For the past two days I have been trying to get into Guggenheim’s Works & Process, John Zorn’s Shir Ha-Shirim. Sunday, I went to the Guggenheim and they refused to seat me, because they were sold out. Fine. However, they were still seating people for comp seats and a whole list of people who hadn’t shown up. I asked that they sell me those seats, they refused. Then someone behind the counter told me that they sold those seats, all ready. Fine.

There were four people that arrived after I did. When I arrived, they were still seating people. However, I stuck around and they started turning people away… people that bought their seats. They were told they were at full capacity. Two ladies there raised a small huff, understandably. The Guggenheim basically sold their tickets twice and made twice as much profit. Of course, I am sure the women will be asking for a refund and giving the box office an earful. Through the 15 minutes we were waiting we saw management tell people they would not be given refunds, and then just told people to call the box office. Are they airlines, or something?

There were 3 people leaving… 3 empty seats and they still didn’t let anyone in. Dude, even Carnegie Hall and NY Phil seats throughout their shows.

The kicker is that when I went on Monday night, they were letting people in way into the set. People were sitting on the steps… And basically these workers were being dicks the night before.

I suspect the choreographer will be hearing from the other two people there the night before… who kept pushing that they were the choreographer’s friends. They were turned away, also.

Anyway. Otherwise the concert was great. The first half of the set consisted of a series of lounge-y jazz music on harp, cello, bass, vibraphone, and percussion.

The vocals on the latter half of the set were haunting and quite lovely. The man doing the narration was slightly gyrating against the microphone. What was that about? He emoted well, but I just couldn’t look at him. That was fine, because I think the focus was on the dancers and I enjoyed watching the vocalists. Ryan was impressed that there was absolutely no vibrato and the tones and pitches were right on. To me, the vocals took the place of instruments, to the point that I had to be reminded that they were coming out of these performers.

The vocals were accompanied by the Khmer Dance Troupe

Yeah, remember that Khmer wedding I was part of? There was a part where the wedding party had to do this little Cambodian dance, which was actually very much like Japanese Bon Odori. Unfortunately I took no footage of it, because I had to dance… and fortunately there is no incriminating evidence anywhere else, except for the couple’s video.

Anyway, the dancing was similar to what I saw before at a Cambodian New Year celebration in Maryland. And actually the vocals have a similarity in tempo and variations (I guess that’s what I would call it?), in that there are some huge tonal differences and jumps that occur in the Cambodian music I have listened to that seem very similar to the vocalists.

I really enjoyed this Trybrid animal he presented. The choreography in this instance was really fitting to the Hebrew (right?) narration. It was an interesting mix that worked together well. The dance, vocals, and narration seemed fragmented in theory and medium, but all expressed a sensual fluidity that worked visually, sonically, and most importantly to create an experience.

Ryan was telling me that a lot of modern music, and specifically we were talking about atonal music, was dedicated to creating an experience than a linear narration. As a girl that loves little tapas treats and dipping my hands into many different pots at once, the trifecta of voice, whispery passionate narration, and slow regal steps of the dancing was an enjoyable environment to be in.

About me

Blogging since 1996. You can find her in Brooklyn, with a spicy Bloody Mary. Love food. Aspiring DIYer. Addicted to buying gadgets.

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