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Start Your New Year with Music and Art

J-Walt draws with the Anitar, a computer interface he invented
J-Walt draws with the Anitar, a computer interface he invented

Warm up your winter by joining us for three live music and art events in January, presented in the Vanderbilt’s Charles and Helen Reichert Planetarium:

  • J-Walt, an interactive art and music pioneer, will present Spontaneous Fantasia, performed with computer-interface instruments of his own design, on the Planetarium dome
  • Rich Rivkin offers the free, annual event ArtMosphere in the Planetarium lobby, where visitors can browse the work of two dozen artists while they listen to live jazz
  • The Liverpool Shuffle, a popular regional Beatles tribute band, will perform favorites, with images from the 1960s projected onto the Planetarium dome

Saturday, January 3

Spontaneous Fantasia SOLD OUT

5:30-6:30 and 8:30-9:30 p.m. SOLD OUT

Newsday ranked this event Number 2 in its Top Ten Things to Do on New Year’s weekend.

John Adamczyk, known as J-Walt – a performer, interactive designer, filmmaker, graphic artist and composer – will present this live, virtual-reality performance, a new art form that combines aspects of animation, dance, music, theater and architecture.

A Los Angeles Times review called Spontaneous Fantasia  “indescribably delicious…Adamczyk says his art is almost like puppetry, but really his Spontaneous Fantasia is beyond words. Animated trippy landscapes, gestural shapes moving through 3-D graphic spaces — oh, just go.”

Tickets: adults $15; seniors (62 and older) and children under 12, $12.

J-Walt has been at the forefront of interactive art for more than two decades, has greatly expanded the uses of computer animation, and has performed for audiences in Canada, Europe and the United States. He draws improvised virtual realities as part of his unique one-man show, using two new computer interfaces. One is the Razer Hydra, a two-handed wand interface for drawing figures and navigating a three-dimensional space. The other is the Anitar (animation guitar), his new invention for drawing in space.

Friday, January 9

ArtMosphere, 7:00-11:00, FREE

Live jazz fusion by the Steve Adelson Stick-tet, plus 200 selected paintings by 25 regional artists, will fill the lobby of the Vanderbilt Museum’s Charles and Helen Reichert Planetarium for ArtMosphere. The event is free – view the art and enjoy the music. The evening will include a tango performance between sets by Con Artist and Miriam Wirski.

ArtMosphere is presented by Rich Rivkin, who produces two annual, summer music events – Woodstock Revival and Grateful (Dead) Fest – on the Great Lawn of the Vanderbilt Mansion. A unique, ongoing series, ArtMosphere features exhibitions of paintings plus live classic rock, jazz fusion and blues music. Stick-tet leader Steve Adelson is one of the New York region’s best-known Chapman Stick players: steveadelson.com/about.php

(The Chapman stick – a member of the electric-guitar family invented in the early 1970s – usually has ten or twelve individually tuned strings and has been used on music recordings to play bass lines, melody lines, chords or textures.)

Saturday, January 24

The Liverpool Shuffle, 7:30 and 10:00

The Beatles tribute band Liverpool Shuffle, a regional favorite, will perform classic songs live in the Vanderbilt Reichert Planetarium – accompanied by a montage of 1960s images on the Planetarium dome – on Saturday, January 24, in two, one-hour shows at 7:30 and 10:00 p.m.

Tickets: adult (on-line) $25, $30 at door; children 5-15 (online) $10, $15 at door.

Joe Ref (Refano), who formed the group in 2003, describes its act as “authentic live Beatles music performed by professional Beatlemaniacs.” The four musician-singers are veterans of the New York music scene with a combined 125 years of experience. Refano has played bass with Peter Noone and Herman’s Hermits (2002-2007) and with the Mickey (of The Monkees) Dolenz Band (2008).

“The Beatles created the greatest popular music in history,” Refano said, “and we play it just the way it is.”

In recent years, The Liverpool Shuffle has performed all over the tri-state region, including at B.B. King’s in New York City, the Jones Beach Bandshell, and the New York World’s Fair 50th anniversary celebration, and at many public and private events.

Freddy G (Giovanelli) – vocals-bass, guitars and bass – worked as Sir Paul McCartney’s guitar tech and road-crew member (1988-1991). Giovanelli has worked for many years as a musical tech expert with the Sam Ash parent company, Samson. Jamie Bateman (vocals, guitars and harmonica) and Brian James (vocals and drums) also have played with other Beatles tribute bands

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