The Hubble Cantata

May 19, 2017

Paola Prestini & Royce Vavrek featuring Nathan Gunn, Jessica Rivera, the Washington Chorus, the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Julian Wachner, ARUP, Mario Livio

The Hubble Cantata is a cosmic mystery set on earth and in the multiverse:

A husband searches for his missing wife, combing the symbols of her life…

The stars guide him to countless constellations, through endless galaxies;

She returns to her husband in the form of photographs taken by The Hubble Telescope.


Track List

1) Fistful of Stars (Intro)
2) Home Never
3) A Story Drawn With Feet
4) Night Nurses
5) Septuple Salchows
6) Dark Matter
7) The Rocking Chair
8) E=mc2
9) Eraser Howl
10) Supernovae
11) On Jupiter (A Mother Outlives Her Son)
12) Laughing, Sleeping, Living
13) Heart Pulls and Betelgeuse
14) The Multiverse
15) Aurora / Hubble's Death
16) Extrasolar Life
17) Data Hums
18) Fistful of Stars

The Hubble Cantata, composer Paola Prestini’s brilliant collaboration with librettist Royce Vavreck and the Hubble Space Telescope’s lead astrophysicist, Dr. Mario Livio. But in all other arenas, Hubble pushes its classical cosmic themes ever more upward than any orchestral work these ears have ear in a long time, upward and toward the stars. the success of this multi-disciplinary performance lies in its ability to exist as both high art and popular entertainment. And so The Hubble Cantata is a work that knows no parallel, pushing boundaries of technology and presentation that push our city’s relationship with multi-disciplinary performance further into uncharted territory.
“Luminously involving music”
“Hubble Cantata saw audience members explore the Orion Nebula while a new piece of music played – the latest in a series of experiments between VR technology and classical music”
“A brilliant collaboration. Prestini’s time spent perfecting 30-plus commissioned multidisciplinary works and serving as creative and executive director of Williamsburg’s National Sawdust have only further fortified her with the tact to balance all the voices, mixed media and technology that combine to make The Hubble Cantata such a spectacle…”
“The performance itself was full of magic and wonder. Space, of course, is silent: there is no audible music of the spheres. But, Prestini has written some astonishing musical passages that capture a sense of what it might be like to be set adrift in a universe without the limitations of space or time.”
"It was a thundering opus”
“Prestini’s music…vividly shimmering and raging with the emotional temperatures of characters as suggested in Vavrek’s libretto, and generally conjuring up an authentically cosmic atmosphere with its trembling strings, ethereal wind lines, and luminous glockenspiel.”
“Crescendos, beauty, drama…It astounded me, this feeling of floating above Earth, and tears began to emerge from my cardboard goggles.”
“Expansive-beyond-imagination images from the Hubble Space Telescope arrived in 360-degree virtual reality amid a new piece by Paola Prestini titled Hubble Cantata this month at Brooklyn’s Prospect Park… the resulting vistas proved the sky was anything but the limit.”
“Hubble Cantata … a work of extraordinary beauty.”
“The Hubble Cantata, is a more than a piece of music. It is a new kind of collaboration: a nexus of art and science.”
‘…the works ability to evoke sheer vastness of what lies beyond our experience.”
"The final section features Prestini at her best, as she conjures a frightening Matrix dystopia in which the human mind is converted into artificial intelligence. A mesmerizing haze of sound builds up, layering humming choir, whistling electronics and a rumbling, Ligeti-like cluster chord in the instrumental ensemble that slowly shifts and intensifies, punctuated by radio interceptions of static and a woman’s voice”

Album info

Release date:
May 19, 2017

The Hubble Cantata, composer Paola Prestini’s brilliant collaboration with librettist Royce Vavreck and the Hubble Space Telescope’s lead astrophysicist, Dr. Mario Livio. But in all other arenas, Hubble pushes its classical cosmic themes ever more upward than any orchestral work these ears have ear in a long time, upward and toward the stars. the success of this multi-disciplinary performance lies in its ability to exist as both high art and popular entertainment. And so The Hubble Cantata is a work that knows no parallel, pushing boundaries of technology and presentation that push our city’s relationship with multi-disciplinary performance further into uncharted territory.

Observer

“Luminously involving music”

The Los Angeles Times

“Hubble Cantata saw audience members explore the Orion Nebula while a new piece of music played – the latest in a series of experiments between VR technology and classical music”

The Guardian

“A brilliant collaboration. Prestini’s time spent perfecting 30-plus commissioned multidisciplinary works and serving as creative and executive director of Williamsburg’s National Sawdust have only further fortified her with the tact to balance all the voices, mixed media and technology that combine to make The Hubble Cantata such a spectacle…”

The Observer

“The performance itself was full of magic and wonder. Space, of course, is silent: there is no audible music of the spheres. But, Prestini has written some astonishing musical passages that capture a sense of what it might be like to be set adrift in a universe without the limitations of space or time.”

