Hidden Soul of Harmony:
      Mark Morris’ L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato
       A Photography Exhibition featurin...
MARK MORRIS was born on August 29, 1956, in Seattle, Washington, where he studied as a young man with Verla
Flowers and Pe...
HIDDEN SOUL OF HARMONY: MARK MORRIS’
        L’ALLEGRO, IL PENSEROSO ED IL MODERATO
A Photography Exhibition Featuring the...
HIDDEN SOUL OF HARMONY: MARK MORRIS’ L’ALLEGRO
                                                                           ...
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Hidden Soul Of Harmony

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Information board and photo descriptions w/ images by Stephanie Berger and Susana Millman for photography exhibit on Mark Morris\' L\'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderaoto, curated by Alex Pacheco.

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Hidden Soul Of Harmony

  1. 1. Hidden Soul of Harmony: Mark Morris’ L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato A Photography Exhibition featuring the works of Stephanie Berger and Susana Millman June 6 – 14, 2008 The MARK MORRIS DANCE GROUP was formed in 1980 and gave its first concert that year in New York City. The company’s touring schedule steadily expanded to include cities both in the U.S. and in Europe, and in 1986 it made its first national television program for the PBS series Dance in America. In 1988, MMDG was invited to become the national dance company of Belgium, and spent three years in residence at the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels. It was there that Morris created his first large-scale work, L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato. "With this two-hour cornucopia of theatrical richness... Mr. Morris moves into the level of high seriousness that his talent had always promised. Ideas, music and dance flow into a regenerating whole in ''L'Allegro.'' Mr. Morris has taken the least likely of scores for a contemporary dance work and made that work seem not only natural but timely, and more than universal.” -The New York Times, (1990) Hailed as one of the masterworks of the 20th Century, L'Allegro represents the culmination of a creative enterprise spanning 350 years and encompassing the work of three other artists: John Milton, George Frideric Handel, and William Blake. Morris’ L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato is set to an oratorio of the same name, composed by Handel in 1740. Handel set his music to a libretto constructed largely from Milton’s poems, “L’Allegro” and “Il Penseroso,” written in 1631. These paired poems depict opposing but complementary states of mind – l’Allegro is the active or cheerful mind, il Penseroso is the melancholic or contemplative mind. Handel and his librettist Charles Jennens adapted these poems to create a dialogue between them and added a third, “Il Moderato,” representing the voice of moderation and reason. Nearly sixty-five years later, Blake painted twelve watercolors to illustrate Milton’s poems. Finally, 185 years later, Mark Morris, inspired by and drawing upon each of his predecessors, created L’Allegro for twenty-four dancers, orchestra, chorus and four vocal soloists – the most ambitious piece he had yet made. Following Brussels, the company returned to the United States in 1991 as one of the world’s leading dance companies, performing across the U.S. and at major international festivals. It has maintained and strengthened its ties to several cities around the world, most notably its west coast home, Cal Performances in Berkeley, CA, and its midwest home, the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. It appears regularly in Boston, MA; Fairfax, VA; Seattle, WA; and at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Becket, MA. MMDG made its debut at the Mostly Mozart Festival in 2002 and at the Tanglewood Music Festival in 2003 and has since been invited to both festivals annually. The company’s London seasons have garnered two Laurence Olivier Awards. MMDG is noted for its commitment to live music, a feature of every performance on its full international touring schedule since 1996. MMDG collaborates with leading orchestras, opera companies, and musicians including cellist Yo-Yo Ma in the Emmy Award-winning film Falling Down Stairs (1997); Indian composer Zakir Hussain, Mr. Ma and jazz pianist Ethan Iverson in Kolam (2002); The Bad Plus in Violet Cavern (2004); pianists Emanuel Ax, Garrick Ohlsson and Yoko Nozaki for Mozart Dances (2006); and with the English National Opera in Four Saints in Three Acts (2000) and King Arthur (2006), among others. MMDG’s film and television projects also include Dido and Aeneas, The Hard Nut, and two documentaries for the U.K.’s South Bank Show. In 2001, MMDG opened the Mark Morris Dance Center in Brooklyn, NY, the company's first permanent headquarters in the U.S., housing rehearsal space for the dance community, outreach programs for local children, as well as a school offering dance classes to students of all ages. This exhibition was created to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Morris’ first evening-length masterpiece and was first presented in Seattle, WA, April 2008. The installation at Avenue at Four Seasons in Toronto represents this exhibit’s Canadian Premiere. MMDG is proud to be a part of Luminato 2008 and will present three programs, June 6-15, at the MacMillan Theatre. www.luminato.com www.mmdg.org
