Here’s the press release from MCA Stage:
2011-12 MCA STAGE SEASON
The Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), Chicago, announces the 15th season of the MCA Stage, presenting iconic and groundbreaking multidisciplinary theater, dance, and music. The season takes place September 2011 – June 2012 and is organized by Peter Taub, Director of Performance Programs, and Yolanda Cesta Cursach, Associate Director of Performance Programs. Tickets are on sale in July, including a special limited quantity of advance $15 tickets, and are available at www.mcachicago.org or the MCA Box Office at 312.397.4010
Jenny Magnus/Curious Theatre Branch:
Still in Play: A Performance of Getting Ready
September 15-17, 2011
The season launches with the world premiere of a theatrical work that reveals a behind-the-scenes view of the theater – in both its vision and the intense interpersonal dynamics. Still in Play: A Performance of Getting Ready was developed by Jenny Magnus through a year-long residency at the MCA with her Chicago-based ensemble and features live music by Crooked Mouth Band, comprised of ensemble members. The MCA first presented Curious Theatre in 1997.
September 22-24, 2011
As part of the influential Japanese-American dance duo Eiko & Koma’s national 40th anniversary retrospective project, they perform their newest work, Raven, with live music by acclaimed Pueblo musician Robert Mirabal, along with two seminal early works, White Dance (1976) and Night Tide (1984). The theater performances serve as a companion to the visual exhibition, Eiko & Koma: Time Is Not Even, Space Is Not Empty, on view in the galleries through November 13, 2011.The artists perform multiple times throughout the course of the exhibition: they perform Naked in the galleries at the start (June 24-26 and 28) and conclusion (Nov 8-13) of the exhibition and The Caravan Project on the MCA Plaza (Aug 23-24).
ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble)
MCA Composers Stage series
MCA Stage continues its three-year ICE ensemble-in-residence project with three distinctive concerts.
October 5, 2011
A large-scale concert features the innovative chamber music of Edgard Varèse, the father of electronic music and prominent influence on late 20th-century music. ICE is joined by SO Percussion and others; Steven Schick conducts.
Ikons: George Lewis and Friends
February 5, 2012
A portrait concert features guest composer and trombonist George Lewis, a major figure in jazz and electronic music, as a way to explore the legacy of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM).
Georges Aperghis and the New Generation
May 26, 2012
This concert, conducted by the highly acclaimed French conductor Ludavic Morlot, features new music commissioned by three composers now living in Paris. Originally from Greece, Georges Aperghis studied with Iannis Xenakis and is known for his playful chamber music and experimental music theater. The concert also features the dynamic young composers Juan Pablo Carreno from Columbia and Patricia Alessandrini from Italy.
Faustin Linyekula: more more more…future
October 20-22, 2011
MCA Global Stage series
In this raucous and powerful dance theater performance, three dancers, including choreographer and director Faustin Linyekula, reflect on the political, social, and cultural history and present day struggles of the Congo. The dancers move to the dark poems of Antoine Vumilia Muhindo, a political prisoner in Kinshasa and childhood friend of Linyekula’s, set to driving music by Congolese guitarist Flamme Kapaya and his five-member on-stage band. The work seeks to present hope for a better future in the Congo.
Lucky Plush Productions: The Better Half
October 27-29 and November 3,5, and 6, 2011
This new dance theater work inspired by Gaslight — the 1944 noir classic where Ingrid Bergman plays a woman slowly driven mad by her evil husband – playfully looks at contemporary marriage and relationships. The Better Half features three dancers from Lucky Plush Productions, including the choreographer Julia Rhoads, and two performers from 500 Clown, the acclaimed physical theater company. Both companies are Chicago-based and the work, directed by Leslie Buxbaum Danzig of 500 Clown, is commissioned by the MCA Stage and developed through a MCA residency in June 2011.
Liz Lerman Dance Exchange: The Matter of Origins
November 10-13, 2011
Co-presented with the Chicago Humanities Festival
This new multimedia dance work is described as a performance, conversation, game show, and chance to meet big minds. The physics of the universe and origins of matter are explored through science, poetry, and faith-based beliefs. Act One takes place on stage and travels from Madame Curie’s lab – the pioneering scientist famous for her research on radioactivity – to the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator, then through the Hubble telescope to the reaches of an accelerating universe. For Act Two, the audience moves to a nearby party room for a 360-degree experience of dance, media, cake, tea, and provocative conversation.
Andrew Bird and Ian Schneller/Speciman Products: Sonic Arboretum
December 6-31, 2011
Installation is free with MCA suggested admission
Two ticketed experiences in mid-December
A collection of horned speakers, made from compressed recycled newsprint and dryer lint, created by sculptor and instrument-maker Ian Schneller and composer/violinist Andrew Bird, are installed in the MCA’s atrium to create a unique sound garden. Bird records the initial compositions on-site at the MCA and sends musical information to different groups of horns via multiple loops. He layers and changes the compositions throughout the remainder of the installation off-site via computer technology. The ticketed experience is not a traditional concert: Bird plays violin and manipulates the sounds while people move through the installation space.
JASC Tsukasa Taiko: Taiko Legacy 8
December 17-18, 2011
Co-presented with Asian Improv aRts Midwest JASC
Tsukasa Taiko returns to the MCA Stage for the eighth year and continues the tradition of celebrating Japanese culture through taiko drumming, stylized kimono dance, and improvisations bridging jazz and Japanese court music. Tatsu Aoki directs three generations of artists from Tokyo, San Francisco, and Chicago for this percussion-based concert.
