First Person: Seeing America with Ensemble Galilei and Lily Knight
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The last date listed for First Person: Seeing America was Saturday April 21, 2012 / 8:00pm.
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With a title that alludes to an inciting moment in the creative life of one of the biggest icons in music history, Miles Davis and the Blue Flame Incident celebrates the life and work of one of the most innovative jazz musicians of all time. An exploration of Davis' career, this unique performance combines video clips, voiceovers that brings to life sections of his autobiography, still images and, most importantly, incredible live music courtesy of the Metta Quintet. As the musicians perform a variety of songs that demonstrates the range and imagination of the trumpeter, bandleader and cultural provocateur that was Miles Davis, an inspirational story of the man himself is woven with the supporting media in this not-to-be-missed show. Learn More
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This was our first time to the new Soka Performing Arts center. It was beautiful and there was not a single bad seat in the house.
Unfortunately though, during the portions of the show where the narration was going on, the mixing or acoustics or something was making her voice quite muffled and difficult to hear. Someone notified the House Manager at intermission about this, and the voice quality was much better afterward.
The stories told were intriguing and the music was amazing! We bought a CD , so we could hear more. Excellent show, and quite different than what is readily available these days!
First Person: Seeing America combines iconic photographs from The Metropolitan Museum of Art – searing pictures of the Civil War and haunting portraits from the Great Depression – with the music of Ensemble Galilei and narration by actress Lily Knight to create a remarkable and powerful performance.
Begin with the strength, diversity and depth of the photography collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art: photographs by Walker Evans, Edward Curtis, Alfred Stieglitz, Paul Strand, Weegee and Thomas Eakins. Take those images and accompany them with the words of Langston Hughes, Carson McCullers, Damon Runyan, John Muir, Frederick Douglass, and others. The soundtrack is the evocative music of Ensemble Galilei – Bach, traditional music from Scotland and Ireland, and new compositions featuring fiddles, harp, viola da gamba, percussion, whistles and oboe.
Transcendent and soulful music winds around the text as high-resolution images are projected on a large screen in the center of the stage. In their second touring project with Ensemble Galilei, NPR’s Neal Conan and actress Lily Knight brilliantly bring people, events and places to life. What people! The haunted faces of rural Americans as they struggle to survive the Dust Bowl, indelible portraits of Native Americans. The events that shaped a nation – the Civil War, the Great Depression, the immigrant experience. And what places – from the sidewalks of New York to the majesty of Yosemite. Great photographers captured it all – hardship, war and despair, and the gritty determination of extraordinary people in a magnificent land. This is what these extraordinary photographers saw – First Person: Seeing America.