April 11, 2004

"Tense, frowning Beethoven-ness" in Madison. Here's a strange and incredibly arty thing happening in Madison of all places, as reported by the NYT:
... Norwegian conceptual artist Leif Inge digitally elongates a recording of [Beethoven's Ninth Symphony] to make it last 24 hours. The piece slows symphonic time so that movement is barely perceptible. What you hear in normal time as a happy Viennese melody lasting 5 or 10 seconds becomes minutes of slowly cascading overtones; a drumroll becomes a nightmarish avalanche. Yet the symphony remains somehow recognizable in spirit if not in form, its frozen strings fraught with tense, frowning Beethoven-ness. ... The slowness eases you into a trance, but the layers of dissonance make the experience slightly uncomfortable.

Mr. Inge created the piece in 2002, and he is now bringing it to America. Tomorrow he will discuss it and play excerpts at Free103point9, a gallery in Brooklyn, and on Friday it will unfold in its full 24-hour glory at the cavernous Theo Kupfer Foundry and Ironworks in Madison, Wis. ...

Theo Kupfer Foundry and Ironworks? Never heard of it, and I've lived in Madison for 20 years. Well, here's an article about it in today's Capital Times:
When John Martens took his first look inside the cavernous industrial building at 149 Waubesa St., he was overwhelmed by its beauty and potential.

"I truly got weak in the knees," said Martens, a local restoration architect.

No mention in that article of "9 Beet Stretch," the glacially paced Beethoven the Times says is playing this Friday.