Sex, drugs, and classical music.

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Music by DAVE SOLDIER
Film by WINSOME BROWN
Performed by
REBECCA CHERRY: Violin
JEFF LANKOV: Piano
SEAN HAGERTY: Electronics & Tech
Lighting Design by SARAH SIDMAN
Directed by WINSOME BROWN

Contact

Winsome Brown, Director, 1-646-249-4377, winsomesmbrown@yahoo.com
Dave Soldier, Composer, 1-917-805-5735, ds43@columbia.edu
Rebecca Cherry, Violinist, 1-718-916-4999, rcherry@rebeccacherry.com

Contact Winsome Brown for CD/DVD winsomesmbrown@yahoo.com

Synopsis

A concert/ a film/ an event.
55 minutes, 3 performers, 1 tech person, & a self-contained set.

The Lost Victrola Sessions is a 55 minute concert that seamlessly weaves live music, experimental film, live video, and theatrical staging. With lush music by Dave Soldier, a ravishing black and white silent film by Winsome Brown, and virtuosic live performances by Rebecca Cherry (violin), Jeff Lankov (piano), and Sean Hagerty (electronics). The Lost Victrola Sessions is a thrilling and unforgettable musical and visual experience.

The Lost Victrola Sessions explores one of the great musical mysteries of our time: What happened to the mythical Russian virtuoso Rebecca Chernyakov, who disappeared suddenly in 1914 after falling in with a crowd of drug addicts and demimondains? Now here on stage, the celebrated violinist Rebecca Cherry — who bears an uncanny resemblance to the lost virtuoso — interprets music from Chernyakov’s legendary Victrola Sessions recordings in front of a stunning film exposé of never-before-seen footage of Chernyakov’s New York period, including her travels to opium dens, her dark romance with the dangerous man who initiated her into the world of drugs, and rare vintage concert clips.

“Resolutely uninterested in stylistic limits, Dave Soldier makes conventional eclecticism seem academically staid. In this compilation of chamber works composed from 1986 to 2006, he draws on (and juxtaposes) everything from polkas to soaring rock guitar solos, from Grappelli-style jazz to neo-Baroquery, with 19th-century salon music and Spike Jones-inspired zaniness along the way.”
-The New York Times, naming Dave Soldier’s “Chamber Music” one of the best classical releases of 2007.

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The Music

Virtuosic, moody, lush, evocative. 11 pieces by Dave Soldier collectively known as “The Complete Victrola Sessions.” “Found” recordings by a mythical Russian violin virtuoso c. 1913 that include solo pieces for violin, solo pieces for piano, duets, and trios with electronics. Piercing and boundary-crossing.

The Film

Winsome Brown’s film “The Violinist” is a 16 mm black and white experimental gothic narrative shot by leading avant-garde filmmaker Jennifer Reeves with a Bolex camera. It tells the story of Russian violin virtuoso Rebecca Chernyakov (embodied by our live violinist Rebecca Cherry) who arrives in New York in 1913 and quickly falls in love with a dangerous demimondain played by Ken Roht, who introduces her to the speakeasies, opium dens, and dark places of the City. Rebecca’s experiences with opium intertwine with her obsession for the stranger until she cannot separate one passion from the other, leading her inexorably to addiction, a terrible fall from grace, and personal and artistic cataclysm.
Apart from its themes of music and intoxication, the film explores the world of dance. Ken Roht, who was principal choreographer and a performer for experimental theatre genius Reza Abdoh, gives a stunning physical performance, writhing like smoke and springing like a panther throughout the film. In rich back-room scenes, copulating bodies rise, entwine, and fall like waves. Leading New York dancer Ariane Anthony gives a jaunty old school burlesque.
Featuring George Steel, Paula Malcomson (Abby Donovan on Ray Donovan), cult favorite O-Lan Jones, and many other luminaries from the worlds of art, music, film, and experimental theatre.

