more from Cantaloupe Music

[purgatorio] POPOPERA

by Michael Gordon

/
  • Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

     $5 USD  or more

     

  • Compact Disc (CD)

    Includes unlimited streaming of [purgatorio] POPOPERA via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 3 days

     $7.50 USD or more

     

  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 10 Michael Gordon releases available on Bandcamp and save 20%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Sonatra, Timber Remixed, [purgatorio] POPOPERA, Decasia, Van Gogh, Gotham, Dystopia, Trance, and 2 more. , and , .

    Excludes subscriber-only releases.

     $80.80 USD or more (20% OFF)

     

1.

about

[purgatorio] POPOPERA is a new dance work created by Emio Greco and Pieter Scholten, principal choreographers of the Amsterdam based troupe Emio Greco/PC. When I met Emio and Pieter in New York in 2000 I was taken by their thoughtful intensity and this attraction only grew when I saw their dance. Their work captures an other worldly energy that, when on the verge of cresting, just continues to get wilder and wilder. We began then a long conversation about creating a new work together. I suggested that the dance company learn how to play electric guitars and perform the music I write for them as part of a new dance piece. Although Emio and Pieter had reservations about this, they were intrigued, and in the summer of 2005 I met the dance company at MASS Moca in North Adams, Massachusetts and we began a 10 day workshop to see if it was even feasible to think that they could learn how to play music.

I was joined there by Bryce Dessner and Katie Geissinger, who coached the dancers in guitar and voice (respectively). Bryce and I immediately went to Guitar World in Albany and had the pleasure of buying eight new guitars. None of us, I think, were prepared for the intensity with which the dancers committed themselves to playing the guitar. The days consisted of long grinding morning to evening sessions in which they rarely wanted to take a break and never seemed to tire. At the end of the ten days we gave a workshop performance (!!) to an invited audience and Popopera was born.

Over the next three years I met repeatedly with the company, always in intense workshop situations, and was assisted by Taylor Levine who was their principal guitar coach throughout this period. Very early in the process I retuned the guitars, tuning the bottom three strings to F and the top three strings to E. This tuning created very rich sonorities and allowed me to create dense sounding harmonies. Between the summer of 2007 and the premiere in June of 2008 at the Holland Festival, Taylor Levine and I met with the company for intense multi-week sessions in Italy, Amsterdam, and again at Mass MOCA.

From the very beginning the company incorporated movement into the creation of the piece, so that after a bit of music was learned they would start to workshop the movement. This whole thing might have seemed crazy to everyone involved in this project but at a certain point it became clear that they were about to pull off something spectacular. All of a sudden they stopped being dancers and became musicians. I don't know exactly when this all happened but it encouraged me to write some fairly tricky rhythmic interplays between the group members.

credits

released July 9, 2008

tags

license

all rights reserved

feeds

feeds for this album, this artist

about

Michael Gordon New York, New York

Michael Gordon's music merges subtle rhythmic invention with incredible power embodying, in the words of The New Yorker's Alex Ross, "the fury of punk rock, the nervous brilliance of free jazz and the intransigence of classical modernism."

contact / help

Contact Michael Gordon

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code