A More Convenient Season: World Premiere

This September, Hope Takes the Stage.  Will You Join Us?

 

A More Convenient Season
World Premiere

featuring the Alabama Symphony Orchestra, four of Birmingham's most talented young soloists, an all-female chorus composed of members of the region's most beloved community choirs including Sixteenth Street Baptist Church Choir, Tuskegee University Choir, Mississippi State University Choir, & many others; an original film from award-winning director David Peterson, and an electronic music component created by innovative artist Philip White

 

Commissioned by architect and philanthropist Tom Blount, produced by the Alys Stephens Center. Sponsored by Betty and John McMahon, Friends of Cornerstone School and UAB Medicine.

On September 21, the ASC presents the largest commissioning project in the Center’s history with the premiere of a new work by composer Yotam Haber, commissioned to commemorate the Civil Rights Movement events of 1963. 

The work, titled "A More Convenient Season," derives its name from the text of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "Letter from Birmingham Jail."

"… who paternalistically feels he can set the timetable for another man's freedom; who lives by the myth of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait until a ‘more convenient season.’ Shallow understanding from people of goodwill is more frustrating than
absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection."

Like no performance we’ve experienced before, the work can best be described as “soaring.” Every word the chorus sings comes from FBI files and oral histories from the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute’s archives. The accompanying film is created from home movies and news footage of the time. The music, performed by an orchestra and a live electronic artist, is stirring and emotional. Yet all of the work’s voices come together for a message of beauty and hope. The piece exemplifies the power of the arts to tell our stories, connect us, and give us hope for the future.

The chorus sings, “How far is far?” … “How high is high?”

Guggenheim fellow and accomplished composer Yotam Haber found inspiration for those words through repeated visits to Birmingham over the last two years. The culmination of Haber's listening to oral histories, learning from foot soldiers, speaking with historians, and browsing through files and artifacts in the Birmingham Public Library Archives has resulted in this immense work. Choirmaster David Harris comments, “I can’t underscore enough how powerful this music and this project is. I believe it’s one of the most important choral pieces for at least a decade, or more, and that we will hear more about it for years  to come.”

In 2014, the Alys Stephens Center will also premiere this work on the West Coast in a performance featuring the CalArts Orchestra at REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theatre).


ArtPlay Composers Workshop: Monday, Sept. 16, 4pm, Jemison Concert Hall.

ArtPlay Meet the Artist School Show: Thursday, Sept. 19, 10am, Jemison Concert Hall.

 

Birmingham News article about A More Convenient Season

Performances

  • Saturday, September 21, 2013 · 8 PM
    A: $60.50 · B: $49.50 · C: $37.50 · tickets

Venue

  • Jemison Concert Hall

 

ABOUT THE COMPOSER
Yotam Haber was born in Holland and grew up in Israel, Nigeria, and Milwaukee - his music is informed by those places. He received the 2007-2008 Frederic A. Juilliard/Walter Damrosch Rome Prize and a 2005 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship. Recent commissions include two works for Pritzker Prize-winning architect Peter Zumthor; and new works for Gabriel Kahane, Alarm Will Sound; 2012 Bang on a Can Summer Festival; the Neuvocalsolisten Stuttgart and ensemble l’arsenale; JACK Quartet, Cantori New York, and the Berlin-based Quartet New Generation. He is currently collaborating with MacArthur Prize Fellow Anna Schuleit on a large-scale project of 104 piano pieces inspired by 104 paintings, drawn from stories by the Austrian writer Thomas Bernhard. Haber is the artistic director of MATA, the non-profit organization founded by Philip Glass, that has, since 1996, been dedicated to commissioning and presenting new works by young composers from around the world. His music is published by RAI Trade.

April 2014
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Vagina Monologues
Monday 3/31
Vagina Monologues 03/31/2014
$10.50, 15.50
SHOW 7:00pm
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Jabberwock 2014: The Blackout
Wednesday 4/02
Jabberwock 2014: The Blackout 04/02/2014
$5.12, 5.25, 7.25
SHOW 7:30pm
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The Devastatiing Divas of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc, Iota Lambda Chapter Present Jabberwock 2014: The Blackout. Special event showcasing talent like you have never seen before.

Bach's Concerto for Two Violins
Friday 4/04
Bach's Concerto for Two Violins 04/04/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Bach's Concerto for Two Violins
Saturday 4/05
Bach's Concerto for Two Violins 04/05/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Tuesday 4/08
UAB Choirs 04/08/2014
$5.00, 8.00
SHOW 7:00pm
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Urinetown: The Musical
Wednesday 4/09
Urinetown: The Musical 04/09/2014
$12.00, 15.00
SHOW 7:30pm
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Urinetown: The Musical. Music by Mark Hollmann, lyrics by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, and book by Greg Kotis.
Directed by Valerie Accetta
In a Gotham-like city a catastrophic twenty-year drought has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets to conserve water. The citizens must use pay-per-use amenities owned and operated by Urine Good Company, a malevolent corporation run by the corrupt Caldwell B. Cladwell. Amid the people, a hero decides he's had enough, and plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom! Winner of three Tony awards and one of the most uproariously funny musicals in recent years, Urinetown has been touted as reinvigorating the very notion of what a musical could be!

