Denison Hosts Composer Michael Kallstrom To Present Newest 'Electric Opera'
Posted: March 1, 2004
Denison University will host composer Michael Kallstrom to present "Tell Me Your Name," his newest Electric Opera, a series of solo vocal works with electronic tape, puppets and videos. Kallstrom will also perform as the bass voice in the performance. This event, set for 8 p.m. on Friday (March 5) in Burke Recital Hall, is free and open to the public.
"Tell Me Your Name" features musical settings of stories of both the creation and end of the world from different cultural perspectives. It is based on the bookBeginnings: Creation Myths of the Worldby Penelope Farmer. Using video projections, a shadow screen and puppets, Kallstrom brings these stories to life in two acts of music and theatre. The first act presents tales of creation of the earth and mankind while the second act tells of the end of the world and the world to come.
Throughout the performance, symbols, human figures, puppets and lights appear on the large shadow screen that is centered on the stage. All of the stories are recombined into a dramatic, musical theatre presentation. A video created by Kallstrom's brother, Daniel Kallstrom, opens the concert and Jeff Jensen creates the shadow puppets.
Kallstrom's Electric Operas have been performed more than 200 times throughout the United States and Canada and "Tell Me Your Name" is his fifth and most recent composition. He was also commissioned to write a new electronic ballet score for "Frankenstein" for the Fort Wayne Ballet in 2002. Kallstrom is professor of music and coordinator of theory and composition at Western Kentucky University and previously taught at Westminster Choir College and Florida A&M University. He earned his bachelor's degree at the University of Miami, a master's degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and his doctorate at Florida State University.
Kallstrom has received numerous awards including a Meet the Composer grant, two Kentucky Arts Council Fellowships and the Ragdale Foundation, Ucross Foundation and Interarts Colony Residencies. He has twice been a Kentucky Music Teachers Association Commissioned Composer and his works have been performed in the United States, Canada and numerous countries in South America, Africa and Europe.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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