New York Times Zorn@60 Guggenheim Review

I can’t believe that this man is 60. Having recently spent a considerable amount of time with him, I can assure you he has more pep in his step than those half his age. Talk about an inspiration.

The New York Times review from the Guggenheim show is in, and survey says awesomesauce!! You can read the full review here. It’s been a crazy ride putting together Earthspirit and Madrigals and we’re about to tour all of Europe with Holy Visions, the piece he wrote for the Sapphites back in November.  So stay tuned for that! 

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(How creepy do we look all in red and black!)

Here’s what the fabulous Steve Smith had to say about our singing:

 

The sopranos Mellissa Hughes and Jane Sheldon and the mezzo-soprano Kirsten Sollek sang sublimely, their precise pitch and clear tones shimmering and resonating in discordant harmonies and intricate metrical maneuvers.

Those singers and three more —  the sopranos Lisa Bielawa and Sarah Brailey, and the mezzo-soprano Abby Fischer —  brought the same exactitude and luster to “Madrigals,” for which Mr. Zorn assembled phrases inspired by reading Percy Bysshe Shelley. Harmonically consonant, often unambiguously melodic and rhythmically effervescent, these half-dozen songs could easily slip into standard repertory.

 

Needless to say, I’m pleased as punch. These are the hardest pieces I’ve attempted to learn in quite sometime. In fact, so hard, I dragged myself to Guitar Center to buy a keyboard, AND I’m rocking a nasty bruise on my left hand from whacking it with my tuning fork repeatedly. New music can be painful in a variety of ways it seems. 

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Washington Post Review from Atlas Theater Show in DC with Newspeak

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It’s been a really fun two weeks playing with Newspeak, one of my favorite bands, first at the Invisible Dog, and Friday at the Atlas Theater in DC, the latter was made even more awesome due to its proximity to Dangerously Delicious Pies.   We were rewarded with a fantastic review in the Washington Post! You can check out the full review here, but a few choice quotes:

In the tiny but essential niche of punk-classical music, Newspeak pretty much rules. Driving rhythms, sophisticated compositions by cutting-edge composers, virtuosic playing on electrified instruments — there’s little not to like about the New York-based ensemble

And about yours truly

Newspeak’s gutsy soprano Mellissa Hughes, leading the ensemble with fire and purpose, ratcheted the work to a wild, intoxicating pitch

June is busting out all over, and I’m busting out some Rzewski and Zorn!

 

Wanted to take a moment to point out some awesome shows that I have coming up. First up, Newspeak, my favorite punk-classical band is playing six shows this coming weekend. Inspired by letters from inmates of Attica pre the 1971 riots, Coming Together/Attica is one of Frederic Rzewski’s most powerful works. We are in collaboration with Rebecca Lazier, a choreographer who attended our Rzewski show 5 years ago and immediately had a vision for what she thought could be a truly powerful piece, and man, was she right. We’re finally performing all of Coming Together, which includes Attica, a truly gorgeous contrast to the raucousness of the first movement, and I’m so thrilled to be participating with these dancers! 
 
Six shows all together over three nights at the Invisible Dog
 
Thursday June 13th, 7pm, 9pm (TONIGHT!!!)
Friday June 14th, 7:30pm, 9:30pm
Saturday June 15th, 7:30pm, 9:30pm 
 
The show will run for 50 minutes. Tickets are a $20 suggested donation, and seating is limited, so if you want a spot, buy a ticket! If you’re interested in reading more about the show, Coming Together/Attica has been receiving some fabulous press. Excuse the link dump:
 
CultureBot (Best article title EVER)
 
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Ain’t we some sexy bitchez??
 
 
Attention fans in DC area, Newspeak is coming at you June 21st at the Atlas Theater!! The website has the wrong repertoire listed, but we are premiering a bunch of new works by Corey Dargel, Ruby Fulton, and Randy Woolf in addition to some old favorites by David T. Little, Caleb Burhans, and, just because we’re really good at it, Rzewski’s Coming Together.  Tickets are available HERE, and just because I still have your attention, it happens to be a Washington Post Critics Pick! 
 
Still with me? Hang in there, the end is near. 
 
John Zorn fans! I bring you tidings of great news, for lo and behold, I have been made a Daughter of Jerusalem! Mr. JZ is celebrating his 60th birthday this year, and what that means for me is a lot of traveling and singing some bad-ass-rock-your-face-off music. I have two shows coming up June 23rd and June 25th at 7:30pm in the Guggenheim Rotunda where the other Sapphic Sisters and I will premiere Earthspirit and Madrigals inside a James Turrell instillation! Tickets are available HERE