Posted: Friday, October 30, 2015
"Everything in here is art," said Lee Mingwei, the artist and creator of Sonic Blossom, to the group of performers gathered in one of the Modern and Contemporary Art galleries during a recent rehearsal. "Be mindful of that as you perform." There is a certain reverence one experiences with Sonic Blossom, and every detail is meticulously coordinated: the costume is a Japanese robe from the 1930s, carefully handled with conservation gloves; the sleek chair with dramatic angles was designed specifically for this performance; and, of course, the modern and contemporary masterpieces on the walls of gallery 915 and the impressive Buddhas in gallery 206. All converge for this very immersive and emotional performance.
Posted: Friday, April 18, 2014
The mid-nineteenth century was a period of incredible stagnation for French music, especially for those composers working in the vocal arts. Only five new French operas were commissioned by the Opéra Comique in Paris between 1852 and 1870, and France had yet to forge their own style of art song, despite the widespread interest German composers had developed in the musical form earlier in the century. However, the passage of multiple revolutions and failed empires in the mid-nineteenth century gave French artists across all disciplines a spectrum of intense emotions to convey, and the wealth of art song in the country quickly began to accumulate.