Long River

for Piano, Color Video, and Recorded Piano.. (1993).. 7:27

This work requires an acoustic or electric piano with an 88-key keyboard. All performing is done on the keys. No amplification of an acoustic piano is required.

Very difficult.

School Children

This concert video is a four-part study of cultural collisions and contradictions in China in 1991. The focus is on everyday life and ordinary activities. The graphic qualities of the visuals are intensified through the use of digital image processing.

 The first section, “Long Bell,” juxtaposes uneasy pieces of the China puzzle: little children awkwardly performing a Muslim dance; people working as animals, carrying heavy loads or pulling large wagons; an ancient, eviscerated Han corpse displayed with its internal organs proudly laid out alongside; a troupe performing Tang dynasty dances with glitzy banners and strobe lights; all amidst the vividly pictorial facets of a rich and unique culture.

The second part, “Light Hand,” pays homage to the craftsmanship of Chinese drawing, painting, cloisonné, embroidery, and lacquer work.

Section three, “The Silk Road,” travels the silk manufacturing route, from sorting cocoons to rolling up a finished bolt of cloth.

The last part, “Panda Prints,” is a collection of wry glimpses: an uncomfortable panda, signs in sometimes fractured English, functional apparel for little children, and dancers with a flair for show biz kitsch.

 

The work was commissioned by pianist Barbara Blegen.

Bicycles and Hand Cart
Silk Factory Worker
Panda
"Tang Dynasty" Dancers
Bye-bye!

CLICK BELOW FOR FLASH MOVIE


 

OPEN PDF FILE OF SETUP DIAGRAM AND INSTRUCTIONS

OPEN PDF FILE OF SCORE (681 KB)


PIANISTS WHO PERFORM “LONG RIVER”

Barbara Blegen
Kathryn Fouse
Steve Gosling
Mark Howard
Julie Leschke
Barbara Phillips-Farley
Catherine Schneider
Logan Skelton
Meng-Yin Tsai
David Ward-Steinman


CREDITS AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Production, Direction, Camera, Image Processing, Music, Editing: Reynold Weidenaar

Recorded Pianist: Barbara Blegen

On-line Editor: Benton Bainbridge

Commissioned by Barbara Blegen

Production assistance provided by the Experimental Television Center, which is supported in part by the New York State Council on the Arts, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and by private contributions.

This production was made possible with assistance from the Media Alliance On-line Program.

Copyright 1993 by Magnetic Music Publishing Co. (ASCAP).

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