Fifth House Ensemble presents:
Black Violet Act 1: The Leagues of Despair
An Unprecedented Experience in Music, Art and Narrative
Story and Illustrations by Ezra Claytan Daniels
Experience narrative and art from this landmark live performance collaboration with music from Fifth House Ensemble's newly-released Black Violet album, available now on iTunes. Special features include the concert trailer, links to exclusive online content, and a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of Black Violet with Ezra Claytan Daniels.
About Black Violet:
'Twas the Year of Our Lorde, Two Thousand and Nine
On a brisk early autumn evening in downtown Chicago, boundary-pushing chamber group Fifth House Ensemble and acclaimed graphic novelist Ezra Claytan Daniels unveiled the first act of the mysterious collaboration that had each party bound diligently to their drawing tables, computers, and sheet music for months prior. To curious peers, BLACK VIOLET was a difficult thing to describe during those months. Part chamber concert, part graphic novel, part epic silent film, the project was one that stretched the limits of each form toward something wholly new and uncommonly ambitious.
The collaboration began with a uniquely compelling idea to create a visceral and accessible format through which an audience could connect in new ways with an otherwise traditional chamber concert. Fifth House recruited Daniels to help realize their vision, and he brought to the project the seed of a story inspired by the superstitious persecution of black cats during the last outbreak of bubonic plague in 17th century London.
Starting with a small library of potential pieces, Daniels worked closely with Fifth House not only to program the music for the concert series, but to create a cohesive emotional narrative using movements from disparate pieces culled from various periods, regions and schools. This would be the structure upon which Daniels would pen a narrative driven as much by his own creative whims as the emotional cues in the music; music, in fact, written sometimes centuries before he was even born.
6 months and countless man-hours later, on that cool autumn evening in the City of Big Shoulders, Fifth House Ensemble and Ezra Claytan Daniels premiered an unprecedented entertainment experience. Performing to a capacity audience in the historic Chicago Cultural Center, the music of Brahms, Piston, Villa Lobos, and others came to life in ways it never had before: A series of vibrant and intricately detailed graphic novel panels, timed precisely to the playing of the ensemble, painted the world of Violet, a posh young black cat living a life of pampered ignorance in the decimated London of 1665.
As the curtain closed on that performance, its creators knew the next 6 months would be no easier than the preceding, as they went straight to work at creating Acts II and III of Violet s adventure, which the Chicago Sun-Times would dub nothing less than a modern classic." But so does not end Violet s story, as Fifth House Ensemble continues to perform the concert series across the country, and creator Ezra Claytan Daniels has begun work on taking Violet s story to an exciting new level
A modern classic."
- Chicago Sun-Times
Be a trendsetter and catch this silent flick of sorts, about a housecat during the plague, with images by the graphic novelist Ezra Claytan Daniels set to music from the Fifth House Ensemble.
- Chicago Magazine
With Black Violet, Chicago s Fifth House Ensemble (5HE) reimagines the graphic novel in an original way.
- Time Out Chicago
Local narrative chamber-music ensemble Fifth House likes to take risks, and its latest production, Black Violet, a collaboration with graphic novelist Ezra Claytan Daniels, seems likely to reward audiences who do the same.
Chicago Sun-Times Our Town Blog
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Black Violet is a free software application from the Audio File Players subcategory, part of the Audio & Multimedia category.
The app is currently available in English and it was last updated on 2012-03-17. The program can be installed on iOS.
Black Violet (version 1.0) has a file size of 2.83 MB and is available for download from our website.
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