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This Takes Place Close By



Members of the music collective thingNY are in the studio to discuss the world premiere of This Takes Place Close By – an experimental opera exploring the reactions of isolated individuals in the wake of a devastating storm. Director Ashley Tata and two of the production's six composer-performers, Andrew Livingston and Jeffrey Young, sit down with Pete McCabe to talk about the process and essence of this collaborative opera.

This Takes Place Close By was conceived in response to Sandy, Katrina, and other urban, natural disasters. Each character represents someone either victimized by the storm or searching for a way to cope with the damaging effects of the catastrophe, and their distinct vocal lines communicate the tension, pain, and solemnity of the story being told. Although crafted in an unconventional style for an opera (with a heavily character driven plot), the members classify This Takes Place Close By as an opera because it aligns with the Wagnerian ideal of the art form, in which each aspect (spatial, sonic, dramatic, etc.) are equally important.

Performances of This Takes Place Close By take place at Knockdown Center, September 24-27, 2015.

thingNY is a quirky collective of New York composer-performers who fuse electronic and acoustic chamber music with new opera, improvisation, theater, text, song and installation. Founded in 2006 for an ad hoc festival in the historic Loew’s Jersey City Theater, thingNY performs experimental sound works created collaboratively by the core ensemble. To bolster and support experimental performance, its members have curated the New Music Showdown (2013-2014) and the Immediacies Series (2012-2014).
 

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Since 1993, HERE has supported multidisciplinary work that does not fit into a conventional programming agenda. HERE's aesthetic represents the independent, the innovative, and the organization has developed such acclaimed works as Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues; Basil Twist's Symphonie Fantastique; Trey Lyford & Geoff Sobelle's all wear bowlers; and Young Jean Lee's Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven.

HERE supports the work of mid-career artists working in hybrid theatrical forms through commissions, subsidized performance and rehearsal space, works-in-progress, workshop productions and fully-produced works. A primary focus of HERE is the work of its HARP (HERE Artistic Residency Program) Artists, who partake of a one- to three-year residency.

The New York Times has called HERE "one of the most unusual arts spaces in New York and possibly the model for the cutting-edge arts spaces of tomorrow." HERE aims to integrate art into daily life and engage the community's needs and interests on as many different levels as possible.

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