Synchronicity, Perhaps

That’s what Sting called it, something like the coincidental but powerful meshing of myriad gears, all moving at different rates and towards different purposes, but at certain points all notching their teeth simultaneously, and all moving to the next slot at the same time. An unsustainable moment …

There must be other words for it, in other languages. How would you describe the experience I had just minutes before sitting down to right this, of leaving several hours of a screening of Christian Marclay’s The Clock in the David Rubenstein Atrium, and crossing the expansive of Lincoln Center to the library, to find a book on John Cage and do some note- and stock-taking? From a comfortable and mesmerizing darkness to a brightly-lit and almost empty space — I felt I was walking through de Chiricho’s “Delights of the Poet.”


The Clock will be showing for free in the Atrium, daily from July 13 to August 1, from 8am to 10pm Tuesdays through Thursdays and continuously from 8am through to 10pm on Friday to Sunday weekends (closed Mondays, full information here). Think about that last piece of the schedule, because this is a work that lasts twenty-four hours and was one of the major events of 2011 when it was on view at the Paula Cooper Gallery. 

9562 300

This is a centerpiece event and part of the Lincoln Center Festival, which itself synchronizes with Mostly Mozart in both time and space. Theatrical events like Allan Cummings one-man MacBeth have garnered a lot of attention, but, from what may strike you as my oddball perspective, this looks like a good mix:

July 20 – Curtis Mayfield tribute

Through July 22 – Paris Opera Ballet

July 19 – 22 – Kaija Saariaho’s Émilie

July 28 – Free Mostly Mozart Preview

August 10-11 – Lutoslawski, Bartok and Mozart

August 14-15 – The quietly great Rudolf Buchbinder

August 22 – 24 – Mark Morris’ Dido and Aeneas

And from the start of August through the end of Mostly Mozart, there is a focus on birdsong in both the sense of having it captured in music and in the abstract, through an installation by Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller at the Park Avenue Armory, The Murder of Crows. Like The Clock, this is a work that includes sound and music, and has musical thinking but is not a pure composition. I’ll be examining it before it opens and, like the Marclay work, will be exploring it in my column at ClassicalTV. But do mark your calendars, and tell the The Big City sent you.


Author: gtra1n

I'm a composer and musician, and I write about music—I do that here, for the New York Classical Review, at the Brooklyn Rail (I edit the music section there) and any place else that will have me, like New Music Box and Music & Literature. I also wrote the Miles Davis' Bitches Brew book in the 33 1/3 series.