Grammy-Nominated Jazz Vocalist Opens Nasher Concert Series

The Nasher Sculpture Center has announced the new season of their concert series, “Soundings: New Music at the Nasher.”

The Soundings Oct. 17 season opener, a brilliant example of what makes the series so essential, features the talent-melding of Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist Theo Bleckmann with the New York-based “accidental brass quartet” The Westerlies.

Now in its tenth season, Soundings will feature four concerts from Oct. 2019 to May 2020 conceived by Seth Knopp, longtime artistic director of the series.

Bleckmann, a German expat who’s called New York home for the past 30 years, is a phenom, often stretching the boundaries of his clarion tenor with ethereal electronic effects. Songs of Refuge and Resistance was first presented at Yellow Barn in the summer of 2018, but its timeliness has not diminished. The program includes original compositions from Bleckmann and members of The Westerlies, as well as songs from Joni Mitchell, Woody Guthrie, Bertolt Brecht and Paul Dessau, Judee Sill, Phil Kline, legendary union organizer Joe Hill, and others.

“No matter what time in which we live, music always has something to say,” Knopp said, “and its power rises above things that are happening around it and the climate in which it is being created.” Music From Yellow Barn: Songs of Refuge and Resistance makes for a diverse, rewarding experience.

The 2019/2020 season will offer an assortment of concerts, from songs of solidarity and protest to unearthed musical treasures by little-known musicians, such as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s often-overlooked sister, Nannerl.

“It is a tremendous occasion to celebrate the ten-year anniversary of Soundings,” said Nasher director Jeremy Strick. “This concert series brings a rich and dynamic level of engagement with our audiences, expanding the artistic offerings of the museum and challenging our expectations of what a musical performance can be.”

This season will also welcome a musician-in-residence, Travis Laplante—saxophonist and composer — who will present multiple performances in different formats for several days in February, in celebration of the 10th anniversary of Soundings.

  • Oct. 17Music from Yellow Barn: Songs of Refuge and Resistance – The Soundings season opener, is a brilliant example of what makes the series so essential. This concert features the talent-melding of Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist Theo Bleckmann with the New York-based “accidental brass quartet” The Westerlies.
  • Dec. 4Carolin Widmann: Works for Solo Violin – Munich-born Widmann has had a celebrated international career and this concert will showcase her extraordinary breadth—she can do it all. From the haunting, austere beauty of Hildegard von Bingen’s 12th century Antiphona, to the contemporary deranged virtuosity of Salvatore Sciarrino’sSei Capricci (after Paganini); from Bach’s celestial Partita No. 2 in D Minor to Jörg Widmann’s wry Paraphrase on Mendelssohn’s Wedding March, to George Enescu’s rarely heard Fantaisie concertante, it is an evening untethered to time and place.
  • Feb. 20, 21, and 22, 2020Travis Laplante, Musician-In-Residence –  His six-day residency will involve a concert in Nasher Hall on Feb. 20 — the primary Soundings concert — as well as smaller performances as part of the free late-night program ‘Til Midnight at the Nasher on Feb. 21, and for children, in the galleries, on Feb. 22.
  • May 1, 2020The Other Mozart – The Other Mozart is the award-winning creation of actress/playwright Sylvia Milo and the final don’t-miss presentation of the season. The play features Milo in the title role, with music by Nannerl’s composing inspiration, Marianna Martines, two contemporary composers, Nathan Davis, and Phyllis Chen, as well as some from her better-known sibling.

Season subscriptions for Nasher Sculpture Center are on sale for $100 for members and $120 for non-members online now, with single tickets available starting Sept. 17.

Tickets are $30 for members and $35 for non-members.

Jaxx Artz

Jaxx Artz is a senior at New York University but has lived in the Dallas Fort Worth area her whole life. An alumna of Ursuline Academy of Dallas, Jaxx got started writing for Ursuline’s Bear News student newspaper and the Colleyville Charm, a magazine local to her home community in Colleyville, TX. When she is not writing, Jaxx loves to explore new places, cook, and walk her dogs (she has two!). If you have a story idea for her, you can email Jaxx at [email protected]. For the latest news, click here to sign up for our newsletter.

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