The opening night has set a lovely tempo for this year’s T:BA festival.
Victoria, Tom and Mark said a few words, and then the festivities were kicked off with a wonderfully amplified horde of guitars orchestrated by John King. When the piece began, I was expecting something of the Knitting Factory variety, that random Portlanders would be musically sparring against each other… but the music followed a strong cadence set by the composer. Something that the very diverse crowd attending a free public event could appreciate.
Kicking up the tempo, a handful of marching bands [sans March Fourth] drew the crowd to the Hawthorne bridge to await the slowly setting sun and the beginning of David Eckard’s somber call to the River. From the distance of the bridge above the waters, and the churning engine of a private yacht, it was difficult to appreciate the intricate and personal beauty typified in Eckard’s work. [Please take a look at his site, if you are not already familiar with his genius: He is an artist that you will want to spend more time in the future appreciating!] As David’s echoes to our collective societal conscious began to be heard upon the bridge, the Marching Bands unfortunately drew off the crowd to the awaiting liqueur; leaving about fifty of us on deck to appreciate the rest of his intent.
Within the WORKS, Music Population Orchestra created a scintillating flurry of sound; while the crowd prepared for ten days of excitement, or atleast waited for their name to be called out for the hamburger they ordered half an hour earlier… Luckily, SloMo [a Portland butoh troupe] was there to engage the crowd in the between space.
Mark stated that this year’s festival is dedicated to Portland, and tonight’s artistry certainly showed its Portland roots with strength and beauty!
Look forward to seeing you at all of the events in the next few days…
Fredrick Zal
Architect | Sculptor | Advocate