Address: Barbican Hall, Barbican Centre, London
Giacinto Scelsi Uaxuctum The Legend of the Maya City, destroyed by themselves for religious reasons (UK premiere)
John Luther Adams Become Ocean
Experience the self-destruction of an ancient civilisation and our planet engulfed by the vastness of the ocean in two massive audio-visual portrayals of a dark past – and still-avoidable future.
These two modern masterpieces share a single unignorable message. John Luther Adam’s Become Ocean imagines our planet succumbing to the rising sea in music of startling, bottomless beauty in what Alex Ross declared ‘may be the loveliest apocalypse in musical history’. And Giacinto Scelsi’s Uaxuctum is equally ravishing in its own way; a vast orchestra creating a fierce, haunting atmosphere through sounds as strange as they are prophetic, building to a point of no return as the ancient Mayan city implodes.
The performance will take place in a unique audio-visual installation with the orchestra situated behind a translucent mesh onto which projections will be cast. The projections are generated by a newly built artificial intelligence, created by Artrendex with art direction by Universal Assembly Unit. The AI generates imagery in specific palettes live in response to the music meaning that for the first time visualisations will be interacting with the live sound of the orchestra rather than pre-prepared and layered on top of it.
London Contemporary Orchestra & Choir
Robert Ames (conductor)
Universal Assembly Unit (art direction)
Artrendex (artificial intelligence)
Supported by funding from Arts Council England and the Cockayne Foundation