The great Soviet writer Alexandr Solzhenitsyn once mused upon the way that humans might have first encountered art. Perhaps, he imagined, we stumbled upon it as though it were a mystical object inexplicably washed ashore from the sea. Successive generations have examined this object of intrigue seemingly exhaustively, subjecting it to every form of experimentation and crucible imaginable in order to better understand it. And yet, with each passing day, art reinvents itself, remaining elusive. We spend our days working, studying, probing, trying to penetrate its surface, "but art is not defiled by our efforts, neither does it thereby depart from its true nature, but on each occasion and in each application it gives to us a part of its secret inner light."
It is still unclear whether artists gave birth to art, or if art gave birth to artists. Nonetheless, it seems that our mission as artists is to spend our lives digging deeper into the precisely that enigma; to study and practice our crafts with deep curiosity and integrity in hope of seeing the inner light of this unknowable object shine more brightly.
It is with this attitude that Monday Evening Concerts presents its 79th season. Here, we present works ranging from the 12th Century to the present day - scores for which the ink is not yet dry. This season brings the third visit of the brilliant Talea Ensemble, presenting the first major performance of a work by the sonic alchemist Pierluigi Billone on the west coast. The piano and percussion quartet Yarn/Wire makes its first Los Angeles appearance with a program of works from the past five years. The towering British pianist Nicolas Hodges gives his debut recital in Los Angeles in a program of high-modernist masters alongside recorded voices of revolutionaries and philosophers. We are invited into the psychological labyrinth of Sciarrino's Venice. The ancient composers Hildegard von Bingen and Guillaume Dufay make cameos. The much-neglected electronic and acoustic works of the musique concrète icon Éliane Radigue receive some of the attention they deserve. And we revisit the work of Julius Eastman in the first west coast performance of his 1979 masterpiece 'Femenine.'
We look forward to seeing you there.