Visit the official Crossroads Project website
Visit the website of Rebecca Allan, collaborating artist
The Crossroads Project brings the power of performance art — music, painting, photography and scientific research — to bear on one of the great conversations of our time — humanity’s growing unsustainability and the possibility for a truly meaningful response. With an original score by composer Laura Kaminsky, the music erects within each vignette a contemplative space for the audience to process what it is we now know.
Kaminsky’s Rising Tide moves from organic, eddying lines to more rigid structures. In “H20 (The Source of Life),” a lonely solo voice meanders through layers of shifting strings, amassing momentum and might until all four lines are crashing forward in rapids that diminish to the solo again. “Bios” and “Forage” evoke the pulsing lives of plants and animals, and “Societas” deconstructs into haunting, harried almost-chaos among innumerable towers of chords.” – The Boston globe
A transfixing film that signifies the enlightened intertwining of science, social conscience, music and art.” – The Utah Review
The four movements of Rising Tide track the planet’s basic resources — water, the biosphere, food and human society — in a carefully structured idiom that makes the most of textures, sometimes delicate and almost weightless, sometimes thick and convoluted, but always vivid. Kaminsky manages both tension and humor in the most natural way, and her final movement conveyed a profound sense of philosophical acceptance.” – The Washington Post
Rising Tide, with violin rising out of the unceasingly energetic texture … reflects a conceptual framework for confronting climate change.” – I Care if You Listen
Rising Tide and The Crossroads Project reviewed at ConcertoNet.com
… each movement was a sonic picture of the talk itself … [Kaminsky] has written a concentrated, emotional (sometimes agitated, sometimes more complacent) work which held its own.” – ConcertoNet.com
Laura Kaminsky had written some very intense music … a concentrated, emotional (sometimes agitated, sometimes more complacent) work which held its own.” – ConcertoNet.com
Art Meets Environmental Activism in ‘The Crossroads Project”
This month’s blast of arctic air may have roused climate-change skeptics. But the composer Laura Kaminsky and the painter Rebecca Allan were unfazed. Holed up in their apartment in Riverdale in the Bronx on one of the coldest days in decades, these longtime artist-activists were doing what came naturally: fighting the planet’s warming. Read the complete story from The New York Times
The Crossroads Project Featured on NPR’s All Things Considered
Interview: The Natural and the Political: A Conversation with Laura Kaminsky and Rebecca Allan
Read the full story at theglassblock.com
Rising Tide Premieres at National Gallery in DC with the Fry Street Quartet
“Fry Street Quartet explores the Earth’s resources in new works” by Joan Reinthaler, The Washington Post, March 14, 2016
Call it eco-art. The Fry Street Quartet, as part of “The Crossroads Project” at Utah State University, has teamed up with scientists, composers Laura Kaminsky and Libby Larsen, visual artists and poets to create multimedia works that focus on the Earth’s gifts and support the sustainability of the planet. On Sunday at the National Gallery, they presented two works from the project — Kaminsky’s Rising Tide and Larsen’s “Emergence” — minus the visuals and poetry. Their program, in celebration of Women’s History Month, also included Amy Beach’s Op. 89 quartet and Joan Tower’s “Night Fields.”
Read the full story in The Washington Post
Fry Street Quartet Goes Deep on New Album, “The Crossroads Project”
Last month, a “king tide” brought Boston Harbor up to the sidewalk of Long Wharf, seawater flowing through cutouts in the concrete barriers. For those few hours, the border between the built and the natural shifted, creating a sense of dislocation and, for some, wonder. This liminal zone is the territory of the Fry Street Quartet’s recent release on Navona, “The Crossroads Project.”
Read the full story in The Boston Globe
Kaminsky’s Rising Tide Featured on Fry Street Quartet’s new CD
September 9, 2016
Today, The Fry Street Quartet releases The Crossroads Project on Navona Records: a captivating recording blending art and science to address global sustainability, featuring new works by Pulitzer Prize nominee Laura Kaminsky and Grammy Award winner Libby Larsen. The Crossroads Project Exemplifies the FSQ’s intellectual and musical curiosity and collaborative spirit. The album commemorates the ensemble’s signature multimedia performance of the same name, created in collaboration with physicist Dr. Robert Davies, which has toured to 20 cities for a total of 30 performances.
