Musical quintet Mélomanie prides itself on creating what they coin “provocative pairings” in their music and partnerships. This month is no different (yet very different), as they celebrate a first-time collaboration with phenomenal spoken-word duo Nnamdi Chukwuocha and Albert Mills, known as the Twin Poets and Delaware’s current Poets Laureate.
In a program entitled United Sounds of America, two performances — Saturday, April 7, at 4:00pm and Sunday, April 8, at 2:00pm — will be presented at The Delaware Contemporary, completing this mash-up of artistic genres. Guest artist Jonathan Whitney will join them on percussion.
The Twin Poets are thrilled at the prospect of this new artistic endeavor. “We’re honored to share the stage with Mélomanie,” Chukwuocha and Mills say.“Through music and spoken-word, we’ll depict the challenges, hopes and aspirations of our great nation. Throughout America’s proud history, the most significant moments have always been when we stood united, demonstrating our true strength. In response to the chaotic divisiveness spreading throughout our country and world, this performance will ‘build a wall’ of love and empowerment, highlighting the transformative power of the arts.”
“I deeply admire the work of the Twin Poets,” says Mélomanie Artistic Director Tracy Richardson. “Their words and performances articulate the human situations of our time and the human condition of any time, contemporary or ancient.”
Mélomanie asked the Twin Poets for the opportunity to combine their respective art forms and offer a new experience to audiences. “We’re continuing in the earliest traditions of the union of poetry and music,” says Richardson.
Richardson says audiences can expect new poetry and favorite past works from the Twin Poets as well as new and favorite music from Mélomanie. For the performance, the Twin Poets have created a poem reflective of the event title, United Sounds of America.
The ensemble and duo will perform together and separately during the program, with composer Mark Hagerty creating and arranging music to accompany the Twin Poets. Mélomanie will perform contemporary regional composer Robert Maggio’s Aegean Airs and German Baroque master Georg Philipp Telemanns’ Chaconne.
Tickets are $25, $15 for Delaware Contemporary members and students 16 and older. Those up to age 15 are admitted free. Advance purchase is recommended at melomanie.org.