Two years ago, I wrote about the annual Solstice celebration at Julia Morgan’s Chapel of the Chimes (aka Garden of Memory), a columbarium in Oakland. I went again this year, to hear the many permutations of New Music.
From Steve Kent’s didgerridoo to a little pingpong ball on an antenna connected to a Therapin that plays music as your hands move around the ball it made a unique, fascinating, and often beautiful cacophony.
At solstice, there is a general bell ringing, to celebrate the longest day. As rituals go, it’s hard to beat.
This year, one of my favorites was John Bischoff, who created a computer program with a keyboard attached. You played a note or tune or chord on the keyboard, and the program takes it and enhances it, so that even a two-year-old can make music.
Here are a few more snaps to give you a sense of the range and variation of the event.