New, Interactive and Immersive Choral Arts Concert Opens in Dupont Underground
The Choral Arts Society of Washington's Chamber Singers and Youth Choir, together with the New Orchestra of Washington (NOW) and the Aeolus Quartet, will immerse their audience with soundscapes and projections in a subterranean musical experience for Into the Light. Presented on Friday, April 5th and Saturday, April 6th at 8:00pm at Dupont Underground, this unique concert will make use of the shimmering acoustics of the space. The program will present Steve Reich's Different Trains, a choral and double string quartet arrangement of Samuel Barber's Adagio for Strings, and a new piece by Choral Arts' Artistic Director Scott Tucker inspired by the acoustics of the venue, amongst others.
The performance will use the entirety of the Dupont Underground, a former belowground streetcar station which has been transformed into a public artspace. The setting will be particularly apt for the presentation of Reich's Different Trains, a three-movement piece composed for string quartet (Aeolus Quartet, NOW's Quartet-in-Residence) and sound effects, inspired by Reich's train travel while living as a young American Jew during the time of the Holocaust.
For this production, the performers will begin on one end of the underground space and gradually move toward the other, emphasizing the transition from darkness into light. Simultaneously, lighting effects and projections by Production Designer JD Madsen will reflect on the musical content. Further immersing the audience, movable barriers will be used to guide the audience through the performance space.
In addition to Reich's Different Trains, the concert will present works by Hildegard von Bingen, Gregorio Allegri, Samuel Barber, Ben Parry, R. Murray Schafer, Sarah Hopkins, and Knut Nystedt. Scott Tucker's latest composition, The Moon and Her Maidens is inspired by the acoustics of the Dupont Underground and composed to pair with R. Murray Schafer's Epitaph for Moonlight .
"I have been looking for opportunities to present choral music in a more interactive and immersive way," says Choral Arts Artistic Director, Scott Tucker. "We visited Dupont Underground soon after it opened. The acoustics of the space, and the theme of light and darkness are what inspired the musical program. The collaboration with Jay Brock (Production Director) and JD Madsen (Production Designer) have helped us create a full-sensory experience that will allow the audience to engage with the music with more intensity than they would find in a traditional concert."
"We are thrilled to bring together so many organizations and artists we have long admired for this unique collaboration," says Tad Czyzewski, Choral Arts Executive Director, of the collaboration with NOW and the Aeolus Quartet.
More information and tickets ($20) can be found online at https://choralarts.org/events/into-the-light.