This season at New England Conservatory, 30+ concerts demonstrate just how vital music is to human struggle, and what revolution in artistic expression sounds like. Programs range from roots music to Beethoven, fight songs to anti-war anthems. Join our year-long exploration of how music speaks truth to power!

Pianist/composer/improviser Ran Blake and coproducer Aaron Hartley bring an extra dimension to Hallowe'en with specimens of that most haunting genre, film noir. Now an annual tradition, this year's concert is based on one of the best-known specimens of the genre: Otto Preminger's 1944 Laura, as well as another Preminger title—Whirlpool.

One of Hollywood's most notorious rebels, Preminger constantly defied censorship by treating such themes as drug addiction and rape. He worked with predominantly black casts, jazz scores, and blacklisted screenwriters at times when all of these went against the unwritten rules of Hollywood.

What do these films have in common? Both are haunted by Gene Tierney in a starring role, and were made in the prime noir era of the mid-to-late 1940s. Tierney's often tragic life and battles with mental illness cast a retrospective shadow over the nuanced performances from the prime of her career that will be seen tonight when students and faculty of NEC's Contemporary Improvisation department perform along with scenes from these films.

NEC's musicians will create a real-time original score as they respond to the drama through improvisations, recompositions, and reinterpretations of David Raksin's original music, and Edward Powell and Arthur Morton's orchestrations.

Members of Aaron Hartley’s Storyboard Noir Ensemble play a key role in this annual Film Noir concert. Each fall, ensemble members engage in a rich exploration of creating music for film, through aural study of original scores, development of student compositions in tandem with traditional repertoire, and collective improvisation.

Whirlpool (1949)

Introduction
Prudence Steiner

I. Tina’s Party
Marnen Laibow-Koser, violin
Abby Swidler, viola
Katie McShane, cello
Kirsten Lamb, bass
Anna Patton, clarinet
Leo Hardman-Hill, trumpet
Alexandra Greenwald, piano
Rebecca Sullivan, composer/conductor

II. Doctor’s Visit over Cocktails
Ilya Portnov, harmonica
Sonny Lalchandani, sitar

III. The Recordings
Hui Weng, guzheng
Sofia Kriger, voice
Taekjoon Kim, flute
Marnen Laibow-Koser, violin
Abby Swidler, viola
Katie McShane, cello
Kirsten Lamb, bass
Leo Hardman-Hill, arranger

IV. Dr. Sutton, Ann Is a Murderer
Shih-Kai Lin, violin
Jay Kent, guitar
Andria Nicodemou, vibraphone, gong, percussion

V. Hypnosis
Eckbert Sierra, bass clarinet, saxophone
Will Greene, guitar
Brad Barrett, bass
Jeremy Barnett, vibraphone, percussion

VI. I Can Move without Pain
Kody Glazer, vocals, trombone, composer
Sofia Kriger, voice
Leo Hardman-Hill, trumpet
Brad Barrett, bass
Sam Fribush, piano
Jeremy Barnett, cajon, percussion

VII. 1400 Canyon Street
Yasmine Azaiez, violin
Cory Pesaturo, accordion
Peter Godart, piano

Laura (1944)

Introduction
Dorothy Clark

Video
Tony Woodcock

I. Waldo Lydecker
Ilya Portnov, harmonica
Hui Weng, guzheng
Patrick M'Gonigle, Ben Andrews, Marnen Laibow-Koser, Pilar Zorro, violin
Eden MacAdam-Somer, viola
Brian McAnally, bass
Jinhee Jung, flute
Eckbert Sierra, saxophone
Hyungyu Kang, piano
Yaniv Yacoby, marimba
Jeremy Barnett, drums
Eden MacAdam-Somer, director

II. Mark McPherson

Patrick M'Gonigle, Ben Andrews, Marnen Laibow-Koser, violin
Brian McAnally, bass
Jinhee Jung, flute
Jeremy Barnett, chimes, vibraphone, composer

III. Shelby Carpenter
Shih-Kai Lin, violin
Anna Patton, clarinet
Brad Barrett, bass
Jeremy Barnett, vibraphone, percussion

IV. Suspect
Anthony Coleman, piano

V. Falling in Love with a Ghost
recording by Jeanne Lee and Ran Blake
Eden MacAdam-Somer, vocals, violin
Anthony Coleman, piano

VI. This Is No Time for Secrets
Bert Seager, Isaac Wilson, piano

VII. Bye-Bye, Waldo
Eleni Odoni, vocals
Dylan McKinstry, mandolin
Alexandra Greenwald, piano

VIII. Clock Chimes
Nedelka Prescod, voice
Nima Mohammadi, kemenche
Eden MacAdam-Somer, violin
Jeremy Barnett, chimes

Date: November 5, 2013 - 8:00:PM
Price: Free
Location: NEC’s Jordan Hall

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NEC's FREE concerts do not require a ticket, unless stated in concert listing.
Unreserved seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Doors open 30 minutes prior to the concert's start time.


IF YOU HAVE TO ASK WHAT JAZZ IS, YOU'LL NEVER KNOW. LOUIS ARMSTRONG