Mark Grey’s “Frankenstein Symphony,” a parable for the modern age

Posted on: April 27, 2016

“A few years ago, Mark Grey decided to reanimate ‘Frankenstein’ for contemporary audiences,” writes Georgia Rowe in Monday’s (4/25) San Jose Mercury News (California). Grey, in adapting the 1818 Mary Shelley novel, was struck by the “deep parallels to today’s high-tech world, and composed two new works—first an opera, then a symphony. The opera, ‘Frankenstein, won’t be performed until later this year [in Brussels]. But audiences will hear the West Coast premiere of Grey’s ‘Frankenstein Symphony’ on the Berkeley Symphony’s May 5 program at Zellerbach Hall … conducted by music director Joana Carneiro.” The work, a co-commission, was premiered in February by Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. “ ‘It’s the story of the created and the creator,’ said Grey…. ‘With today’s issues about germ warfare, gene splicing and genetically modified foods, we’re in a time when this story is still relevant. We’re following through to the end of the creation process, to the horror of what happens when you abandon these things.… Growing up in Silicon Valley, tech was never something obscure to me. Studying traditional classical music, I started to bind the two. I was writing orchestral music but bringing tech sounds into it.’ ”

Posted April 27, 2016