TO SEE THE FILM’S TRAILER go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UfOxyHZ9wOM

TO SEE THE LOST VICTROLA SESSIONS (PERFORMANCE CONCERT) TRAILER go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gMtz9qQiDq8

Comments on The Lost Victrola Sessions

“A stunning, moving, beautiful piece.” -Claire Chase, MacArthur Prize winner and Founder of International Contemporary Ensemble

“A musical feast!. Truly grateful.” – Van Dyke Parks, songwriter for the Beach Boys

“There was something particularly special about the way the many creative modes interacted: each element stood distinctly, as if it were there on behalf of the others. A film made to celebrate music, human movement there to point out abstract shape, the performance of music generating its own shadow to merge with the shadow and light of film, the whole thing a reminder of the generosity each creative form has to point our awareness to other creative acts and languages.” -Nils Folke Anderson, artist

“Excellent, lush, authentic, funny and sad. Very, very beautifully filmed… delicious.”
-Lisa Ecklund-Flores, Founder, Church Street School for Music & Art

“A great evening.”
-Arthur Ceria, Founder, Creative Feed

Production History

2007 : Dave Soldier and Rebecca Cherry receive NYSCA grant to develop a new work twinning music & film. Winsome Brown and Jennifer Reeves come on board as writer/director & cinematographer.

July 2007: Concert at Joe’s Pub in New York City. Rebecca Cherry plays “The Unfolding Opium Poppy” and other music that will be included in “The Violinist.”

February 2008: Concert at Issue Project Room in Brooklyn. Rebecca Cherry and pianist Jerome Tan premiere some of the music from “The Complete Victrola Sessions.”

April/May 2008: Filming in New York & Los Angeles with Rebecca Cherry, Ken Roht, George Steel, and luminaries from the NY and LA theatre, dance, and music worlds.

April 2009: Concert at the Flea in NYC. Rebecca Cherry and Jerome Tan play 6 pieces from “The Complete Victrola Sessions.” Winsome Brown shows excerpts from the film.

September 2009: The Lost Victrola Sessions Upstate Residency. Director Winsome Brown, violinist Rebecca Cherry, and Sound Designer Sean Hagerty hole up in a barn to develop the Performance Concert.

January 2010: Production workshop with lighting designer Sarah Sidman.

June 2011: The Lost Victrola Sessions has a private debut at The Players Club in New York City for an invited audience of 200. The CD/DVD is released. And The Lost Victrola Sessions is open for booking.

September 11, 2011: The Lost Victrola Sessions joins artists such as Lou Reed, Laurie Anderson, Philip Glass and many more in an all day music memorial for September 11th at The Joyce SoHo.

February 17, 2012: The Lost Victrola Sessions is booked for a private concert at the home of Kerri Fersel Bennet, Tony Bennett’s daughter-in-law.

October 12 & 13, 2012: The Lost Victrola Sessions has its public debut at The Hudson Opera House, New York State’s oldest theatre.

To present The Lost Victrola Sessions, or for other booking/touring possibilities, please contact Winsome Brown at 1-646-249-4377 or winsomesmbrown@yahoo.com.

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Credits

Dave Soldier’s “The Complete Victrola Sessions” with Winsome Brown’s experimental film “The Violinist.”

Live music and performance by Rebecca Cherry, Jeff Lankov. Electronics, programming, and live feed by Sean Hagerty. Film written & directed by Winsome Brown. Cinematography by Jennifer Reeves. Music by Dave Soldier.

Film Performances by Rebecca Cherry, Ken Roht, George Steel, Dave Soldier, Winsome Brown, O-Lan Jones, Tanya Selvaratnam, Paula Malcomson, Ariane Anthony, Harry Sinclair, David F. Slone, Esq.

Scenic Design by Winsome Brown, Sean Hagerty.

Lighting design by Sarah Sidman. Tech by Sean Hagerty.

Directed by Winsome Brown.

Bios

Dave Soldier (Composer) lives two lives: as neuroscientist; and as composer, violinist, guitarist, and producer. He founded the seminal punk chamber group, the Soldier String Quartet in 1985, pioneering the use of amplified instruments and a repertoire that erased boundaries between classical and popular music and now leads the Andalusian band the Spinozas, and the Delta punk group, the Kropotkins. He founded the first orchestra for animals, the Thai Elephant Orchestra of Lampang, in 2000. Recordings and scores of many of his works written for classically trained players are available from Mulatta Records (mulatta.org). He has recorded almost 100 albums as a composer, leader, arranger, and/or musician. In addition to his classical work, Dave has played and recorded with rock and jazz groups including Bo Diddley, John Cale, David Byrne, Ric Ocasek, Guided by Voices, Regina Carter, Henry Threadgill, Pete Seeger, Richard Hell, and Van Dyke Parks.

