‘17-’18 season recap

Our 2017-2018 season was our most ambitious yet, pushing the boundaries of the imagination. By the numbers, we can look back at the year in summation to see that it featured:

  • 6 new concert length works

  • 22 days spent on tour

  • 23 world premieres

  • 28 shows

  • groundbreaking music by 54 living composers

  • 66 different works

  • 67 hours of performance

  • 329 hours rehearsing and recording

  • over 20,000 people in attendance

From the development, presentation, and production of the first projects of Contemporaneous IMAGINATION to performances on the PROTOTYPE Festival, the Bang on a Can Marathon, with Beth Morrison Projects, and LUNA Lab, and Face The Music, to a 16-hour long world premiere to celebrate the solstice, Contemporaneous has sought to foster a culture of radical empathy, empowering greater understanding between diverse communities through the most extraordinary music being created today. Here are a few highlights from the season:

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Stranger Love

Stranger Love is a 6-hour-long multimedia opera, scored for Contemporaneous, 8 singers, and 6 dancers with music by composer Dylan Mattingly, text by Thomas Bartscherer. An immersive experience, Stranger Love is a grand celebration of life itself. It follows two lovers whose romance unfolds to the rhythm of the seasons. Set on a vast time-scale against the ever-expanding universe, it broadens in scope and frame over the course of three acts, moving from the personal to the archetypical to a vision of the divine — a love supreme. Stranger Love evokes the visceral thrill of a gospel revival, the ethereal calm of watching snow fall, the wonder of staring into the night sky.

Contemporaneous presented the first act of Stranger Love in a concert performance on the PROTOTYPE Festival on January 16 and 17, 2018 at Roulette in Brooklyn.

Watch the trailer below!

Sunrise / Sunset

A project of Contemporaneous IMAGINATION, SUNRISE / SUNSET is a 16-hour communal performance, created by composer Brian Petuch, that tracks the movement of the sun from sunrise to sunset on the longest day of the year, the summer solstice.

Contemporaneous presented this participatory work with Make Music New York and the Port Authority of New Jersey on June 21, 2018 at Liberty Park at the World Trade Center. Throughout the day, over 10,000 people experienced SUNRISE / SUNSET in-person, while CBS Sunday Morning live streamed its beginning for a national audience.

Watch the timelapse video of the whole event below!

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Contemporaneous with LUNA Lab, Face The Music, and Sarah Goldfeather

As the season finale on June 24, 2018 (and the final show of Contemporaneous’s artist residency at National Sawdust), Contemporaneous joined forces with Face the Music, the nation’s only youth music program dedicated to performing music by living composers, to perform new works by students within Face the Music and alumnae of LUNA Lab, a groundbreaking mentorship program for young women composers directed by Missy Mazzoli, Ellen Reid, and Reena Esmail.

Alongside this, Contemporaneous presented the world premiere of several songs from Treading Water, an in-progress song cycle from composer and singer Sarah Goldfeather on the ways we experience cognitive distortions, commissioned by Contemporaneous as part of Contemporaneous IMAGINATION.

Watch a video below of the first movement of Contemporaneous’s performance of Treading Water with Sarah Goldfeather from this season finale!