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Bang On A Can All-Stars And SONUS Perform Julia Wolfe's Pulitzer Prize-Winning "Anthracite Fields"

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The music of legendary and influential American composer, Julia Wolfe, has been described by the Wall Street Journal as: "long inhabiting a terrain of its own, a place where classical forms are recharged by the repetitive patters of minimalism and the driving energy of rock."

She, along with composers Michael Gordon and David Lang, formed the Bang on a Can organization in 1987, which will be in residence at this year's Big Ears Festival, which takes place in various venues throughout downtown Knoxville, March 22-25.

A few years ago, Julia was commissioned to write a choral piece for the Mendelssohn Club in Philadelphia. What was created was "Anthracite Fields." A powerful, poignant, and socially provocative work that examines the coal mining industry in Pennsylvania.

In this interview, Julia speaks with Morning Concert host and producer, Melony Dodson, in fascinating detail about this piece and the process she took to compose it. "Anthracite Fields" will be performed by the Bang on a Can All-Stars, along with Nashville's choral ensemble SONUS on Saturday, March 24th, from 3:30-4:30 at the Mill and Mine. More information on this and the Big Ears Festival can be found at bigearsfestival.com

Melony calls the beautiful mountains of Boone, N.C., home, although she was born near Greensboro, N.C. There’s just something about those Blue Ridge Mountains that got in her blood and never left after she moved there to attend Appalachian State University (ASU). While at ASU, she majored in piano performance and music therapy and began to cultivate a love for accompanying and for collaborating with other musicians. This soon led her to earn a master’s degree in collaborative piano at the University of Tennessee, which she attended from 2006-2008.
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