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Thursday, February 1st, 2018
“Quietly transfixing” violinist, singer, producer and composer Emily Wells is known for her varied use of classical and modern instrumentation, deft approach to live sampling, and “dramatic, meticulous and gothic songs” (New York Times) that blend “traditionalism with electronic ambiance” (NPR). Fresh off the premiere of Emily Wells’ new work “This World is Too _____ For You”, commissioned by the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra’s Liquid Music Series and masterfully arranged for strings, horn and percussion by Michi Wiancko, Wells is reimagining these and other new songs for a few select solo performances before taking them into the recording studio. She aims to learn more about the songs from live performance and engagement with familiar audiences. “The new songs are the rub between desire for, and desire to strip oneself of all wanting” Wells says of the new material, which clamors around all the edges, and sometimes into the center of our collective uncertainties. “I grew up with hymns and I often find myself drawn to a form that seeks redemption, even for transgressions unknown… they are an offering, an oath.” Wells’ new video work will accompany the performances of which she says, “the video and the songs are mirrors of one another: human failing, desire, grace, the body, movement, muted gutting, and the natural world, beating against our windows, drunk with the answer.”