An Earth Day call to action concert featuring Portland composer Lisa Neher’s major song cycle No One Saves the Earth from Us But Us urges immediate steps to address the global climate crisis. The concert features the release of a filmed performance of the cycle, the product of an interdisciplinary team of composers, poets, performers, sound designers, and recording engineers from across the United States. It will be live-streamed on Friday, April 22 (Earth Day) at 5:00 pm Pacific, followed by a talkback with the creative team on Zoom. The concert lasts approximately 35 minutes, with the Zoom talkback immediately following.
On the heels of last July’s record-breaking temperatures in Portland, No One Saves the Earth from Us But Us speaks to the gravity of global climate change with unflinching clarity and directness, holding space for the mourning, fear, and anger we experience in the face of this catastrophe and advocating immediate action. Commissioned by mezzo-soprano Quinn Patrick Ankrum (OH) and pianist Elizabeth Avery (OK), the work sets poetry by Felicia Zamora (OH) and Craig Santos Perez (HI). Zamora’s poem takes inspiration from data and interrogates why humans are so resistant to change. Poems from Perez’s Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Glacier sound a clarion call about environmental justice. The music ranges in style from tuneful grooves to experimental techniques. The final movement sets an erasure version of Zamora’s poetry, in which the blank space on the page is translated into a series of bell-like repeating chords in the piano.
The piece experiments with technology to allow for collaboration without burning fossil fuels by flying across the country. Conceived by Ankrum and Avery as a way to collaborate remotely from across the country during the COVID-19 pandemic, Ankrum and Zamora recorded all of the vocal parts first in small pieces. These vocal events were programmed into software by the project’s digital process creator Jonah Elrod and were controlled during the live performance by Avery using a foot pedal. This recorded performance was filmed by Josh Bivens (OK) and produced, mixed, and mastered by Christina Giacona and Patrick Conlon of Onyx Lane (OK). The work is inspired by Greta Thunberg and is dedicated to her generation and those who will follow.
This project was made possible by funding from the University of Oklahoma Faculty Senate and the University of Cincinnati Office of the Vice President for Research.
Call to Action Concert and Talkback Friday, April 22, 2022 | 5:00 pm PST Livestreaming from anywhere, details: https://www.lisanehermusic.com/savetheearth Free Admission Via Eventbrite [https://tinyurl.com/2s4fj8zf]
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