David Byrne's "Here Lies Love" Begins Five-Night Run at MASS MoCA; Album Is "Superb, Sumptuous" (Boston Globe)
The new musical of Here Lies Love, which explores the life of former Filipino First Lady Imelda Marcos, with concept and lyrics by David Byrne and music by Byrne and Fatboy Slim, begins a five-night, sold-out run at MASS MoCA's Hunter Center in North Adams, Massachusetts, tonight. This week's performances offer theatergoers an early look at the musical—a co-production between MASS MoCA, Williamstown Theatre Festival, and the Public Theater directed by Alex Timbers of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and Peter and the Starcatcher fame—that will receive its official world premiere at the Public Theater in New York City in April 2013.
In Here Lies Love, David Byrne and iconic deejay-composer Fatboy Slim tell the story of Imelda Marcos's meteoric rise and subsequent descent into infamy, all within a throbbing dance club environment. This immersive spectacle combines disco beats, choreography by Annie-B Parson, and a 360-degree scenic and video environment, all the while moving beyond Marcos's oft-discussed obsession with shoes to explore questions of power and responsibility. This marks the first theatrical production of Here Lies Love, which was first presented as a song cycle at the Adelaide Bank Festival of Arts in 2006 and in concert at Carnegie Hall in 2007.
Nonesuch Records released the double-disc song cycle recording of Here Lies Love in 2010, featuring a who’s who of indie rockers, dancefloor divas, and established stars, including Tori Amos, Steve Earle, Cyndi Lauper, Natalie Merchant, Florence Welch of Florence + the Machine, Santigold, and St. Vincent. The Wall Street Journal calls it "a fountain of funk and dance music that's entirely accessible."
The Boston Globe's Sarah Rodman, in a preview of this week's performances, calls the 2010 Nonesuch album a "superb ... sumptuous double album." Rodman spoke with director Alex Timbers about the highly collaborative nature of developing the new production with David Byrne.
"I think he's one of the most important artists of the last several decades," Timbers says of Byrne. "I’ve listened to his music for years. So the idea of getting to collaborate with him on something is really exciting. What’s even more exciting is how collaborative he is. He’s surrounded by a lot of amazing theater artists, whether it be designers or the artistic staff at Williamstown and The Public Theater, and he’s just really interested in making a really good theater piece, and there’s no ego at all. "
Read the article at boston.com.
To pick up a copy of the 2010 Nonesuch recording of Here Lies Love, head to the Nonesuch Store, where orders include an instant download of the album at checkout.