“MUSICAL CIRCUS”: Pianist Cristina Altamura and percussionist David Degge will perform a musical tribute to filmmaker Federico Fellini and composer Nino Rota in a variety-style concert on June 23 at 7:30 p.m. at McCarter Theatre’s Berlind Theatre. (Photo by Maria Grazia Facciolá)
Legacy Arts International presents “Musical Circus,” a variety-style concert, at McCarter Theatre’s Berlind Theatre on Thursday, June 23 at 7:30 p.m. The event is planned in cooperation with Jacobs Music Company, which is providing a Steinway & Sons Spirio concert grand piano for the performance.
Headed by concert pianist Cristina Altamura, Legacy Arts International is holding the concert to kick off the All Abilities Music Creation Pilot. The program commissions new pieces of music for students whose educational needs are not being met by the current repertoire and pedagogy for their instrument, due to factors which could include a disability, lack of representation in the field, or other unmet needs.
“Understanding the unique qualities of audience members, fidgets will be available upon request at the check-in desk in the lobby or people are welcomed to bring their own,” reads a press release about the event.
The concert features a musical tribute to filmmaker Federico Fellini and composer Nino Rota, with music from such films as La Dolce Vita and Amarcord. Altamura commissioned arranger Steve Buck to make new arrangements of Rota’s music for performances which will also feature percussionists Adam Sliwinski and David Degge.
Venezuelan pianist Vanessa Perez, fresh from her debut in Bill Murray’s NewWorlds — The Cradle of Civilization documentary featured at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival and released this year in theaters worldwide, and her husband, Steve Buck, will perform his arrangements of Venezuelan music on two pianos. Opening the concert will be the 18-year-old jazz singer Anaïs Reno, and a quartet of music students from the Princeton High School Studio Band.
“I am most appreciative of every single performer who believes so much in Legacy Arts International, that they are donating their time,” said Altamura. “Our guests will be delighted with this spectacular evening dedicated to the arts.”
During the 2022-2023 school year, Legacy Arts International will pair a diverse team of composers with music students to create new works which will harness and emphasize the students’ unique strengths and interests. The pilot will be guided by a committee of disability experts.
“All great collaboration in music relies on the composers and performers building bonds of trust and enhancing each other’s’ strengths,” said Adam Sliwinski of So Percussion and the Edward T. Cone Artist in Residence at Princeton University. “Many music students do not have the opportunity to work with living composers. When they can, they see that their unique physicality and ideas matter in the creative process.”
Sliwinski and Altamura are artistic directors of the project.
Participants will benefit from using a range of different instruments as assistive technology including new technology developed by composer Dan Trueman at Princeton University called the BitKlavier and the Steinway Spirio. The instruments will be on display at the gala.
Tickets are $35. Visit legacyartsinternational.org for more information.