“The depth of his sound, the originality of his conception and the epic scope of his performances make him a singular figure in contemporary jazz—Chicago Tribune
With The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra Liquid Music Series, the Walker welcomes back vanguard composer/pianist Vijay Iyer who shows two sides of his current creative output. He joins acclaimed Nigerian American writer and photographer Teju Cole, “one of the most vibrant voices in contemporary writing” (Los Angeles Times), in a powerful new interdisciplinary collaboration.
Blind Spot combines Cole’s photography and spoken prose with a live score composed by Iyer and performed with cellist Okkyung Lee and mallet percussionist Patricia Brennan.
Blind Spot is a musical investigation of humanity’s voluntary blindness to tragedy and injustice throughout history. The program opens with selected movements from two of Vijay Iyer’s contemporary chamber works Time, Place, Action (2014) and Mutations (2005) and features musicians from The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.
There will be two concerts that both take place in the William and Nadine McGuire Theater, Thursday, May 31 at 8pm and Friday, June 1 at 8pm.
ABOUT VIJAY IYER
Grammy-nominated composer and pianist Vijay Iyer is the Franklin D. and Florence Rosenblatt Professor of the Arts in the music department at Harvard University. Studio 360/National Public Radio has said, “The pianist and MacArthur genius Vijay Iyer is one of the great living jazz musicians…” Iyer was named DownBeat Magazine’s Arts of the Year in 2012, 2015 and 2016 and a MacArthur Fellow in 2013. He was also a 2012 Doris Duke Performing Artist and was named one of 2011’s “50 Most Influential Global Indians” by GQ India. Iyer has an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in the cognitive science of music from the University of California, Berkeley. He has published for several journals and outlets such as the Journal of Consciousness Studies, Wire and JazzTimes.
ABOUT TEJU COLE
Teju Cole is a novelist, photographer, critic, and the author of four books: “Every Day is for the Thief,” “Open City,” “Known and Strange Things,” and “Blind Spot.” He has received the PEN/Hemingway Award, the Windham-Campbell Prize, the Internationaler Literaturpreis, the Rosenthal Award of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the New York City Book Award, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Since 2015, he has been the photography critic of the New York Times Magazine, where his monthly column was shortlisted for a National Magazine Award. His photography has been exhibited in several countries and collected by numerous institutions, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Lannan Foundation.