Jazz: The Essentials w/ Marcus Roberts Trio
Thursday 4/10
Jazz: The Essentials w/ Marcus Roberts Trio 04/10/2014
$38.50
SHOW 7:00pm
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Join us on this journey through the history and development of jazz. This innovative new program, developed by Alys Stephens Center Curates, will spend the next three years on this journey from the very beginning of this American art form through all of its branches with a focus on live performance, education, outreach, and foundation-building.
We begin with Ragtime and the Early New Orleans Sound. The first half of this evening is dedicated to surveying the exciting beginnings of Ragtime through the history, music, and artists - led educationally by UAB’s artist-in-residence Eric Ess...

Urinetown: The Musical
Thursday 4/10
Urinetown: The Musical 04/10/2014
$12.00, 15.00
SHOW 7:30pm
Get Tickets

Urinetown: The Musical. Music by Mark Hollmann, lyrics by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, and book by Greg Kotis.
Directed by Valerie Accetta
In a Gotham-like city a catastrophic twenty-year drought has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets to conserve water. The citizens must use pay-per-use amenities owned and operated by Urine Good Company, a malevolent corporation run by the corrupt Caldwell B. Cladwell. Amid the people, a hero decides he's had enough, and plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom! Winner of three Tony awards and one of the most uproariously funny musicals in recent years, Urinetown has been touted as reinvigorating the very notion of what a musical could be!

Urinetown: The Musical
Friday 4/11
Urinetown: The Musical 04/11/2014
$12.00, 15.00
SHOW 7:30pm
Get Tickets

Urinetown: The Musical. Music by Mark Hollmann, lyrics by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, and book by Greg Kotis.
Directed by Valerie Accetta
In a Gotham-like city a catastrophic twenty-year drought has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets to conserve water. The citizens must use pay-per-use amenities owned and operated by Urine Good Company, a malevolent corporation run by the corrupt Caldwell B. Cladwell. Amid the people, a hero decides he's had enough, and plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom! Winner of three Tony awards and one of the most uproariously funny musicals in recent years, Urinetown has been touted as reinvigorating the very notion of what a musical could be!

Ovation
Friday 4/11
Ovation 04/11/2014
$25.00, 35.00, 45.00
SHOW 7:30pm
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Ovation, a mixed repertory performance features one of the most celebrated excerpts in classical ballet, The Kingdom of the Shades from La Bayadere. Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo, set to the iconic score from Aaron Copland, rounds out the program. Considered an early example of an American ballet, Rodeo combines the exuberance of a Broadway musical with the discipline of classical ballet technique. The company is excited to return to the Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre for Ovation.

Classical Mystery Tour
Friday 4/11
Classical Mystery Tour 04/11/2014
$19.00, 29.00, 39.00, 49.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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John Prine with special guest Shelly Colvin
Friday 4/11
John Prine with special guest Shelly Colvin 04/11/2014
$50.50, 61.50, 69.50
SHOW 8:00pm
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Ovation
Saturday 4/12
Ovation 04/12/2014
$25.00, 35.00, 45.00
SHOW 2:30pm
Get Tickets

Ovation, a mixed repertory performance features one of the most celebrated excerpts in classical ballet, The Kingdom of the Shades from La Bayadere. Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo, set to the iconic score from Aaron Copland, rounds out the program. Considered an early example of an American ballet, Rodeo combines the exuberance of a Broadway musical with the discipline of classical ballet technique. The company is excited to return to the Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre for Ovation.

Ovation
Saturday 4/12
Ovation 04/12/2014
$25.00, 35.00, 45.00
SHOW 7:30pm
Get Tickets

Ovation, a mixed repertory performance features one of the most celebrated excerpts in classical ballet, The Kingdom of the Shades from La Bayadere. Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo, set to the iconic score from Aaron Copland, rounds out the program. Considered an early example of an American ballet, Rodeo combines the exuberance of a Broadway musical with the discipline of classical ballet technique. The company is excited to return to the Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre for Ovation.

Urinetown: The Musical
Saturday 4/12
Urinetown: The Musical 04/12/2014
$12.00, 15.00
SHOW 7:30pm
Get Tickets

Urinetown: The Musical. Music by Mark Hollmann, lyrics by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, and book by Greg Kotis.
Directed by Valerie Accetta
In a Gotham-like city a catastrophic twenty-year drought has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets to conserve water. The citizens must use pay-per-use amenities owned and operated by Urine Good Company, a malevolent corporation run by the corrupt Caldwell B. Cladwell. Amid the people, a hero decides he's had enough, and plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom! Winner of three Tony awards and one of the most uproariously funny musicals in recent years, Urinetown has been touted as reinvigorating the very notion of what a musical could be!

