CalArts Performance Marathon at the Walt Disney Family Museum

Video: “Like Powder to the Light” by Steve Horowitz, from the Stations of the Breath CD.

There’s a Musicircus coming to The Walt Disney Family Museum tomorrow (Saturday, Jan. 28)—just without the elephants.

Instead, the halls of the museum will echo with strains of CalArtian music throughout the day, in a Family Fun event coordinated by the museum and the San Francisco Chapter of the CalArts Alumni Association.

The first part of the day (1:30-5:30 pm) is inspired by John Cage‘s Musicircus (1967), an invitation for performers to assemble and play together. It’s a “happening” with multiple performances occurring simultaneously for new and unusual configurations.

John Cage wrote about the piece:

I have not made detailed directions for Musicircus. You simply bring together under one roof as much music (as many musical groups and soloists) as practical under the circumstances. It should last longer than ordinary concerts, starting at 7 or 8 in the evening, and continuing, say, to midnight. Arrange performers on platforms or within roped-off areas. There must be plenty of space for the audience to walk around. If you have more groups than places, make a schedule: Group 1 in Piace A from 7-9:30;  Group 23 in Place A from 9:45-midnight, etc. There should be food on sale and drinks (as at a circus). Dancers and acrobats.

The lineup of more than 30 acts, including a number of alumni, faculty and students, joined by well-known Bay Area performers. Yamaha has donated a Disklavier Mark III MIDI grand piano for the day to enable both in-house and remote performances throughout the afternoon. On the program are works by David Rosenboom, dean of The Herb Alpert School of Music at CalArts, faculty members Vinny Golia, Michael Jon Fink, as well as Steve Horowitz (Music BFA 89), Kubilay Uner (Music MFA 91) and Stupid Man Suit, comprised of recent grads Mike Lockwood (Music MFA 11), Jake Rosenzweig (Music BFA 11) and Maxwell Gualtieri (Music BFA 11) and Matty Harris (Music MFA 10) and current music MFA student Ryan Parrish.

The afternoon performance marathon is free to the general public and designed to be kid-friendly, with film screenings from the CalArts and Disney archives, dance performances, educational workshops and hands-on fun during the day. The day wraps with a more adult gala concert from 6-9 pm.

CalArts Family Event
The Walt Disney Family Museum

104 Montgomery St., The Presidio of San Francisco
San Francisco

Saturday, Nov. 28
1:30-5:30 pm: John Cage’s Musicircus
6-9 pm: A CalArts Family Showcase Concert

The event performances are free to the public, but does not include museum gallery admission.

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  1. Lori Sutton // //

    It was a hit! Loved the performances and animation activities for children. Our kids had a blast making zoetrope animations and flipbooks! We also enjoyed the character animation shorts – I felt like I was back at CalArts again! Twelve years has gone by TOO fast. Thanks for putting on the event. We look forward to the next one.

    Here’s some pics from our visit…

    And hello to all the Experimental Animation students and professors! Miss seeing all of you.