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September 12, 2007

excellent birds

by gl. at 3:37 pm

sven & i went to the opening of tba:2007 last week to watch rinde eckert's "on the migration of excellent birds (flash, sorry) performed in pioneer courthouse square. sven remembered seeing rinde eckert in maine many years ago, and i was amused that mph had mentioned laurie anderson's "excellent birds" a couple of nights before.

using a chorus of ordinary voice & simple gestures, they portrayed flocks, rivers and song. it was unexpectedly delightful. bird serendipities abounded, most notably with a flock of normal pigeons flying dramatically out from the chorus as they lifted their voices to sing "amen."

i wanted to write about it because i've seen a lot of mixed reaction, in part because it was intended to be for a larger chorus. but the idea and the reality of it just tickles me. i can sympathize with people who thought this was a bit of an anticlimatic way to end the opening ceremony (as it was both beginning and end with no context about TBA at all), but for a group that usually advertises the annual event where the swifts fly into the big elementary school chimney, it certainly seemed appropriate.

[the umbrella is part of the performance]

this is a really terrible picture: i didn't even think to try for one until it was almost over. but hilary pfeifer has an excellent post with video on her site.

posted by gl. | September 12, 2007 3:37 PM | categories: exhibits & events