Michael Torke: Fiji (1995)—Hungarian premiere
David Del Tredici: Acrostic Song (1979)
Michael Daugherty: What’s That Spell (1995) —Hungarian premiere
John Adams: Scratchband (1996)—Hungarian premiere
H.K. Gruber: Frankenstein!! (1976-77) —Hungarian premiere
How on earth can a production by a sophisticated new-music ensemble feature two Barbie dolls, Frankenstein, and a work entitled Fiji that, according to American critic Tom Huizenga of NPR’s All Things Considered, “swings with a pop-sensibility and a serious South American groove”? Pop music and the real and imaginary figures of pop culture are all around us – every day and everywhere – and our intentional or accidental encounters with them have an inevitable effect on us. Through the works of four American and one Austrian composer, we can discover how the sounds of Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and Frank Zappa, or the figure of a cabaret Frankenstein (a bloodthirsty politician lurking in nursery rhymes) are transformed into contemporary music.
“Oh, Ken! Oh, Ken! What can I do?
I’m plastic just like you.”
So sings Barbie, and by the end of the concert, maybe it will be revealed how plastic, pop music and rock bands can become high culture.