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“The Cave”

Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) | Peter Jay Sharp Building

Race, ethics, gender politics, cultural history, geography, the Torah, the Koran, and current affairs: these are the seemingly improbable ingredients of The Cave, 1993, a majestic music-theater collaboration between video artist Beryl Korot and composer Steve Reich. Yet it is the intricate layering of facts, myths, legends, and opinions along so many lines of video cable and music keyboard that makes The Cave an important work. Indeed, this intellectual theater shows not only that media and technology can be vessels for complex ideas, but that they can also be used for humanistic debate.

Reich’s Different Trains, 1988 (in which taped speech patterns are used as the basis for melody and structure, and mixed with live music) and Korot’s Dachau, 1974 (a multimonitor installation that rhythmically creates a video tapestry of sound and image) were the models during the more than four years that

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