Bang on a Can All Stars | Wentz Concert Hall, North Central College | Experimental | Chicago Reader

Bang on a Can All Stars All Ages Recommended Soundboard

When: Thu., April 12, 8 p.m. 2012

For this tour, which celebrates the 25th anniversary of eclectic New York new-music festival Bang on a Can, the festival organization's performing ensemble is revisiting one of the most popular adaptations in its vast repertoire: a meticulously orchestrated version of Brian Eno's ambient classic Music for Airports. The group's 1998 recording of the piece (in four sections, one arranged by each of its founding members: Michael Gordon, David Lang, Julia Wolfe, and Evan Ziporyn) adds layers of harmonic detail to the ultrasimple melodies, making it much more than background music but retaining its serene glow. The rest of the program will focus on music from the All-Stars' terrific new double CD, Big Beautiful Dark and Scary (Cantaloupe), their first recording with the current sextet lineup: clarinetist Ziporyn, cellist Ashley Bathgate, bassist Robert Black, pianist Vicky Chow, percussionist David Cossin, and guitarist Mark Stewart. In addition to the Eno, tonight they'll perform Gordon's wonderfully tense, stubbornly ascending "For Madeline," selections from Ziporyn's shadow-play piece Shadowbang, ambitious arrangements of four of Conlon Nancarrow's maniacal Studies for Player Piano, three short commissioned pieces by David Longstreth of Dirty Projectors, and a composition by Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore. —Peter Margasak

Price: $5, $3 for seniors and students

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