Kate Simko (LIVE HD CINEMA PA),
DJ Masonic (Mason Bates),
Musicians from The Chicago Symphony Orchestra,
Benjamin Schwartz, Anne Patterson,
Justin Reed featuring Thomas Madeja (trumpet)
Searchl1te featuring Dominic Johnson (electric viola),
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Mead Composer-in-Residence Mason Bates (also known as DJ Masonic) joins forces with members of the CSO, conductor Benjamin Shwartz, director/designer Anne Patterson and members of the Chicago electronica community for MusicNOW Presents Mercury Soul.
Using the innovations of both modern stagecraft and club production, Mercury Soul re-imagines the classical music experience for a broad audience in extraordinary spaces, from clubs to warehouses to concert halls.
This fluid evening of electronica and classical music features performances by members of the CSO, interspersed with diverse musicians from the Chicago electronica scene: DJ Justin Reed of illmeasures with trumpeter Thomas Madeja; live electronics by Searchl1te with Dominic Johnson on electric viola; a DJ set from Striz of illmeasures; and featuring a special guest live cinema set courtesy of Chicago's Kate Simko.
Bringing CSO musicians to new spaces around Chicago is in keeping with Maestro Riccardo Muti’s vision to take classical music into the community. At Mercury Soul, the audience is given the same freedom to roam as at a rock show. In between DJ sets, classical performers appear scattered around the space, performing music from a variety of contemporary composers. Along with slowly shifting lighting, electro-acoustic interludes fusing classical ensembles and DJing guide the crowd from one musical space to another.
First performed in the Roter Salon at Berlin’s famed Volksbühne, Mercury Soul has brought crowds of more than 1,000 people to experience this unique, hybrid musical event in cities ranging from Miami (with the New World Symphony) to San Francisco (with
the San Francisco Symphony). Each show is completely redesigned for the space and the ensemble.