Ascending elegies

By MARCIA B. SIEGEL  |  March 11, 2009

The Guggenheim enhanced Monk's music wonderfully. The huge coil of concrete made an illusory stage set, concealing the performers from us watchers down below, and allowing them to slip back from the visible edge and pop up somewhere else. High up in the dome, yelps and howls and shouts blended in disembodied conversations, and sustained single tones ripened into choruses of chords that seemed to last forever.

Finally, when we'd all trudged high up into the sound, Monk reappeared at the bottom, sitting on the floor and pumping a sruti (an accordion-like box) and singing, calling back the performers. They gathered there and brought it all back to earth with a strolling, singing farewell. They lay down on their backs, as if in death, but the music would live on in the space.

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  Topics: Dance , New York, Dance, Cultural Institutions and Parks,  More more >
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