A Change of Harp
Saturday, September 20
First Unitarian Church of PhiladelphiaMap
What if live music was displayed like visual art, allowing you to linger at pieces that spoke to you and pass by others that did not? Berio’s 14 Sequenzas – solo works for nearly every instrument – will be on display within rooms decorated to match their style, era, and power. Come anytime during the show and wander.
$20 / Members save 30%
An exceptionally rare opportunity for any daring listener. Luciano Berio’s unsparingly difficult Sequenzas (14 in total, each one for a different solo instrument) are widely acclaimed as essential repertoire of the 20th century. While some of the music from that century (the dreaded ‘new music’) has been cast off as “academic” or “unapproachable”, these works have thrived because they appeal as much to to a listener’s ear as to a musician’s sense of adventure.
Rather than presenting the works in a typical, static concert environment, this production (conceived and organized by Elizabeth Morgan-Ellis, and presented by Bowerbird) offers the Sequenzas performed live in an immersive, site-specific, interactive environment set throughout the entire First Unitarian Church. From a circus scene to a 60s bedroom, each of these rooms reflects elements of the piece that brings listeners closer to the music.
Audience members may choose to watch all fourteen works as they move from room to room, or to move freely at their own pace for up to three hours, choosing where to go and what to see, so that everyone’s journey is unique. Beyond the live performances and sets, each room will feature listening stations where the audience may listen to pieces that influenced a particular sequenza, read written letters about the pieces, watch documentary materials on the life of Berio, or hear more about a particular piece if they wish to fully immerse themselves in just one work for a period of time. They may also exit the premises at any point.
Sequenza I -flute- Katie Ambacher
Sequenza II -harp- Elizabeth Morgan-Ellis
Sequenza III -voice- Alize Rozsnyai
Sequenza IV -piano- Christopher Oldfather
Sequenza V -trombone- Justin Moore
Sequenza VI -viola- Kristina Giles
Sequenza VII -oboe- Jocelyn Plant
Sequenza VIII -violin- Rebecca Schlappich
Sequenza IXb -alto sax- Aaron Stewart
Sequenza X -trumpet- Kenneth Bean
Sequenza XI -guitar- Jordan Dodson
Sequenza XII -bassoon- (Recorded and projected into a soundspace) Martin Kuuskmann
Sequenza XIII -accordion- Bill Schimmel
Sequenza XIV -cello- Mirjam Ingolfsson
A Change of Harp