Art does not seek to describe but to enact. —Charles Olson

Festival XIV

August 2-8, 2019

+ Heidi Carlsen + David Coll + Evelyn Ficarra + Nick Gardner + Sam Nolen + J.H. Prynne +
+ Mauricio Rodriguez + Élise Roy + Marcia Scott + Niki Ulehla + Erik Ulman + Nick Virzi +

Again I’ve let too much time pass to attempt a complete recounting of our Fourteenth Festival. However, I can remember that there were many lively presentations: Evelyn shared her work in progress on a robot opera; Jeremy presented a new poem, written on the plane flight to California, and discussed his current interest in writing more lexically than syntactically; Erik presented his piece Pan and also led long discussions of Debussy and Berg; Nick G. shared some of his varied research in Classics, from labor in ancient Greece to textual analysis using computers; Mauricio detailed his collaboration with the Pasatono Orquesta Mexicana, working both with ritual and with mestizo and native instruments; David shared his recent music (including his setting for soprano and piano of Jeremy’s “Refuse Collection”) and discussed spectacle in Busby Berkeley; Sam read and discussed his story “Apostrophe”; Nick V., fresh from defending his dissertation, played his Chilnualna and described his practice of field recording; Heidi performed for us two complementary monologues; Élise played recent compositions as well as performing Debussy’s Syrinx. There were also viewings of films: Pasolini’s Medea, Rossellini’s The Taking of Power by Louis XIV, Barry’s Creation of the Humanoids, Rohmer’s Stéphane Mallarmé, and some live Led Zeppelin footage among them; expeditions to town and to the Yuba, where the river reading comprised excerpts from Pound’s Canto LXXXI and Ruskin’s “The Storm Cloud of the Nineteenth Century”; delicious food, including the usual BBQ; and even a sighting of a bear, who sauntered nonchalantly across the property one afternoon…