“The FSQ has always been motivated by the goal of relevancy, in matters big and small. We feel it’s critical that we bring our artistic voices to bear on a topic vital to human society,” says Fry Street Quartet cellist Anne Francis Bayless.
“The Crossroads Project is intended to encourage a sense of wonder at the beauty of the natural world, and bring listeners into a place of reverence. After listening, we hope some will dig further into the mission of our project, and be encouraged to learn more.”
In addition to demonstrating expert craftsmanship and musicality, the recording evokes natural wonders and the composers’ responses to the plight that they, and we, face. The Project looks unblinkingly at the fact that the beauty and life-sustaining power of our natural resources may be ephemeral if we do not act.
The water cycle forms the basis of Larsen’s “Emergence.” Simultaneously, it captures a vast, potent emotional landscape. At one crucial moment, a wistful folk tune becomes distorted as its accompaniment becomes increasingly dark and jagged. Yet the work ends on a hopeful note, with the quartet resolved in a shared melody, and, ultimately, resounding as one gleaming, unified voice.
Kaminsky’s “Rising Tide” tackles the divide between the natural world and man-made ecosystems. With a vivid, kinetic score, it encompasses a global life cycle. Opening with sounds of wonder at the first stirrings of life, it goes on to illustrate the lushness of a world full of vitality as well as the turmoil of a complex civilization.
The recording underscores the quartet’s longstanding relationship with Kaminsky. The FSQ recently appeared as the accompanying ensemble for As One — the composer’s critically acclaimed opera centered on a transgendered individual — at BAM.
“The Fry Street Quartet is the most thoughtful, artistically committed intellectually vibrant group of artists I have ever known,” Kaminsky says.
“The Crossroads Project is the most fully realized manifestation of my work as a composer, using my music as a means of expressing my concerns about the fate of the earth.”
“The arts, and music in particular, have long been instrumental in social change movements,” adds FSQ violinist Robert Waters.
“The simpler goal of this recording is to generate a wider audience for these two fantastic new works. Our larger goal, though, is to spread awareness of the work of The Crossroads Project and, by extension, its call to action for each of us to work, as quickly as we can, to change our path away from environmental destruction and toward a sustainable world.”
Fry Street Quartet explores the Earth’s Resources in New Works
March 16, 2016 – Call it eco-art. The Fry Street Quartet, as part of the “Crossroads Project” at Utah State University, has teamed up with scientists, composers Laura Kaminsky and Libby Larsen, visual artists and poets to create multimedia works that focus on the Earth’s gifts and support the sustainability of the planet. On Sunday at the National Gallery, they presented two works from the project — Kaminsky’s “Rising Tide” and Larsen’s “Emergence” — minus the visuals and poetry. Their program, in celebration of Women’s History Month, also included Amy Beach’s Op. 89 quartet and Joan Tower’s “Night Fields.”
Read the full story in The Washington Post
Kaminsky’s Rising Tide is Centerpiece of The Crossroads Project
Kaminsky’s most recent string quartet, Rising Tide, is the musical centerpiece of The Crossroads Project, an evening-long multi-disciplinary performance-science work conceived by physicist Dr. Rob Davies of the Utah Climate Center, in collaboration with the Fry Street Quartet, who commissioned the work. The Crossroads Project was the keynote address of the 2012 Association for Sustainability in Higher Education Conference at the Los Angeles Convention Center, playing to 2000 participants from around the world. The Project has toured nationally and internationally, and is soon to make its east coast tour in February 2014, with performances at Wave Hill, the Hudson Opera House, the Performing Arts Center at Purchase College/SUNY, and at Symphony Space.
Read more about Laura Kaminsky and the Crossroads Project in “The Crossroads Project” [PDF] by Daniel Stephen Johnson in the Winter 2014 issue of Chamber Music Magazine.