Kurt Weill going TETE-a-TETE with Hank Williams
STURM 'n TWANG
"The most exciting new thing to come around in a long time."
-- Rick DesRochers, Literary Manager, The Public Theater / NY Shakespeare Festival
"A theatrical tapestry of history, love, tragedy, comedy, art, and questions about where we have come from and where we are going, all woven together by some of the most beautiful music I've ever heard."
Playing to sold-out audiences since May, when it performed at The Public Theater's "New Work Now!" festival, The Weimarband arrives at The Bottom Line on March 7th to unveil the latest incarnation of its evolving, far-flung new "music theater" project The Blue Flower.
Made up of some of New York's finest musicians, including three members of the Grammy-nominated Absolute Ensemble (www.absoluteensemble.com),the eclectic 12-piece ensemble blends the restless mood and dark hues of 1920's Berlin cabaret music with the insouciant charm and lyricism of American country & western.
The kaleidoscopic music, a narrative song-cycle written by versatile composer, lyricist and performer Jim Bauer, drives and breathes with shifting, jagged dynamics from bright to brooding, grim to glistening. The Weimarband's magically compelling instrumentation is in a class entirely its own: PEDAL STEEL GUITAR (John Widgren), BASSOON (Martin Kuuskmann), CELLO (Ann Kim), ACCORDION (Mark Rubinstein), PIANO (Jim Bauer, Mark Rubinstein and David Rozenblatt), ELECTRIC GUITAR (Jim Bauer), BASS (Stephan Crump), DRUMS (Patrick Carmichael) and PERCUSSION (David Rozenblatt). Featured vocalists are the soulful and manic maestro JIM BAUER, the immensely talented singer/songwriter JEN CHAPIN, who carries on the proud tradition of her famous musical family, the electrifyingly theatrical SUSAN McGEARY, and special guest DAVID DRIVER, who leads New York's critically-acclaimed Driver Quartet and who performed recently in New York and London with Elvis Costello and Debbie Harry in a production of Roy Nathanson's "Fire at Keaton's Bar and Grill."
Set at the end of WWI and the beginning of the Weimar Republic in Germany with characters based loosely on the historical figures Max Beckmann, Franz Marc, Hannah Hoech, and Marie Curie, The Blue Flower tells the haunting story of a mortally wounded German soldier -- his ambulance ride and what happens after. Sliding between Paris, the battlefield trenches, the Dada cabarets of Zurich and the rattled streets of post-war Berlin, the story is about living where we have always lived: between two wars, whichever the last one was, and whatever the next one will be.