John Cage’s 4’33” has been adapted for many instruments according to Mary Fairchild of Maverick Concerts. It’s so easily adaptable because it consists of four minutes and 33 seconds of silence. This world-famous avant-garde composition debuted at the Maverick Concert Hall in Woodstock in 1952. Pianist Pedja Muzijevic will perform it July 28 as part of this summer’s series, which has the theme “Woodstock Legends.”
Muzijevic will also accompany Nancy Allen Lundy, a lyric soprano. Like Bob Dylan, Lundy is from Minnesota. She will perform composer John Corigliano’s “Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems of Bob Dylan.” Corigliano set seven of Dylan’s songs to entirely new music, including “Chimes of Freedom,” “Blowing in the Wind,” “The Clothesline,” and “Masters of War.” Dylan wrote some of these songs while living in Woodstock, including the final one of the series, “Forever Young.” This a unique chance to hear Dylan’s achievement in the classical idiom. How often can one re-experience Dylan as a modernist blonde soprano?
Lundy will sing “Have Peace Jo” from Mark Adamo’s opera “Little Women.” In this song, she performs the role of Beth, who is dying. Another piece is Ned Rorem’s “The Dancer,” based on a poem by Edmund Waller (1606-1687) beginning: “Behold the brand of beauty tossed! / See how the motion does dilate the flame!”
“I can compare [preparing for this one-night performance] to learning an opera; it’s a lot more difficult,” Lundy observes. “You have to play so many different people in one evening when you do a recital. And note per note, there’s probably more singing in a recital than there is in an opera role. And I love it.”
Lundy represents a new generation of opera singers, unlike the classic rotund performers who would “park and bark” (stand in one spot and sing). After receiving a master’s degree from the Eastman School of Music (in Rochester, New York), Lundy attended the Juilliard Opera Center, a kind of diva boot camp, where she studied acting, singing, and languages. Her embrace of modern music began with concerts for the Continuum Ensemble.
On July 21 guitarist Jason Vieaux will salute another Woodstock legend, jazz master Pat Metheny. Vieaux will perform works of Metheny’s, along with pieces by Bach and Ponce. Though the Maverick Festival is known for chamber music, September 1 will bring the world premiere of a chamber orchestra adaptation of David Del Tredici’s “Final Alice,” a work for soprano based on Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland.
Nancy Allen Lundy and Pedja Muzijevic will perform at Maverick in Woodstock, New York on Saturday, July 28 at 6pm. (845) 679-8348; www.maverickconcerts.org.