Nov. 1, 1996
'The Nova Connection Revisited' brings together unique group of artists
Tickets still available for Nov. 26 event
Singer Patti Smith has added her name to the list of performers appearing Nov. 26 in "The Nova Convention Revisited: William S. Burroughs and the Arts," presented by the Lied Center and the Hall Center for the Humanities. Show time is 7:30 p.m.
Joining Smith will be longtime collaborator and guitarist Lenny Kaye and guitarist Oliver Ray. Other artists scheduled to appear include performance artist and writer Laurie Anderson; poet and AIDS activist John Giorno; poet Ed Sanders, founder of the Fugs, a poetic folk-rock group; composer Philip Glass; and musicians Deborah Harry and Chris Stein.
The original Nova Convention was held in New York City in 1978 and was organized by James Grauerholz, Giorno and Sylvere Lotringer. The event included performances by Anne Waldman, Sanders, Allen Ginsberg, John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Anderson, Smith, Glass and Frank Zappa.
Author William S. Burroughs is best known for his revolutionary novel Naked Lunch, published in Paris in 1959 and banned in the United States until its publication in New York in 1962. The cult standing of Burroughs, a member of the Beat Generation, has been strengthen by his literary and artistic statements and by the unconventional and sometimes marginal way he has lived. In 1981 Burroughs moved to Lawrence and continues to be Lawrence's most famous living writer.
Smith began her artistic career as an actress, playwright and poet before her poetry readings evolved into the rock performances that became her trademark. Her 1975 debut album, "Horses," combines a driving rock sound with the "outlaw poet" spiritual lyrics for which she is known. In 1979, Smith gave up her full-time career to become a housewife. Sixteen years later, in late 1995, she began performing again.
Composer Glass has done work for theatre, film, orchestra, opera, dance and chorus. His collaboration with Robert Wilson in Einstein on the Beach produced a seminal music-theatre work. Glass' most recent operatic projects include The Voyage, commissioned by the Metropolitan Opera in New York and premiered there in 1992, and Orphée, after the film by Cocteau, presented in 1993 by the American Repertory Theatre in association with the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Glass' theatricality and handling of orchestral color have made him a leader among late 20th-century composers.
Giorno is a New York-based experimental poet, publisher, singer, AIDS activist, founder of Dial-A-Poem, star of Andy Warhol's Sleep. He is described in his World Wide Web site as a "proto-punk gay Tibetan Buddhist poet." He believes in extending the boundaries of the live performance experience.
Anderson, a poet, writer, visual artist, sculptor and social commentator, is perhaps best known as a recording artist, one whose technical wizardry and live shows have earned her a reputation as one of the most eccentric performers in the business.
Deborah Harry with Chris Stein
Harry and Stein are both formerly of the band Blondie. From their first hit in 1978 to their breakup not long after the success of "Rapture," Blondie dominated the charts, scoring hits with "Call Me," "The Tide Is High" and "Heart of Glass." Since 1978, Harry has released five solo albums and has acted in several movies and television shows. Recently, she has been doing shows in the United States, Canada and Europe with the Jazz Passengers. She also has appeared in two movies and has issued four newly remixed Blondie singles. A Blondie tribute album is due soon, and she has been working with Stein on a new rock album.
Sanders, poet and author, is the founder of the Fugs, a poetic folk-rock group. His current work includes The New Amazing Grace, premiered November 1994 at St. Mark's Church in New York City.
Sanders has received a number of awards and fellowships, including a Guggenheim fellowship in poetry in 1983 and a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship in poetry in 1987.
For more than two years, he has produced "The Sander's Report," and "The Woodstock Evening News," weekly experimental televisions shows that combine poetry, environmental stances, political information and music.
All seats are reserved. Tickets are available at the KU box offices. Tickets are $30 and $25 for the general public and $22.50 and $17.50 for KU, Haskell Indian Nations University and K-12 students. For more information contact the Lied Center, 864-3469.
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