Project [BLANK], A New Concert Series, Launches With Multimedia Event At St. James In La Jolla
Project [BLANK], an exciting new multimedia concert series, launches in San Diego next month with three performances of TRIADIC MEMORIES, a 1981 work by the late contemporary American composer Morton Feldman.
In a first for this venue, for this 90-minute work for solo piano the sanctuary of St. James by the Sea Episcopal Church in La Jolla will be transformed into a large-scale video and sound installation gallery space. Multimedia artist Jason Ponce will turn the sanctuary into a living light sculpture, accompanying the musical performance in a simple yet dramatic staging.
Project [BLANK] Inaugural Concert
by Morton Feldman
Brendan Nguyen, piano
Jason Ponce, installation
May 24, 2019 at 7:30 PM
May 25, 2019 at 2 and 7:30 PM
St. James by-the-Sea, La Jolla
$5 discount for students and seniors
** Artists are available for interviews **
Although this is Project [BLANK]'s first concert as its own entity, founders Brendan Nguyen (piano) and Leslie Leytham (mezzo-soprano) have been performing together and producing concert events for nearly 10 years while both were earning Doctorate of Musical Arts degrees at UC San Diego. For TRIADIC MEMORIES they have invited award-winning intermedia artist, composer, and interactive arts researcher Jason Ponce to collaborate.
"Our concert series focuses on the integration between visual art, theatre, and chamber music," says Leytham. "Each concert event will be presented in collaboration with a visual artist to reconfigure the concert space."
American composer Morton Feldman (1926-1987) was a major figure in 20th-century music and a pioneer of indeterminate music, a genre associated with the experimental New York School of composers that also includes John Cage, Christian Wolff, and Earle Brown. TRIADIC MEMORIES, one of Feldman's last compositions, is a series of repeated patterns and musical images extended in time by repetition.
"When I was asked to create a something for this performance of Morton Feldman's TRIADIC MEMORIES, my first thought was: What can I possibly add to the experience of this incredible work that won't detract from its delicate and unusual beauty?" says intermedia artist Jason Ponce. "After a couple of false starts my project clarified: With this installation I would not 'add' anything. Nor would I represent anything that was not already there in the music, available to be discovered by other means. Nor would I present anything at all that could not be ignored entirely in favor of a pure sonic experience... In this installation I represent the mysteries and complexities of the score using light projected onto two upward sloping corridors of fabric."
Unusually for a concert in this venue, the audience will not be seated in the pews facing the altar, where musicians normally perform, but rather behind the altar facing Ponce's installation. He will project light and images live, complementing Nguyen's piano performance. Although the artists have been developing and rehearsing the project together, an element of improvisation is possible as they perform live, and the show might change slightly from one performance to the next.
"As with sound, this translation will work for some and not for others," Ponce says. "If you are inspired by the process I invite you to leave your eyes and ears open as you explore these intermodal spaces. And if instead you prefer to let your ears alone guide your journey I know you will be in excellent company."