Contemporary music with a global cast
The 2018–19 season of the innovative annual performance series MIT Sounding continues to blur musical boundaries. Curated by Evan Ziporyn, faculty director of the MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology (CAST), this season of MIT Sounding presents unique artists who push the envelope of their respective genres, creating new evolving music for the 21st century.
2018-19 MIT Sounding
Jacob Collier at MIT
Special Orchestral Concert Celebrating the release of Collier’s “Djesse Vol. 1” and his return to MIT
2018-19 Rick and Terry Stone Concert
Celebrating the December 7th worldwide release of “Djesse Vol.1”—the follow-up recording to the 2017 double Grammy-winning “In My Room”—Jacob Collier preempts his “Djesse” world tour with a one-of-a-kind performance on December 8 at MIT, an artistic home-away-from-home for him over the past several years.
This unique concert features the MIT JC Orchestra (comprised of MIT and Berklee College musicians), MIT Festival Jazz Ensemble, MIT Vocal Jazz Ensemble, MIT Concert Choir and Chamber Chorus, Rambax MIT (Senegalese drumming ensemble), Suzie Collier (Jacob’s Mom), and other special guest musicians from Boston and Los Angeles.
Jacob Collier’s new album is the first of four volumes being released throughout 2019. The December 8th concert features most of “Djesse Vol. 1” including the first live performance of “With The Love In My Heart,” adapted by Jamshied Sharifi, plus rarely heard orchestral arrangements along with musical surprises.
Jacob’s return to MIT follows the success of his 2016 large-scale concert and subsequent New England Emmy-winning documentary about that event, “Imagination Off The Charts: Jacob Collier Comes to MIT.”
Co-produced by MIT’s Center for Art, Science & Technology (CAST) and MIT Music and Theater Arts, Music Director Frederick Harris, Jr. collaborates with MIT’s master audio technologist and key Collier associate Ben Bloomberg, media experience artist Peter Torpey, and other MIT artists including Laura Grill Jaye (MIT Vocal Jazz Ensemble director), William Cutter (MIT Choirs conductor), and Senegalese drumming master Lamine Touré (Rambax MIT director).
More about Jacob Collier at MIT
Image: Jacob Collier, Djesse Vol. 1 album cover, courtesy of the artist.
Spider’s Canvas / Arachnodrone
February 16, 2019 / 9:00pm
February 17, 2019 / 3:00pm
February 18, 2019 / 7:00pm
April 16, 2019 / 11:00am – 3:00pm
MIT Building W97
345 Vassar Street, Cambridge, MA
February 26-April 2019
MIT.nano, MIT Building 12-3207
The Immersion Lab
60 Vassar Street, Cambridge, MA
The live concert of Spider’s Canvas / Arachnodrone is a co-creation of composer and MIT CAST Faculty Director Evan Ziporyn, composer/visual artist Christine Southworth ’02, sound artist Ian Hattwick, spider researcher Isabelle Su, in collaboration with artist Tomás Saraceno, whose originating idea provides the basis of the concert, and MIT Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) Department Head and McAfee Professor Markus Buehler.
The concert premiered in November 2018 as part of Saraceno’s acclaimed carte blanche exhibition ON AIR at Palais de Tokyo in Paris curated by Rebecca Lamarche Vadel, with the programme supported by Festival d’Automne, Paris.
This project emerged from myriad interactions between different disciplines, in an effort to work together—and extend the boundaries of disciplinary knowledge and practices—toward new understandings of emergent human and non-human entanglements. The technical development of this musical instrument was inspired and made possible by the Spider Web Scan—a novel scientific apparatus and technique for generating precise 3D scans and digital models of complex spider webs—first created by Saraceno in 2009/2010 in collaboration with the TU Darmstadt, and more recently refined in Saraceno’s ongoing collaboration with the MIT Laboratory for Atomistic and Molecular Mechanics (led by Markus Buehler). Based closely on a tent-web made by a semi-social South American Cyrtophora citricola spider, the work is not simply interdisciplinary, but quite literally an interspecies collaboration.
