Be sure to read–and subscribe to–the City Symphonies blog, which has been posting some captivating stories about the Philadelphia Voices project. Here’s an excerpt from the most recent post, Jam Session with Sister Cities Girlchoir:
I gave the girls a challenge of helping to create Philadelphia Voices by thinking of words and phrases that convey the essence of the city to each of them, and then making melodies or texts to express those feelings. They will all work on this on their own and in Saturday rehearsals, and then we’ll get back together in a few weeks to share results. I am sure that some of this material will end up in Philadelphia Voices; the Sister Cities Girlchoir will be among the several hundred voices on stage for the premiere performances in Philly and at Carnegie Hall. Exciting!
Composer Tod Machover visits the National Constitution Center on Constitution Day, September 17, 2017, for his newest city symphony project, “Philadelphia Voices.” His objective: to collect sounds that capture the spirit of the place that gave birth to American democracy. Add your voice to the project by downloading the Philadelphia Voices app!
Download in the iTunes Store
Download in Google Play Store
Terrific article in today’s Detroit Free Press by Mark Stryker. On his Facebook page, Tod Machover comments: “Stryker paints the background for the project beautifully, and describes the paradoxical nature of this “ephemeral” work – that tries to capture this moment in Detroit’s history with a not-likely-to-repeat cast of characters – with the simultaneous goal of leaving something lasting and significant. We sure are trying to do both.”
Our favorite quote from the article:
“He had such an inclusive view of the story he wanted to tell about Detroit,” said Marsha Music, a longtime writer on African-American music and culture in Detroit and a 2012 Kresge Fellow. She’ll be reading a poem during the symphony’s fourth movement, “Memories and Dreams.”
“Right off the bat, he wanted to include voices that had historically not been heard, particularly in a classical milieu. I was so impressed with his desire to capture so many of the archive sounds of the city, this important ephemera, and merge them into a musical form. He had a true curiosity. He never gave off the feeling, ‘Oh, I got Detroit under my belt.’ “
Read the full article here.
Buy tickets to the DSO’s world premiere here.
From Tod Machover’s Facebook: Hamming it up with the Chaldean Chorus last evening at rehearsal in their beautiful church just north of Detroit. They are among the amazing local musicians who will participate in the world premiere of SYMPHONY IN D with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra on Friday and Saturday. Info on tickets/timings/webcast here.
The composer Tod Machover with students at YouthVille in Detroit. They will take part in his “Symphony in D,” a “city symphony” that will have its premiere with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Credit Laura McDermott for The New York Times
New York Times reporter Zachary Woolfe shadowed Tod Machover on a recent visit to Detroit and published his story in today’s paper: Detroit Symphony Tackles an Adventurous Premiere.
The story does an excellent job of depicting the arduous process of building relationships with diverse communities within the city and developing collaborations that will be integrated into the final work, which premieres later this month, on November 21.
From Tod Machover’s Facebook page:
In the midst of workshops a few days ago at YouthVille, an inspiring after-school workshop center that offers creative training in everything from computer animation to running a radio station to choreography to music production. Working with my friend/colleague Morris Porter – himself a visionary producer, composer and performer (GREAT voice, like Marvin Gaye, but better:) – we are rehearsing with several very talented young people to prepare them to be part of the world premiere performances of SYMPHONY IN D with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra on November 20 and 21. By the end of our 2-hour session, Matt and Taquiyah in particular were totally at ease with my very crazy rhythms, and were adding punch and texture in ways that really made me smile. By showtime, their contribution will be astounding, I am certain!!!!
From Tod Machover’s Facebook page:
Remarkable day yesterday working with our various partners for SYMPHONY IN D that we will premiere next month with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. We are collaborating with so many wonderful people from so many different backgrounds, from the bright, creative 3rd graders at Detroit Achievement Academy to the imaginative, thoughtful seniors at American House. Can’t wait to work over the coming month to build our performance. Premiere on November 20 and 21…come join us!