Entries tagged with: Park Avenue Armory

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photos by Ryan Muir

'Habeas Corpus' / Anderson / Souleyman / Garbus @ Park Ave. Armory 10/2/2015
Laurie Anderson: Habeus Corpus
Laurie Anderson: Habeus Corpus
Laurie Anderson: Habeus Corpus
Laurie Anderson: Habeus Corpus
Laurie Anderson: Habeus Corpus

You can't miss the no-joke political import of Anderson's collaboration with onetime Guantánamo prisoner Mohammed el Gharani. As he is barred from entering the US, Anderson's use of "telepresence" to stream his image live into an Upper East Side venue serves a refreshingly clear conceptual purpose.

"Habeas corpus," we're told at the hall's entryway, means "you shall have the body". If a modern western government can't make good on this rule-of-law pillar, Anderson and Gharani will use digital technology to give us the next best thing.

Lit principally by a very slowly rotating disco ball, the vast interior of the Armory contains a larger-than-life sculpture of a throne and a seated occupant. (In a thoughtful essay published ahead of the exhibit, Anderson confirmed that viewers aren't wrong to think of the Lincoln Memorial.) Gharani's live image, shot from an undisclosed location in west Africa, is then projected on to the stage for the majority of each day's exhibition schedule.- [The Guardian]

Laurie Anderson's Habeas Corpus happened at NYC's Park Avenue Armory over the weekend. As mentioned in The Guardian review quoted above, the day portion of the installation was a collaboration with former Guantánamo Bay prisoner Mohammed el Gharani whose image was projected in real time against a giant throne while sound design by Anderson, including guitar drones by her late husband Lou Reed, filled the large hall. On the Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings there was a "dance party" featuring tUnE-yArDs' Merrill Garbus, guitarist Shahzad Ismaily, and Anderson herself (who performed "O Superman"). They wrapped up with a set by Omar Souleyman that, according to the Guardian, had some people confused:
Accustomed to being a party starter, Souleyman's inclusion so utterly baffled a large (and seated) portion of the crowd that the cool, typically unflappable singer had to work visibly to get the crowd dancing. The printed program for Habeas Corpus explicitly advertises that the evening concerts are supposed to be "dance parties" -thereby helping justify the use of the disco ball - but the somnolent nature of the first half of Friday's concert didn't do much to prepare an audience that hadn't read up in advance.
Did you check out Habeas Corpus over the weekend? We've got pics from the first day (10/2) and lots more are below...

Continue reading "pics: Laurie Anderson's "Habeas Corpus" @ Park Avenue Armory w/ Merrill Garbus, Omar Souleyman & more"

Laurie and her dog Lolabelle
Laurie Anderson Heart of a Dog

We knew Laurie Anderson's new work, "Habeas Corpus," would be making its U.S. premiere at the Park Avenue Armory from October 2 - 4, and now we have more details. Part of it is a "site-specific environment that uses telepresence to examine memory, monuments, and prohibited space." The installation is open to the public during the day noon - 7 PM, and is $15 general public and free to Armory members. Each night, there will a celebratory performance and dance party with Omar Souleyman, including a new sonic composition created by Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs with Anderson. Tickets are on sale now.

Currently at Park Avenue Armory is Tree of Codes, the ballet created by choreographer Wayne McGregor, visual artist Olafur Eliasson with music by Jamie xx. Tree of Codes runs from September 14-21 and tickets to Thursday (9/17), Friday (9/18) and the Saturday matinee (9/19, 2 PM) are still available.

In other Laurie Anderson news, her new film Heart of the Dog, about her own rat terrier, Lolabelle, will play at NYC's Film Forum from October 21 - November 3. Tickets are on sale and here's the description:

Lolabelle was Laurie Anderson's beloved rat terrier. "Hello, little bonehead. I'll love you forever," is how she greets the puppy in the movie's hilarious first scene in which she gives birth to her dog. Dreams, memories, and stories of childhood trauma and loss form a kind of emotional wallpaper against which Anderson foregrounds her story. The musician/composer/poet/philosopher creates a humorous, deeply moving meditation on the relationship of woman and dog, and in the process comments with wit and prescience on the changes in post-9/11 America. Rat terriers are bred to protect borders, but Lolabelle not only engages in the kind of surveillance the filmmaker notes proliferating everywhere, but also plays experimental piano and paints. "Every love story is a ghost story," Anderson quotes David Foster Wallace, as she illuminates the Buddhist concept of the afterlife (the bardo). HEART OF A DOG employs an original, hypnotic visual language that embraces animation, home movies, and loop-like images, complemented by Anderson's signature music.
Anderson's Heart of a Dog will also air on HBO in 2016.

photo: Jamie xx at NYU in 2014 (more by Mimi Hong)
Jamie xx

The Armory's 2015 season encompasses site-specific installations, commissions, and cross-disciplinary collaborations across a range of art forms--including Philippe Parreno's largest exhibition in the U.S. to-date, a multi-sensory journey within the monumental interior of the Armory's drill hall; Tree of Codes, a new contemporary ballet with direction and choreography by Wayne McGregor, visual concept by artist Olafur Eliasson, and music by Jamie xx; a commission of performance art by Laurie Anderson; and an immersive interpretation of J. S. Bach's Goldberg Variations by pianist Igor Levit and performance artist Marina Abramović.
The Park Avenue Armory 2015 season runs from this month through December with various events. As quoted in the press release above, one of those especially interesting events is Tree of Codes, a new ballet with music by The xx's Jamie xx.The ballet was inspired by the book of the same name by Jonathan Safran Foer, and Jamie worked alongside choreographer Wayne McGregor and visual artist Olafur Eliasson. Having had his work displayed in conjunction with a Sigur Ros performance in the past, Olafur is no stranger to working with indie musicians. That ballet runs from September 14-21.

The following month, it's the legendary Laure Anderson premiering her new multimedia artwork, Language of the Future: The Line, from October 2-4. The work will be "harnessing a cacophony of events from anthropology and history to form a series of songs in visual form. Commissioned by the Armory, Anderson creates a site-specific environment in which audiences confront these diametrically opposing ideas, situations, and images. The result is a processional of consciousness where doubt, perception, and illusion are defined and redefined in equal measure."

You purchase a 2015 season subscription here. Full schedule with more info, below...

Continue reading "Jamie xx worked on a ballet w/ Olafur Eliasson, debuting it at Park Ave Armory; 2015 season also includes Laurie Anderson"

Massive Attack

An extraordinary collaboration connecting the dark, intense music and visual work of Robert Del Naja of Massive Attack with the thought-provoking vision of documentary filmmaker Adam Curtis, this site-specific event integrates music, film, politics, and elements of illusion in a hallucinatory ride through the dreams and hidden realities of our strange, anxious age.

Created by a visionary team of artists and designers that also includes Massive Attack, Punchdrunk director Felix Barrett (Sleep No More), radical set designer Es Devlin (stage and costume designer for everyone from the Royal Shakespeare Company to Kanye West and Jay-Z), and the innovative art and design practice United Visual Artists (whose commissions for venues such as the Tate Modern and the Serpentine Gallery intersect sculpture, architecture, live performance, and digital installation), this groundbreaking production includes performances by Massive Attack and places the audience at the center of arresting stories of politics and power over the past 30 years.

The "collective halucination" known as "Massive Attack V Adam Curtis" happens across six performances at the Park Avenue Armory from September 28 - 30 and October 2 - 4. Individual tickets don't go on sale till June 17 but you can buy a season pass to the Armory's 2013 season now.

The Park Avenue Armory's 2013 season also includes Karlheinz Stockhausen & Kathinka Pasveer's OKTOPHONIE (March 20 - 27, tickets); the previously-mentioned The Life and Death of Marina Abramović starring Antony and Willem Dafoe (December 12 to 21); and visual artist Paul McCarthy's WS installation (June 19 - Aug 4).

Life and Death of Marina Abramovic

Marina Abramović has earned international renown and acclaim for the boldness and startling originality of her work. But when the self-proclaimed "grandmother of performance art" decided to put her life story on stage, Abramović opted to hand the reigns to another visionary avant-gardist, director Robert Wilson. The remarkable result, The Life and Death of Marina Abramović, features Abramović in dual roles--as herself and her mother--and Willem Dafoe as the narrator, with original music composed and performed by Antony Hegarty of Antony and the Johnsons. [Luminato]
The Life and Death of Marina Abramović, Robert Wilson's new quasi-opera, which he "conceived and directed," and which stars Marina herself, along with major actor Willem Dafoe and Antony and the Johnsons brainparent Antony Hegarty (who has performed with Marina), will make its North American premiere in Toronto this June, and then makes its US premiere in NYC at the Park Avenue Armory from December 12 to 21. Single tickets go on sale to the general public on June 17, and will be available on June 10 for members of the Park Avenue Armory, and June 13 for season ticket holders.

A short clip of Antony singing in The Life And Death of Marina Abramović and a list of all showtimes at the Armory below...

Continue reading "'The Life and Death of Marina Abramović,' starring Antony and Willem Dafoe, making US premiere at Park Avenue Armory"

Rufus Wainwright in Poughkeepsie - Feb. 12th (more by Eric Townsend)
Rufus Wainwright

Blackoutsabbath is a concept created by Canadian-American singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, as promoted by the organization Blackout Sabbath. In an attempt to become more environmentally conscious, participants are asked to live "off the grid" as much as possible on a designated date by unplugging appliances, walking or cycling for transportation, turning out lights and decreasing energy usage in any other ways possible.
Rufus will performing with sister Martha Wainwright at the third annual Blackoutsabbath concert (an afternoon show) on Sunday, March 14th at Park Avenue Armory. Tickets are on sale now.
The program, much like the fantastic Stanford White architecture of the space, will be decidedly European. Martha will sing Piaf and I (drum roll please).............will sing the entire Berlioz song cycle, "Les Nuits d'Ete." Now, this later announcement comes with a warning - let me explain.

I don't consider this first run through of Hector's massive work as the official premiere of yet another daunting move I'm making in the world of classical music. If anything, it's a bench mark set to aid the rise of this gnarled bud that one day will see the light of day and blossom into a full blown lugubrious flower......in other words, I'm going to make a lot of mistakes. [Rufus Wainwright]

He'll be in the UK and Europe for shows this April and May (his new opera, Prima Donna, premieres in London April 12th). Rufus's new record, All Days Are Nights: Songs For Lulu, comes out April 20th in the US.

All tour dates are below...

Continue reading "Rufus Wainwright playing Park Avenue Armory w/ Martha (Blackoutsabbath 2010 - tix on sale) & other dates "