Hubbard Street Dance Chicago: danc(e)volve: New Works Festival
January 19-22 and 26-29, 2012
Co-presented with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago
This new festival features world premiere works by renowned Hubbard Street Dance Chicago (HSDC) and Hubbard Street 2 (HS2). The project strengthens HSDC and the MCA’s commitment to supporting developing artists. Artistic Director Glenn Edgerton is selecting pieces to develop into full works from the annual Inside/Out Choreographic Workshop, which fosters choreographic talent within the company; as well as from HS2’s National Choreographic Competition. danc(e)volve also features the new work Resident HSDC Choreographer and company member Alejandro Cerrudo is making for HS2.
Diamanda Galás: Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?
February 23 and 25, 2012
The distinctive vocalist, known for her haunting operatic voice with a three-and-a-half octave range, returns to the MCA Stage. Galás has a strong presence during her live performances and is known for addressing themes of suffering, condemnation, injustice, and loss of dignity. She performs a selection of songs for voice and piano, including blues covers and songs from her Masque of the Red Death trilogy. She originally performed and recorded this music to bring attention to the daily struggles of people living with AIDS. The concerts are programmed in conjunction with the MCA exhibition This Will Have Been: Art, Love & Politics in the 1980s.
eighth blackbird: The Music of Less/The Music of More
March 22 and 24, 2012
MCA Composers Stage series
The acclaimed Chicago-based chamber music ensemble returns to the MCA Stage for two concerts presented with the MCA exhibition, the language of less (then and now) that feature contemporary visual art with themes of minimalism. Both concerts feature music by esteemed older composers as well as talented younger composers. The March 22 concert explores what “less” can mean when translated to music – with stark, otherworldly landscapes by Alvin Lucier and Morton Feldman, contrasted with calm beautiful works by younger composers Timo Andres and Caleb Burhans. Music by Philip Glass and David Lang round out the concert. The “more” concert on March 24 features more of everything – more notes, more wild humor and complexity that pushes the virtuoso ensemble to its limits. Two of the composers, Philippe Hurel and Bruno Mantovani, are renowned in their native France, but little-known in America. Eclectic music by young composers Fabian Svensson (Sweden) and Americans Dan Visconti and Amy Kirsten complete the program.
Teatr ZAR: The Gospels of Childhood Triptych
March 29 – April 1, 2012
MCA Global Stage series
Presented by MCA Stage in association with Goodman Theatre
Poland’s Teatr ZAR uses song, chanting, and movement in this ritualistic work of theater and music that examines birth, death, pleasure, and pain. The performance is staged in three different installations: the first and third take place in the MCA Theater, with the audience on stage; and the second takes place in the MCA second-floor atrium. Inspired by ancient sacred music from the Caucasus and based on texts from the little-known apocryphal gospels and a poem by Polish Romantic poet Juliusz Slowacki, Poland’s Teatr ZAR uses song, chanting, and movement in this ritualistic work of theater and music. The work is the culmination of artistic director Jaroslaw Fret and the company’s more than ten years of investigative research.
Marc Bamuthi Joseph/The Living Word Project with Theaster Gates:red, black and GREEN: a blues
April 12-14, 2012
Oakland-based spoken word and dance artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph, and Chicago visual artist and activist Theaster Gates collaborate to create a multimedia performance and visual installation addressing environmental issues from the perspective of communities of color. The stage is set as an installation, open for public viewing during museum hours. The installation and performance have four inter-related parts representing the four seasons, four cycles of life, four rooms of a house, and the four cities with the Life is Living festivals Bamuthi convened: Chicago, Houston, New York, and Oakland. The audience moves through the stage set before taking their seats.
Armitage Gone! Dance: Drastic-Classicism and Three Theories
April 26-28, 2012
Choreographer Karole Armitage, dubbed the ‘punk ballerina’ by Vanity Fair magazine, creates work inspired by physics, sixteenth-century Florentine fashion, pop culture, and new media. Drastic-Classicism (1981), one of her first works, features a strong 1980s aesthetic with dancers in ripped, black costumes and a rock score by Rhys Chatham, performed onstage by a drummer and fourelectric guitarists. Three Theories, a new work, is inspired by physicist Brian Greene’s bestselling book, The Elegant Universe. Armitage translates concepts of contemporary physics into fast-paced duets, sensual moves, and shape-shifting formations. The score is by John Luther Adams, Sangeeta Shankar, and Rhys Chatham. The project is programmed in conjunction with the MCA exhibition, This Will Have Been: Art, Love & Politics in the 1980s.
John Jota Leaños: Imperial Silence: Una Ópera Muerta
May 17-20, 2012
Cultural taboos around silence, death, and dissent are presented through a multimedia performance that fuses dark, humored animation with Mexican folklore dance, Mariachi music, hip-hop, bossa nova, and blues. The work is created by San Francisco-based director, John Jota Leaños; Chicago-based choreographer Joel Valentin-Martinez; DJ/composer Cristóbal Martinez; and the Tucson Mariachi ensemble, Los Cuatro Vientos. The opera’s four acts are Act I: animated primer on war and empire; Act II: animation that re-examines Mother Goose children’s rhymes and culminates with the great fall of Humpty Mariachi Dumpty; Act III: live performance and animation of a skeleton traveling the road to Mictlan (the Aztec underworld); and Act IV: a dead animated newscast exploring the silencing of dissent and “spin” in the corporate news media.
Luna Negra Dance Theater: Luna Nueva
June 7-10, 2012
Co-presented with Luna Negra Dance Theater
This festival of three new works by Chicago-based Luna Negra Dance Theater (LNDT) is choreographed by Gustavo Ramírez Sansano, LNDT artistic director; Mónica Cervantes Rodriguez, LNDT dancer and choreographer; and guest artist Diana Szeinblum. The company celebrates the richness and diversity of Latino culture through choreographing new works by contemporary Latino choreographers and leading hands-on education programs that encourage the exploration of personal and community identity.