We're surrounded: 4/29 FREE concert features Corigliano's "Circus Maximus" in the round

On Friday, April 29, Nicholas Music Center will be busting out all over with the sounds of "Circus Maximus," written by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Corigliano.

The 35-minute, eight-part piece, part of a FREE concert featuring the Rutgers Wind Ensemble and members of the Rutgers Symphony Band, calls for musicians to play from all parts of the auditorium--from the stage to the aisles to the upper seats.

"Essentially, it is a theater piece that encircles the entire audience in 3-D sound from the rear of the house to the front," conductor Darryl Bott says.

The Rutgers Wind Ensemble ends its 2010-2011 performance slate with a bang: You will hear trumpets and percussion surrounding the audience with fanfares, a saxophone quartet and string bass calling from the second tier, marching bands filling the aisles and, in the end . . . a gunshot.

Look for dramatic lighting and listen for music that, as the composer has written, "was built both to embody and to comment on this massive and glamorous barbarity" that once took place in the Ancient Roman Circus Maximus arena and that, in his opinion, continues today with our own amusements, such as "reality TV." 

No tickets are required. The concert begins at 8 p.m. at Nicholas Music Center, part of the Mason Gross Performing Arts Center, 85 George St. at Route 18 on the Douglass Campus of Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. Media Inquiries: Laurie Granieri, 732-932-7591, ext. 516.

Photo by Jody Somers