Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, communications assistant; tele: (413) 597-4277; email: [email protected]
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A computer music performance/lecture titled “MILLing in the ENNIUM” will be given by the McLean Mix, the internationally-recognized husband-wife composer-performer duo, at Williams on Tuesday, March 7, at 8 p.m. in Brooks-Rogers Recital Hall.
The program should be of special interest to all who are fascinated by unusual music and visual image in a unique blend of high tech with virtuosic performance. Barton and Priscilla McLean (the McLean Mix) are classically-trained composer/performers who are exploring new means of integrating thematic interests such as nature, multicultural areas, and world history of the arts into their performance.
The lecture/concert opens with MILLing in the ENNIUM, a 19 minute audio-video excerpt from the 45-minute work premiered at MASS MoCA for their millennial celebration in February of 2000. To accompany the video, Barton McLean composed a music collage with synthesizer obligato. The two middle works comprise music with video, and are shorter and more delicate in nature; JEWELS OF JANUARY, a video taken in two locations: the icy January brook in front of the McLeans’ farmhouse in the Taconic Mts. of New York, and a group of large hanging icicles on Rte. 22 heading towards the Vermont border. The video took three years to film. JULY DANCE is a brief frolic with summer, with all the Northeast in celebration, from jiving birch trees to children playing with balloons. The composer accompanies all with her ad hoc percussion “table” of skinned firewood logs and croquet posts strewn upon resonators and placed in a neighbor’s 200-acre field, to dance with the blowing wind as she plays. AUTUMN REQUIEM will be performed after a brief intermission, a work created as a result of a McLean Mix artist residency at the iEAR Program at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2001-02. Its “requiem” thematic content was originally inspired by the tragic yet renewing nature of the fall season in the USA Northeast, with all its beauty, starkness, death, and eventual rebirth.
The McLean Mix has performed extensively throughout the U.S. (in 40 States) and around the world in such forums such as the Zagreb International Muzicki Biennale, Asian Composers League (Tunugun-Manila), and the Athens International Film Festival. They have been the recipients of five NEA Composer Fellowships and a Media Arts Grant, as well as awards from the Rockefeller, Ditson, IMC-Rostrum, Bourges Festival, Asian Society, etc. Their music has been performed at most of the major festivals, including Warsaw Autumn, Graz, Gaudeamus, Bourges, and New Music America. Priscilla McLean has recently been Visiting Professor at the University of Hawaii. Her orchestral work Variations and Mozaics on a Theme of Stravinsky was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and recorded by the Louisville Orchestra. Her music has been featured throughout Europe on public radio, and in the U.S. in such public radio forums asAll Things Considered and Morning Pro Musica. Barton McLean, as recent director of the University of Texas-Austin Electronic Music Center, developed one of the largest and most modern computer and electronic music centers in U.S. universities in 1981, and has recently served as guest lecturer and artist in residence at I-EAR studios of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
During the informal event, the McLeans will talk about each work and will entertain questions from the audience. Directions: (413) 597-2736.
For building locations on the Williams campus, please consult the map outside the driveway entrance to the Security Office located in Hopkins Hall on Main Street (Rte. 2), next to the Thompson Memorial Chapel, or call the Office of Public Affairs (413) 597-4277. The map can also be found on the web at www.williams.edu/home/campusmap/