In this split bill evening, two internationally renowned ensembles reimagine classical music and dance for contemporary viewers.
“The dazzling fingers-in-every-pie versatility that Brooklyn Rider exhibits is one of the wonders of contemporary music.” –– Los Angeles Times
“Ragamala imbues the South Indian dance form of Bharatanatyam with a thoroughly contemporary exuberance… a visionary approach to an ancient art form.” ––Dance Magazine
“In 2012, my artistic partner/mother Ranee Ramaswamy and I met Brooklyn Rider founders/brothers Colin and Eric Jacobsen at the United States Artists (USA) fellowship ceremony in Los Angeles, CA.
“Since that time, composer/violinist Colin and I have been talking about how our two ensembles — although working in very different genres — are similar in aesthetic mission. We both use family as an incubator to absorb and re-create our artistic lineage (Colin is the son of Edmund Jacobsen, a former violinist with the Minnesota Orchestra and the Metropolitan Opera; my sister, Ashwini, is Ragamala’s Choreographic Associate).“Although rooted in classical structures, we both believe our respective mediums are not museum pieces. We are both committed to maintaining the rigor of classical forms while evolving them into the next generation, artistically highlighting the continuum between history and the present.“Since that time, we have discussed working together, but did we need to be on the same stage at the same time? We found the concept of the split bill to be a very compelling way to invite audiences to make their own connections between these worlds.”— Aparna Ramaswamy, Ragamala Dance Company Co-Artistic Director
BROOKLYN RIDER: Hailed as “the future of chamber music” (Strings), the veteran string quartet Brooklyn Rider presents eclectic repertoire and gripping performances that continue to draw rave reviews from classical, world, and rock critics alike. NPR credits Brooklyn Rider with “recreating the 300-year-old form of string quartet as a vital and creative 21st-century ensemble.” They open the evening with Healing Modes, an autumnal masterwork comprised of five new commissions from women composers—Reena Esmail, Gabriela Lena Frank, Matana Roberts, and recent Pulitzer Prize winners Caroline Shaw and Du Yun—which explore the subject of healing from a wide range of historical/cultural perspectives.
RAGAMALA DANCE COMPANY: Called “soulful, imaginative and rhythmically contagious” (The New York Times) and “one of the most important South Asian dance companies in the world” (Martha’s Vineyard Online), Ragamala Dance Company’s artistic matriarchy of Ranee Ramaswamy (founder/Artistic Director), Aparna Ramaswamy (Artistic Director), and Ashwini Ramaswamy (Choreographic Associate) explore the myth and spirituality of their Indian heritage to engage the dynamic tension between the historical, the ancestral, and the personal. The company presents Nocturne, conceived and choreographed by Ashwini Ramaswamy. “Nocturne imports the literary technique of magical realism into the dance world…we are transported into an exquisite dream state, one that exists deep in the heart of night.” (Minneapolis Star Tribune).