Met Museum, commissioning music around art exhibits

Posted on: April 6, 2017

In connection with its “Age of Empires: Chinese Art of the Qin and Han dynasties (221 B.C.-A.D. 220)” exhibit, New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art last weekend presented the world premiere of Tan Dun’s Symphony of Colors: Terracotta, writes Charles Passy in Friday’s (3/31) Wall Street Journal (subscription required). “For the Met commission, Mr. Dun focused on what arguably is the exhibition’s biggest draw: The sculptures of army warriors, created in terra-cotta, that were buried with Qin Shi Huang, China’s first emperor. Mr. Dun … [created] a film, showing the statues in their original China location, [to] accompany the score. Mr. Dun also incorporated percussion instruments made from terracotta into his 35-minute piece to connect the music with the art.” The Met program featured the Juilliard Orchestra conducted by the composer, and included Dun’s Triple Concerto: Hero for violin, violoncello, piano, and orchestra. “For the Met, expanding upon the art it showcases through music and other programming has become an increasingly important strategy.… This past December, the Met hosted the world premiere of a choral work it commissioned from the New York composer Mohammed Fairouz, tied to its ‘Jerusalem 1000-1400: Every People Under Heaven’ exhibition.”

Posted April 6, 2017