Spider’s Canvas is a co-production of MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology, MIT Music & Theater Arts, MIT Civil & Environmental Engineering.
To see excerpts of the Paris performances, please visit arachnodrone.com.
Spider web music: An inspiring harmony of art and science
The Washington Post:
‘Spider’s Canvas/Arachnodrone’: A web of otherworldly music
A Three-Dimensional Spider Web Soundscape Comes to Life
WGBH Radio Interview:
Spiders Are the Partners in this ‘Inter-Species Collaboration’
Photos of Spider’s Canvas / Arachnodrone on flickr
Image: Spider’s Canvas performance during Tomas Saraceno’s exhibition ON AIR at Palais de Tokyo in Paris, France on November 23, 2018. Photo courtesy of Aurelie Cenno/Palais de Tokyo.
BIC in Concert, Featuring Jean Appolon Expressions
Friday, April 5, 2019 / 8:00pm
Lobdell, MIT Building W20
84 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA
CAST Visiting Artist BIC is a Haitian rapper, poet, and singer whose prior work with Professor of Digital Media Nick Montfort and Professor of Linguistics Michel DeGraff helped create digital literary art in Kreyòl.
The cross-pollination of Kreyòl linguistics, poetry, computer science, and music continues at MIT for one week in April 2019. As part of MIT Sounding, BIC performs his work in collaboration with musicians, dancers, and performers from MIT and the greater Cambridge area.
“Tout Istwa Se Istwa: Cultural Story Machines” Digital Story-Telling Workshop
Tuesday, April 2, 2019 / 5:00-7:00pm / MIT Building 66-154
Karaoke Kreyòl, followed by an appearance by BIC
Wednesday, April 3, 2019 / 8:00pm / Brothers’ Kafe Kreyòl, 299 Main Street, Everett, MA
“Vwayaj” Movement Workshop with Jean Appolon
Friday, April 5, 2019 / 1:00-3:00pm / MIT Building W97-162
More about BIC at MIT.
Image: BIC. Courtesy of the artist.
Harbison’s 80th at Jordan Hall
Sunday, April 7, 2019 / 3:00pm
Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory
30 Gainsborough Street, Boston, MA
Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP) performs works by Institute Professor John Harbison in honor of his 80th birthday. Featuring Remembering Gatsby (Foxtrot for Orchestra), Dawn Upshaw performing Harbison’s Milosz Songs, Symphony No. 6, and the Concerto for Viola and Orchestra with MIT Institute Professor Marcus Thompson.
The Boston Musical Intelligencer: A Rewarding Harbison Tribute
Image: Jordan Hall. Credit New England Conservatory.
DON’T WANT TO WAIT
Joel Fan, solo piano
Featuring works by MIT Faculty Composers
April 18, 2019 / 8:00pm
MIT Killian Hall, 14W-111
160 Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA
Keeril Makan Afterglow (2007)
John Harbison Three Montale Sketches (1999, 2004)
Bernard Rands Four Impromptus (2018) [Boston Premiere]
Gyorgy Ligeti Etudes Book III (1995 – 2001)
Evan Ziporyn & Christine Southworth Don’t Want to Wait (2018) [Boston Premiere]
Bernard Rands & Augusta Read Thomas Two Thoughts About The Piano (2018) [Boston Premiere]
Charles Shadle A Tale of My Native Land (Ballade after Hawthorne) (2016)
Elena Ruehr Preludes (2002)
Celebrated for his exuberant virtuosity and a bold repertoire that embraces piano classics and inspired discoveries of contemporary and world music, Joel Fan reinvents the piano recital by illuminating the rare and unexpected—creating, in the words of the Baltimore Sun’s critic Tim Smith, “one of the most satisfying piano performances I’ve heard.”
Fan performs a bold selection of works by MIT composers as part of MIT Sounding, and collaborates with MIT composition students as they develop their own new works in April 2019.
More about Joel Fan at MIT.