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Bobby Previte's Rhapsody

Painted Bride Art Center
Event organized by Painted Bride Art Center

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What is the experience of being in transit? Separated from your home but not yet at your destination, you are neither here nor there, confined with strangers in an intimate environment for a predetermined amount of time. Uncomfortable, yet somehow free. To travel is to be bound with these strangers by faith—faith in the vessel which carries you, faith in the people who operate it, and ultimately, faith in the strangers waiting at your destination.

Rhapsody is the second part in a three-part series exploring the experience of travel. The first part, Terminals Part I: Departures, is a set of five concertos written for the visionary percussion group SO Percussion and five improvisers. This piece premiered at Merkin Hall in New York City and the recording was released on Cantaloupe Music in 2014.

In 2015, Bobby Previte received the Greenfield Prize for a new work and decided to create Part II of the set, ‘In Transit.’ For this piece he had the thought to take the improvisers from Part I, each of whom were selected based on their ability to carry a fifteen-minute concerto by themselves, and throw them all together into one ensemble.

Beginning from the point of view of a traveler sitting comfortably in an airplane, Rhapsody twists and turns, until the traveler finally arrives at a strange shore – on a raft.


Zeena Parkins—harp
John Medeski—piano
Nels Cline—guitars
Fabian Rucker—alto saxophone
Jen Shyu—voice, er hu, percussion, piano
Bobby Previte—trap drums, guitar, autoharp, harmonica

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