Voices of Change To Join Musica Nova
In Multi-Media Event May 1 at UTD

Evening Will Feature World Premiere of The Dot and The Line
Set to Original Musical Score by Robert Xavier Rodriguez

RICHARDSON, Texas (April 8, 2005) – The University of Texas at Dallas’ classical season finale will combine the  Musica Nova and Voices of Change ensembles in a multi-media performance, An Evening of Words and Music, on Sunday, May 1 at 7:30 p.m. in the University Theatre.  An Evening of Words and Music will integrate music, the spoken word, visual images and dance. 

The featured work will be the world première of The Dot and the Line set to an original score by Robert Xavier Rodríguez and narrated by Fred Curchack.   Also on the program will be The Story of Ferdinand by Alan Ridout, Sports et divertissements by Erik Satie and Rodríguez' The Food of Love, based on food texts by Shakespeare .   In addition to Curchack, other soloists during the concert will include violinist Maria Schleuning, pianist Jeff Lankov, narrator Pierrette LaCour and conductor Lawrence Loh.

Photo, Robert Xavier Rodríguez
Robert Xavier Rodríguez

The Dot and the Line (2004), subtitled A Romance in Lower Mathematics for actor, visual images, and chamber ensemble,  was commissioned by the Voices of Change ensemble with assistance from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Kraft Foundation, The Eugene McDermott Foundation, Robert L. Hull and Myra Barker Hull, Don and Norma Stone and UTD’s School of Arts and Humanities.  The work is based on Norton Juster’s 1963 illustrated book of the same title. Rodríguez has previously written A Colorful Symphony (1987) for narrator and orchestra, based on a chapter from Juster’s best-known work, The Phantom Tollbooth (1961).

The text of The Dot and the Line concerns “a sensible straight Line” who is “hopelessly in love” with a Dot. The Dot, however, “only has eyes for a wild and unkempt Squiggle.” Eventually, the Line learns to bend in new and dazzling ways and, in doing so, wins the Dot over.

Rodríguez’s musical version is the first multi-media treatment of The Dot and the Line since the Academy-Award-winning animated short of 1965.

UTD's Musica Nova ensemble, which is directed by Rodríguez, performs music for small ensembles, plus multi-media and theater works of all periods. UTD students and faculty join professional musicians and members of the community. Musica Nova guest artists have included members of the Dallas Symphony and Dallas Opera Orchestra and singers from the New York City Opera and Metropolitan Opera. Music for past Musica Nova concerts has ranged from Medieval and Renaissance dances and motets to standard repertoire to experimental mixed-media works written for and/or developed by the ensemble. Concerts have included an evening of jigs, an evening of tangos, French cabaret and mariachi songs, chamber opera, ballet and a fully staged commedia dell'arte pantomime.

The Voices of Change ensemble, directed by Shields-Collins Bray, is one of the pioneer professional chamber music ensembles in America dedicated to the performance of contemporary music. Performers include members of the Dallas Symphony and other distinguished artists, including a regular series of guest composers. Voices of Change has made numerous recordings, has performed for enthusiastic audiences of all ages and has toured throughout the world. In 1999, the ensemble’s recording, Voces Americanas, which included Rodríguez' Les Niais Amoureux, was nominated for the prestigious Grammy award.

Tickets for the concert are $20 for general admission and free to UTD students with a valid identification. UTD ticket office hours are from 2 to 5 p.m. Mondays to Fridays and at the door one hour prior to show time. To purchase tickets using Visa, MasterCard or Discover, please call 972-883-2972. 

More information about the concert can be found at http://ah.utdallas.edu/season0405/musicanovaspring.htm

For information about the many musical, arts, theatre, dance and other performances and exhibitions held throughout the year at UTD, please call 972-UTD-ARTS (972-883-2787), e-mail [email protected], or visit the School of Arts and Humanities’ Web site at http://ah.utdallas.edu/. Persons with disabilities needing special accommodations may call 972-883-2982, Texas Relay Operator: 1-800-RELAYVV.

About Voices of Change

Voices of Change is the Southwest's only professional chamber music ensemble dedicated to the performance of music of our time. In its 30th successful year, VOC fills a unique niche in the music world by performing small ensemble works by 20th century and 21st century composers, encouraging and preserving the impulse of creativity and imagination . Voices of Change has consistently earned national and international recognition and awards both for the high caliber of its performances and for its diverse repertoire, and is also dedicated to commissioning new works and recording them. For additional information, please visit www.voicesofchange.org

About UTD

The University of Texas at Dallas, located at the convergence of Richardson, Plano and Dallas in the heart of the complex of major multinational technology corporations known as the Telecom Corridor, enrolls more than 14,000 students. The school’s freshman class traditionally stands at the forefront of Texas state universities in terms of average SAT scores. The university offers a broad assortment of bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs. For additional information about UTD, please visit the university’s web site at www.utdallas.edu.