As Dave Sulzer (his real name) he is professor in the Neurology and Psychiatry departments at Columbia University, as well as head of a neuroscience laboratory. For more details and samples of the music, visit www.davesoldier.com.

Winsome Brown (Director) is a writer, director, and Obie-award winning performer whose work has received critical acclaim from The New York Times, The Scotsman, Variety, LA Weekly, and others. Her latest solo play Hit the Body Alarm debuted at The Performing Garage in New York. Her monodrama This is Mary Brown launched at La MaMa and the Edinburgh Fringe in 2015, and will travel to Los Angeles in 2017. The short film Everything I Know About Love (“Cindy Sherman meets Lars von Trier on overdrive”) is upcoming. Winsome has frequently collaborated with composers and musicians, both as performer and director. These include: Dave Soldier; the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), Nathan Davis, Yuval Ron, Rebecca Cherry, Leon Livshin, and Du Yun. Recent work as an actor: The Burial at Thebes (Irish Rep); Gertrude Stein (Target Margin’s Stein Lab); Irina Brook’s Shakespeare’s Sister; Hillary Clinton in Du Yun and Paul Warner’s opera Women: The War Within (Baryshnikov Arts Centre). André Gregory and Wallace Shawn’s The Master Builder. Heather Woodbury’s Obie award winning Tale of 2Cities: An American Joyride on Multiple Tracks, (UCLA Live/PS 122). Film/ TV: Holy New York; A Master Builder (dir. Jonathan Demme); Heights (Merchant/Ivory dir. Chris Terrio); Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Nightfall with David Carradine, For Your Love, Shadows Choose Their Horrors (NY FilmFest, dir. Jenn Reeves). Winsome’s essays have been featured in Salon. She was born and raised in Toronto and lives in New York. Winsome directed both The Lost Victrola Sessions and “The Violinist” (2011, 44 min), a 16 mm experimental narrative which she also wrote. The film was her second collaboration with noted avant-garde filmmaker Jennifer Reeves, who served as director of photography.

Rebecca Cherry (Violinist/Rebecca Chernyakov) born in Vancouver, Canada, is a Violinist, Composer, Writer and Actor. She has played with many international orchestras including the Bergen Philharmonic in Norway with Music director Andrew Litton, and the London Philharmonic, where she was acting co-principal during the 2005 season. Her wide range has led her to perform with many of the worlds top performers in genres such as rock, folk, hip hop, and experimental music, including Arlo Guthrie, Kanye West, Jay Z, Adele, Coldplay, the Jonas Brothers, and many more. Her production company Cherry-Tate Music has created music for use in commercials and films, including a Monster.com commercial in 2008, which won a top industry award for composition that year. She was the recipient of a 2007 Harvestworks artist in residency grant, and, with Dave Soldier, of a 2006 NYSCA grant for the multimedia music and film performance of “The Violinist.” Rebecca recently worked on a production of Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” directed by Tomas G. Waites, again combining her skills of music and acting, lending her talents to the musical direction as well as the stage. Ms. Cherry recently finished her first book, “The Golden Rose.” A fairytale based on lyrics from a series of songs, written, sung and performed from her first solo project being produced by Scott Hackwith. Her Classical CD “Remembrances” is found on Itunes and CD baby.

Jeff Lankov (Pianist) Jeff Lankov is a pianist dedicated to performing revolutionary music of the twentieth century and the music of living composers, particularly as it relates to the synthesis of popular and classical forms.  Mr. Lankov is active as a solo recitalist, concerto soloist, and chamber musician throughout the United States and abroad.  His concerts often feature unusual juxtapositions and seldom-heard repertoire. Past concerts have included music for toy piano and prepared piano; the piano works of John Adams, Blind Tom, George Gershwin, Scott Joplin, Astor Piazzolla, and Robert Xavier Rodríguez; Lankov’s own solo-piano transcriptions of Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps and Copland’s Appalachian Spring; multimedia and electro-acoustic works; and concerts of music that blur the boundaries between popular and classical styles. Mr. Lankov is based in New York City, where he serves on the piano faculty at New York University and is a Ph.D. Candidate in Piano Performance.

