Interesting interview on WGBH TV’s “Open Studio” about the VOCAL VIBRATIONS project, including footage from the Cambridge, Massachusetts, installation open through March 21. The interview is from 6:00-14:40 at http://tinyurl.com/OpenStudioTod, followed by a cool chat with Justin Hayward of the Moody Blues who happens to be a friend, a really lovely guy, and is still touring after all these years!!
Download Vocal Vibrations music here.
Check out this terrific interview Barbara Seisel did with Tod Machover about his recently premiered flute concerto, “Breathless.” The article, temporarily available online to nonsubscribers, provides an in-depth look at how the piece was created. Tod talks about how he collaborated with flutist Carol Wincenc, and how he thought about using electronics, how the three-movement work is constructed, and more. Here’s a gem:
In writing the piece I thought a lot about meeting Carol at 16 and trying to reconcile classical, electronic and rock music influences and also remembering back to high school. It’s one of the big moments of your life – you’re going to leave home and go out and make a life for yourself. It’s extremely anxiety producing for many people. I know for me, I felt that everything was possible, that everything I love should be able to find a place in what my life becomes. I really believed that at 16! When I was putting Breathless together it all of sudden struck me that my younger daughter is now exactly the same age as I was when was when I was at Aspen. I’m seeing this feeling again though her eyes now, as she is planning college, how she’s going to pull together all the things that she cares about and that connection in time was really powerful for me. So I think this idea of looking back and remembering how this precious friendship started and what the world felt like then and seeing it again through my daughter is very meaningful.
Read the full article here: Interview with Tod Machover: A composer’s process. By Barbara Siesel
Listen to Breathless here.
Photo by Nathan Hunsinger, Dallas Morning News
The Dallas Morning News has ranked the Dallas Opera’s February 2014 production of “Death and the Powers” one of its “Classical music: Top 10 performances of 2014.” Reviewer Scott Cantrell writes:
Tod Machover’s sci-fi opera, dividing a cast of characters between known reality and some sort of parallel existence, was quite a stretch for a company not exactly known for adventure. But with a strong cast, including some quite mobile robots, excellent direction and some pretty dazzling high-tech effects, it was a memorable experience.
Bravo to the entire DATP team!!
Fun TV segment about the Opera of the Future group’s work on FOX TV’s “Exploration Earth 2050″, which aired this past Saturday and is now available on Hulu. The second half of the show – starting at ca. 10:00 – is about DEATH AND THE POWERS, the new Sensor Chair, and other music, technology, and “experience” projects we are working on.
Watch the full episode here.
In-depth, thoughtful interview about the SYMPHONY IN D project for Detroit, with Ann Delisi of WDET, Detroit’s NPR station. Ann covers the background and essentials for this collaborative city symphony. Listen here.
Just stumbled upon this thoughtful review of the Dallas Opera simulcast production:
Technology is very much integral to the story, immersing the audience in the age-old questions about life and death again, this time with 21st century complexities – while religions are still fighting to win believers with their respective answers and narratives as mankind settles into the new millennium, scientific and technological advances have made the questions more complicated and nuanced. The story is not entirely science-fiction – robots have been used in real-world applications from agriculture to military; bionic limbs are already in the marketplace; Google has invested billions in Artificial Intelligence, DeepMind being its latest acquisition. Along such trajectory, disintegration of consciousness from physical beings, as showcased by the Machover team – so far still an imagination – is perhaps not inconceivable. The existential questions are no longer just philosophical or theological.
via Futuristic Opera “Death and the Powers” Asks Life’s Oldest Questions, with New Dimensions.
From Tod Machover’s Facebook page:
Listen to the trailer for Symphony in D, created from sounds recorded by Tod on a visit to Detroit.
Check out the Detroit Symphony’s page about Symphony in D