Sonic Illinois returns to UI

The+Kronos+Quartet+pictured+above+is+comprised+of+marquee+guest+artists+and+a+part+of+Sonic+Illinois.+
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Sonic Illinois returns to UI

The Kronos Quartet pictured above is comprised of marquee guest artists and a part of Sonic Illinois.

The Kronos Quartet pictured above is comprised of marquee guest artists and a part of Sonic Illinois.

Photo Courtesy of Bridget Lee-Calfas

The Kronos Quartet pictured above is comprised of marquee guest artists and a part of Sonic Illinois.

Photo Courtesy of Bridget Lee-Calfas

Photo Courtesy of Bridget Lee-Calfas

The Kronos Quartet pictured above is comprised of marquee guest artists and a part of Sonic Illinois.

By Zihan Wang, Staff Writer

The groups aim to explore and celebrate contemporary music and the spirit of the University of Illinois Festival of Contemporary Arts, a major cultural force in the mid-20th century, Krannert Center and the School of Music are working together to bring Sonic Illinois back to the University.

Sonic Illinois is a month-long series of concerts, featuring a combination of marquee artists brought in by Krannert Center, faculty and students from the School of Music.

Bridget Lee-Calfas, advertising and publicity director, said Sonic Illinois is an opportunity to think about the history and evolution of new music scenes, and what’s happening now in the contemporary music scene.

“I think some people have a really narrow view of what new music might be, and one of the beautiful things of this one-month celebration is that it will really show all of the different ways they manifest in the arts,” Lee-Calfas said.

Jeffrey Magee, professor and director of the School of Music, said Sonic Illinois is a collaboration of the School of Music and Krannert Center for Performing Arts.

“It really integrates the public engagement efforts of Krannert with the academic mission of the School of Music. It’s very exciting to have students, faculties and world-renowned artists in the same series,” Magee said.

Pinda Ho, doctoral student from the School of Music, said in an email he believes Sonic Illinois is very important. He said it is an opportunity to demonstrate the talents and activities of the School of Music, especially when performances are tied deeply to our learning and professions.

“One could see Sonic Illinois as an exhibition of the school’s traditional and innovational history that still lives and breathes till this very moment,” Ho said.

Magee said a lot of shows in the celebration of Sonic Illinois are extensions of classical music traditions, but always with some twists that combine the music and performing arts together in a show.

Cara Feng, alumna living in Urbana, said in an email she booked the ticket of “The Rape of Lucretia”, one of the shows in the Sonic Illinois series. She said she first learned about Sonic Illinois while scrolling through the Krannert website’s event calendar and realized that it is related to the University’s School of Music.

Feng said she has been to very few Sonic Illinois productions, therefore she hoped to learn more about the group and the opera itself after the show.

“There are some wild, exciting events going on, and there is some risk-taking in our concerts,” Magee said. “It really demonstrates what a music and research university should be doing, you know, pushing the boundaries.”

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