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Venue:
Bartram's Garden5400 Lindbergh Boulevard
Philadelphia, PA Map
https://bartramsgarden.org
Price: Free Admission
Sunday, September 20, 2015 - 6:00pm - 10:00pm

Moon Garden

with Steve Coleman & Five Elements

Steve Coleman, alto saxophone
Jonathan Finlayson, trumpet
Miles Okazaki, el. guitar
Anthony Tidd, el. bass
Sean Rickman, drums

 How can such A little remote body as ye moon in such A little time move ye far greater part of ye surface of our much greater Globe; I should rather think that our earth and waters hath much greater influence upon ye moon than it has upon us.
-John Bartram to Linnaeus, ca. October 1773

Ars Nova Workshop (ANW) and Bartram’s Garden, the birthplace of American botany, is pleased to announce MOON GARDEN, a free evening-length festival featuring the return of saxophonist-composer Steve Coleman to Bartram’s Garden on Sunday, September 20 beginning at 6pm. The event is free. Steve Coleman & Five Elements perform at 7pm with a pre-concert discussion between Coleman and acclaimed jazz critic John Szwed at 6pm.

In anticipation of the autumn equinox and in celebration of his 59th birthday, and following two sold-out shows on the spring equinox at Batram’s (in the oldest barn in Philadelphia County), Coleman—whose compositions incorporate a lifetime of research into cycles found in nature and astronomy—will perform under the night sky. Moon Garden combines Coleman’s music with a variety of other fun galactic activity:

+ Kayak and rowboat after sunset on the gentle waters of the tidal Schuylkill
+ Take home the plants and the knowledge to grow a moon garden for moths and other nighttime pollinators
+ Entomologist Dan Duran will be on hand for a rare peek at the nocturnal insects lured into our black light trap
+ Free guided night time tour of the garden
+ Free Moon Pie ice cream from Little Baby’s Ice Cream
+ Purchase a variety of delicious foods and beverages from vendors

The New York Times, who recently reported on this unique ANW engagement, described Coleman as, “one of the most rigorously conceptual thinkers in improvised music.” Coleman is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, a MacArthur Fellowship, and the Doris Duke Performing Artist Award. The performance this Sunday, falling a week before a lunar eclipse, serves to celebrate Coleman’s connection to nature and the way his compositions draw on nature, metaphysics, and sciences, integrating patterns derived from the cycles and relationships of the planets in our solar system. Coleman has often stated his desire “to be able to look at a mountain and literally play the mountain and to look at the flight pattern of a bee, the flight pattern of a bird, and play that. Or have that directly influence my music, so almost be able to look at nature as one big gesture.” To hear him play in Bartram’s Garden, the oldest botanic garden in North America, is a chance to see that desire realized.

About Steve Coleman

2014 was a remarkable year for alto saxophonist and composer Steve Coleman. Already acclaimed in jazz circles, he won wider recognition as the recipient of three prestigious awards: a MacArthur Fellowship, Guggenheim Fellowship and Doris Duke Performing Artist Award. This comes at a time when Coleman is at his creative peak, incorporating a lifetime of learning in African diasporic culture, ancient religions, metaphysics, Eastern philosophy and patterns found in nature into his musical methods. His influence among young artists, particularly in his approach to rhythm and his willingness to look beyond music for sources of inspiration, has never been stronger.

For a quarter century Coleman has been known as the key proponent of M-Base, a musical and philosophical movement that incorporates elements from the folkloric music of the African diaspora fused with musical ideas influenced by ancient metaphysical concepts and patterns found in nature. He has conducted extensive research trips to Cuba, Ghana, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Senegal, Algeria, Ivory Coast and Tunisia to collaborate and learn from musicians from different cultures. Pianist and composer Vijay Iyer said in an article in The Wall Street Journal: “It’s hard to overstate Steve’s influence. He’s affected more than one generation, as much as anyone since John Coltrane.”"

Coleman has often stated his desire “to be able to look at a mountain and literally play the mountain“ and “to look at the flight pattern of a bee, the flight pattern of a bird, and play that.  Or have that directly influence my music, so almost be able to look at nature as one big gesture.”