Music, dance, and poetry, all come together in a captivating live performance of DUST AND IONS, with a portion of proceeds going to help the children of Lebanon and Wichita: tickets.
Composer and pianist, Alex Wakim (RAINDANCE Film Festival’s Frayed Roots, and the 2019 production of musical AN AMERICAN IN BEIRUT) is joining forces with musicians from the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, singers from the Wichita Grand Opera, dancers from the Regina Klenjoski Dance Company, as well as composer and musician Juan Dussán, to actualize a new 90-minute live version of Dust and Ions. He is collaborating with award-winning poet and writer, Yara Zgheib, to mix in poetry and story to Dust and Ions, as well as writing a whole new 40-minutes of original music. This show reminisces on the purity of creation and the joy of unity in an evening that is sure to transport all who attend.
A portion of proceeds will go to the Kids First Association in Lebanon to purchase medicine for pediatric oncology patients (who have no access to treatment medication due to a complete financial meltdown), as well as the WPS Fine Arts Gift Fund in order to purchase instruments for students who would otherwise be unable to continue their music education.
Tickets available here: https://app.arts-people.com/index.php?show=128402
There will be an exclusive pre-show event starting at 6:00 PM available to those who purchase VIP tickets.
When: September 17th & 18th, 7:30 PM
Where: Wichita Center for the Performing Arts
Mounting an effective show requires detailed production elements, high level talent, and community support through sponsorship and gifts. We are looking for organizations and individuals to donate tax-deductible gifts through Fractured Atlas in order to mount this show.
Creating Connection in a Suddenly Disconnected World
I used my pandemic-time spent in Kansas to develop an instrumental cinematic album reflecting on this thought.
One of the most profound moments of 2020 was when I saw the NEOWISE comet in July. The title of the album, as well as the grand formation that takes place in the opening track, both refer to the beauty of comets (there being a dust tail and an ion tail in every comet.)
This project would be nothing without the immense contributions of these extraordinarily talented musicians and collaborators. I thank them from the bottom of my heart.
(Left to Right, Top to Bottom) Trevor Stewart (Clarinet), Carmen Lemoine (Flute); Chelley Graves, Cindy Wu, Addison Wegerle (violins), Rosie Barney (viola), Masha Begacheva (cello), Dennis Danders (bass).
Wayne Goins, (Guitar); Claire Kuttler, Aaron Stepanek, and Renee Macdonald (Voices).
Sanjay G. Pamaar (Additional Orchestrations); AM Namee (Recording Engineer); Angie Teo (Mixing Engineer); Recorded at Zeptepland Studios; Mastered at Zampol Productions by Oscar Zambrano
About the Tracks
Whether it’s amongst the largest structures we know about (stars, galaxies, comets), or some of the smallest known particles, (viruses) – all things that connect have a profound impact on us as humans. I used my pandemic-time spent in Kansas to develop an instrumental cinematic album reflecting on this thought.
The title of the album, as well as the grand formation that takes place in the opening track, both refer to the beauty of comets (there being a dust tail and an ion tail in every comet.) Sophia 537, named after the Hagia Sophia Cathedral in modern-day Istanbul, grew out of my reaction to observing the comet. I had an intense drive over to the country to see it, speeding so as not to miss the visibility window. Getting there, I stood, heart racing, looking in awe at something so beautiful, calm, yet ferociously racing through space.This contrast between the human anxiety with the more celestial or God-given peace is something I wanted to explore through. The tune ultimately relaxes and succumbs to this appreciation of the world around it.
The Fireflies in Kansas (Are as Big as the Stars) continue this feeling of awe with lush pads and Desplat-like flutes. Things then get much more introspective with a Chopin / Morricone-esque piano solo, Folie á Deux, as well as a piano and guitar jazz duo, To The Girl in the Window, featuring Wayne Goins on guitar.
A Gentle Fall paints a gentle melancholy scene with swaying strings, internal, warm, yearning.
The final track, As The Wind Flows was written on August 4th, as soon as I got news of the Beirut Port explosion, in which a cousin was seriously injured. A sense of helplessness and loss pervaded, yet the ultimate hope that love and persistence can make things right is how I approached the end of this track, and ultimately the whole album.