DURATIONS

Our sense of time during the pandemic shifted immensely. Two years disappeared in the blink of an eye. When concert:nova reached out to me to produce a concert responding to the concept of "time", we discussed how music is a time-based art form. This project is our collective response to that idea.

Each film contains three sections. First, speakers from a wide range of disciplines to talk with us about what their own particular expertise tells us about the true nature of time (a physicist, a neurologist, a Jewish mystic scholar, and even a clockmaker). Second, concert:nova performs five pieces by Morton Feldman called DURATIONS. These pieces are designed to distort our perception of time in the same way that the pandemic distorted it. They distort the way that we perceive what is supposed to be a simple linear reality, making us question if we really remember what just happened and if we can really predict what is about to happen. Finally, five brand new animated shorts, created by inviting five animators to respond directly to one of each of the five Durations. These animators to help us explore the concept of "time" in a visual time-based art form as a coupling to the musical sound time-based art form.

DURATIONS 1

Speakers: Jordan Ficklin, watchmaker

Jennifer Molano, neurologist

Philip Argyres, physicist

Musicians: Henrik Heide, flute
Brianna Matzke, piano

Eric Bates, violin

Ted Nelson, cello

Animation:

"Durations (1)" by Santiago Slabý

DURATIONS 2

Speaker: Haim Rechnitzer, Ph.D

Musicians:
Brianna Matzke, piano

Ted Nelson, cello

Animation:

"monticello" by Kate Ball

DURATIONS 3

Speaker: Jordan Ficklin, watchmaker

Musicians: Matt Hightower, tuba
Brianna Matzke, piano

Eric Bates, violin

Animation:

"Soundscape II" by Joomi Chung

DURATIONS 4

Speaker: Jennifer Molano, neurologist

Musicians: Michael Culligan, vibraphone

Eric Bates, violin

Ted Nelson, cello

Animation:

"Response" by Steven Subotnick

DURATIONS 5

Speaker: Philip Argyres, physicist

Musicians: Molly Norcross, horn
Brianna Matzke, piano

Anna Dunlap, harp

Michael Culligan, vibraphone

Eric Bates, violin

Ted Nelson, cello

Animation:

"Durations" by Lizzy Duquette

A note about Morton Feldman from the project producers:

There’s a cliche saying you will hear occasionally from people when something bad happens: “Time heals all wounds.” When this project was originally dreamt up, we wanted to use music and animation to explore the nature of time itself. We chose the music of Morton Feldman as the centering “response point” for our project artists, and specifically we chose his set of five compositions entitled Durations. It was not until many months into production did we come to learn that Morton Feldman had been accused of sexual violence by one of his students/mentees, an accusation that was not brought to light until after Feldman’s death. It is horrifying to realize that within the world of classical music, this story is one of many, part of an all-too-common experience. There have been efforts in recent years (such as #metoo) to bring issues of harassment, violence, and exploitation to light, but there is still much work to do. Time does not, in fact, heal all wounds – sometimes there is nothing that could ever sufficiently right such an egregious wrong. What we can do is work to ensure the safety protection of each and every person as we move into the future. In that light, a percentage of the proceeds from this project will be donated to the Cincinnati-based non-profit domestic violence help center Women Helping Women. If you would like to make an additional donation, please visit https://www.womenhelpingwomen.org/ and click “Donate Now”. Thank you.