Library of Congress commissions composer/performer pairs for virtual “Boccaccio Project”

Posted on: June 4, 2020

“The limbo of this extended quarantine has forced us all into a state of increased resourcefulness,” writes Michael Andor Brodeur in Friday’s (5/29) Washington Post. “Take David Plylar, senior concert producer in the music division at the Library of Congress…. When he was in school studying music composition, he read ‘The Decameron,’ 14-century author Giovanni Boccaccio’s masterful collection of 100 stories as told by 10 acquaintances isolating from the bleakest stretch of the plague…. ‘I always wanted to write a piece about it,’ … Plylar says…. Plylar assembled 10 pairs of composers and performers to collaborate remotely on short solo compositions … that he’s calling the ‘The Boccaccio Project.’ The pieces will be recorded and premiered on the LOC website over 10 days starting June 15…. The New York-based pianist Jenny Lin is collaborating with California composer Cliff Eidelman, and New York composer Damien Sneed is paired with pianist Jeremy Jordan…. Composer Niloufar Nourbakhsh’s piece for York-Based PUBLIQuartet violinist Jannina Norpoth, ‘A Shared Solitary,’ incorporates field recordings of the city … as well as a delay system she created in the programming language Max…. ‘I’m amazed to see how adaptable these musicians are to the circumstances in which they find themselves,’ Plylar says.”