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Three weekends of public events have been planned to introduce EMPAC to the campus community, neighbors from Troy and surrounding areas, and the world. Though some events are already filled, there are a limited number of additional seats available for the campus community. For additional details, contact your vice president or dean. Events are subject to change; for the latest schedule and ticketing information, visit


10 a.m.
Presidential Colloquy: “Photons, Sound Waves, and Data Bytes: Creativity at the Nexus of Science, Technology, Media and the Arts”

EMPAC Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony


10 a.m.
Lecture by architect Sir Nicholas Grimshaw, with acoustician Larry Kierkegaard, and theater designer Joshua Dachs, on the creation of the EMPAC building

12 p.m.
Per Tengstrand “2 Hands, 3 Pianos”: Solo piano recital by the Swedish piano virtuoso. For this exciting solo performance, Tengstrand will perform works specifically chosen for three of EMPAC’s grand pianos.

2 p.m.
Multimedia Performance “louder,” by Norwegian artists Verdensteatret (additional performances at 5 and 8 p.m.). Combining robotics, video, sound, music, shadow play, object theater, and new technology, “louder” is a performance inspired by travels in the Mekong Delta created by Verdensteatret, a Norwegian company of artists from a wide range of arts disciplines.

Multimedia performance “Voyage,” by Japanese collective dumb type (additional performance at 10 p.m.). dumb type, the Japanese performance collective, brings together artists from a variety of fields, including theater, dance, video, and music, to create performances and installations that move between and among all of these disciplines. “Voyage” is a multimedia performance that examines the uncertainty and dislocation of the modern world through a combination of intense sound, movement, and projected images.

3:30 p.m.
Premiere screening of the four DANCE MOViES Commissions:
Nora directed by Alla Kovgan and David Hinton, choreographed by Nora Chipaumire with Souleymane Badolo, soundscore by Thomas Mapfumo, cinematography by Mkrtich Malkhasyan, produced by Joan Frosch (USA/UK/Zimbabwe/Mozambique)
PH Propriedad Horizontal created by David Farias, Carla Schillagi and Maria Fernanda Vallejos (Argentina)
Veterans directed/choreographed by Victoria Marks, photography/ editing/direction by Margaret Williams (USA/UK)
Kino-Eye directed by Joby Emmons, choreographed by Elena Demyanenko (USA)

7:30 p.m.
Inaugural Concert — Concert Hall. A one-of-a-kind concert — presented as a continuous “sonic event”— featuring performances by the Albany Symphony Orchestra with conductor David Alan Miller, known for its pioneering advocacy of American music; the International Contemporary Ensemble, a top chamber group from Chicago and New York; the Vox Vocal Ensemble, with director George Steel, acclaimed specialists in early and contemporary music; and Per Tengstrand, the Swedish piano virtuoso.

11 p.m.
“Open Late” with Madlib, Juiceboxxx, J.Rocc, and lmnopf. Starting at 11 p.m. and continuing into the wee hours, dance and hang out under the 360-degree screen with live projections and the encyclopedic beats of Madlib and special guests.

All-day events include:
Exhibitions on the architecture and construction of EMPAC, associated research projects, and a chronology of EMPAC productions.

The Wooster Group’s installation “THERE IS STILL TIME..BROTHER,” a new interactive 360-degree film from the influential New York City theater company commissioned by EMPAC for the opening.

“Hybrid Space and the Panoramic Screen,” presented by Workspace Unlimited, a Belgian media art duo in the 360-degree panoramic screen, of their productions where art, architecture, and digital technologies converge.

“In The Flesh,” an intimate 3-D video installation by Billy Cowie for four viewers at a time.


10:30 a.m.
Lecture by Johannes Goebel, director of EMPAC

11 a.m.
Deep Listening workshop with Arts Professor Pauline Oliveros

11:30 a.m.
Lecture by Liz Lecompte of the Wooster Group

1 p.m.
Behind the Scenes: DANCE MOViES Commission, a panel discussion with the commissioned artists

2 p.m.
Cecil Taylor “Floating Gardens”: Poetry Reading by Cecil Taylor

3 p.m.
Multimedia Performance “louder,” by Norwegian collective Verdensteatret (additional performance at 6 p.m.)

4 p.m.
“Pioneers of Experimental Media: Selections From Three Decades of Electronic Arts at Rensselaer”: highlights from the history of the iEAR program

5:30 p.m.
“In sight/Out look”: Scientific Visualization and Research Presentations

8 p.m.
Concert by Arts Professor Pauline Oliveros, the pioneer of “Deep Listening” and a Rensselaer faculty member, and Cecil Taylor, a legendary improvising pianist and composer. Two of the most renowned composer-improvisors in the United States sharing a stage for the first time, presenting a concert in three parts: Taylor solo, Oliveros solo, and a duo improvisation.


7:30 p.m. Oct. 9 and 10
“As If Stranger,” by Richard Siegal/The Bakery is a solo dance performance with live sound in which images, movement, presence, and streams of words weave a seeming narrative, oscillating between fact and fiction, transparency and poetry.

9 p.m.
Robert Normandeau: “Cinema for the Ear.” A winner of nearly every major prize within the field of electroacoustic music, Montreal-based composer Robert Normandeau will explore the Concert Hall’s ideal design for multichannel electronic music. Using an array of more than 40 loudspeakers hung from the ceiling and placed throughout the hall, he will perform a selection of his works live.


12 p.m. Oct. 10 and 11
Symposium on “Transcending Boundaries in Sciences, Arts, and Media Research.” Featuring eminent researchers from the science and engineering communities in a discussion about where those fields may intersect and connect with EMPAC, and the extent to which they will drive, challenge, augment, and inform each other.

9 p.m.
Fieldwork, a collective of three widely celebrated young composer/performers — pianist Vijay Iyer, saxophonist Steve Lehman, and drummer Tyshawn Sorey — Fieldwork’s music reflects each member’s ties to the American jazz tradition, modern composition, African and South Asian musics, underground hip-hop and electronica, and the influential music of Chicago’s A.A.C.M.


8 p.m.
Wynton Marsalis & Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, America’s institution of jazz and one of its finest big bands, in concert.


5 p.m.
DANCE MOViES Commission Screening
(see Oct. 4 for description)


8 p.m.
Improvcapella, Sheer Idiocy, et al.

8:30 p.m.
RPI Symphonic Band and Percussion Ensemble


11 a.m.
RPI Orchestra and Choir Concert

2 p.m.
Student Arts Sampler

2:30 p.m.
Gamelan Galak Tika & Ensemble Robot. Gamelan Galak Tika are a group of traditional instruments from Bali and untraditional robots from Boston. They will perform marching across campus and then in the open air of EMPAC’s café.

8 p.m.
Ramsey Lewis Trio. Composer, pianist, and radio personality Ramsey Lewis has been a leading figure in fusions of jazz, R&B, and other popular musics for decades and one of the major exponents of smooth jazz.

11 p.m.
Campus Serenaders and Swing Dancers

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Inside Rensselaer, Strategic Communications and External Relations
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Inside Rensselaer
Volume 2, Number 15, September 19, 2008
©2008 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
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