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DIRECT CURRENTWHEN THE WORLD'S ON FIRE: SOPHIA BROUS & MARC RIBOT

3/18/2018 at 6:00 PM

Australian performer and National Sawdust artist-in-resident Sophia Brous joins with New York icon and guitarist Marc Ribot to premiere a new collaboration with Shazhad Ismaily on percussion.

In the Birth of Tragedy, Frederik Nietzsche theorized the religious myth of Silenus (“the best thing for you would be to have never been born”) as the trauma that necessitated the birth of the artistic beauty of Greek Tragic theater.
The Carter Family’s “When the World’s On Fire” points to a different process at work in American culture: when utopian optimism collided with the lived reality of the New World and produced apocalyptic visions of devils, fire, and brimstone. As Greil Marcus writes, paving the way for the “devil” as a primary antagonist in the sublime musical expression of musician Robert Johnson and a blues and gospel musical heritage of enormous power and beauty.

Whatever the political effects of these socio-religious transformations might be, it seems clear to us that they have “stung…into poetry” some of the great beauty of the wellsprings of our musical heritage.

Today, as myth and fantasy spill out into the political stage, New York icon, guitarist Marc Ribot joins with National Sawdust artist-in-resident, celebrated performer and vocalist Sophia Brous to premiere a new exploration into songs of beauty, disorder and dissent for a new America, where the blurred lines between dream and waking call on a new songbook of lullabies, hymns and songs of resistance to guide us in the days ahead.

Featuring selections from Sophia Brous’ celebrated song cycle Lullaby Movement (originally conceived with David Coulter and Leo Abrahams), Marc Ribot’s forthcoming Songs of Resistance project, and other world premiere repertoire.

Presented in collaboration with National Sawdust.

Presented as part of the Kennedy Center's DIRECT CURRENT inaugural season. For more information on the season, please click HERE.


Featured Artist(s)
Sophia Brous
Marc Ribot

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