Special guest composer Samuel Adler and the Merling Trio of Western Michigan University will be among the headliners at BGSU’s 26th annual New Music & Art Festival Thursday-Saturday (Oct. 27-29).
Nearly three dozen composers and artists will be showcased during the three-day international festival of concerts, video screenings, performance art, lectures, exhibitions and workshops.
Hosted by the MidAmerican Center for Contemporary Music and the Fine Arts Center Galleries, the festival celebrates new work and new media.
Adler, a faculty member at Juilliard and Professor Emeritus at the Eastman School of Music, “consistently finds new things to say within his chosen musical language and makes wonderfully resourceful use of his … forces,” writes Fanfare magazine. Adler’s “forces” range from choirs to small chamber ensembles to such esteemed orchestras as the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony and the Boston Pops.
Formerly both a Guggenheim and MacDowell fellow, he has also been honored by the Music Teachers National Association and has won the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award for his book on orchestration.
The Merling Trio, an international ensemble combining musicians of Polish, Japanese and Dutch backgrounds, has given numerous recitals throughout the United States and Canada. The group has performed works by contemporary composers to great success, leading Fanfare to claim “the composer could not ask for better interpreters.”
The festival’s featured art exhibition is “DNA (do not assume...),” which examines the controversial issues of DNA ownership, personal privacy and genetic discrimination with visually fascinating images and ideas. The artists include Suzanne Anker, Larry Miller, Paul Vanouse, Amy M. Youngs and Gregory Little, art.
Anker, a visual artist and theoretician working with genetic imagery, will create a site-specific installation for the exhibition. In 1994, she was curator of “Gene Culture: Molecular Metaphor in Contemporary Art,” the first exhibition devoted entirely to the intersection of art and genetics, at Fordham University.
Miller is an intermedia artist whose work questions the borders between artistic, scientific and theological disciplines. He was in the vanguard of using DNA and genetic technologies as new art media.
Vanouse's “Relative Velocity Inscription Device” (2002) uses game theory to question the veracity of DNA sequencing. Placing DNA samples from his own interracial family into a genetic sequencing gel, he positions the four specimens in a "race" about race.
Youngs creates mixed-media, interactive sculpture and digital media works that explore the complex relationship between technology and our changing concept of nature and self. In addition to staging exhibits, she has published several essays, including one on genetic art in the journal Leonardo.
The festival will also feature “Terminal Time,” a multimedia history engine combining audience participation, real-time graphics and artificial intelligence to create a customized half-hour experience covering 1,000 years of human history. The project was created by Steffi Domike, Michael Mateas and Vanouse.
Also on the schedule are two musical world premieres—one by Larry Austin, for clarinet and electronics, and the other by Steve Ricks. The latter is made possible by a grant from the Barlow Endowment at Brigham Young University.
In addition, the festival will include music by BGSU alumnus Peter Terry; Symeon Waseen, a master’s degree candidate in composition; Distinguished Artist Professor Dr. Marilyn Shrude and Dr. Elainie Lillios, composition.
Organized by Dr. Burton Beerman, director of the MidAmerican Center for Contemporary Music, and Jacqueline Nathan, director of the Fine Arts Center Galleries, the festival supports the creation of new work and engages both the University and city communities in art appreciation and awareness.
In addition to the MidAmerican center and the galleries, sponsors include the College of Musical Arts and the Medici Circle at BGSU, as well as the Ohio Arts Council.
For a complete schedule of festival events, contact the MidAmerican center at 2-2685 or visit http://festival.bgsu.edu. Most events are free and open to the public. For events requiring tickets, contact the Moore Musical Arts Center box office at 2-8171.