Songs of Wars I Have Seen juxtaposes modern and period instruments, electronic atmospherics, baroque compositions, modernist harmonies, and the haunting text of Gertrude Stein’s World War II memoir to create a bittersweet lament on war’s insidious effects. Read the Phindie review >>>
An American Jew living in the Nazi puppet state of Vichy France, Stein detailed everyday life in a neutral, descriptive style, pausing as much on the food she ate as the atrocities engulfing Europe. Her Wars I Have Seen tells us what is happening, without telling us how to feel about it.
Conducted by Estonian maestro Anu Tali, the staged concert sees female performers from Philadelphia’s leading classical music groups — Philadelphia Orchestra and Baroque ensemble Tempesta di Mare — speak Stein’s words.
Male and female musicians play compositions that bridge centuries of music, with melodies ranging from jazzy bursts to plaintive moans, incorporating melancholic and violent segments by the 17th-century English composer Matthew Locke.
[FringeArts, 140 N. Columbus Boulevard] September 7-8, 2018; fringearts.com/event/songs-wars-seen