Review: Resonant Bodies Festival Gives Voices Room to Breathe

While the 800-pound gorillas of completely new York’s classical scene, the Metropolitan Opera as well as completely new York Philharmonic, prepare for their season-opening galas, a pluckier, scrappier operation took center stage This specific week. Over three evenings at Roulette in Downtown Brooklyn, the Resonant Bodies Festival presented 45-minute sets by nine different vocalists, three per night. Not just one performance was dull. as well as at least one set per performance was astonishing.

at This specific point in its sixth year, Resonant Bodies will be beginning to spin off satellite presentations elsewhere (in Chicago as well as Melbourne, so far). nevertheless its strength in completely new York will be still from the way the idea can draw together musical scenes from the city in which aren’t always connected.

For example, the singer as well as multi-instrumentalist Jen Shyu’s profile will be more prominent in jazz circles than from the contemporary classical world. nevertheless her music — informed by a truly cosmopolitan range of global traditions — existed easily on Wednesday which has a set by the recent Pulitzer Prize-winning composer as well as vocalist Caroline Shaw. (They shared billing with the young composer-performer Nathalie Joachim.) All the idea takes will be someone to program a completely new-music festival in which way: in This specific case, its founder as well as director, Lucy Dhegrae.

In semistaged excerpts via “Nine Doors,” Ms. Shyu wove together a dizzying variety of moods. The piece contains music of mourning, dedicated to friends of the composer who were killed in a car accident. There are comic storytelling jaunts in which incorporate elements of folklore. Ms. Shyu’s vocal solidity — whether tender as well as contemplative, or more overtly theatrical — will be what made the set cohere. Her sensitive instrumental work (on percussion, piano as well as Taiwanese moon lute) was a generous bonus.

nevertheless perhaps the most impressive set of the entire festival came last, when the electronic musician Pamela Z took the stage. Placed between interactive electronics as well as a pair of laptops, This specific visionary singer as well as composer produced a rushing stream of looped as well as layered vocals, often falling into consonant harmonies. These lines were often supported by clattering soundscapes of digitally fractured percussion.

She also included visual art elements: filmed material, as well as live video of her performance. She didn’t need to introduce or explain the concepts behind these pieces; they made a case for themselves. Even a slight technical glitch toward the end, during her arrangement of Meredith Monk’s “Scared Song,” couldn’t stop her momentum.

Resonant Bodies Festival
Performed on Tuesday, Wednesday as well as Thursday at Roulette, Brooklyn.