Unsound New York Presents Soft Power and Speaker Music at Knockdown Center on December 8th
Soft Power is a collaboration between experimental pop producer Felicita and traditional folk dancers from Śląsk Song and Dance Ensemble, the oldest and most renowned company of its kind in Poland. An Unsound commission, this show was originally part of the Unsound New York 2019 lineup, and had to be moved to this new date due to unforeseen reasons.
Taking place on Knockdown Center, Soft Power synthesizes traditional choreography and costume with new electronic music. The concept originally stemmed from Felicita’s childhood education in Polish dance, and explores folk culture, national identity, tourism, branding, illusion, and farce. Soft Power is intimately connected to Hej! the debut album by Felicita, released by PC Music in August 2018. The work has been presented at Unsound Kraków and the Barbican in London, among other places.
Opening is Speaker Music aka DeForrest Brown, Jr., who will present “a Black rhythm happening to fill a crease,” a new improvised composition expanding on the lush ensemble energy music found in his debut album Of Desire, Longing - released on Planet Mu on December 6th. Referencing free jazz trumpeter Eddie Gales’ culturally noteworthy 1969 album Black Rhythm Happening, Speaker Music probes further into the sonic narratives of African American expression towards a novel rhythmic and romantic abstraction of vibration and frequency.
DeForrest Brown, Jr. is also known to the Unsound audience through his talk at the Krakow festival this year entitled Assembling a Black Counter-Culture, which is related to a book he will publish in 2020 with Primary Information.
Tickets cost $10, and are available via Eventbrite.
Soft Power is organised in collaboration with the Adam Mickiewicz Institute as part of the Polska Music programme and POLSKA 100, the international cultural programme celebrating the centenary of Poland regaining independence. Financed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of the Republic of Poland as part of the multi-annual programme NIEPODLEGŁA 2017–2022.