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ICE at Mostly Mozart | Grand Pianola Music

  • Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College 524 West 59th Street New York, NY, 10019 United States (map)

Courtney Bryan: Songs of Laughing, Smiling, and Crying (2012)
George Lewis: Voyager (1987/2018)
John Adams: Grand Pianola Music (1982)

International Contemporary Ensemble
Christian Reif, conductor (Mostly Mozart Festival debut)
Cory Smythe and Jacob Greenberg, pianos
Peter Evans, trumpet
Joshua Rubin, clarinet
Ryan Muncy, saxophone

John Adams's groundbreaking work Grand Pianola Music is the centerpiece of this spirited celebration of the piano and technology from the ever-inventive International Contemporary Ensemble. Dating from 1982, Adams's work for two pianos, voices, and chamber ensemble uses live performers to recreate tape-delayed loops to astonishing effect. In the first half of the program, Courtney Bryan’s Songs of Laughing, Smiling, and Crying creates conversation between the piano and recordings plucked from YouTube. And in a newly revised version of George Lewis’s epic chamber piece Voyager, AI technology allows the piano to take up the conversation on its own, a sentient automaton among human wind players.