new music by Julianna Barwick, and world premieres by Ben Frost and Angélica Negrón co-commissioned by The SPCO's Liquid Music Series and Walker Art Center

Fri - Sat, Mar 22 - 23, 2019

Music at 8:00pm

Summit Center for Arts & Innovation, Saint Paul

ModernMedieval, founded by Anonymous 4 member Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, brings together singer-experts in the fields of early and new music to create programs that combine the two in compelling ways. In The Living Word, chants by 12th century mystic Hildegard of Bingen are interwoven with newly commissioned pieces by visionary composer-producers Ben Frost, Angélica Negrón and Julianna Barwick. ModernMedieval (Horner-Kwiatek with Roomful of Teeth's Eliza Bagg and Abigail Lennox) will be joined by Barwick on Adder for four voices and electronics, and by Frost and Negrón for their world premieres.

Tickets: $25 ($20 for Liquid Music/SPCO subscribers and Walker members)

Double Header: New Music and Dance Duos (World Premieres)
Choreography by Fukiko Takase/ Music by Dustin O'Halloran

Choreography by Eva Mohn/ Music by Mike Lewis
Commissioned by the SPCO's Liquid Music Series
Wed - Thurs, Apr 18 -19, 2019

Performance 7:30pm

Each duo will fill half the evening, divided by an intermission.

Lab Theater, Minneapolis

Dustin O'Halloran & Fukiko Takase: 1001

Award winning composer and pianist Dustin O'Halloran (Marie Antoinette, Lion, Transparent) whose "sublime" and "enveloping" (DIS) music creates "altered states" (Mojo) teams with choreographer and Company Wayne McGregor member Fukiko Takase to explore ideas of technology, humanity and mind-body dualism in a new electronics-forward existentialist performance 1 0 0 1. As we approach the age of AI, the collaborators ask: how will a new form of consciousness manifest inside a body? What will happen to our soul?

Mike Lewis & Eva Mohn

With light and sound designer Søren Knud Christiansen and performer Sarah Baumert

Minneapolis-based composer, saxophone player and multi-instrumentalist savant Mike Lewis (Andrew Bird, Bon Iver, Happy Apple) and internationally acclaimed performer, locally awarded Sage Artist and City Pages' "best dancer" 2012 Eva Mohn (Cullberg Ballet, Johannes Wieland Dance, TU Dance) come together to explore the alchemy of their crafts in a new composition about chance, daily mystery and meaning. Joined by sound and light designer Søren Knud Christiansen (Royal Danish Theatre, Edhem Jesenkovic, Recoil Performance Group) and performer Sarah Baumert (Body Cartography Project, Xavier LeRoy, ARENA Dances), this courageous Minneapolis-Stockholm exchange promises audiences a singular experience of intimate gesture and analogue connectivity.

Tickets: $30 ($25 for Liquid Music subscribers)


James McVinnie and Darkstar (World Premiere)
Commissioned by the SPCO's Liquid Music Series

Sat, May 4, 2019

Music at 8:00pm
Northrop, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis

One of the world's most sought-after organists, James McVinnie's boundless approach to music has led him to collaborations with a wide variety of artists across musical genres such as Nico Muhly, Squarepusher, Shara Nova (My Brightest Diamond), Oneohtrix Point Never and Bryce Dessner. McVinnie will be joined by London-based electronics duo Darkstar for a full evening of new music for electronics and organ performed on Northrop's spectacular refurbished Aeolian-Skinner organ. McVinnie and Darkstar will explore how synthesis techniques from electronic music can be applied to the organ, using functionality, subtlety, automation and performance to create new music that evolves through Darkstar's electronic experimentation and McVinnie's rare versatility on the organ.

Tickets: $30 ($25 for Liquid Music subscribers; FREE for students and children)



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