won’t find too many artists with a better musical upbringing
than Rufus Wainwright: Son of folk legends Loudon Wainwright
III and Kate McGarrigle, big brother of folk-rocker Martha
Wainwright—the guy grew up around Leonard Cohen for God’s
sake! And, not to be overshadowed by his famous family,
Rufus has made a respectable name for himself as a singer-songwriter,
with a signature sound often described as “popera.”
With musical influences that span from Franz Schubert and
Edith Piaf to Judy Garland and Al Jolson, tossing his family’s
folk roots into the eclectic mix, Wainwright has certainly
defined a signature sound. His self-titled debut album,
released a decade ago, garnered Wainwright a Best New Artist
of the Year nod from Rolling Stone, and he has been
hauling in album after album of Juno Award nominations (yes
folks, that’s the Canadian Grammy equivalent). His quiet
cover of Cohen’s “Hallelujah” became a familiar ballad on
U.S. airwaves thanks to the Shrek soundtrack.
While many of his songs layer complex orchestrations and
rock instrumentation with his tenor melodies, the singer-songwriter
is also an accomplished guitarist and pianist, and some
of his most memorable tunes are his simplest—and this tour
finds him performing solo in an intimate acoustic concert.
His half-sister, Lucy Wainwright-Roche, opens the show.
Rufus Wainwright brings his singular sound to the Egg (Empire
State Plaza, Albany) on Saturday (Aug. 16) at 8 PM. Tickets
are $34.50. For more info, call 473-1845.
is spring, moonless night in the small town, starless and
bible-black, the cobblestreets silent and the hunched, courters’-and-rabbits’
wood limping invisible down to the sloeblack, slow, black,
crowblack, fishingboat-bobbing sea.” So begins the introduction
of Under Milk Wood, Dylan Thomas’ masterpiece “play for
voices.” The play, originally commissioned for radio by
the BBC in 1945 and later adapted for stage, was Thomas’
last work, and his only play.
Under Milk Wood unfolds as a series of vignettes, weaving
the lives and dreams of 63 quirky characters who make up
the fictional Welsh town of Llareggub. Thomas was an undisputed
master of lyrical language, and Under Milk Wood is poetry-cum-
theater, brimming with Thomas’ perceptive and witty music.
The folks at Walking the Dog will present their production
at PS/21 in Chatham, with an ensemble of seven actors creating
all the inhabitants of the small seaside town.
Under Milk Wood opens at 8 PM on Wednesday (Aug. 13) at
PS/21 (2980 Route 66, Chatham). Tickets are $20, $15 for
PS/21 members. For more info, or to reserve tickets, call
Chamber Music Festival
summer, the Cooperstown Chamber Music Festival celebrates
10 years of bringing the best in chamber-ensemble programming
to a variety of venues in and around this upstate village—complementing
nearby Glimmerglass Opera, in a place heretofore best known
for its association with the “national pastime.”
On Sunday evening, the CCMF will hold its gala anniversary
concert: “One of the largest ensembles ever gathered at
the Festival” will perform Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos
No. 3-6. We can’t think of better music to celebrate
The CCMF gala will be held Sunday (Aug. 17) at 7:30 PM at
the Farmers’ Museum (Louis C. Jones Center, Lake Road, Route
80, Cooperstown). Tickets are $30, $15 students. There will
be a postconcert reception with the artists. For more info,
visit cooperstownmusicfest.org or call (877) 666-7421.