Photo courtesy of Allan McGregor

Photo courtesy of Allan McGregor

a special evening to benefit ice
Wednesday, January 16, 2019, 8:00 PM

It's opening night!

The International Contemporary Ensemble cordially invites you to a once-in-a-lifetime experience on the steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Great Hall. As part of this special fundraiser, join us for Tyshawn Sorey's Perle Noire: Meditations for Joséphine, a revolutionary musical portrait illuminating the life, legacy, and music of artist/activist Joséphine Baker, starring soprano Julia Bullock.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art will be closed to all other patrons during this truly unique performance.

Each $1,000 package includes: 

  • An exclusive ticket to Perle Noire’s opening night

  • Pre-show toast starting at 7:00 PM in Limor Tomer’s (General Manager, Met Live Arts) intimate office space

  • Celebratory after-party in a private home nearby

  • The first page of Perle Noire’s score, signed by Tyshawn Sorey, Julia Bullock, and members of the International Contemporary Ensemble

  • Free access to the Metropolitan Museum of Art the day of the event

Recommended attire for the event is festive dress.

All proceeds benefit ICE's free and open community engagement initiative, OpenICE
If you are not able to attend but would still like to support OpenICE, you may make a 100% tax-deductible donation here.
For questions or to pay by check please contact Bridgid Bergin, Development Associate, at

We hope you can join us for opening night!

All but $150 of your donation per ticket is tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law.

perle noire: meditations for Joséphine 

Tyshawn Sorey’s Perle Noire: Meditations for Joséphine, a song cycle based on the words and life of artist/activist Joséphine Baker, with acclaimed soprano Julia Bullock, is described as “one of the most important works of art yet to emerge from the era of Black Lives Matter” (The New York Times). Texts by Claudia Rankine frame a portrait of the historic singer in which several of Baker's classic songs are reimagined and given new expressive depth.

Together we share words, movement, and music that further examine and highlight various undercurrents of Joséphine Baker’s life...sharing a personal portrait that is not so much about her, but for her
— Julia Bullock

Soprano Julia Bullock is recognized as an “impressive, fast-rising soprano... poised for a significant career” (The New York Times) and has captivated and inspired audiences through her versatile artistry, probing intellect, and commanding stage presence.

A 2017 MacArthur Fellow, multi-instrumentalist and composer Tyshawn Sorey is celebrated for his incomparable virtuosity, effortless mastery, and an extraordinary ability to blend composition and improvisation in his work. The Wall Street Journal notes Sorey is, “a composer of radical and seemingly boundless ideas.”

The International Contemporary Ensemble began working with Tyshawn in 2011 as part of ICElab, ICE’s incubation program for new, experimental work. This concert highlights the results of the organization’s collaborative working model and the enduring relationships created through close creative work.