Renée Fleming VOICES:
Rinde Eckert in
RIN--Tales from the Life of a Troubadour
Rinde Eckert "finds vivifying parallels between the theological quest of one man and the theatrical quest to capture and illuminate life."--The New York Times
Renée Fleming's acclaimed new VOICES series continues with the Kennedy Center debut of Grammy-winning writer and performer Rinde Eckert.
In RIN--Tales from the Life of a Troubadour, Rinde Eckert recalls the ancient jongleur--the storyteller, minstrel, and poet-singer--inviting audiences into his world and laying its particular wonders before them. He accompanies himself in song and story on piano, guitar, accordion, ukulele, banjo, kalimba, fife, flutes, chimes, and percussion of all sorts.
Rinde Eckert is one of true pioneers of multi-disciplinary performance: a consummate musician who combines extraordinary vocal virtuosity with an athlete's physical prowess, a slapstick comic's theatrical vulnerability, and a philosopher's understanding of human complexity. His performances defy all traditional notions of the boundaries between music, movement, and theater. He is best known and celebrated for his dynamic and innovative creations as a composer, lyricist, and multi-instrumentalist.
With a virtuosic command of gesture, language and song, this total theater artist moves beyond the boundaries of what a play, dance work, opera, or musical might be, in the service of grappling with complex issues and pushing the boundaries of contemporary art. The success of his works has garnered many awards, including Grammy Awards, the Doris Duke Performing Artist Prize, and a
nomination for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
Says VOICES curator Renée Fleming:
"I first heard of Rinde Eckert wandering through a dinner event as a performance artist, singing and playing the accordion, and I was mesmerized. I admire artists who push the envelope, and Rinde merges gesture, language, and song in utterly original ways. I think his audiences experience something similar to what people must have felt centuries ago when the very first operas were created."
Performance Timing: 90 minutes, with no intermission.