Sean Hagerty (Sound Designer) is an independent musician, programmer, and technician based in New York City. As an eclectic violinist, he plays and sings with the Freedom Haters, an experimental rock trio based in Brooklyn. Stepping to side-man, he’s played with Michael Cerveris and Nellie McKay at the Bowery Ballroom as well as Aaron Stout and Tomer Oami, local singer-songwriters. As an arranger, Boston Fielder’s soul-tinged Muthawit Orchestra marked his NYC debut, with a concert full of arrangements for strings, trumpet, and sax. In late summer of 2006, he served as violinist, music director, and arranger for Ben Magnuson’s “Who Asked Me to Annoy You With my Sad Repartee,” a cabaret of love songs. Surprisingly, Sean had the unique chance to write a revised version of “Bohemian Rhapsody” for the Broadway cast of Sweeney Todd. He is an avid programmer of Max/MSP/Jitter, having worked with a number of performance artists, notably Michael Portnoy at the SOHO art parade. Part of the downtown multi-media community, Sean created an interactive animation for Harvestworks, using their from-scratch sensor suitcase. He is currently sound designing at Three Legged Dog (3LD), an experimental theater group.

Sarah Sidman (Lighting Designer) designs throughout the US and internationally for theater, opera, magic, dance and circus. West End: Jesus Hopped the A Train (dir. Philip Seymour Hoffman).  Regional credits include the Magic Theatre, Dallas Theater Center and Shakespeare Theater of NJ. Off Broadway credits include the Public Theater, Manhattan Theater Club, New York Theater Workshop, Women’s Project, New Georges, Foundry, and multiple premieres with LAByrinth Theater Company. Touring includes Pig Iron Theater Company and River Arts Repertory.
From 1997-2000, she served as Lighting Designer for the Big Apple Circus, and since 2000, has been the Lighting Designer for the Hip-Hop Theater Festival in NY, San Francisco, Chicago and Washington DC. She has designed multiple operas at Teatro Nacional (Dominican Republic) and Centro de Bellas Artes (Puerto Rico). She is Associate Lighting Director for Live With Regis and Kelly. Member LAByrinth Theater Company. For more information: www.sarahsidman.com

Jennifer Reeves (Cinematographer) pushes the boundaries of film through optical-printing, film stock “mis-use”, and direct-on-film techniques including hand-painting and sewing 16mm film. Her latest film “When It Was Blue” was selected for the 2008 TIFF and was called “a captivating tour de force (that) explodes all preconceptions about both experimental and environmental film” by the Globe and Mail. Reeves has explored themes of memory, mental health and recovery, feminism and sexuality, landscape, wildlife, and politics. Her films have shown extensively, from the Toronto, Berlin, New York, Vancouver, London, Sundance, and Seoul Film Festivals to the Museum of Modern Art. She has been the proud recipient of a 2007 Wexner Center Capital Residency Award, and a 2007 MacDowell Colony Residency.  Reeves has collaborated with some of the finest composer/ musicians today, including Anthony Burr, Skúli Sverrisson, Elliott Sharp, Zeena Parkins, Marc Ribot, Erik Hoversten, Pitt Reeves, Hilmar Jensson, John Stone, Eliza Slavet, and Dave Cerf. Her experimental narrative feature THE TIME WE KILLED (2004) won the FIPRESCI Critics prize at the Berlin Film Festival, Outstanding Artistic Achievement at OUTFEST, and Best NY, NY Narrative Feature at Tribeca Film Festival, and was screened at the 2006 Whitney Biennial.

Ken Roht (The Stranger) is the Producing Artistic Director of Orphean Circus, a Los Angeles-based music theater collective. He was the recipient of the 2003 Audrey Skirball Kenis TIME Grant, awarded to only five other people in the United States. His holiday series, “The 99¢ Shows”, is now in its sixth year and performs to sold-out audiences. He has been granted and/or commissioned by A.S.K. Common Ground Festival, Dept. of Cultural Affairs (LA) L.A. Cultural Affairs Department, Rockefeller Foundation, Durfee, Dance Theater Workshop, Flintridge and California Arts Council. His one-act opera Last Resort opened REDCAT’s first Workshop Festival and he directed/choreographed “Offenbach!!!,” three operettas, for Bard Summerscape in 2006. As a performer Ken has worked with Bill Viola, Paul McCarthy, and Reza Abdoh, for whom he was also a choreographer for seven years. He most recently sang a principle tenor role in a micro-tonal opera at Symphony Space in NY. Ken also choreographs for other directors, notably at the Mark Taper Forum, Oregon Shakespeare Festival (now in his fourth season), Long Beach Opera (three times), South Coast Rep (twice), Kirk Douglas Theater, Great Lakes Theater Festival and Lookingglass in Chicago.

