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Plenary Concert: A ninetieth birthday celebration - Margaret Leng Tan plays Crumb's Metamorphoses (Asian Premiere)

  • Conservatory Concert Hall Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music 117376 Singapore (map)

MONICA DUNCAN, video projections


GEORGE CRUMB (b. 1929)
Metamorphoses, Book I (2015-17) (Asian Premiere)
for amplified piano, auxiliary percussion, toy piano, voice

  1. BLACK PRINCE (1927) - Paul Klee

  2. GOLDFISH (1925) – Paul Klee

  3. WHEATFIELD WITH CROWS (1890) – Vincent van Gogh

  4. THE FIDDLER (1912-13) – Marc Chagall

  5. NOCTURNE: BLUE AND GOLD (Southampton Water) (1871) – James McNeill Whistler

  6. PERILOUS NIGHT (1990) – Jasper Johns

  7. CLOWNS AT NIGHT (1957) – Marc Chagall

  8. CONTES BARBARES (1902) – Paul Gauguin

  9. THE PERSISTENCE OF MEMORY (1931) – Salvador Dalí

  10. THE BLUE RIDER (1903) – Vasily Kandinsky


Metamorphoses, Book I is the first installment in a new major piano cycle by composer George Crumb, his first since the four Makrokosmos piano volumes were created in the 1970s. Metamorphoses, Book I is inspired by ten paintings and is Crumb’s tribute to Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition. A comprehensive summation of the Crumb pianistic vocabulary, Metamorphoses also makes vocal and theatrical demands on the pianist, as did the earlier Makrokosmos pieces. A novel feature of this new work is Crumb’s use of the toy piano and several small percussion instruments in combination with the grand piano, a nod to Margaret Leng Tan’s career as a toy pianist and toy instrumentalist. This concert is taking place on the eve of George Crumb’s 90th birthday (October 24), and will feature video projections created by Monica Duncan.

This Asian premiere is presented as part of Performers(‘) Present 2019: Telling Stories.


Narratives – whether historical, political, or musical; whether fact or fiction – are inextricably bound to the ways we experience the world, and the art that translates these experiences.

In the decade since we began hosting the triennial Performers(‘) Present symposium, artistic research has been undergoing rapid and ground-shifting transformations, with the performer’s voice becoming ever more present. As with our previous symposia, Telling Stories seeks to address and evolve the kaleidoscopic issues facing 21st-century performers, as they reflect on their practice in the context of significant shifts in politics, communications and technology, and performance practice. 

Come join us and the artistic research community at the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music from 23 – 26 October 2019, as we reflect on the power of music narratives and celebrate their narrators in Performers(‘) Present 2019: Telling Stories.


• Free admission.
• All event information is correct at time of print.
• Out of respect for other concertgoers, no children under 6 years of age will be allowed admission.