About This Program
Julius Eastman (1940–1990) was a gay African-American composer, pianist and vocalist, and among the first musicians to combine minimalist processes with elements of pop music. Inspired by his fascinating life story, Brooklyn-based interdisciplinary artist Jace Clayton (a.k.a. DJ/rupture, former turntable soloist with the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra and “thoughtful pipeline for music from countless distant and obscure outposts.” – The New York Times) created the Julius Eastman Memorial Dinner: a performance piece that restages three Eastman compositions in new arrangements for pianos, chamber ensemble and real-time electronic processing. The music is interspersed with video and short theatrical vignettes that use empathy and humor to reveal details about Eastman’s exceptional life. Project collaborators include acclaimed writer Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts, pianists David Friend, Bryan Nichols and Emily Manzo, multi-instrumentalist and composer deVon Gray (Heiruspecs) and vocalist Arooj Aftab.
Twin Cities documentary filmmaker, writer, and photographer, Justin Schell sat down with Clayton for a revealing interview in anticipation of these performances. You can also listen to an excerpt of Jace Clayton's new album and read more about him in these high-praise, high-profile articles:
Jace Clayton The Julius Eastman Memory Depot (Pitchfork)
DJ /rupture: how to sing like a sufi (The Guardian)
Please note: The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra does not perform on this program.
Liquid Music Series
This event is part of a boundary-defying new concert series presented by The SPCO. Learn more and buy this event as part of the Liquid Music Series.