Arts and Music


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Choreographer Allyson Green returns to SummerFest to present Nada Que Declarar (but everything to say). Set to J.S. Bach's Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major and mingled with Tijuana street sounds, the piece reflects upon Green's years of border crossings. This west coast premiere is performed by cellist Felix Fan and the Lux Boreal dance troupe, and arrives after a critically acclaimed tour in New York and New Haven. The program also includes Moszkowski's  Suite for Two Violins and Piano in G Major, performed by  Bei Zhu and Lindsay Deutsch (violins) and Weiyin Chen (piano).

Tan Dun's powerful score for cellist and four percussionists commemorates the 1989 massacre in Beijing's Tiananmen Square. The title refers to the 13th-century Chinese drama by Kuan Han-Ching, in which a young woman, Dou Eh, is executed for crimes she did not commit. Even nature cries out for Dou Eh's innocence: her blood does not fall to earth, but flies upward, and a heavy snow falls in June. Likewise Tan Dun's music sings of pity and purity, beauty and darkness. As choreographed by Allyson Green, this striking dance/theatre work is a lament for victims everywhere.

Cho-Liang Lin, SummerFest's Music Director and world-renowned violinist, performs a selection of his favorite works, accompanied by a stellar cast of colleagues.

Japanese woodblock prints (Ukiyo-e) depict images that evoke moments of pleasure and respite from everyday toils. In Malashock Dance's The Floating World, contemporary forms of music, dance and image-making draw inspiration from this aesthetic to reveal what it takes to create a 'façade of beauty' in the arts today. Choreographer John Malashock and UCSD-based filmmaker/projection artist Tara Knight co-conceived the work, including a four-sided video environment enveloping performers and audience. Bay Area 'avant' cellist, Zoe Keating provides the musical score and fashion icon Zandra Rhodes designed the costumes.

Is it possible to define music? What is its utility? What needs does it serve? Does it have survival value? Is it biologically necessary? Are humans inherently musical? Using audio & video examples from around the globe and drawing on historical, psychological, neurological & cultural research on music making, saxophonist and educator David Borgo explores why we make music, ultimately arguing that music is a universal human phenomenon but not a universal language.

La Jolla Symphony & Chorus presents a multimedia concert. The first half offers GOTHAM, a 2004 joint production by filmmaker Bill Morrison and composer Michael Gordon. Using archival footage of New York City, Gotham combines film, projectors, lighting, and the orchestra to create a haunting impression of that city. Stravinsky's opulent PERSEPHONE, which the composer described as a "melodrama," sets a text by André Gide that tells of the descent of the goddess Persephone into the underworld and her return. For this presentation the Symphony is joined by the Lux Boreal Dance Company, a narrator, a tenor soloist, and a children's choir.

"She is Fierce: The Art of Joyce Cutler-Shaw" is an exploration of the multimedia artist's expansive and diverse body of work, featuring commentary from colleagues and an in-depth interview with Cutler-Shaw. Throughout her long career the art of Joyce Cutler-Shaw has taken on a wide spectrum of forms, from melting iconic "ice words" and reflective light sculptures to installations and public commissions to intricately drawn depictions of the human form. Her subjects are human identity and the natural world; her themes are evolution and survival - from reptile into bird, from mammal to human, and from human, perhaps, to humane. But always at her art's core, according to Cutler-Shaw, is her use of drawing "as a way of knowing, as a mode of inquiry, as a visual language." Her "word images" have been central motifs, informing her works from the outset. Culter-Shaw's works are exhibited in museums and library collections worldwide.

In the finale concert for UC San Diego Jazz Camp 2016, sax virtuoso Charles McPherson leads a talented group of students in a performance of standards and new works. Recorded on 06/24/2016.

Director Jay Roach (Austin Powers trilogy, Meet The Parents, and Trumbo) discusses his film "All the Way" which offers a behind-the-scenes look at President Lyndon B. Johnson's tumultuous first year in office after the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Recorded on 11/02/2016.

Director Madhusree Dutta and UCSB Department of Film and Media Studies Professor Bhaskar Sarkar discuss the film "7 Islands and a Metro," a fascinating documentary on Bom Bahia / Bombay / Mumbai. Recorded on 11/16/2016.

The Last Aristocrats is a film based on a short story by Kenneth Pai, UCSB Professor Emeritus. It follows four young Chinese women from elite Shanghai families who become stranded in the US when the communists take over Shanghai in 1948. Professor Pai, is joined by Professor Michael Berry of UCLA's Contemporary Chinese Cultural Studies. Recorded on 01/17/2017.
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