MUSE/IQUE, known for its counter-conventional performances that feel more like parties than formal concerts, launches “Summer of Sound” 2013 with “Lost in the Stars with Patti Austin,” featuring the Grammy Award-winning legend, on Saturday, June 29, 2013, 7:30 pm, outdoors at Caltech’s Beckman Mall in Pasadena. Austin joins MUSE/IQUE Artistic Director Rachael Worby, who conducts the MUSE/IQUE Orchestra in a musical mash up of works by Brubeck, Beatles, Ellington, Weill, Paganini and more. Also spotlighted is critically acclaimed Concertmaster Robert Wilke. Gates open at 5:30 pm for dinner (ordered in advance) or bring-your-own picnics, with table and bleacher seating and plentiful free parking.
“’Summer of Sound’ performances are 90 minutes of pure out-of the-box adventures in sound,” says Worby, who founded MUSE/IQUE in 2011. “Linking master artists like Patti Austin with unexpected musical pairings represents what MUSE/IQUE is all about.”
Worby coaxes Austin, a “vocal powerhouse,” to explore the far reaches of her staggering stylistic range with repertoire spanning Kurt Weill’s Lost in the Stars and Ira Gershwin’s Swanee, Slap that Bass and Lady Be Good to Tena Clark’s emotional Way Up There (written for NASA’s Space Shuttle Challenger), Duke Ellington’s apt Sophisticated Lady and the Beatles’ Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds. A special Paganini match up also features Austin on Sam Coslo’s hip jazz tune Mr. Paganini, which follows a blistering performance by MUSE/IQUE Concertmaster Roger Wilke of the second movement of Paganini’s tour de force Concert No. 2, one of the most difficult pieces ever written for violin. Other orchestral works include Glinka’s Russina und Ludmilla Overture, a Dave Brubeck medley and Weill’s New York Suites: September Song and Mack the Knife.
MUSE/IQUE’s “Summer of Sound” continues on July 27 with “Moving Pictures,” featuring groundbreaking cellist Matt Haimovitz and actress Wendie Malick (“Hot in Cleveland”) in a fresh take on motion picture scores by Elmer Bernstein, Jerry Goldsmith and Erich Korngold as well as a world premiere of a work by Peter Golub, prolific composer for films and theatre and director of Sundance’s Film Music Program, and some Bach and Beethoven as well. It concludes August 17 with “Lose Your Senses with Ellis Hall,” which brings together celebrated vocalist/pianist virtuoso Ellis Hall, former Tower of Power lead singer, with the MUSE/IQUE orchestra, for a blend of soul by Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder, and beyond with works by Beethoven, Vivaldi and Bach, to celebrate life through music.
MUSE/IQUE, known for its inspired, unexpected live music events, connects master artists with new voices across a limitless range of styles. Its counter-conventional performances, which feel more like parties than formal concerts, link musicians with great thinkers and compelling visual, cinematic and dance artists. In the two years since MUSE/IQUE was founded by Artistic Director Rachael Worby, it has grown from one performance with a handful of devoted followers to a major cultural presence that reaches vast audiences. Its considerable membership currently numbers nearly 500 people. In the fall and spring, MUSE/IQUE presents “Uncorked” evenings at unconventional locations, and in the summer MUSE/IQUE features three outdoor “music parties” at Caltech’s Beckman Mall, all curated by the innovative and visionary Worby. Among MUSE/IQUE’s guest artists are Jessye Norman, Charlie Haden, Patti Austin, Mary Wilson, Flea, Rickie Lee Jones, Ellis Hall, Matt Haimovitz, Angela Bassett, Arturo Sandoval and more. Uncorked’s “pop-up” venues have included Pasadena’s Phoenix Decorating Center (where Rose Parade floats are constructed), Art Center College of Design Sculpture Garden, Castle Press (one of the nation’s largest printing presses), backstage at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium and others. KIDS/IQUE!, a primary element of the organization, serves boys and girls, ages 12 to 18, in the San Gabriel Valley’s network of foster care services by presenting ongoing interactive experiences with professional musicians and other artists designed to compliment the service goals of the foster care facilities even as they allow MUSE/IQUE to reach otherwise underserved youth. Other outreach programs include free and low-cost tickets for students and community groups, and “Free For All,” a free annual concert featuring a fusion of music with family friendly surprises.
Caltech’s Beckman Mall is located at 332 S. Michigan Ave. Pasadena CA 91106. Plentiful parking is free. To reserve a catered dinner that can be picked up on site, please contact Perfect Equation Catering at (626) 529-5585. Concert tickets begin at $10 per person with top tier seating, $96 per person, available to MUSE/IQUE members at the $1,000+ level; students with ID are $10. MUSE/IQUE membership, which ranges from $250 to $2,500, includes a variety of special benefits including priority seating and services. For tickets and membership information, please call 626-539-7085 or visit www.muse-ique.com.