Feast of Music

"It was a thundering opus”

Hyperallergic

“Prestini’s music…vividly shimmering and raging with the emotional temperatures of characters as suggested in Vavrek’s libretto, and generally conjuring up an authentically cosmic atmosphere with its trembling strings, ethereal wind lines, and luminous glockenspiel.”

VAN Magazine

“Crescendos, beauty, drama…It astounded me, this feeling of floating above Earth, and tears began to emerge from my cardboard goggles.”

The New Yorker

“Expansive-beyond-imagination images from the Hubble Space Telescope arrived in 360-degree virtual reality amid a new piece by Paola Prestini titled Hubble Cantata this month at Brooklyn’s Prospect Park… the resulting vistas proved the sky was anything but the limit.”

The Philadelphia Inquirer

“Hubble Cantata … a work of extraordinary beauty.”

Classical TV

“The Hubble Cantata, is a more than a piece of music. It is a new kind of collaboration: a nexus of art and science.”

WQXR

‘…the works ability to evoke sheer vastness of what lies beyond our experience.”

The Los Angeles Times

"The final section features Prestini at her best, as she conjures a frightening Matrix dystopia in which the human mind is converted into artificial intelligence. A mesmerizing haze of sound builds up, layering humming choir, whistling electronics and a rumbling, Ligeti-like cluster chord in the instrumental ensemble that slowly shifts and intensifies, punctuated by radio interceptions of static and a woman’s voice”

Opera News

May 19, 2017

The Hubble Cantata

May 19, 2017

The Hubble Cantata

Paola Prestini & Royce Vavrek featuring Nathan Gunn, Jessica Rivera, the Washington Chorus, the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Julian Wachner, ARUP, Mario Livio

Press Quotes

October 12, 2017
‘…the works ability to evoke sheer vastness of what lies beyond our experience.”
May 15, 2017
“The Hubble Cantata, is a more than a piece of music. It is a new kind of collaboration: a nexus of art and science.”
November 1, 2013
“Hubble Cantata … a work of extraordinary beauty.”
August 28, 2016
“Expansive-beyond-imagination images from the Hubble Space Telescope arrived in 360-degree virtual reality amid a new piece by Paola Prestini titled Hubble Cantata this month at Brooklyn’s Prospect Park… the resulting vistas proved the sky was anything but the limit.”
August 8, 2016
“The performance itself was full of magic and wonder. Space, of course, is silent: there is no audible music of the spheres. But, Prestini has written some astonishing musical passages that capture a sense of what it might be like to be set adrift in a universe without the limitations of space or time.”
August 11, 2016
“Prestini’s music…vividly shimmering and raging with the emotional temperatures of characters as suggested in Vavrek’s libretto, and generally conjuring up an authentically cosmic atmosphere with its trembling strings, ethereal wind lines, and luminous glockenspiel.”
October 1, 2017
"The final section features Prestini at her best, as she conjures a frightening Matrix dystopia in which the human mind is converted into artificial intelligence. A mesmerizing haze of sound builds up, layering humming choir, whistling electronics and a rumbling, Ligeti-like cluster chord in the instrumental ensemble that slowly shifts and intensifies, punctuated by radio interceptions of static and a woman’s voice”
August 13, 2016
“Crescendos, beauty, drama…It astounded me, this feeling of floating above Earth, and tears began to emerge from my cardboard goggles.”
April 21, 2016
“Luminously involving music”
August 8, 2016
“A brilliant collaboration. Prestini’s time spent perfecting 30-plus commissioned multidisciplinary works and serving as creative and executive director of Williamsburg’s National Sawdust have only further fortified her with the tact to balance all the voices, mixed media and technology that combine to make The Hubble Cantata such a spectacle…”
August 8, 2016
“Hubble Cantata saw audience members explore the Orion Nebula while a new piece of music played – the latest in a series of experiments between VR technology and classical music”
August 8, 2016
The Hubble Cantata, composer Paola Prestini’s brilliant collaboration with librettist Royce Vavreck and the Hubble Space Telescope’s lead astrophysicist, Dr. Mario Livio. But in all other arenas, Hubble pushes its classical cosmic themes ever more upward than any orchestral work these ears have ear in a long time, upward and toward the stars. the success of this multi-disciplinary performance lies in its ability to exist as both high art and popular entertainment. And so The Hubble Cantata is a work that knows no parallel, pushing boundaries of technology and presentation that push our city’s relationship with multi-disciplinary performance further into uncharted territory.
August 10, 2016
"It was a thundering opus”