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roses are blue

 

ramon & jessica sings gertrude stein

September 11 and 12, 2015


 
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ramon & Jessica

 

Since 2002, Ramon & Jessica have been beloved by both adults and children for their highly original songs, intricate harmonies, and uniquely blended vocals. After their 2004 self-titled debut as an experimental folk duo, R&J briefly expanded into an improvising ensemble, then  released a second album Handyman’s Honeymoon, in 2006, followed by 2012’s Fly South on PortoFranco Records. In their recent work, they have embarked on a deeper investigation of a cappella music, creating virtuosic interlocking vocal duets. Their 2012 collaboration with choreographer Amy Siewart, at ODC Theater in San Francisco, received a Meet The Composer award and an Isadora Duncan Award nomination.

 

ramon & jessica are

jesse olsen bay and dina maccabee

 

 
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r&j Performs Roses are Blue

with special guest singers Caitlin Austin, Lorin Benedict, Michael Mellender, and Ron Shalom

and narrator Judy Grahn

 

Friday, September 11, 8pm

Subterranean Art House, 2179 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704,

(510) 508-3492 / subterraneanarthouse.org 

 

Saturday, September 12, 7:30pm

Red Poppy Art House, 2698 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA

(415) 826-2402 / redpoppyarthouse.org

 

 

 

Dina Maccabee and Jesse Olsen Bay, known as Ramon & Jessica, will present a new work, Roses are Blue, a suite for vocal ensemble inspired by experimental author Gertrude Stein’s 1938 children’s book The World is Round. The song cycle explores Stein’s playful language and imagery, using lyrical melodies and complex rhythms to tell the story of the young adventurer Rose and her fellow characters, from Pepe the dog to her irreverent cousin Willie and his pet lion.

 

Performances will feature the voices of Ramon & Jessica, with an all-star ensemble, featuring Kitka alum Caitlin Austin; pioneering jazz vocalist Lorin Benedict; Sleepytime Gorilla Museum alum Michael Mellender; and composer, and multi-instrumentalist and time artist Ron Shalom. Esteemed poet Judy Grahn, a pioneer of feminist writing who has published a book on Gertrude Stein, will narrate.

 

Funded by San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music’s Musical Grant Program, Roses are Blue continues R&J’s decade-long juxtaposition of “art,” “folk,” and “popular” music. Using Stein’s story as a springboard, this new work challenges the conventions of a cappella music, in intimate all-ages venues.