Contemporaneous, an ensemble of some two dozen musicians, started out at Bard College as the brainchild of a pair of undergrads. Now, more than a decade later, the ensemble is based in New York City and continues to thrive professionally. It will present its largest production to date on Sept. 18. Billed as The Day of Imagination, the program will feature three sets over a full day, four world premieres, six hours of music, and 50 artists.
The founders and co-artistic directors of the group, the composer Dylan Mattingly and the conductor David Bloom, regard the event as “an ode to idealism.” It was curated through an open call for works that participants would “most like to be making regardless of traditional constraints on scale and practicality.” The program at the Irondale Center in Brooklyn will include Mattingly’s “Stranger Love,” an immersive, multimedia opera scored for 28 musicians (including three microtonal pianos), and eight singers, with a text by Thomas Bartscherer. Here’s a taste: