“Reading about the Walker’s new Performing Arts season is always like opening a Christmas present from someone who knows how to shop, spares no expense, and has a fantastically active imagination.” –Pamela Espeland, Minn Post
Minneapolis, May 12, 2014—The Walker Art Center announces its 2014–2015 performing arts season today, featuring contemporary dance, theater, and music artists from around the globe. Philip Bither, McGuire Senior Curator, Performing Arts, comments: “In 2014-15, we celebrate the Walker’s 75th Anniversary as a multi-disciplinary art center by looking both forward and back. The season furthers the Walker’s international position as a leader in contemporary performing arts by supporting multiple commissions, residencies and debuts, including world premieres by interdisciplinary vanguardist Ralph Lemon, theater auteur Richard Maxwell, performance artist/filmmaker/author Miranda July, and Minnesotans Chris Schlichting (dance-theater) and Chris Larson (sculptor/director). Season highlights include the mind-blowing immersive digital/theatrical spectacle superposition by Japanese electronic music and visual artist Ryoji Ikeda; rare remounts of signature works by Belgian choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker and Judson Dance Theater alum/contact improvisation creator Steve Paxton; and drummer Jack DeJohnette with an all-star group of free jazz masters. We also further our on-going partnerships with The Cedar Cultural Center, The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra’s Liquid Music series, Northrop at the University of MN, and The Soap Factory. Three intensive mini-festivals, focused on the work of composer/guitarist Bryce Dessner (of The National), choreographer Paxton, and solo dance works on the redefinition of home by leading African choreographers, will combine with the 27th year of our month-long Out There alternative performance festival to enable us to dig deeper artistically and reach audiences in new ways.”
The Walker’s 2014-2015 Performing Arts season opens with the world premiere of the Walker-commissioned Scaffold Room by Ralph Lemon. In this collaboration with the Walkers’ Visual Arts department, Lemon merges performance, visual art, music, and text in an inquisitive hybrid that will be completed at the Walker before a national tour. Lemon calls his latest work a “lecture-performance-musical,” one that refracts ideas of contemporary performance through archetypal black female personae in American culture. In the piece, three women—Okwui Okpokwasili and April Matthis (performing live) with the 86-year-old Edna Carter and her extended family (on video)—enact parallel iconic characters that draw from history, popular culture, and speculative fiction with source materials ranging from Moms Mabley to Amy Winehouse, Kathy Acker to Samuel Delaney, as they “act out” within and around assumptions about prescribed cultural body politics. The live performance installation is supported by an electronic/turntable–based sound score created and performed by composer Marina Rosenfeld. The space for Scaffold Room is a confined, constructed two-story environment, in essence its own theater, placed in the Walker’s white cube Burnet Gallery.
For a portion of his three-week residency, Lemon’s sound and image installation Meditation will be on view in the McGuire Theater. Conceived as the final piece of his work cycle How Do You Stay in the House All Day and Not Go Anywhere, this immersive experience freely associates themes of shadow and light, sound, atmosphere, and memory.
Performing Arts Season Preview
Thursday, September 11
William and Nadine McGuire Theater, 7 pm
Join Philip Bither, McGuire Senior Curator of Performing Arts, as he weaves the story of the upcoming season, complete with engaging personal anecdotes, exclusive videos from the artists, and behind-the-scenes insights on the Walker’s more than 20 dance, theater, music, and interdisciplinary programs from around the globe. A storyteller who holds audiences rapt with his descriptions of discovering new performances each year, he explains why every show he presents is his favorite.
WALKER ART CENTER’S 2014–2015 PERFORMING ARTS SEASON
Unless otherwise noted, all events take place in the William and Nadine McGuire Theater.
($) = ticket prices for Walker Art Center members
World Premiere/Walker Commission
Friday, 7 and 9:30 pm; Saturday, 8 pm; Sunday, 7 pm
“(Lemon is) a multimedia star of a new constellation.” – The Huffington Post
Equal parts theater work and gallery installation, Scaffold Room is perhaps Ralph Lemon’s boldest experiment yet with the boundaries of form and presentation. Merging performance, visual art, music, and text, this “lecture-performance-musical” refracts ideas of contemporary performance through archetypal black female personae in American culture. The two-story environment/theater for Scaffold Room comes alive with riveting performances by Okwui Okpokwasili and April Matthis and a video appearance by 86-year-old Edna Carter and her extended family, all inspired by iconic female figures drawn from history and pop culture such as Moms Mabley and Amy Winehouse. The supporting electronic/turntable–based sound score is performed by composer Marina Rosenfeld. Note: Performance contains adult subject matter.
Commissioned by the Walker Art Center with support provided by the William and Nadine McGuire Commissioning Fund, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts. A production of Cross Performance and MAPP International Productions, the work is co-commissioned by Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography at Florida State University, Bard College/The Fisher Center for Performing Arts, and the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC), and was developed through a residency at the Park Avenue Armory.
September (dates and times TBA)
Free with gallery admission
William and Nadine McGuire Theater
Installed as a companion piece to Scaffold Room, Lemon’s immersive sound and film experience freely associates themes of love, loss, and redemption through high-definition projection, shadow, light, and atmosphere. This final piece of Lemon’s major 2010 performance work, How Can You Stay in the House All Day and Not Go Anywhere?, was acquired by the Walker in 2011.
Meditation is commissioned by the Walker Art Center, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts/University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and On the Boards. Support provided by the William and Nadine McGuire Commissioning Fund, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts.
This all-standing club concert is copresented with The Cedar
Saturday, October 4, 8 pm
The Cedar, 416 Cedar Avenue, Minneapolis
“Ms. Tijoux is South America’s answer to Lauryn Hill: equally skillful at singing and rapping and determined to empower everyone, not just herself.” —New York Times
Chile’s hip-hop heroine known for her fierce raps about feminism, freedom, and social justice makes her debut performance in Minnesota. Tijoux’s music tracks beats and samples from across the Americas, dipping deep into Andean charangos, pan flutes, reggae, and R&B. Born and raised in France to exiled Chilean parents escaping the Pinochet dictatorship, Tijoux returned to Chile after the return of civil power in 1993. She was soon revered as a national phenomenon for both her social commentaries that flow out as rapid-fire tongue twisters and her reputation for matching wits and will with her male counterparts.
Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker/Rosas
Rosas Danst Rosas
Copresented with Northrop at the University of Minnesota
Wednesday–Friday, October 15–17, 8 pm
“Riveting and exhausting, fascinating and relentless, brilliant and tedious, [Rosa Danst Rosas] is a mesmerizing exploration of synchronicity, patterning, and rhythm. “ —New York Times
Thirty-one years after her Rosas Danst Rosas set the dance world on fire, Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, one of the defining choreographers of our time, offers a rare remount of her masterpiece. Although the Walker has presented De Keersmaeker previously, her signature work has never been seen in the Midwest. Now widely viewed as a seminal work of art for its rhythmic complexity, stylized minimalism, and nuanced feminism, the piece has had an impact on several generations of dance, theater, and design creators on both sides of the Atlantic. Rosas Danst Rosas has also seeped into popular culture: Beyonce’s video hit “Countdown,” for instance, drew directly from its costuming, set, and choreography.
Supported in part with funds from the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts.
Friday–Saturday, October 24–25, 8 pm
$28 ($24) General Admission
“A sound and music event that is simultaneously mesmerically beautiful and so radically disorientating that afterwards you feel as if the world has tilted to one side.” —theartsdesk.com
Eyes open and jaws drop during this state-of-the-art, immersive performance experience, the newest work by renowned Japanese electronic music/visual artist Ryoji Ikeda. Employing a spectacular combination of synchronized video screens, real-time content feeds, digital sound sculptures, and—for the first time in Ikeda’s work—human performers, superposition explores the conceptual world opened up by quantum theory. Ikeda’s viscerally thrilling music plunges the audience into the gray space between 0 and 1, true and false, where uncertainty and probability coexist inside the indescribable structures at the very foundation of all life. Ikeda was a founder of the groundbreaking high-technology performance collective Dumb Type, which the Walker presented at the Guthrie Lab in 1999 and 2001. Note: Performance contains high decibel levels.
Support provided by Producers’ Council members King’s Fountain/Barbara Watson Pillsbury and Henry Pillsbury.
Thursday–Friday, October 30–31, 8 pm
$30 ($26) General Admission
“An innovative theatrical experiment… (and) a whimsical excursion into make-believe.” —Boston Globe
Take a room full of total strangers, add in an eccentrically charismatic guide, and begin a charmingly evocative experiment in public collaboration. In her return to the stage, performer/writer/filmmaker Miranda July mines the banal elements of our lives and unearths humor, lyrical beauty, and surprising poignancy. She offers us a journey into the New Society—an elaborate concoction in a future to be that intertwines fiction and faith, audience and artist. It’s theater of the moment in the best possible sense, where each of us may play a part.
Faustin Linyekula and Panaibra Gabriel Canda
Tales of Home: Congo/Mozambique
Friday–Saturday, November 7–8
This two-evening program of intimately scaled dance-theater features extraordinary contemporary artists from the African continent and the welcome return of Walker favorite Faustin Linyekula. In both full-length works, Linyekula and Canda grapple with the complex histories of their countries by reigniting memories of their fathers and their own experiences of dislocation, forced emigration, and cultural assimilation. They present, in very different ways, intimate and personal points of view on colonialized and post-colonial Africa, familial and national histories, and our global society—and in the process, reveal the rigor and passions of their contemporary lives.
Friday, November 7, 8 pm
“…Linyekula reminds us that moving performance doesn’t need pixels and live feeds – it can exist on the raw strength of the performer alone.”
Following the success of his recent work more more more… future, Linyekula now presents his first-ever choreographed solo, which intimately tells of his return home in search of things lost and the dance, people, and music he reclaimed in the process.
Panaibra Gabriel Canda
Time and Spaces: The Marrabenta Solos
Saturday, November 8, 8 pm
“Canda’s expressive and uniquely articulated body became the moving metaphor for the body of his country and the people’s struggle for identity… [using] fingers, hands, legs, and then muscles and bones to visualize geographic parts of the country and its population.” – Albuquerque Journal
The Marrabenta Solos deconstructs cultural representations of a “pure” African body. Since gaining independence from Portugal in 1975, Mozambique has been a land of social and political rifts that have seen an inflexible communist model gradually make way for a fragile democracy. This complex history is carried in marrabenta, a musical form born in the 1930s from a mix of local and European influences. Accompanied by virtuoso guitarist Jorge Domingos, Canda dances and speaks about today’s African body that has absorbed the elements of colonialism, nationalism, modernity, and freedom of expression.
Supported in part with funds from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts. North American Tour Produced by MAPP International Productions in partnership with The Africa Contemporary Arts Consortium.
Composing Forward: The Art of Steve Paxton
Thursday, Free; Friday–Saturday, $25 ($22)
“A titan of the 1960s and ’70s avant-garde” —New York Times
This multifaceted mini-festival celebrates the work of legendary dancer/choreographer Steve Paxton, creator of the worldwide movement phenomenon Contact Improvisation. Paxton’s life and art have been intricately linked to the Walker’s history of dance—from being a key dancer in Merce Cunningham’s company during some of Cunningham’s most fertile years in the 1960s to his role as a principal in the influential Judson Dance Theater (along with Trisha Brown, Yvonne Rainer, David Gordon, Deborah Hay, and Lucinda Childs) to his participation with the Grand Union collective, which had two seminal residencies at the Walker in the early ’70s. In recent years, Paxton’s live performances have been rare, but his role in the development of contemporary dance is profound.
Talking Dance with Steve Paxton
Thursday, November 13, 7 pm, Free
An informative and performative dialogue with Paxton begins with his influential work Smile, performed by longtime Paxton collaborator Lisa Nelson.
Friday, November 14, 8pm
A performance remount of his 1982 solo Bound, expertly performed by Slovenian dancer Jurij Konjar, combines improvised as well as set dance sequences with theatrical framing.
Friday–Saturday, November 21–22, 8pm
This poignant and incredibly nuanced duet created in 2004, performed by Paxton himself with longtime collaborator and master improviser Lisa Nelson, is a “reminder that one of the pleasures of watching high-level improvised performances is the sense you get of on-the-spot decisions, of accidents that become baby epics, of tides that turn unexpectedly.” (Deborah Jowitt’s DanceBeat)
Dawn of Midi and Nils Frahm
Copresented with the SPCO’s Liquid Music series
Saturday, November 15, 7 pm
$15 General Admission
Amsterdam Bar & Hall, 6th and Wabasha, St. Paul
With a grand piano, upright bass, and drum kit, Dawn of Midi may look like a traditional jazz combo, but their music is far from standard. Drawing from jazz, minimalism, rock, and a variety of world influences, their sound is ambient yet engrossing, sparse yet rhythmically demanding. Their 2013 release Dysnomia, “a work of lunatic genius” (Village Voice), expands the possibilities of acoustic sounds and was heralded by jazz, rock, and trance lovers alike. Berlin-based composer/keyboardist Nils Frahm’s work is both explosively energetic and intensely thoughtful. His sonic experiments meld electronic and acoustic sounds, and his latest release, Spaces, was named “one of the year’s best albums” by the Quietus. Frahm and Dawn of Midi share an evening that explores the interplay between extremes of sonic simplicity and complexity.
Curated by Kenna-Camara Cottman
Saturday, November 29, 7 and 9:30 pm
“As a snapshot of a community, the Walker Art Center’s Choreographers’ Evening might be the best annual curated event in Minnesota.” —Vita.mn
From established dancemakers forging new ideas to the scene’s youngest and brightest, Choreographers’ Evening has, over the course of 40-plus years, become an honored rite of passage for Minnesota dance artists. This snappy sampler of works lasting seven minutes or less gives you the inside scoop on our thriving local scene. Curator/choreographer Kenna-Camara Cottman is a self-described move-buster, 4th-wall-hater, and circle-creator.
This all-standing club concert is copresented with The Cedar
Friday, December 5, 8 pm
$25 ($22); $30 ($26) day of show
The Cedar, 416 Cedar Avenue, Minneapolis
“Undoubtedly the best Syrian-folk techno banger you’ll hear this—or any other—year.” — New Musical Express
Electro-shaabi anyone? Singing in Arabic and Kurdish, Omar Souleyman supercharges the sounds of shaabi and dabke—traditional music heard at social gatherings throughout the Middle East—into East meets West electronic dance music bursting with overdriven synthesizer and trance-inducing rhythm. Souleyman has found a new generation of admirers from around the globe thanks to projects such as his well-received remixes for Björk’s Biophilia and appearances at Bonnaroo and other prominent festivals. His first studio album, Wenu Wenu, was produced by renowned musician Kieran Hebden (Four Tet). Joining Souleyman is his longtime musical partner, keyboardist-composer Rizan Sa’id, known for his frenetic and otherworldly synth solos. But beyond all the mixing and remashing of sounds and traditions, Souleyman is known for his enthralling live performances—a fireball of Middle Eastern passion and excitement that “can compete against any kind of dance music being made right now, and succeed” (Pitchfork).
OUT THERE 2015
Thursday, $20 ($18)
Friday–Saturday, $25 ($22)
Richard Maxwell/New York City Players
Custodian of a Man
Thursday–Saturday, January 8–10, 8 pm
World Premiere/Walker Commission
“One of the strongest directors out there—an artist committed to making us see the world for what it is.” —New Yorker
Out There 2015 kicks off with a new work commissioned and developed by the Walker from award-winning playwright/director Richard Maxwell in a return to his earlier minimalist and muscular style. This archetypal tale of a good man in moral decline is a loose adaptation of Dante’s Inferno and Milton’s Paradise Lost, featuring six seasoned Maxwell actors, spare scenic design and live music. Although rich with sublimated humor and magnified nuance, Maxwell’s theater works are noted for their non-emotive acting style coupled with an extreme neutrality in direction. Circular conversations, fractured silences, and dead-pan absurdity permeate his works, yet one never suspects lurking parody or satire. Instead, the result is a sophisticated, surprisingly moving rendering of the human condition.
Richard Maxwell is the recipient of the 2014 Spalding Gray Award from P.S. 122; the Andy Warhol Museum; On the Boards; and the Walker Art Center.
Commissioned by the Walker Art Center with support provided by the William and Nadine McGuire Commissioning Fund, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
CAMPO/Pieter Ampe and Guilherme Garrido
Still Standing You
Thursday–Saturday, January 15–17, 8 pm
“To say that this contemporary dance piece is memorable is an understatement. You can’t forget watching two naked men manipulate each other’s penises in a game of one-upmanship.” —The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
Using their bodies as instruments, this Belgian-Portuguese duo explores the lines between play, tenderness, slapstick, and violence in an acclaimed performance art/dance work. The rough-and-tumble duo—sometimes seeming to be friends or brothers, at other times perhaps lovers or even strangers—reveal themselves through choreography that travels from masculine movement duets to gymnastics and wrestling to violent strokes of a leather belt and beyond. Yet humor and humanity shine throughout, as Ampe and Garrido achieve a delicate balance between pain and physical joy. Note: Performance contains nudity.
Thursday–Saturday, January 22–24, 8 pm
“A tour de force in which fiction and reality converge… multi-layered, cleverly using theatrical devices in new combinations, but it remains deeply human.” —British Theatre Guide
Four filmmakers in Buenos Aires each start a new project, not knowing that the creative process will change their lives forever. This “filmic drama” is performed by a handful of actors seamlessly changing characters on an elaborate two-story, split-screen set that allows for fluid switching between the lives of the filmmakers and the works being shot. Cinematic techniques adapted for the stage tell compelling stories of love, loss, joy, and despair. The Walker introduced the virtuoso director on his first US tour with El Pasado es un Animal Grotesco (The Past Is a Grotesque Animal) as part of Out There 2012. In Spanish with English surtitles.
Lucidity Suitcase Intercontinental
Thaddeus Phillips and the Wilhelm Bros. & Co.
RED-EYE TO HAVRE DE GRACE
January 29–31, 8 pm
“…this exquisite show is among the most original musical theater works I’ve seen in years.” —New York Times
Theater magician Thaddeus Phillips teams up with Minneapolis-based musical duo Wilhelm Bros. & Co. (Jeremy and David) to create a visually striking and sonically complex action-opera that follows the odd details surrounding Edgar Allan Poe’s mysterious last days. Set in September 1849, the playfully humorous yet dark RED-EYE TO HAVRE DE GRACE follows Poe on his last lecture tour from Virginia to New York, focusing on a stop in Maryland. There a train conductor saw Poe, wearing a stranger’s clothes, headed south just a few days before his death. Utilizing altered perspectives and ingenious stagecraft, this wildly inventive work is informed by 19th-century train routes, historical accounts, and Poe’s letters to his mother-in-law to create a spellbinding sketch of a man you soon realize you know little about.
Supported in part with funds from the National Theater Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts.
with Jennifer Davis and Alpha Consumer
(Jeremy Ylvisaker, Mike Lewis, JT Bates)
Stripe Tease (working title)
Thursday–Saturday, February 19–21, 8 pm
World Premiere/Walker Commission
“The world Schlichting reveals is full of clever kinetic asides, streamlined beauty, hints of mischief and thoughtful juxtapositions.” —Star Tribune
Named Best Choreographer in 2013 by City Pages, Chris Schlichting creates beautifully designed, meticulously constructed dance worlds that combine movement, visual art, and music. Building on a commission for the Walker’s 25th-anniversary celebration of the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden in 2013, he collaborates with rock/pop guitarist Jeremy Ylvisaker (Andrew Bird) and his band Alpha Consumer, whose repetition of musical phrasing is a perfect foil for Schlichting’s movement art. The collaboration also features Minnesota-based visual artist Jennifer Davis, whose collages and paintings strike a magical balance between childlike playfulness and dark yearnings. Crafting a deeply satisfying mix of large-scale spectacle and delicate intimacy, Schlichting’s newest work, which embraces and slyly subverts dance history, is sure to further his increasingly national reputation. Stripe Tease is copresented with the National Performance Network (NPN).
Stripe Tease is an NPN Creation Fund project commissioned by the Walker Art Center in partnership with Legion Arts, American Dance Institute, and NPN, with support provided by the William and Nadine McGuire Commissioning Fund, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. In honor of Dale Schatzlein (1948–2006) and his important work in dance and jazz in the Twin Cities, additional support is provided by Emily Maltz.
The Campbell Brothers perform John Coltrane’s
A Love Supreme
Copresented with the Cedar
Thursday, February 26, 8 pm
$25 ($22) General Admission
“It’s a soul-stirring blend of gospel and the power and volume of electric blues and rock, a sound as hot as brimstone that kicks holy butt.” —NPR
Masters of a little-known American musical tradition, the Campbell Brothers helped create a unique steel guitar–driven sound called Sacred Steel: African-American gospel with electric steel slide guitars and soaring vocals. February 2015 marks the 50th anniversary release of John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme, a seminal recording as well as a declaration that Coltrane’s expansive musical innovations had become intertwined with his religious devotion. To mark the anniversary, the Campbell Brothers revisit the work on their signature slide guitars and with particular attention to its transcendent spiritual message. The group features Chuck Campbell, a National Heritage Fellow and “the Jimi Hendrix and Django Reinhardt of the steel guitar” (Real Blues), with his brothers Darick and Phil along with a rhythm section. The concert opens with gospel and spiritual works from the Campbell Brothers’ repertoire.
Jack DeJohnette’s Made in Chicago
with Roscoe Mitchell, Muhal Richard Abrams, and Henry Threadgill
Thursday, March 12, 8 pm
$35 ($30) General Admission
“Challenging, thorny, dense, dissonant music that avoided certain jazz conventions … In a word, exhilarating.” —Chicago Tribune
Chicago-born jazz pianist/composer/NEA Jazz Master and one of the most influential jazz drummers of the 20th century, Jack DeJohnette revisits the avant-garde scene synonymous with his musical roots and plays tribute to the 50th anniversary of Chicago’s Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). This extraordinary gathering of free-jazz giants features three of the greatest artists to emerge from the AACM: pianist/composer Muhal Richard Abrams and reedists/composers Henry Threadgill and Roscoe Mitchell. The quintet is completed by prolific Chicago bassist Larry Gray. Expect an evening of uncompromised creativity and unmatched virtuosity with no rules left unbroken.
Tere O’Connor Dance
Thursday–Saturday, March 19–21, 8 pm
“[T]his masterly work … incorporates bits of ballet, gestures ordinary and obsessive, formal invention and flares of drama, the virtuosic and the casual, all treated equally … but each moment is strikingly singular.”
—New York Times
For his return to the Walker, choreographer Tere O’Connor collapses three recent works into a single choreographic exploration of ways that disparate cultures can blend in a symbiotic relationship. BLEED features 11 of the most distinctive and accomplished movement practitioners in the country, including Heather Olson, David Thomson, Cynthia Oliver, Hilary Clark, and Silas Riener, who expertly balance the ruminative and the playful with captivating results. Though a respected innovator in New York’s contemporary dance scene, O’Connor makes works for everyone—full of humor, humanity, and wit—and seems wholly aware that an “uncompromising investigation of choreography as a mirror of human consciousness doesn’t have to exclude fun” (New York Times).
The Music of Bryce Dessner
Copresented with the SPCO’s Liquid Music series
Friday–Saturday, April 3–4, 8 pm
$25 ($22) General Admission
“Dessner’s sensibility as a composer is furtive, urgent, intense—nothing at all, in other words, like his rock band.” —Pitchfork
Respected equally in the worlds of rock and new classical, in-demand composer/guitarist Bryce Dessner is busy making richly imagined music and defying definitions. Come hear Dessner’s “gorgeous, full-hearted music” (NPR) in a celebration over two days of kaleidoscopic creations featuring his orchestral work Lachrimae for 17 players featuring members of The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and his resounding new piece for invented instruments played by Sō Percussion. Collaborators new and familiar will be present as Dessner draws friends and artists he admires from classical and rock worlds, and spaces in between, to perform his work and share their own. In addition to working with composers such as Philip Glass, Nico Muhly, and David Lang, Dessner is also lead guitarist for The National and cofounder of the instrumental group Clogs, and, as put best by composer Steve Reich – “I can’t believe one person can be such a good composer, a great guitarist, a wonderful curator – and a nice guy!”
Border Music: David Hidalgo and Marc Ribot
Copresented with the Cedar
Saturday, April 18, 8 pm
$30 ($26); $35 ($30) day of show
The Cedar, 416 Cedar Avenue, Minneapolis
“Ribot played with the wasp-like sting of the young, Bluesbreakers-era Eric Clapton, Hidalgo replying with legato lines rich in lyricism. At other times they reversed these roles or mixed them up… a profoundly memorable evening.” —The Australian
In this musical excursion that crosses borders between cultures, styles, and genres, West Coast meets East Coast, real meets prosthetic, and guitar meets guitar in a rocking post-roots pan-Latin rave-up. One evening, two masters: together they forge a unique partnership exploring form and place, tradition and innovation. David Hidalgo is the driving vocal and guitar force of East LA’s Los Lobos and the more experimental Latin Playboys, the former of which took border-hopping cultural collisions onto the world stage with a series of chart-topping songs and albums. Marc Ribot (ex Tom Waits, ex Lounge Lizards, and just plain excellent guitarist) is also the leader of downtown New York’s Prosthetic Cubans (Los Cubanos Postizos), power rock trio Ceramic Dog, and frequent collaborator with John Zorn.
Jason Moran & Robert Glasper
Saturday, May 2, 8 pm
“The crowd sat in awe throughout their set…” – Revive
Two of today’s most influential contemporary jazz pianists team up for a U.S. exclusive summit and combine their artistry and virtuosity in what promises to be an unforgettable evening. Informed by the entire history of jazz as well as essential American musical forms of hip-hop, blues, gospel, and soul – Moran and Glasper are Houston high school friends that have gone on to change the face of American jazz in the 21st Century. Noted for his percussive attack, his interdisciplinary collaborations with leading filmmakers and visual artists (like Milestone, his 2005 Walker-commissioned collaboration with conceptual artist Adrian Piper), Moran continues to impact the music and art of our time. For his first Walker engagement, Glasper’s mix of jazz chops, R&B and soul wisdom, and collaborative work from across the pop, jazz, and dance spectrum promises to be a revelation. The duets will span music from 30s boogie of Albert Ammons and Meade Lux Lewis to Thelonious Monk, Wayne Shorter and J. Dilla, as well as each of their own rich catalogues of compositions. When they opened the 75th Anniversary Celebration of Blue Note Records at Town Hall in New York, the tore it up and all present agreed it was a moment where one could simultaneously and ecstatically look backward and forward at the art form of jazz.
Copresented with the SPCO’s Liquid Music series
Saturday, May 9, 8 pm
$22 ($18) General Admission
“Victoire condenses moments of focused beauty and quiet conviction from the pandemic distractions of modern life” – Pitchfork
Composer/electric guitarist Noveller, synthpop chanteuse Glasser, and new classical chamber ensemble Victoire join forces to explore the sonic intersections of woman and machine, manipulation and composition. Sarah Lipstate (Noveller) conjures dense, sweeping soundscapes from her guitar that “call to attention all senses at once, to the point where even the word music seems somehow limiting” (Time Out New York). Through soaring voice and rhythmically driven melodies, Cameron Mesirow (Glasser) creates “a methodical, computer-tethered expedition into the vast, wild expanse of human feeling” (Pitchfork). Hailed as a “postmillennial Mozart” by Time Out New York, Victoire founder Missy Mazzoli composes diverse, hypnotic pieces that encompass indie rock, meditative electronics, and classical minimalism for Victoire’s five virtuoso female players. The evening features solo sets from each artist and culminates in a collaborative finale.
Copresented and Cocommissioned with The Soap Factory
Thursday–Sunday, June 4–7 and 11–14, 8 pm, General Admission
The Soap Factory, 514 Second Street SE, Minneapolis
“Where you come from is gone, where you thought you were going was never there.” —Flannery O’Connor, Wise Blood
Set in the cavernous environs of the Soap Factory, WISE BLOOD is a wild and immersive ride through the bright, burning coals of Flannery O’Connor’s masterful Southern gothic tale of redemption and retribution in 1950s America. Composer Anthony Gatto and media artist Chris Larson join forces with brass bands, percussion lines, string players, and singers for a joyously dark New Orleans–style opera-exhibition. Singers and accompanying ensembles guide audiences through Larson’s sets, film projections, and kinetic sculptures; performers include New York vocalist Gelsey Bell, whose celebrated recent work includes Matthew Barney’s epic film, River of Fundament, and Grant Hart, founding member of fabled punk pioneer band Hüsker Dü. The Jack Brass Band provides the core second line.
WISE BLOOD is commissioned by The Soap Factory and Walker Art Center with support provided by the William and Nadine McGuire Commissioning Fund.
The WISE BLOOD installation will be on view at The Soap Factory through June 15 during gallery hours.
