Pick of the Week: Music Box re-opens in Bywater
New Orleans Airlift opened the Music Box: a shantytown sound laboratory last October to overwhelming positive response on Piety Street in the Bywater. The rotating roster of internationally renowned musicians last fall at the Music Box was legendary, featuring Jim White, Mannie Fresh, and others.
The project, a playable, musical, conceptual "shantytown," references New Orleans' cultural and physical architecture with salvaged materials--purposeful, repurposed house remains from the Creole Cottage that stood on the Piety St. site and cleverly engineered musical magic. Interactive components of the musical wonderland each designed by sound artist collaborators include "singing walls, a heartbeat-triggered percussion machine, an organ staircase, and weather sensitive oscillators," an awesome description of which lies here.
Re-visit the Bywater masterpiece-in-progress led by the influential street artist Swoon who is known for her community-driven collaborative endeavors Saturday, 6-9pm, at a reception during the St. Claude Arts District Second Saturday Art Walk.
The spring re-opening, or "awakening," will "shine a spotlight on Swoon’s collaborators" as the artist shares her dream of a musical architecture for New Orleans and adds wheat pastes to the shantytown.
New Orleans Airlift explains, "The Music Box is an important and exciting prelude to the building of Dithyrambalina, an interactive sound sculpture in the form of a permanent three-story house" designed by Swoon. The sounds and processes of the Music Box serve as an experimental platform for the eventual instrumentation "built into the Dithyrambalina’s walls and ceilings and floorboards in the same way plumbing and electric are configured for a traditional home."
Following the reception Saturday, the Music Box’s free public opening hours will resume on Fridays and Saturdays from April 20th - June 2nd, from 12pm-5pm, 1029 Piety St. at St. Claude Ave.