Playground Ensemble

Howl

September 22 at Leon Gallery . 7pm
Denver, CO

September 24 at Metro State University . 2pm
Denver, CO

Lee Hyla’s Howl is based on beat poet Allen Ginsberg’s masterpiece Because of its explicitly sexual passages, it was the subject of an obscenity trial in 1957, but was eventually deemed “of redeeming social importance,” and therefore not obscene. Lee Hyla’s angular and violent string quartet amplifies the intensity of the poem.

Lee Hyla’s string quartet was written in coordination with Ginsberg before his death. Originally performed with music played over a recording of Ginsberg reading the text, Playground performs narration live. The impact of the poem’s live narration is amplified by a harsh, haunting, and compelling accompaniment by string quartet.

Season 13 is a season of words, exploring how music and words combine to enhance meaning. In addition to these two performances of Howl, stay tuned for more performances to be announced soon.