Walker Art Center 2014-2015 Season Copresenting Partners
This Walker Performing Arts season includes long-standing and vital partnerships with four presenting organizations – we’re proud to be working with SPCO’s Liquid Music series, the Cedar, the Soap Factory, and the Northrop at the University of MN.
The Cedar Cultural Center
The Cedar Cultural Center is a highly eclectic music venue located in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood of Minneapolis, MN. Over its 25 year history, The Cedar has become one of the premiere venues for world music in the U.S. by fulfilling its (501c3 non-profit) mission of promoting inter-cultural appreciation and understanding though the presentation of global music and dance. Learn more at http://www.thecedar.org/
Liquid Music is a concert series presented by The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra that expands the world of classical music through innovative new projects, boundary-defying artists, and unique presentation formats. Liquid Music performances invite adventurous audiences of all ages to discover the new and the fascinating among the colorful landscape of classical music today. Learn more at www.thespco.org/liquidmusic
Northrop at the University of Minnesota
Northrop is an epicenter of discovery and transformation that connects the University of Minnesota and communities beyond by celebrating innovation in the arts, performance, and academics. Northrop is home to the following resident partners: Northrop Presents, The Institute for Advanced Study, The University Honors Program, The College of Design’s Travelers Innovation Lab, and U of M Tickets and Events. Learn more at http://www.northrop.umn.edu/
The Soap Factory
The Soap Factory is a laboratory for artistic experimentation and innovation, dedicated to supporting artists and engaging audiences through the production and presentation of contemporary art in a unique and historic environment. Based in the historic National Purity Soap Factory in downtown Minneapolis, The Soap Factory is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. Learn more at http://www.soapfactory.org/
Make a Night of It!
Meet the artists, talk about the show, and enjoy drinks on the upper balcony of the elegant McGuire Theater. Open one hour prior to and after most performances.
Keep an eye on the Walker site for all the latest updates, including original articles about artists and performances.
Find rich film and audio content related to artists past and present on the Walker Channel. channel.walkerart.org
Share your thoughts on the Walker’s social media channels or leave your comments on the performing arts blog, The Green Room.
On Saturday nights after select shows, join us in the Balcony Bar for SpeakEasy, a conversation led by Walker tour guides and local artists.
Connect with the Artists
Take part in unique offstage experiences such as public workshops, open rehearsals, opening-night celebrations, postshow Q&As, and member events walkerart.org/performing-arts
Free Gallery Admission
Walker gallery admission is free with a paid event ticket within one week of every performance.
The Walker is accessible to all visitors. Assistive listening devices, audio description, and ASL interpretation are available for performing arts events. For more information, call 612.253.3556 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Unless otherwise noted, all events take place in the Walker’s William and Nadine McGuire Theater.
Price for Walker members is indicated by ($).
Season Package: Buy 4 events and save 20%—plus all ticket fees waived
Call 612.375.7600 or stop at the box office to take advantage of this special offer through October 15, 2014.
Discounted tickets are available for groups of 10 or more. Call 612.253.3556 or e-mail
A limited number of discounted tickets per performance are available for students with a valid ID. Call 612.375.7600.
Members Get More
Walker members always save up to 50% on tickets and are invited to go deeper with Art School and A Think & A Drink events. Members also receive advance notice and purchase opportunities for hot tickets, free gallery admission, a 10% discount on shopping and dining, and much more.
To become a member and/or to learn more about these programs, call 612.375.7655 or visit walkerart.org/membership.
The Walker Art Center’s performing arts programs are made possible by generous support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation through the Doris Duke Performing Arts Fund, the William and Nadine McGuire Commissioning Fund, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Performing Arts programs and commissions at the Walker are generously supported by members of the Producers’ Council: Russell Cowles; Nor Hall and Roger Hale; King’s Fountain/Barbara Watson Pillsbury and Henry Pillsbury; Emily Maltz; Dr. William W. and Nadine M. McGuire; Leni and David Moore, Jr.; Josine Peters; Mike and Elizabeth Sweeney; and Frances and Frank Wilkinson.
Additional support is generously provided by members of the Commissioning Circle: Harriet and Bruce Bart; Barbara Broker; Charles Fuller and Constance Mayeron Cowles; David Francis; Bryce and Donna Hamilton; Jon Oulman; Leonard and Linda Schloff; JoAnn Verburg and Jim Moore; and Binky Wood and Winthrop Rockwell.