Producer's Statement
Blackstar Symphony is a unique and singular interpretation of the music of "Blackstar," a recording that Bowie fashioned as his finale. Different in feel and different in sound, Bowie’s "Blackstar" speaks more poignantly - and more metaphorically - than any of the artist’s prior creations. It stands as a monumental testament to artistic expression on the eve of the artist’s passing from this life. David Bowie died two days after the album’s release.
It is our intention to assemble a presentation that matched the profound nature of Bowie’s original endeavor. We recruited the foremost orchestrators/arrangers to reimagine Bowie’s final masterpiece for full symphonic orchestra to be accompanied by Donny McCaslin’s jazz quartet and two featured vocalists. The scope of the production demanded no less.
McCaslin, the saxophonist that Bowie himself originally recruited as the bandleader for "Blackstar," is this show’s Artistic Director, who along with Jules Buckley put a magnifying glass to all the elements – the melodies, the song structures, the performers and their performances, all geared towards once again delivering Bowie’s heartfelt final message - one which is not conveyed in words but rather in the artful and visionary construct itself.
Act I is a presentation of "Blackstar" in its entirety. Act II is composed of various selections from the artist’s extensive catalog, each also receiving the probing examination that is the guiding principle of this production. Featured are such touchstone Bowie compositions as, “Heroes,” “Modern Love,” “Life On Mars,” “Space Oddity,” and others that serve as a reminder of the pervasiveness of Bowie’s presence in the popular culture. All the material presented is with the kind permission and unflinching support of The David Bowie Estate, to which a debt of gratitude is owed.
Steven Saporta