Friday, October 7, 2011

the sundance kid is beautiful

Robert Wilson, Voom Portraits: Steve Buschemi

  • I'm very excited to go see Robert Wilson tonight at the LSU Reilly Theatre at 7pm.. Most famous for staging Philip Glass' 1976 opera Einstein At The Beach and collaborating with Tom Waits and William S. Burroughs on The Black Rider, Robert Wilson has had a singular, peculiar career that stretches over and bends all the arts of the last forty years.

    Einstein at the Beach, Segment III
  • Personally, meeting Robert Wilson is one of the last items on my avant-garde bucket list: John Cage rode in my car once, I chatted with Philip Glass backstage, saw Anthony Braxton play solo sax at the old Knitting Factory, watched a Stan Brakhage movie with (I think) him in the room, and had Milton Babbitt once tell me the thing he was about to explain was out of my cognitive league. All I have to do now is get Ornette Coleman to tell me what really happened in that south Louisiana bar in the 1950's. And then write a libretto and get Robert Wilson to stage it. Then I'm done.

    Robert Wilson, Voom Portraits: Robert Downey Jr.
  • The recording of Wilson & Christopher Knowles' "A Letter to Queen Victoria: The Sundance Kid is Beautiful" from the 1975 album Big Ego is one of my favorite things because it takes art, theatre, poetry, minimalism, performer, time brackets, control, audience, social propriety totally to task. It is maddening and funny and enraging and poignant; I've heard it a million times and still go through the same cycles.

    Robert Wilson & Christopher Knowles, "A Letter to Queen Victoria: The Sundance Kid is Beautiful"
  • Eight minutes that changed my brain forever. I was unfamiliar with his tableau vivant Voom Portraits, peppered throughout this post, before last night.

    Robert Wilson, Voom Portraits: Johnny Depp
  • It's the trouble of living off The Art Grid; I'd like to think I'm as up on Robert Wilson as anyone around here, yet there are whole swaths of his work with which I am unfamiliar. I suspect tonight's lecture will get me up to speed. There is a documentary Absolute Wilson that helps explain what he's about should you be left wondering, but then I think you are supposed to always be left wondering.

    Absolute Wilson trailer

    "...what should I not do... and then do that."

1 comment:

  1. thank you so much alex. i woulda missed this had it not been for your blog!