The final Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival concerts, Music from Angel Fire, Marina Abramović, Explosions in the Sky, The Maya Spectra, and Mushroom Jazz
The artist is controversial: Marina Abramović
Serbian-born artist Marina Abramovic´ , the “grandmother of performance art,” comes to the Lensic Performing Arts Center (211 W. San Francisco St.) for My Life in Art: An Evening with Marina Abramovic´. As reported by The Atlantic and many other media outlets, Abramovic´ recently stirred controversy for referring to indigenous Australians in an uncorrected proof of a forthcoming memoir as “really strange and different” people who “look terrible” and “look like dinosaurs.” She has since posted a statement on Facebook saying that her words, taken from a diary she wrote in 1979, do not reflect her current “understanding and appreciation of Aborigines.” Abramovic´ has gone to extreme lengths in her career, exploring issues of identity, physicality, and ritual acts. Her works often break the the fourth wall to include the audience in her art. The event, presented by SITE Santa Fe, takes place on Tuesday, Aug. 23, at 6:30 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets, $19-$49, are available through www.ticketssantafe.org or by calling 505-988-1234. — Michael Abatemarco
Thursday night lights: Explosions in the Sky
Originally scheduled to perform in the Meow Wolf parking lot, post-rock phenomenon Explosions in the Sky plays an all-ages concert at The Bridge at Santa Fe Brewing Company (35 Fire Place, 505-424-3333) on Thursday, Aug. 25. Their sweeping lyric-free songs are the emotionally complex background music for the movie and television show Friday
Night Lights and are featured on a diverse array of other soundtracks, including the film adaptation of The Kite Runner and Michael Moore’s documentary Capitalism: A
Love Story. Playing three electric guitars and a drum kit, the Austin-based quartet prioritizes narrative crescendo, though that structure is muted somewhat on their most recent album, The Wilderness, which has a more intimate, interior focus; it’s less driving than past efforts but still sonically all-encompassing. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets — $22 in advance, $27 at the door — are available at www.ampconcerts.org.
— Jennifer Levin
High-altitude tunes: Music from Angel Fire
The 33rd season of Music from Angel Fire begins on Friday evening, Aug. 19, with concerts continuing through Sept. 3 at venues in Angel Fire, Taos, Eagle Nest, Las Vegas, and Raton. The festival’s roster this year sports mostly the same names it does every year and also includes a large infusion of students and teachers from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where artistic director Ida Kavafian has long Ida Kavafian served as a faculty member. The most compelling concert this year may be the one that begins at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 24, at the Angel Fire Community Center (71 Valley Road, Angel Fire). It comprises the world premiere of Gabriela Lena Frank’s Iberian Songs, which the festival commissioned, featuring the remarkable soprano Tony Arnold; also on that concert are Elgar’s Piano Quintet and Debussy’s Sonata for Flute, Viola, and Harp. Another work by Frank, her
Milagros for String Quartet, will be included on a free concert on Sept. 1, which has the extra inducement of being at the historic Shuler Theater in Raton. Program information can be found at w w w.musicfromangelfire.org, and tickets (ranging from $35 to $80, depending on the event) can be ordered through www.holdmyticket.com or by calling 575-377-3233 or 888-377-3300. — James M. Keller
All night jazz: DJ Mark Farina
Mark Farina brings his Mushroom Jazz grooves to Meow Wolf at 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 19. The Chicago native grew up playing the trumpet in a marching band and drums in a Nu Wave cover band before discovering the joys of turntabling. He hooked up with Derrick Carter and Chris Nazuka for the band Symbols & Instruments; their 1989 album Mood is a classic. In 1996, Farina produced his first mixed-artist CD in the Mushroom Jazz series; earlier this year, Mushroom Jazz 8 was released, celebrating the project’s 25th year. Like its predecessors, the album features an interesting panoply of down-tempo sounds and vocals set to danceable synth-drum beats. Tickets are $20 at the door of Meow Wolf, which opens for the show at 8 p.m., 1352 Rufina Circle, 505-395-6369. Call for ticket availability. — Paul Weideman
Homegrown soundscapes: The Maya Spectra
The music of The Maya Spectra can be described as intelligent dance music or electronic indie pop, but the group’s creativity and its casual, summery soundscapes give it an edge. Singer Janel Blanco and brothers Donnie Peña, on guitar/synth, and Julian Peña, on drums and percussion, play the Santa Fe Bandstand series on the Santa Fe Plaza at 7:15 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 25. For a taste, check out the group’s debut EP Music Box, featured on the 2016 Amy West video of the same name (www.youtube.com) funded by Indiegogo. The love story is enlivened by Blanco’s beautiful, shivery voice expanded with echo and multi-tracking enhancements. See www.santafebandstand.org for more. — P.W.
At summer’s end: Final Santa Fe Chamber Music concerts
In the final two concerts of this summer’s Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the Dover Quartet participates in two quartet-plus-one masterworks. At 6 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 21, the foursome is joined by cellist Eric Kim for Schubert’s String Quintet, a transcendent work written in the composer’s final months. The piece shares the bill with a trio sonata by the Dresden-based Baroque composer Jan Dismas Zelenka and the duopiano version of Busoni’s Fantasia contrappuntistica, the latter played by Peter Serkin (this season’s artist-in-residence) and Julia Hsu. At 6 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 22, Serkin assists the Dover Quartet in Dvoˇrák’s A-major Piano Quintet (Op. 81), in a program that also includes Britten’s Six Metamorphoses after Ovid (an unaccompanied suite played by oboist Liang Wang) and Beethoven’s D-major String Trio (Op. 9, No. 2). Both concerts take place at the Lensic Performing Arts Center, 211 W. San Francisco St. Tickets ($10-$82) are available by calling 505-982-1890 or 888-221-9836 (ext. 102) or online at www.santafechambermusic.com. — J.M.K.