Kicking off the marathon's final stretch is Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto, who gives us an hour of tranquility (including a melodic piano solo and a new work written for the Bang on a Can All Stars) that feels like a restful island in this sea of music.
On the surface, there isn't anything all that innovative about Evan Ziporyn's "Sulvasutra," which he wrote for the Silk Road Ensemble (though he wasn't sure he was supposed to tell us that.) But there's this guy, Sandeep Das, sitting in the center, who's playing tabla like he's in a trance, full of joyous abandon. Everyone else on stage (Brooklyn Rider, pipa player Wu Man,) have scores; Das learned the whole thing by ear. And feel. It's like a whole other thing, you know?
Note to Missy: when you get the NY Times critic tapping his shoe to your sweet strings and ipod-driven beats, you're probably onto something. Too bad they only let you play two numbers, even though they're running a 1/2 hour ahead of schedule. (Pictured: Victoire)
After yesterdays performance of David Lang's "give me," it only makes sense to hear Julia Wolfe's "Thirst" from "Water," with the Ars Nova and Athelas Sinfonietta, both of Copenhagen. The way the chorus and strings bounce around in here is haunting and stirring, like an eastern orthodox rite. Which, of course, makes me think of Part, though Julia tends to give the women more of a voice. Of course.