At Panoply Performance Laboratory by Mitchell Murdock
Recently I had the privilege of shooting some video at the glorious Lehman College Multimedia Center with my old roommate Keren Plowden. It was an exercise in articulating who I have become in the last 5 years or so: how I work with composers, who I am as a performer. I've been considering this article from Nautilus magazine, excerpted from this book - that collaborating and performing can take the shape of a laboratory, where the language of the composer is the raw data, and as a performer, I lift patterns out. That is to say: I haven't completely lost sight of my scientific training (thanks, Oberlin), nor my childhood spent puzzling over abstract math problems scribbled on diner napkins by my dad, with whom I share a constant inquisitiveness; we could be sitting alone in a train station for an hour, staring at a wall, brain humming. It's not a sense of mental quietude, per se; it's more that our minds are like intellectual hamster wheels, which makes me keen to work on new music, peer inside the abyss.
And so, next month, I take on Peter Maxwell Davies' Eight songs for a mad king with TENTH INTERVENTION, a work that fascinated me when I first saw it performed by Peter Tantsits and ICE. There's a fair amount of theatrics, and seduction. My favorite environment.