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Theo Bleckmann Performs Hello Earth! – The Music of Kate Bush Presented by Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum

Theo Bleckmann

Credit: Photo by Lynne Harty available in high resolution upon request

Release Date: October 8, 2019

Theo Bleckmann Performs Hello Earth! – The Music of Kate Bush Presented by Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum

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Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 7:30pm
Scheuer Auditorium at the Jewish Museum | 1109 5th Ave at 92nd Street | New York, NY
Tickets: $20 General; $16 Students and Seniors; $12 Jewish Museum Members
Available at www.thejewishmuseum.org. Includes museum admission.

New York, NY, October 8, 2019 – Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum’s 2019-2020 concert season continues on Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 7:30pm at the Jewish Museum (1109 Fifth Avenue at 92nd Street). Grammy-nominated jazz singer, new music composer, and long time collaborator with Bang on a Can, Theo Bleckmann takes on the mysterious songbook of British pop icon Kate Bush in a project entitled Hello Earth! – The Music of Kate Bush that goes beyond re-creating her music to further realms of sound and interpretation. Joining him on this performance are long-time collaborators percussionist Ben Wittman, bassist Chris Tarry, and keyboardist Henry Hey,  along with special guest, multi-instrumentalist Caleb Burhans on viola, guitar, and laptop.

Of his 2011 recording for Winter & Winter, The New York Times writes, “Bleckmann treats Bush's music as he would that of Charles Ives, Thelonious Monk, George Gershwin, Guillaume de Machaut, Joni Mitchell or any other composer he takes on: with love, respect and an insatiable curiosity for new possibilities.”

Bleckmann says of Kate Bush, "Her music has this thing that I love in art: you're instantly drawn into someone's universe without really knowing why but somehow understanding everything in your heart …I now realize that the way she layered sound, speech and music became a major influence for my live electronic looping aesthetic.”

The 2019-2020 season marks the sixth year of the Jewish Museum and Bang on a Can’s partnership. This season’s performances celebrate the power of artists voices, which resonates with themes in the Museum’s fall 2019 exhibitions, Edith Halpert and the Rise of American Art and Rachel Feinstein: Maiden, Mother, Crone. Upcoming concerts include Nicole Mitchell (February 27, 2020 at 7:30pm) and Carla Kihlstedt (May 21, 2020 at 7:30pm).

About Theo Bleckmann
Grammy-nominated jazz singer and new music composer Theo Bleckmann’s diverse recorded work includes albums of Las Vegas standards, Weimar art songs, and popular “bar songs” (all with pianist Fumio Yasuda); a recording of newly-arranged songs by Charles Ives (with jazz/rock collective Kneebody); and his acclaimed Hello Earth - The Music of Kate Bush. Bleckmann has most recently appeared as a special guest on recordings by Ambrose Akinmusire for Blue Note Records and Julia Hülsmann’s trio for ECM Records. In January 2017, ECM released Bleckmann’s recording with his new Elegy Quintet, produced by legendary label head and founder, Manfred Eicher. Bleckmann has collaborated with musicians, artists, actors and composers, including Ambrose Akinmusire, Laurie Anderson, Uri Caine, Philip Glass, Ann Hamilton, John Hollenbeck, Sheila Jordan, Phil Kline, David Lang, Kirk Nurock, Frances MacDormand, Ben Monder, Michael Tilson Thomas, Kenny Wheeler, John Zorn, the Bang on a Can All-Stars, and, most prominently, Meredith Monk, with whom Bleckmann worked as a core ensemble member for over fifteen years.
 He has been interviewed by Terry Gross on NPR’s Fresh Air and appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman with Laurie Anderson. In 2015, Bleckmann premiered a new work for the American Composers Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, and in 2016 he brought new work to the New York Philharmonic Biennial and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Bleckmann has consistently appeared in the top-five spots in the DownBeat Critics’ Polls for Best Male Vocalist, and top-ten spots in their Readers’ Polls, and his work on Phil Kline’s “Out Cold” helped place that production on WQXR's Operavore "Best Opera of 2012". In 2010, Bleckmann received the prestigious JAZZ ECHO award from the Deutsche Phono-Akademie in his native Germany.

