Saturday, December 30, 2017

Details Announced for SFP PIVOT Festival

This past July this site explained that the innovative PIVOT series, launched by San Francisco Performances (SFP) in March of 2016, would be presented in a new festival format. The series would again consist of four performances, but they would all take place during the final week of January. In addition, there would be a single venue, the Strand Theater, which is located at 1127 Market Street, between 7th Street and 8th Street; and all performances would begin at 8:30 p.m. As of last July, all the performers had been determined; but program details have not yet been released. Those details are now available as follows:

Tuesday, January 23: The L.A. Dance Project is an “interdisciplinary” dance company (based in Los Angeles) co-founded by choreographer Benjamin Millepied, composers Nico Muhly and Nicholas Britell, art consultant Matthieu Humery, and producer Charles Fabius. The program will involve an intriguing mix of “live” and recorded performances. The opening selection will be Millepied’s pas de deux “Closer.” Millepied set his choreography to Philip Glass’ “Mad Rush,” which will be performed “live” by Timo Andres (who will return later in the festival to give a solo recital). “Closer” will be followed by the film version of Millepied’s “Hearts & Arrows,” which has Glass’ third (“Mishima”) string quartet as its soundtrack. The final selection will be Millepied’s “Sarabande,” performed by a small male ensemble to selected movements by Johann Sebastian Bach taken from the BWV 1013 solo flute partita in A minor and the six sonatas and partitas from solo violin (BWV 1001–1006).

Wednesday January 24: This will be a celebration honoring composer Lou Harrison, whose 100th birthday was recognized last year. The program has been prepared by pianist Sarah Cahill, who will be working with violinist Kate Stenberg, the members of the Alexander String Quartet (violinists Zakarias Grafilo and Frederick Lifsitz, violist Paul Yarbrough, and cellist Sandy Wilson), and the William Winant Percussion Group. (Winant was one Harrison’s close colleagues.) The program will be as follows:
  • Summerfield Set (1988)
  • Varied Trio (1986)
  • String Quartet Set (1978)
  • Song of Quetzalcoatl (1941)
  • Threnody for Carlos Chavez (1978)
  • Music for Violin with Various Instruments (1967)
Friday, January 26: Andres will return to present a solo piano recital of (in his words) “works based on visual images, either real of imagined.” Three currently active composers will be featured: Caroline Shaw (“Gustave le Gray”), Eric Shanfield (“Utopia Parkway”), and Christopher Cerrone (“The Arching Path”).These pieces will be framed by selections from Leoš Janáček’s cycle of fifteen piano pieces collected under the title On an Overgrown Path.

Saturday, January 27: The festival will conclude with the SFP debut of the Joe Goode Performance Group, which is based here in San Francisco. Goode will present a “progress report” of Still Standing, a full-evening work that will receive its world premiere this coming June at the Haas-Lilienthal House. The work addresses communities subjected to persecution, Jewish immigrants and LGBT, both of which found “safe haven” in San Francisco. Goode is working with composers Shawna Virago and Lila Blue on this project. The company will also perform excerpts from “Hush.”

Those wishing to attend all four events will be able to purchase a PIVOT Festival Pass for $90. These may be obtained online through a City Box Office event page or by calling the SFP Box Office at 415-392-2545, which is open for receiving calls between 9:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Single tickets are available for $25 and $40 for premium seating. (All Festival Pass tickets are for premium seating.) These may also be purchased online from City Box Office, using the hyperlinks on the dates given above, or by calling SFP. Single tickets will also be sold at the door.

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