Wednesday, February 07, 2007

No Time For Dancing

David Byrne showed off Here Lies Love, his work-in-progress multimedia musical chronicling the rise of Imelda Marcos, as part of the Carnegie Hall Perspectives Series that he curated and performed last week. The first American staging of the incomplete work generated a fair amount of interest with warm reviews in the New York Times and Time Magazine. Better yet is that he did a number of interviews including one with New York Magazine that asked "what made now the right time to write a song cycle about Imelda Marcos?":

Probably the end of the CD and the end of the record business. Seriously. This is going to sound very calculated, but I just thought, If I think of a collection of songs I write as being of a piece, how do you keep that connection and continuity? And I thought, Well, this is made to be heard and seen; it doesn’t rely on a piece of plastic. Although I think the piece of plastic will be a nice-sounding thing, too.

: The Guardian found out why he decided to work with Fatboy Slim on the project:

"I imagined it being dance music, so I thought I should go to a professional for help," he says. "Norman's awfully good at that - he has played an instrument at some point, so has an innate sense of song structure that not everyone in the dance community has. He knows what a song is."

: As a side-note, it is interesting that the qualities that attracted Byrne to Cook are the same reasons Cook is distrusted in the underground electronic scene.

Here Lies Love should be a fascinating experience as the songs reportedly range from whistle sampling big beat to trip hop and pure orchestral accompaniment with archive footage and stage performance expected at the final staging. None of the press indicates that it will happen particularly soon and Byrne has implied he is still in the writing process for material to be featured in the musical. Hopefully it will be worth the wait.

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