Tickets for the November 14, 2019 program are $20 general public; $16 students and seniors; and $12 for Jewish Museum members and Bang on a Can list members, and include exhibition admission prior to the performance. Further program and ticket information is available by calling 212.423.3337 or at TheJewishMuseum.org/calendar. The Jewish Museum is located at Fifth Avenue and 92nd Street, NYC.

Public programs are made possible, in part, through public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with City Council and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

About Bang on a Can
Bang on a Can is dedicated to making music new. Since its first Marathon concert in 1987, Bang on a Can has been creating an international community dedicated to innovative music, wherever it is found. With adventurous programs, it commissions new composers, performs, presents, and records new work, develops new audiences, and educates the musicians of the future. Bang on a Can is building a world in which powerful new musical ideas flow freely across all genres and borders. Bang on a Can plays “a central role in fostering a new kind of audience that doesn’t concern itself with boundaries. If music is made with originality and integrity, these listeners will come.” (The New York Times)

Bang on a Can has grown from a one-day New York-based Marathon concert (on Mother’s Day in 1987 in a SoHo art gallery) to a multi-faceted performing arts organization with a broad range of year-round international activities. “When we started Bang on a Can, we never imagined that our 12-hour marathon festival of mostly unknown music would morph into a giant international organization dedicated to the support of experimental music, wherever we would find it,” write Bang on a Can Co-Founders Michael Gordon, David Lang and Julia Wolfe. “But it has, and we are so gratified to be still hard at work, all these years later. The reason is really clear to us – we started this organization because we believed that making new music is a utopian act – that people needed to hear this music and they needed to hear it presented in the most persuasive way, with the best players, with the best programs, for the best listeners, in the best context. Our commitment to changing the environment for this music has kept us busy and growing, and we are not done yet.”

Current projects include the new LOUD Weekend at MASS MoCA; The People's Commissioning Fund, a membership program to commission emerging composers; the Bang on a Can All-Stars, who tour to major festivals and concert venues around the world every year; recording projects; the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA - a professional development program for young composers and performers led by today’s pioneers of experimental music; Asphalt Orchestra, Bang on a Can’s extreme street band that offers mobile performances re-contextualizing unusual music; Found Sound Nation, a new technology-based musical outreach program now partnering with the State Department of the United States of America to create OneBeat, a revolutionary, post-political residency program that uses music to bridge the gulf between young American musicians and young musicians from developing countries; cross-disciplinary collaborations and projects with DJs, visual artists, choreographers, filmmakers and more. Each new program has evolved to answer specific challenges faced by today’s musicians, composers and audiences, in order to make innovative music widely accessible and wildly received. Bang on a Can’s inventive and aggressive approach to programming and presentation has created a large and vibrant international audience made up of people of all ages who are rediscovering the value of contemporary music.

About the Jewish Museum

Located on New York City's famed Museum Mile, the Jewish Museum is a distinctive hub for art and Jewish culture for people of all backgrounds. Founded in 1904, the Museum was the first institution of its kind in the United States and is one of the oldest Jewish museums in the world. Devoted to exploring art and Jewish culture from ancient to contemporary, the Museum offers intellectually engaging exhibitions and programs, and maintains a unique collection of nearly 30,000 works of art, ceremonial objects, and media reflecting the global Jewish experience over more than 4,000 years.

Location: 1109 Fifth Avenue at 92nd Street, New York City

Hours: Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, 11 am to 5:45 pm; Thursday, 11 am to 8 pm; and Friday, 11 am to 4 pm.

Admission: $18.00 for adults, $12.00 for senior citizens, $8.00 for students, free for visitors 18 and under and Jewish Museum members. Free on Saturdays and select Jewish holidays.

Information: The public may call 212.423.3200 or visit TheJewishMuseum.org

Press contacts

For Bang on a Can:
Jensen Artists – Maggie Stapleton | 646.536.7864 x2 or maggie@jensenartists.com

For the Jewish Museum:
Daniela Stigh or Alex Wittenberg | 212.423.3271 or pressoffice@thejm.org