Urinetown: The Musical
Sunday 4/13
Urinetown: The Musical 04/13/2014
$12.00, 15.00
SHOW 2:00pm
Get Tickets

Urinetown: The Musical. Music by Mark Hollmann, lyrics by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, and book by Greg Kotis.
Directed by Valerie Accetta
In a Gotham-like city a catastrophic twenty-year drought has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets to conserve water. The citizens must use pay-per-use amenities owned and operated by Urine Good Company, a malevolent corporation run by the corrupt Caldwell B. Cladwell. Amid the people, a hero decides he's had enough, and plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom! Winner of three Tony awards and one of the most uproariously funny musicals in recent years, Urinetown has been touted as reinvigorating the very notion of what a musical could be!

Ovation
Sunday 4/13
Ovation 04/13/2014
$25.00, 35.00, 45.00
SHOW 2:30pm
Get Tickets

Ovation, a mixed repertory performance features one of the most celebrated excerpts in classical ballet, The Kingdom of the Shades from La Bayadere. Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo, set to the iconic score from Aaron Copland, rounds out the program. Considered an early example of an American ballet, Rodeo combines the exuberance of a Broadway musical with the discipline of classical ballet technique. The company is excited to return to the Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre for Ovation.

Monday 4/14
UAB Gospel Choir Spring Concert "Gospel Anthology III: Evolution 04/14/2014
$6.00, 7.00
SHOW 7:00pm
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Classical Masters: Mozart & Grieg
Friday 4/18
Classical Masters: Mozart & Grieg 04/18/2014
$13.00, 16.40, 17.25, 23.15, 24.50, 25.00, 32.00, 33.55, 33.75, 48.95
SHOW 7:30pm
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John Legend
Friday 4/18
John Legend 04/18/2014
$49.50, 59.50, 68.50
SHOW 8:00pm
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Coffee Concert: Mendelssohn's Reformation Symphony
Friday 4/25
Coffee Concert: Mendelssohn's Reformation Symphony 04/25/2014
$19.00, 27.00, 33.00
SHOW 11:00am
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Bruch's Scottish Fantasy
Friday 4/25
Bruch's Scottish Fantasy 04/25/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Bruch's Scottish Fantasy
Saturday 4/26
Bruch's Scottish Fantasy 04/26/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Sunday 4/27
ASYO Spring Concert 04/27/2014
$7.00, 10.00, 15.00
SHOW 5:00pm
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ArtPlay Parlor Series: Ji
Thursday 5/01
ArtPlay Parlor Series: Ji 05/01/2014
$20.00, 21.00, 30.40, 32.18, 37.50, 50.00
SHOW 7:00pm
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Hailed by the Chicago Tribune as “a gifted young pianist who is clearly going places,” 22-year-old Ji has a compelling musical presence and a career that began at the age of ten, when he was the youngest pianist to win the New York Philharmonic’s Young Artists Competition, and subsequently played at Avery Fisher Hall under Maestro Kurt Masur. In December, Ji makes his debut at New York’s Merkin Hall and the Kennedy Center before arriving in Birmingham for this ArtPlay debut.
Well-known in his native Korea, Ji performed Korea’s first outdoor classical concer...

Thursday 5/01
Contemporary Visions 05/01/2014
$12.00, 24.00, 32.00
SHOW 7:30pm
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Saint-Saens's Piano Concerto No. 2
Friday 5/02
Saint-Saens's Piano Concerto No. 2 05/02/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Saturday 5/03
Alabama Ballet: Tapper Showcase 05/03/2014
$15.00
SHOW 7:00pm
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Saint-Saens's Piano Concerto No. 2
Saturday 5/03
Saint-Saens's Piano Concerto No. 2 05/03/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Disney in Concert: Magical Music from the Movies
Saturday 5/10
Disney in Concert: Magical Music from the Movies 05/10/2014
$24.00, 39.50, 49.00, 62.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Mozart's Requiem
Friday 5/16
Mozart's Requiem 05/16/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Mozart's Requiem
Saturday 5/17
Mozart's Requiem 05/17/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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Baroque Trumpet
Tuesday 5/20
Baroque Trumpet 05/20/2014
$12.00, 24.00, 32.00
SHOW 7:30pm
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Coffee Concert: Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto
Friday 5/30
Coffee Concert: Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto 05/30/2014
$19.00, 27.00, 33.00
SHOW 11:00am
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Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto
Friday 5/30
Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto 05/30/2014
$24.00, 34.00, 49.00, 69.00
SHOW 8:00pm
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