The Tune In Festival: Day Four
The Tune In Festival: Day Four
Sun, Nov 7, 2021 at 5PM
Prerecorded Worldwide

The return of The Tune In Festival features more than 30 artists and ensembles over four days, coming together to pay respect to the time-honored tradition of music and poetry as sources of resilience, protest and inspiration. Curated by performance poet J. Ivy and pianist Lisa Kaplan in close collaboration with CAP UCLA Creative Advisor Kristy Edmunds. Day Four of the festival features the work of jessica Care moore, Thalea String Quartet performing piece by Jessie Montgomery and Anthony R. Green (who is also performing), Errollyn Wallen, J. Ivy, Ayanna Woods and Julius Eastman.

jessica Care moore
"Such a Wild Beauty"

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jessica Care moore is a world renowned poet, writer and recording artist. A consistent institution builder, moore is the executive producer and founder of the 17-year old rock & roll concert and empowerment weekend Black WOMEN Rock! and the CEO of Moore Black Press Publishing, the imprint she launched in 1997. She has been called “the voice of Detroit," creating the award-winning Detroit anthem, "Move Here, Move The World."

moore is the author of several books: The Words Don’t Fit in My Mouth, The Alphabet Verses The Ghetto, God is Not an American, Sunlight Through Bullet Holes and We Want Our Bodies Back. Her full scale theatrical work, the Afrofuturistic techno choreo-poem Salt City, premiered in Detroit in 2019.

Moore captivated a national television audience in the 1990's when she won the legendary It’s Showtime at the Apollo competition a record breaking five times in a row — with a poem. moore's poetry and voice is prominently featured on the 4th floor of the Smithsonian's New National Museum of African American History. She is a proud Detroiter and lives in the city, raising her son King. 


Thalea String Quartet
"Source Code"
By Jessie Montgomery
Filmed at Merkin Hall, Kaufmann Music Center, NYC (7/23 & 24)

Jessie Montgomery

Jessie Montgomery is an acclaimed composer, violinist and educator. She is the recipient of the Leonard Bernstein Award from the ASCAP Foundation. Her works are performed frequently around the world by leading musicians and ensembles. She interweaves classical and vernacular music, improvisation, language and social justice, placing her squarely as one of the most relevant interpreters of 21st-century American sound and experience. Her profoundly felt works have been described as “turbulent, wildly colorful and exploding with life” ( The Washington Post).

The melancholy requiem "Source Code" draws from the history of Black artistry, according to Montgomery. “The first sketches of 'Source Code' began as transcriptions of various sources from African American artists prominent during the peak of the civil rights era in the United States. I experimented by re-interpreting gestures, sentences, and musical syntax (the bare bones of rhythm and inflection) by choreographer Alvin Ailey, poets Langston Hughes and Rita Dove, and the great jazz songstress Ella Fitzgerald into musical sentences and tone paintings. Ultimately, this exercise of listening, re-imagining, and transcribing led me back to the black spiritual as a common musical source across all three genres. The spiritual is a significant part of the DNA of black folk music, and subsequently most (arguably all) American pop music forms that have developed to the present day. This one-movement work is a kind of dirge, which centers on a melody based on syntax derived from black spirituals. The melody is continuous and cycles through like a gene strand with which all other textures play.”

Errollyn Wallen
"Daedalus"

Errollyn Wallen

Errollyn Wallen CBE is a multi award-winning Belize-born British composer, pianist and singer-songwriter whose output includes twenty-two operas and a large catalogue of works which are performed internationally. Her re-imagining of Parry’s “Jerusalem,” “JERUSALEM — our clouded hills” for soprano and orchestra was performed at the BBC Last Night of the Proms 2020 and broadcast around the world from the Royal Albert Hall.

“The renaissance woman of British classical music” [The Observer] retains song at the heart of everything she composes. Her song “Daedalus” is a meditation on the Greek myth Icarus. Icarus died ignoring his father's warning not to fly too close to the sun, melting the wax on his artificial wings. The piece also alludes to Daedalus’ earlier murder of his nephew and apprentice Perdix, whose talent for invention threatened to eclipse his own.

“Daedalus” was first recorded on her album ERROLLYN and travelled to outer space on mission STS-115. It was later arranged for the Brodsky Quartet’s album Moodswings. Both versions were used for the opening and closing titles of the BBC television drama, One Night.

Anthony R. Green
"I returned. I wanted to."
Filmed in Accra and Kumasi, Ghana

Anthony R. Green

The output of composer/performer/social justice artist Anthony R. Green (he/him/his) includes musical and visual creations; interpretations of original, contemporary and repertoire works, collaborations, educational outreach, and more. Behind all his artistic endeavors are the ideals of equality and freedom. His compositions and projects have been presented in over 25 countries across four continents by various internationally acclaimed soloists and ensembles, including cellist Ifetayo Ali-Landing, the Thalea String Quartet, and the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra, to name a few.

