October 14, 2004, 7pm
Hosted by Charles and Ray Eames, the evening musical event begins with a cocktail party. The party illuminates a universe in a setting that the Eameses might conjure. Outside, a dozen performers in white jumpsuits, “The Physicists,” move through the landscape. Here, then their, their flickering light is seen through the doors and windows of the Tang Museum. Charles and Ray welcome guests into the atrium. Many gather around a large table covered with a cloth Ray designed and printed. In her abstraction of the Tarantella Nebulae in the large Magellanic Cloud, stars hover in fiery explosions of gas and dust millions of miles beyond the milky way.
Special guests Edwin Hubble, Henrietta Leavitt and Rainer Maria Rilke arrive. For a few minutes the room is awash in conversation. The convivial chatter dies down as the sound of the cosmic microwave background pervades the party. The interviewer takes her place. One by one, the Eameses, Hubble, Henrietta Leavitt and Rilke step into the booth in the vestibule, respond to her questions, tell their stories.
Then, Charles and Ray invite their guests into the Wachenheim Gallery to listen to the pianists Richard Hihn and David Porter and percussionists Richard Albagi and Scott Stacey perform Music For a Summer Evening (Makrokosmos III). Written for two amplified pianos and percussion in five movements, George Crumb’s Makrokosmos III premeired at Swarthmore College in 1974.
The performance takes place in the round. The Eames-design bleachers with Ray’s silk screened cushions provide excellent views from anywhere in the gallery.