The International Street Cannibals (ISC), hailed by The New York Times as a "brash new-music ensemble," join forces with young boxers from the legendary Gleason's Gym for "STRIKE!" - a concert event in which contemporary chamber music commingles with boxing rounds and choreography. Initially drawing its players from groups such as Orpheus, The Orchestra of St. Luke's, Absolute Ensemble, and the ST-X Ensemble of Xenakis, this collective of seasoned musicians/composers was founded in 2005 by Dan Barrett as a laboratory for ritual and artistic expression that defies assumptions regarding performance spaces and audiences. STRIKE! will take place on Saturday, March 16 at 8 p.m., at the historic Gleason's Gym - training home of 132 world champions, among them Mohammed Ali, George Foreman, Larry Holmes, and Roberto Duran - located at 77 Front Street in Dumbo, Brooklyn. Tickets are $20 ($15 for Gleason's Gym members and students) and are available by calling 718-797-2872.
Part of an ongoing series, STRIKE! brings together boxing, dance and chamber music, allowing each discipline to combine in surprising partnerships while engendering new artistic forms. New music compositions from some of today's most dexterous composers as well as modern masters will be heard in the unfamiliar, yet highly disciplined environment of the boxing ring. Short 10 to 12-minute sets of 3-minute chamber music works will alternate with 9-minute boxing bouts of 3 rounds each. 60-second thematic interludes that can involve music and/or movement will serve as transitions between the boxing rounds. Performances will take place in the three main rings of the gym, contributing to a theater-in-the-round effect, with the audience progressing from one ring to another to follow the sequential flow of the evening. A dance component directed by Dance Director/choreographer Megan Sipe will also play an essential role in this mix, contributing to unify the choreographies of these various genres.
The music program will include:
* A Dixieland version of the well-beloved German folk tune, "Die Gedanken sind Frei," which introduces and closes the concert with its call for freedom of thought.
* Dan "Wotan" Barrett's impressionistic villanelle, "Philomela" (premiere); his "Technical Knock Out" (Premiere) (French horn, bass trombone, violin, electric guitar, percussion); as well as his schizoid "March of the Balonie Sandwiches" (bass trombone, violin, viola, and military snare drum), which exploits various species and layers of Canon.
* John Clark's French horn solo "Full Count" (Premiere): an inside-out Cubist view of "horn call," inspired by Wagner's Siegfried (Act 2); and his cryptic "Going Coastal" (trumpet, French horn, and bass trombone).
* Dan Cooper's jumpy "Hoof & Mouth" (Premiere) (violin, bass trombone, percussion tap dance); his frenetic, breakneck duo "Ephemeral Blues" (Premiere) (trumpet and electric guitar); as well as his "Soca" (flute, French horn, bass trombone, violin, cello and double bass), an homage to Caribbean Soca music.
* Paul Hindemith's "Marsch," "Lied," and "Musikstück" from Wir Bauern Eine Stadt (We're Building a City), a children's song cycle about an imaginary and metaphoric city built and ruled by children alone.
* Daniel Palkowski's "Bela's Musette" (Premiere) (French horn, bass trombone, violin, viola, electric guitar, percussion), an embroidered study of pitch relations and tonal color with quotes by Bartok; and his pensive miniature, "Duet for a Wet Space" (Premiere) (French horn and violin).
* Gene Pritsker's "Aeon II" (Premiere) (flute, trumpet, violin, electric guitar, cello, contrabass), a romp in the hybrid vein of Satie, Zappa, and Stravinsky; and his jagged "Dust and Mirages of the Communal Mind" (Premiere) (French horn, bass trombone, contrabass).
* Dave Taylor's "Brother" (Premiere) (bass trombone, flugelhorn, violin, viola, percussion), part dirge, part anthem; and his "Dance" (Premiere) (piccolo and bass trombone), characterized by an incongruous superimposition of contours, gaping voice positioning, and Extreme registration.
International Street Cannibals is directed by Dan Barrett with co-director Chala Yancy.
Musicians include Dan Barrett (conductor), John Clark (French Horn), Tish Edens (cello), Rachel Golub (violin), Franz Hackl (trumpet), Gregor Kitzis (violin), Cesare Papetti (percussion), Gene Pritsker (electric guitar), Troy Rinker (bass), Dave Taylor (bass trombone), Linda Wetherill (flute), Chala Yancy (viola).
Dancers include Andrew Broaddus, Adrienne Misko, Amanda Mottur (belly dancer), Cat Murcek, Max Pollak (tap dancer), and Megan Sipe (choreographer).
Boxers for this event will be Paul Anthony (17 yrs) and Kevin Barker (17 yrs), Jennifer Guzman (17 yrs) and Eryan Rodriguez (16 yrs), Matt Nicelli (11 yrs) and Kevin Anderson (12 yrs), Antonio Arca (13 yrs), Isabella Arca (14 yrs), and Nicole D'Alessio (17 yrs).
ISC's Stage Director is Tyler Learned, Video Director is Daniel Palkowski, and Technical Director for this performance will be Charles Moses (Viper Studios).