Yoshitomo Nara at Asia Society
One of the installations at Asia Society created by the Japanese Artist Yoshitomo Nara and a team of collaborators is known as “YNG.” The structure is meant to evoke sites that the artist finds most familiar, exciting, and inviting: an artist’s studio, a concert stage, and a carnival tent. The exhibition title — “Yoshitomo Nara: Nobody’s Fool” — references an album by Dan Penn, an American musician admired by Nara. One of the main themes of this exhibition is the relationship of Nara’s art to music. His work reflects the rebellious spirit of rock and punk music, and the feelings of hopelessness, frustration, and disaffection shared by restless youth worldwide. It’s the first time in the history of Asia Society that the entire museum space is devoted to the work of one contemporary artist. The exhibition is on view through January 2, 2011.
Dodge Poetry Festival
The largest and most renowned poetry event in North America, the biennial Dodge Poetry Festival, will be hosted this year by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center and the City of Newark. The festival opens on October 7th with a “poetry sampler” featuring back-to-back readings by two-dozen major poets. The participants include Kay Ryan, the most recent U.S. Poet Laureate, and former Poets Laureate Billy Collins and Rita Dove, as well as Galway Kinnell, a Pulitzer Prize- and McArthur “Genius” Fellowship-winner. Other notable poets reading from their works are Amiri Baraka, Matthew Dickman, Martín Espada, and Sharon Olds. All of these poets and many more will participate in the festival’s three-day lineup of readings, discussions and conversations.
Yale in New York
For three seasons, the Yale School of Music has become a notable presence at Carnegie Hall with its “Yale in New York” series showcasing mostly new or unusual works. On October 11, the artistic director David Shifrin opens the new “Yale in New York” season on a new stage with Sleeping Giant at (Le) Poisson Rouge. The program features works by five young composers, all Yale School of Music graduates, known as the music collective Sleeping Giant.” The world premiere of Jacob Cooper’s austere cello octet is pit against Ted Hearne’s rhythmic duet for piano and percussion, “One of Us, One of Them.” Christopher Cerrone’s strikingly visual “Averno: A Fragment” will be played alongside Timothy Andres’s gracious chamber music and Robert Honstein’s rock-inspired song-without-words, “Why Are You Not Answering.” Other “Yale in New York” events coming up this year are the concert of Yale guitarists on November 9 and a Yale percussion group concert on December 12, both at Carnegie Hall.
Peak Performances @ Montclair
Innovation and convention collide and join forces at “Peak Performances @ Montclair,” a theater, music and dance series that continues through May 8, 2011. One of the highlights is “Everywhere Is the Best Seat,” a sound / light installation by composer / architect Christopher Janney. This interactive work invites visitors to give vibrant life to the Montclair University Amphitheater. Don’t miss the Young Concert Artists program on October 10, featuring Courtenay Budd (soprano), Jose Franch-Ballester (clarinet), Benjamin Moser (piano) and Wonny Song (piano), in a program that includes works by Mahler, Beethoven and Schubert.
The faculty room of Princeton university’s historic Nassau Hall hosts the portrait exhibition “Inner Sanctum.” This room’s role as the symbolic center of Princeton is the main theme of this exhibition. Located at the very heart of the Princeton campus, the faculty room served variously as a prayer hall, library, and museum, until university president Woodrow Wilson had it remodeled in 1906 for executive and ceremonial use. The exhibition traces how the faculty room’s changing function and the diverse portraits on its walls tell an evocative story of Princeton’s evolution from a small school of dissident theologians to the world-renowned research university it is today.
Gotham Chamber Opera
Gotham Chamber Opera announces the premiere of “El Gato con Botas” on October 2 at the New Victory Theater. A stunning new production of the classic children’s tale directed by Moises Kaufman and conducted by Neal Goren, it tells the story of a charismatic cat who promises a poor miller everlasting love and fortune.