“I returned. I wanted to.” is an exploration of the Black, queer, US-specific North American psyche placed against and in conversation with Ghana/West Africa-specific modalities. Filmed primarily in Kumasi, Ghana, this video essay amalgamates music, text, graphic notation, photography, geography, improvisation, and philosophy to bring this duality to the fore. “I returned. I wanted to.” features the music of Liz Gre, Shannon Sea, and Anthony R. Green, blended together in a recontextualization and soul-affirming actualization of Black, queer, U.S. American praxis in diaspora. Poetry and text by Phillis Wheatley Peters, Anthony R. Green, and Angelina Weld Grimké contribute to the deeper penetration of US American Blackness in three voices: from an enslaved African who developed mostly in the United States, from a queer Black man born in the United States but currently living in Europe, and from a queer, mixed race woman who – despite being 75% white – identified more with her Blackness.

This project was made possible in part by the PerfocraZe International Artists Residency in Kumasi, Ghana.

J. Ivy

J. Ivy

Performance poet J. Ivy is also a recording artist, songwriter, author and actor. Over the years his work has earned him a Peabody, Clio, Telly and NAACP Image Award. He is widely known as the poet featured on Kanye West’s GRAMMY-winning album The College Dropout, on the classic song "Never Let Me Down," along with hip-hop icon Jay-Z. Early in his career Ivy was featured on three seasons of HBO’s Def Poetry Jam. From performing at conferences for Deepak Chopra to penning a poem for the NBA Hall of Fame legend Michael Jordan, Ivy has used his singular style of poetry to navigate the art form to arenas of all facets. In 2015, directors Coodie & Chike commissioned Ivy to poetically narrate, act, and star in the award winning B.E.T. documentary, Muhammad Ali: The People’s Champ. The trio later followed up with the NAACP-nominated documentary, Martin: The Legacy of a King. In 2020, Ivy was commissioned by ESPN and the NBA to write and narrate Beyonce's Black Is King promo for the Return of the NBA. A National Trustee for The Recording Academy, J. Ivy is also a writer for the upcoming Kanye West three-part DocuFilm Series jeen-yuhs, set to release on Netflix in February 2022. His most recent release is Catching Dreams: Live at Fort Knox.

Thalea String Quartet
"Mightosis"
By Ayanna Woods
Filmed at Merkin Hall, Kaufmann Music Center, NYC (7/23 & 24)

Ayanna Woods

Ayanna Woods is a composer, performer and bandleader from Chicago. Her music explores the spaces between acoustic and electronic, traditional and esoteric, wildly improvisational and mathematically rigorous. A collaborator across genres and forms, her work spans new music, theater, film scoring, arranging and improvisation. CAP UCLA audiences will remember her bass playing as part of composer Ted Hearne’s collaborative project Dorothea, which we presented last season.

Woods’ song “Mightosis” is a play on the biological term for cell division “mitosis.” It is a semi-improvised piece about becoming more resilient through the process of breaking apart.

Thalea String Quartet
"Sacred Ground: We Can Still Feel The Tremors"
By Anthony R. Green
Filmed at Merkin Hall, Kaufmann Music Center, NYC (7/23 & 24)

Thalea String Quartet

The second piece by Green to be featured in this year’s Tune In is the evocative “Sacred Ground: We Can Still Feel the Tremors.” It was commissioned for the Thalea String Quartet by Chamber Music Tulsa to commemorate the centennial anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre, one of the worst incidents of white supremacist violence in U.S. history. According to Green, “This was a wonderful chance for me to do research about this event as well as do something creative in honor of the lives that were lost and the people who suffered.” The piece is full of rapid tremolos and trills, conveying the violence, confusion and terror of the Massacre.

"The Holy Presence of Joan D’arc"
By Julius Eastman
A work for vocalist and 10 cellos
Produced by Looking Glass Arts; Filmed at Looking Glass Arts in upstate NY July 27 & 28, 2021

Julius Eastman

Protominimalist, pianist, singer and organizer Julius Eastman made a name for himself in the 1970s representing a new kind of artistic intellectual- one determined to redefine the role of modern creatives, committed to intersectionality and self-liberation. In a 1976 interview he professed, “What I am trying to achieve… is to be what I am to the fullest. Black to the fullest, a musician to the fullest, a homosexual to the fullest.” The unapologetic nonconformity and authenticity of Eastman’s compositions have undoubtedly contributed to the posthumous reemergence, recognition, and subsequent renaissance that his body of work has received in recent years.

Looking Glass Arts is an artist-led creative retreat center in the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York committed to democratizing access to the space, time and natural beauty critical to artistic growth and practice. In its inaugural season, LGA has partnered with the Center for the Art of Performance at UCLA to film Julius Eastman’s “The Holy Presence of Joan d’Arc” (1980) for 10 cellos (under the Musical Direction of Seth Parker Woods) and the Prelude for Solo Baritone (performed by Davóne Tines) in the hundred-year-old dairy barn the organization has adapted for use as a rustic recording space. The physicality of the composition and its driving call to “speak boldly” is palpable in the film—resonating through the floorboards and out onto the rolling green fields just beyond the barn doors.

The Tune In Festival is supported by a generous gift from composer Rachel Fuller (Animal Requiem) and musician Pete Townshend (The Who). Additional funds provided by the Henry Mancini Tribute Fund and the National Endowment for the Arts Challenge Grant Endowment.

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