At the end of last summer, the New York Philharmonic in August took a turn for scrapping.
With its theater closed by the pandemic, the orchestra rented a Ford F-250 pickup truck, wrapped it in red, white and black, and toured town for eight weekends for short chamber events. and impromptu.
The Philharmonic announced on Friday that it would bring back the NY Phil Bandwagon concept this spring, but for a shorter period and in a more stable environment – reflecting glimmers of a transition to the pitfalls of the concert hall.
Bandwagon 2 will trade in the van for a 20-foot shipping container on top of a semi-truck, which will visit four parks around New York City for weekend residences through May. (The full schedule will be available at nyphil.org/bandwagon.) Deceived with a fold-out stage, video wall, and built-in sound and lighting, the setup is now more striking and theatrical.
Its offerings will also go beyond classical and new chamber music in more diverse and diverse, cross-genre collaborations with six community arts organizations, including A Better Jamaica in Queens and El Puente in Brooklyn.
“Bandwagon 2 allows us to focus the voices of our partners and use the resources of the Philharmonic to amplify the work of our collaborators,” said Deborah Borda, general manager of the orchestra, in a statement. Countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo, who helped create the Bandwagon last year, will have another stint as the program’s producer.
In Domino Park in Brooklyn, songwriter and singer Juana Luna and dancer Elisa Toro Franky, both associated with El Puente, will develop song and dance pieces with a quartet of philharmonic string musicians.
Domino Park will also host the premiere of Mark Grey’s chamber opera “Birds in the Moon”, on migration and mother-daughter relationships, with a libretto by Júlia Canosa i Serra and directed by Elkhanah Pulitzer; a philharmonic string quartet will be joined for the performance of soprano Maria Elena Altany and actor Austin Spangler.
Angélica Negrón’s “Sembrar,” to be performed at Father Gigante Plaza in the Bronx, will feature its composer on electronics with string musicians from the Philharmonic and Bronx Arts Ensemble. Also at Father Gigante Plaza, the orchestra’s deputy lead timpanist, Kyle Zerna, will be DJing with Grand Wizzard Theodore.
Soprano Laquita Mitchell will perform with the Harlem Chamber Players at Marcus Garvey Park in Manhattan and with a Philharmonic String Quartet at St. Albans Park in Queens. New works by participants in the Orchestra’s Very Young Composers Program will be presented each week.
The Bandwagon was among the Philharmonic Orchestra’s scattered activities during the pandemic forced closure of David Geffen Hall, his home at Lincoln Center; in February, the orchestra also unveiled the NYPhil + subscription streaming service. It is taking advantage of the power shutdown thanks to its long-delayed renovation of Geffen, which is now due to reopen in fall 2022, a year and a half ahead of forecast.
On April 14, exactly 400 days after its last meeting indoors to perform in front of an audience, the Philharmonic returned to the live show for a two-night adventure at The Shed. The next day, the orchestra announced its return to Bravo! Vail Music Festival in Colorado in July, and he also expects to host his beloved summer concert series in New York City parks. Next season, while Geffen remains closed, performances are scheduled at Lincoln Center facilities like Alice Tully Hall and the Rose Theater, as well as Carnegie Hall and other spaces.