The Last Detail

[MUSIC, ETC.] Leave it to Don Metz to arrange some extraordinary exit music for himself. Metz—who is currently associate director and head of public programs at the Burchfield Penney Art Center, and who has worked at the institution since 1995, including a stint as acting director—will retire this year. As a final gift, Metz has arranged The Last Detail, a four-day festival of music and multimedia performance illustrative of his tastes for the cutting edge and the subversive. (The gala’s subtitle is “An Eclectic Mix of Music Detached From Uniformity of Reason,” which mightas wellbe the title of Metz’s unwritten autobiography.) The series begins Thursday evening at 7pm with multimedia setting of “Cassandra,” a poem by 1960s countercultural icon Ed Sanders (perhaps most famously a member of the Fugs), one of Metz’s favorites. Poet and and visual artist Mike Basinki narrates; Metz, on guitar, is joined by musicians John Smigielski (percussion) and Kristen Smigielski (voice); Andrew Deutsch and John Kostusiak contribute audio/video design and lighting, respectively. On Friday, famed Buffalo musician Joe Rozler presents Ambient/Analog, a soundscape that will greet guests attending the Burchfield Penney’s Second Friday events, which includes the opening of four—count ’em, four—new shows in the galleries. That same night, in the auditorium, A Musical Feast—the gallery’s chamber ensemble in residence, led by acclaimed violinist Charles Haupt—present an eclectic program that includes works by Boulanger, Rachmaninoff, and Bach, among others, with guest musicians Arie Lipsky (cello, flute), Charles Castleman (violin), Diane Hunger (saxophone), and Claudia Hoca (piano). On Saturday evening, the internationally celebrated Bugallo-Williams Piano Duo (comprising Helena Bugallo and Buffalo native Amy Williams) will perform cutting-edge new works and 20th-century masterpieces for piano four-hands and two pianos. Finally, on Sunday afternoon, The Last Detail concludes with Tony Conrad’s Amplified Drone Strings, performed by the Open! String Ensemble, a relatively new collaborative musical project formed by BPO cellist Jonathan Golove. (The ensemble lineup: David Adamczyk (violin), Ana Vafai (violin), Helen Yee (violin), Leanne Darling (viola), Evan Courtin (viola), Golove (cello), Stanzi Vaubel (cello), Paige Sarlin (cello).) The program includes original works by the ensemble’s members, as well as pieces by the likes of Godspeed! You Black Emperor, Yo La Tengo, St. Vincent, and King Crimson. Quite a weekend. If you see Metz grinning in the corner, wish the old man luck—and make sure he’s getting plenty of electrolytes. Visit for more information.

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