Music of Carla Kihlstedt and Phyllis Chen | ICElab on the MCA Stage

February 16, 2013 | 7:30pm
Museum of Contemporary Art
220 East Chicago Avenue
Chicago, IL 60611
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Working closely with ICE musicians, Carla Kihlstedt has created a song cycle entitled At Night We Walk in Circles and Are Consumed By Fire, based on dreams and their mirror on waking lives. Her Facebook group documents the collaborative development of this extraordinary piece and invites contributions of dreams and ideas from her fans. She is a violinist, composer, and bandleader of groups including Sleepytime Gorilla Museum.

Praised by the New York Times for her “delightful quirkiness matched with interpretive sensitivity,” pianist, performance artist, and ICElab 2011 composer Phyllis Chen has become a trailblazer in performing original multimedia compositions using toy pianos, electronics and video and works by prominent contemporary composers. Her evening-length ICElab cycle, Chimers, uses sounds, video and electronics to create landscapes that reflect on themes of the popular symbols of the present, and the power of nostalgia for things past.

ICE will premiere At Night We Walk in Circles and Are Consumed By Fire on January 26th at the Ecstatic Music Festival in New York City. Learn more about the January 26th concert.


Phyllis Chen: Chimers, for toy piano, flute, clarinet, piano, and violin (2011)
Carla Kihlstedt: At Night We Walk in Circles and Are Consumed by Fire, for flute, clarinet, bassoon, guitar, 2 violin, percussion, piano, harp (2012)

ICE’s 2012-13 MCA residency is made possible through generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, the Amphion Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation, the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and through a CityArts Program 2 Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs.

ICElab 2012 is made possible through lead support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, alongside generous funding from the Greenwall Foundation, the Creative Capital Multi-Arts Production (MAP) Fund, the National Endowment for the Arts, the French American Cultural Exchange, the New Essential Works Program of the Jerome Robbins Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, the Francis Goelet Charitable Trust, and public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Phyllis Chen’s Chimers was made possible through support from Andreas Waldburg-Wolfegg, in honor of Barbara Gundlach.

Carla Kihlstedt’s participation in ICElab is supported by the MAP Fund, a program of Creative Capital supported by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

From the Blog

  • Notes from Phyllis Chen on Chimers

    February 16, 2013

    Notes from Phyllis Chen on Chimers

    Glass Clouds We Have Known is an electro-acoustic audio/visual piece for bass clarinet, flute, nineteen mixing bowls, toy piano, electronics and video. The piece hopes to capture a dream-like, meditative state that explores curious timbres and images through found objects.

  • ICE at MCA: Carla’s Kaleidoscope of Dreams

    February 16, 2013

    ICE at MCA: Carla’s Kaleidoscope of Dreams

    ICE performed Carla Kihlstedt’s spellbinding kaleidoscope At Night We Walk in Circles and Are Consumed By Fire on Saturday, February 16, 2013, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. This 2012 ICElab commission was part of a double-bill that began with ICE-member Phyllis Chen’s 2011 ICElab works.

  • ICE Talk: Rebekah Heller and Carla Kihlstedt

    February 16, 2013

    ICE Talk: Rebekah Heller and Carla Kihlstedt

    ICE had the immense pleasure of collaborating with superstar, genre-defying songstress, composer, and violinist Carla Kihlstedt for the past several months. We presented her new song cycle, written for ICE, at Merkin Hall on January 26 as part of the Ecstatic Music Festival. I’m thrilled to be playing it again in Chicago on the MCA stage on February 15th.