(NORTH ADAMS, Mass.) – Chamber-pop singer-songwriter Gabriel Kahane, whose songs betray his parallel life as a classical music composer, will be joined by Rob Moose of Bon Iver for a duo concert at MASS MoCA‘s multi-colored Pavilion, an outdoor sculpture of overlapping canopies located at the center of the museum’s renovated 19th-century factory campus, on Saturday, July 20, 2013, at 8pm. Kahane combines a voice like Paul Simon’s, the musical palette of a Randy Newman, and the eccentric lyrical sensibility of a Tom Waits or David Byrne.
Kahane’s compositions, recordings, and performances reflect a quirky, innovative musician, deeply enmeshed in New York’s downtown new-music scene. In 2006, he found a personal ad on craigslist that read: “Neurotic and Lonely: slightly hunched, occasionally employed anthropologist, chain-smoking Jew, currently living with parents.” Inspired by the words of this lonely and self-aware stranger, Kahane wrote the first of a cycle of songs called Craigslistlieder, delicately balancing humor with sadness. These poppy, classical, ironic, and humorous pieces soon became a model for other artists. Craigslistlieder is played everywhere from seedy dive bars to Carnegie Hall. Singer-actress Audra McDonald opened her recent show at the Colonial Theater in Pittsfield, Mass., with two of Kahane’s Craigslistlieder songs, one of which begins, “You looked sexy even though you were having a seizure (in Walgreens).”
Kahane has been commissioned to compose concert works by Carnegie Hall, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, American Composers Orchestra, Kronos Quartet, and The Caramoor Festival. In 2012 he made his recital debut at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall in a program devoted to his music, both pop and classical. He has released two albums, including Where Are the Arms in 2011, which received widespread praise among critics and was heralded by the New York Times for its “extravagant poise and emotional intelligence”.
Rob Moose, a violinist, guitarist, and singer for the Grammy Award-winning American indie folk band Bon Iver, will accompany Kahane in this intimate outdoor concert. Moose, like Kahane, has established a name for himself in both the classical and pop scenes. His diverse career has stretched from serving as concertmaster for the Manhattan School’s celebrated Jazz Philharmonic Orchestra to playing viola for hip-hop mogul Jay-Z. Moose often collaborates with experimental chamber-pop artist Sufjan Stevens, including orchestrating seven of Stevens’ songs for a special performance, which Moose conducted, at the Kennedy Center.
Tickets for Gabriel Kahane’s performance with Rob Moose at MASS MoCA are $12 for general admission in advance, $16 for general admission on the day of the performance, and $10 for students with a valid student ID. Museum members receive a 10% discount. Tickets are available through the MASS MoCA Box Office located on Marshall Street in North Adams. Tickets can also be charged by phone by calling 413.662.2111 x1 during Box Office hours, or purchased online at MASS MoCA.