Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ballet Mecanique at UNLV

UNLV College of Fine Arts presents George Antiel's Ballet Mecanique

Two performances at the Black Box Theatre:

Thursday, March 25, 7:30 p.m. (doors open at 7 p.m.)
Friday, March 26, 7:30 p.m. (doors open at 7 p.m.)

Tickets: $10 and $8, available from the UNLV PAC box office.

This concert is a College of Fine Arts collaboration between the departments of dance, theatre (lighting design), and music (piano and percussion). Each area will be featured in the first half of the program with the second half dedicated to George Antiel's great work: Ballet Mecanique.

Ballet Mecanique is George Antheil's most famous--or notorious--piece and was originally written in 1924 to accompany a Dadaist film of the same name. The music was premiered by in Paris in 1926 with the concert ending in a riot. In 1953, Antheil wrote a shortened (and much tamer) version for four pianos, four xylophones, two electric bells, two propellers, timpani, glockenspiel, and other percussion. This version of Ballet Mecanique is a highly rhythmic, often brutalistic piece combining, among other elements, sounds of the industrial age, atonal music, and jazz.

Antheil's description of this work is "...that the piece leans toward the barbaric and mystic splendor of modern civilization; mathematics of the universe... a mechanical scientific civilization, and the 'time-space' principle."

Contact: Timothy Jones,

Phone: 702-895-1066

Image: Film still from Fernand Leger's Ballet Mecanique (1924).

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