  2. 2. MARK MORRIS was born on August 29, 1956, in Seattle, Washington, where he studied as a young man with Verla Flowers and Perry Brunson. In the early years of his career, he performed with Lar Lubovitch, Hannah Kahn, Laura Dean, Eliot Feld, and the Koleda Balkan Dance Ensemble. He formed the MARK MORRIS DANCE GROUP in 1980, and has since created more than 120 works for the company. From 1988-1991, he was Director of Dance at the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels, the national opera house of Belgium. In 1990, he founded the White Oak Dance Project with Mikhail Baryshnikov. Morris is also much in demand as a ballet choreographer. He has created seven works for the San Francisco Ballet since 1994 and received commissions from American Ballet Theatre and the Boston Ballet, among others. His work is also in the repertory of Pacific Northwest Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, Ballet British Columbia, and Houston Ballet, among others. Morris is noted for his musicality and has been described as “undeviating in his devotion to music.” He has worked extensively in opera, directing and choreographing productions for The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, English National Opera, and The Royal Opera, Covent Garden. Morris is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, has received eight honorary doctorates to date, and was named a Fellow of the MacArthur Foundation in 1991. He is the subject of a biography by Joan Acocella (Farrar, Straus & Giroux). STEPHANIE BERGER, best known for her work photographing the performing arts, brings her unique vision in capturing the excitement, beauty and expressiveness of many of the leading dancers, choreographers, directors, and musicians working today. For over twenty years, she has been photographing music, dance, opera, cultural events and festivals at institutions including Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Carnegie Hall, Museum of Modern Art and The Metropolitan Opera, among others. She has also photographed international productions in China, France, Spain, Canada and Holland. Ms. Berger has been the staff photographer for Lincoln Center Festival since its inception in 1996. She is a frequent contributor to many publications, including The New York Times, ArtNews, and Film Comment, among others. Her work has been commissioned by many contemporary dance companies such as Mark Morris Dance Group, The Merce Cunningham Dance Company, and Shen Wei Dance Arts, as well as theater directors and companies like Robert Wilson, Chen Shizeng, Meredith Monk and Bang on a Can. Her photographs have been exhibited in many galleries and public art spaces including a 10-year retrospective of the Lincoln Center Festival at The New York State Theater, the Freida & Roy Furman Gallery, Film Society of Lincoln Center, NYC Deptartment of Cultural Affairs, and the Museum of the City of New York. Ms. Berger graduated from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst in 1983 and studied photography at Hampshire College. She worked as a photographer for the City of New York’s Department of Transportation in the 1980’s documenting bridges and public works. SUSANA MILLMAN’s work as a photographer of the arts came as a mid-life succession to an academic career in social psychology – and it shows. For the key to understanding her work as a photographer is her understanding of that quintessentially human experience, the transcendent moment in the arts. After undergraduate studies at Cornell and a Ph.D. at Columbia, she pursued an interest in esoteric botany in South America, and eventually took up the camera. Her first subject was that most American – and transcendent - of bands, the Grateful Dead. As she grew ever more comfortable with her art, she added travel to her photographic repertoire – it was always one of her personal comfort zones, and again, her psychologist’s understanding of the human condition allowed her to find the right time to shoot, whether of subjects as varied as people or monumental architecture; it is the preceding understanding that allows her to find the exquisite beauty of a camel driver in Gujurat or the hands of the master tabla drummer of Indian classical music, Zakir Hussain. (see www.mamarazi.com). All of which prepared her for her favorite subject - seeking to stop time itself by shooting dance. It is her epiphany and her joy. LUMINATO, Toronto's Festival of Arts and Creativity, encompasses a broad spectrum of creative expression including music, dance, theatre, film, literature, visual arts and lectures. Luminato began in 2007 as an aspiration for Toronto to realize its true potential as one of the most creative cities in the world. Conceived out of our city's unique vibrancy and cultural diversity, and designed to showcase Toronto's bustling downtown core and the cultural renaissance transforming our renowned concert halls, galleries, museum collections, and performing arts companies, Luminato was created to bring Toronto's light to the world, and the world's light to Toronto.
  3. 3. HIDDEN SOUL OF HARMONY: MARK MORRIS’ L’ALLEGRO, IL PENSEROSO ED IL MODERATO A Photography Exhibition Featuring the Works of Stephanie Berger and Susana Millman June 6 – 14, 2008 LUMINATO FESTIVAL 2008 The Hunt (Stephanie Berger) Photograph in non-glare plexi with sintra backing C-print: 40” x 26 3/4", signed by artist Finale (Susana Millman) Photograph in non-glare plexi with sintra backing C-print: 40” x 30", signed by artist Finale (Susana Millman) Photograph in non-glare plexi with sintra backing C-print: 40” x 30", signed by artist Hidden Soul of Harmony (Stephanie Berger) Photograph in non-glare plexi with sintra backing C-print: 40” x 30", signed by artist Basilica (Stephanie Berger) Photograph in non-glare plexi with sintra backing C-print: 40” x 26 3/4", signed by artist Haste Thee Nymph (Stephanie Berger) Duratran photograph in a light box Fujitran: 30” x 24” Populous Cities (Susana Millman) Duratran photograph in a light box Fujitran: 30” x 24”
  4. 4. HIDDEN SOUL OF HARMONY: MARK MORRIS’ L’ALLEGRO (…continued) Sweet Bird (Susana Millman) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 14” x 11”, signed by artist The Walking Duet (Susana Millman) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 14” x 11”, signed by artist Fireplace (Stephanie Berger) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 11” x 14”, signed by artist The Stupid Men’s Dance (Susana Millman) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 14” x 11”, signed by artist Melancholy Octet (Stephanie Berger) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 11” x 14”, signed by artist Sweet Bird (Susana Millman) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 11” x 14”, signed by artist Day’s Garish Eyes (Susana Millman) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 11” x 14”, signed by artist Fireplace (Stephanie Berger) Photograph in non-glare plexi with plexi backing C-print: 11” x 14”, signed by artist WWW.MMDG.ORG

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