Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble and Bang on a Can All-Stars 2023
About this Piece
Spaceship, from The Games: a science fiction opera (1984) (arr. Michael Gordon)
Memory Song, from The Games: a science fiction opera (1984) (arr. Julia Wolfe)
Gamemaster's Song, from The Games: a science fiction opera (1984) (arr. Meredith Monk)
Migration, from The Games: a science fiction opera (1984) (arr. Meredith Monk, text by Ping Chong)
Downfall, from The Games: a science fiction opera (1984) (arr. Ken Thomson)
Waltz in 5s, from The Politics of Quiet (1996) (arr. Meredith Monk and Allison Sniffin)
Tokyo Cha Cha, from Turtle Dreams (Cabaret) (1983) (arr. Allison Sniffin)
Totentanz, from impermanence (2006) (arr. David Lang)
Double Fiesta, from Acts from Under and Above (1986) (arr. David Lang)
All compositions by Meredith Monk © Meredith Monk Music (ASCAP)
Wardrobe for Meredith Monk, Katie Geissinger and Allison Sniffin by threeASFOUR
Program is subject to change.
About MEMORY GAME:
MEMORY GAME is both a look back at a pivotal point in Meredith Monk’s storied career, and a richly layered portrait of how vocal music, under the guidance of an indefatigable master, can play with our expectations in poignant and compelling ways. What emerges is a suite of songs that flows with a remarkable narrative cohesion, stemming in large part from the composer’s willingness to revisit the past with an insatiably curious eye.
"The first time that I worked with Bang on a Can was in the late 1990s when we performed an arrangement of ‘Memory Song’ at Lincoln Center. That, in a way, was the beginning of this project. It's really exciting to hear these songs again in a new way, with the instruments added onto the original vocal arrangements." - Meredith Monk
Teaming up here with her renowned Vocal Ensemble (featuring Theo Bleckmann, Katie Geissinger and Allison Sniffin) and the Bang on a Can All-Stars, Monk explores new arrangements of selections from her award-winning sci-fi opera The Games, as well as new versions of several pieces originally released on ECM Records from Do You Be (1987) and impermanence (2008). The project includes arrangements by Monk, Michael Gordon, David Lang, Julia Wolfe, Bang on a Can All-Stars member Ken Thomson, and Vocal Ensemble member Allison Sniffin.
For composer Michael Gordon, whose arrangement of “Spaceship” opens the album of MEMORY GAME, his own memories of Monk’s music go back to his earliest days in New York City. “I saw Meredith perform when I came to New York in the 1970s,” he says. “Her first appearance on the Bang on a Can Marathon was in 1989, and we’ve had a close association ever since. In 1999, we arranged some of her music for her to sing with the Bang on a Can All-Stars. It was magic, and sparks flew! MEMORY GAME is a collection of pieces we’ve performed together in New York and on tour, with some new arrangements that we had yet to play live.”
As Monk writes in her liner notes for the recording: “Right from the beginning of conceiving MEMORY GAME, the prospect of uniting the magnificent singers and players from Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble and Bang on a Can All-Stars filled me with excitement. My hope is that our rich and joyous experience of making music together inspires and resonates with the listener.”
About Meredith Monk/The House Foundation for the Arts
The House Foundation for the Arts is a nonprofit organization with a mission to cultivate cultural engagement through live music concerts, interdisciplinary performances, exhibitions and educational initiatives. The House Foundation develops, disseminates, promotes and preserves the work of iconic American artist Meredith Monk and members of Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble.
Meredith Monk/The House Foundation
Sarah Lerner, Executive Director
Carla Sacks / Sacks and Co.
The House Foundation Board of Trustees
Frederieke Sanders Taylor, Chair Emeritus
Bang on a Can Board of Directors
Betto Arcos, Daniel Baldini, Jeffrey Bishop, Michael Gordon, Lynette Jaffe, Alan Kifferstein, Michael Kushner, David Lang, Lesley Lassiter, George Lewis, Raulee Marcus, Elizabeth Murrell, Robert A. Skirnick, Jane Stewart, Sandra Tait, Julia Wolfe, Adam Wolfensohn.
Bang on a Can Staff
Michael Gordon – Artistic Director
David Lang – Artistic Director
Julia Wolfe – Artistic Director
Kenny Savelson – Executive Director
Laura Patterson - Development Director
Philippa Thompson – Project Manager and Summer Festival Manager
Sruly Lazaros – Producer
Brian Petuch – Accounts Manager
Adam Cuthbert – Licensing & Store Manager
Emily Motherwell at Otherarts – Marketing and Publicity