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Perspectives Pride

Catalyst Quartet: “Bassline Fabulous” with Machine Dazzle

June 10 AN HOUR

Through 30 movements of mathematics and acrobatics, the bass line of J.S. Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” stands constant, a staunch pillar of infrastructure undergirding one of Western art music’s wildest (yet most logical) exercises in transformation. 

In December 2022, as part of their Met residency, Catalyst Quartet presented an immersive dive into Bach’s behemoth “Goldberg Variations,” featuring their own acclaimed string quartet arrangement of the beloved keyboard work. Performance artist and “theatrical genius” (The New Yorker) Machine Dazzle responded in real time, interpreting the music’s inescapable evolution through a personal, emotional lens. Through pleasure, pain, laughter, and longing, “Bassline Fabulous” continues to engage audiences with the transformative power of the dynamic composition.

“Bassline Fabulous”
conceived by Machine Dazzle and Catalyst Quartet

“Goldberg Variations,” BWV 988 
by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
arr. Catalyst Quartet

Machine Dazzle, performance artist

Catalyst Quartet:
Karla Donehew Perez, violin
Abi Fayette, violin
Paul Laraia, viola
Karlos Rodriguez, cello

Geoff Sobelle, director
Jeremy Lydic, director of production
Alban Sardzinski, lighting design

***Please note that this performance contains sexual content.***

For more information, please view the performance program.

Recorded on Friday, December 16, 2022, in The Vanderlyn Panorama Room (Gallery 735) of The American Wing.

This performance was made possible by the Adrienne Arsht Fund for Resilience through Art.

Additional support was provided by Barbara Tober, the Muriel Kallis Steinberg Newman Fund, and the Grace Jarcho Ross and Daniel G. Ross Concert Fund.

MetLiveArts thanks Barbara Tober for generously hosting the invited dress rehearsal, and The Frederick R. Koch Foundation for its support of the special event.