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Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble: Cellular Songs Concert

Saturday, July 7 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Tickets on sale starting April 25

Meredith Monk returns to the WKC with members of her acclaimed Vocal Ensemble!
Considered one of the most significant creator/performers of the past fifty years and a pioneer of “extended vocal technique,” “site-specific,” and “interdisciplinary” performance, Monk’s groundbreaking exploration of the voice as an instrument has expanded the boundaries of musical composition by creating landscapes of sound.

Cellular Songs is the newest in a series of music theater pieces created by Meredith Monk that explore our interdependent relationship with nature while seeking to evoke the ineffable. Following the celebrated On Behalf of Nature, which offered a liminal space questioning the precarious state of our global ecology, Cellular Songs turns attention inward to the very fabric of life itself. Joined by the women of her acclaimed Vocal Ensemble, Monk combines some of her most adventurous and daring music for the voice to date, with movement, theatrical characters and images, light, and video installation. The work, at once playful and contemplative, draws inspiration from such cellular activity as layering, replication, division, and mutation, and looks to underlying systems in nature that can serve as a prototype for human behavior in our tumultuous world. Conjuring cycles of birth and death throughout, Monk once again reminds us of her vitality as an artist who cuts to the core of experience, continuing to share the genius of her discovery and innovation.

Celebrated internationally, Monk’s work has been presented by the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Lincoln Center Festival, Houston Grand Opera, London’s Barbican Centre, and at major venues in countries from Brazil to Syria. She has received numerous honors including the prestigious MacArthur “Genius” Award, two Guggenheim Fellowships, three “Obies” (including an award for Sustained Achievement), and two “Bessie” awards for Sustained Creative Achievement. She was recently named an Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters by the Republic of France and 2012 Composer of the Year by Musical America. Monk is also one of NPR’s 50 Great Voices and recipient of a 2012 Doris Duke Artist Award and a 2011 Yoko Ono Lennon Courage Award for the Arts. In September 2015, Ms. Monk received the National Medal of Arts from President Obama.

In 1968 Monk founded The House, a company dedicated to an interdisciplinary approach to performance. In 1969, she was the first artist to use the rotunda of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum as a performance space. In 1978 she founded Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble to expand her musical textures and forms. More recently, she has created vital new repertoire for orchestra, chamber ensembles, and solo instruments, with commissions from Carnegie Hall, San Francisco Symphony, Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, and Los Angeles Master Chorale, among others.

Monk has more than a dozen recordings, mostly on the ECM label, including the 2008 Grammy-nominated Impermanence and highly acclaimed Songs of Ascension (2011) and Piano Songs (2014). Her award-winning films, including Ellis Island (1981) and her first feature, Book of Days (1988), have been seen throughout the world. Monk’s music can also be heard in films by directors Jean-Luc Godard and the Coen Brothers, among others.

“If Monk is seeking a place in the classical firmament, classical music has much to learn from her…She may loom even larger as the new century unfolds, and later generations will envy those who got to see her live”–The New Yorker.


Saturday, July 7
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Event Category:


West Kortright Centre
49 West Kortright Church Road
East Meredith, NY
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