Technical Specs

Staging and Layout

A roll of 12 foot super white Setpaper & 2 auto-stands (approx $100 for Setpaper, $40 per day to rent auto-poles); or a large film projection screen at least 12 feet by 8 feet.
Tuned piano – grand or baby grand
A tech table and chair DSR
A backstage area/ an area dressed as backstage

Video

We travel with our own Sanyo Pro xtraX multiverse projector
(PLC-XU 115, 4500 lumens)
Media is run off a laptop, we travel with the laptop

Sound

All sound from film playback and mixing of performers will be executed by our technician DSL. WE WILL PROVIDE:
-wireless mic / receiver for violin
-mic for piano
-cabling for mics

We Require

An in-house stereo sound system
Downstage power for tech table
We will patch into in-house sound system (in booth) from stage. Require 1/4′ run (x2) from stage to booth. Sound mixing / micing will be done from stage, downstage left.

We Would Like

-2 stage monitors, 1 for violin, 1 for piano
-an additional backstage/offstage monitor
-Headset for sound technician

Lighting

Light specifications submitted on request. Rental costs of birdies and cable usually about $160.

Staffing and Scheduling

1 Sound video technician
1 Lighting technician to assist load-in and tech
TECH: 6-8 hours load-in for first concert

Production Will Provide

2 musicians
Technician
Light/sound supervisor

Select Press Clips & Quotes

On Dave Soldier

“The most astonishing performance of the evening was the set by the Soldier String Quartet.” -Allan Kozinn, The New York Times, on “Sonic Boom” at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center.

“Double lives are usually led by spies and philanderers, not doctors and
musicians. But Dr. David Sulzer, an assistant professor of neurology and
psychiatry at Columbia University’s medical school, is leading so many lives — one
medical, several musical — that you have to wonder where he finds the time to be all the
people he is. By day, Sulzer, 42, investigates “how synapses are modulated during behavior and learning,” as he put it, adding a loose translation: “It’s very basic research about how the brain works.” Laboratory work, he said, takes up most of his time, and he speaks of it with considerable excitement, noting that neurobiology is a “fascinating field that’s undergoing a revolution right now.” But when Dr. Sulzer takes off his lab coat and leaves New York-Presbyterian Hospital in upper Manhattan, he becomes Dave Soldier, a prolific composer and arranger and a busy violinist, guitarist and banjo player. Soldier is the name on the buzzer of his TriBeCa apartment, and it is how he is known in the downtown arts world, where the boundaries of avant-garde classical music, rhythm and blues, jazz and alternative rock are porous.” – Allan Kozinn, The New York Times, Arts Section profile on Dave Soldier.

On Winsome Brown

“Ms. Brown is engrossing. She’s a spiky actress and an unaccommodating one, who prefers to needle audience members rather than oblige them. Confronted with forbidden fruit, you know she’d take an audacious bite.”
-The New York Times, “Hit the Body Alarm finds Satan in a Jumpsuit”

“A darkly luminous meditation on freedom, captivity, mortality, and memory.”
-Exeunt (Hit the Body Alarm)

“Brown is just magnificent to watch.”
-New York Theater Guide (Hit the Body Alarm)

“Lovely. Poignant. Affecting.” The New York Times (This is Mary Brown)
“Powerful.” Time Out New York
★★★★★ “A very special piece of writing and a virtuosic piece of acting.” Broadway Baby, Edinburgh Festival Fringe’s most popular review source

★★★★ “Warm and funny. Beautiful. Inspiring.” The Scotsman
“Riveting. A gift.” TheatreScene
“Brings the audience to tears.” Tribeca Trib
“Marvelous.” Edge New York

On Rebecca Cherry

”The Unfolding Opium Poppy’,’ for violin and piano, builds from dark, plaintive introspection to a level of searing passion.” Allan Kozinn, The New York Times

On Jennifer Reeves

“Reeves’s captivating tour de force explodes all preconceptions about both experimental and environmental film. When It Was Blue is a frenetic double-projection montage… a can’t miss event.” –M. Peranson, The Globe and Mail