Sunday, February 19, 2006

San Francisco Performances: Koyaanisqatsi / Life Out of Balance

It seems petulant to complain of the embarrassment of cinematic riches on any given weekend in San Francisco; but, how can one not complain when you are given choices between a Carlos Reygadas residency at Yerba Buena's Center for the Arts and the San Francisco Performances exclusive West Coast engagement of The Qatsi Trilogy performed by Philip Glass and the Philip Glass Ensemble (conducted by Michael Riesman)? Hmmmmmm? Borrowing somewhat from Solomon, I swallowed Reygadas whole and split Qatsi three ways. I figured a third was better than nothing so I showed up for the opening night screening of Koyaanisqatsi / Life Out of Balance at Davies Symphony Hall. Despite a rush on will call that stalled the performance for a half an hour, the evening was an exciting blend of cinema and music.

It's hard to consider I first saw Koyaanisqatsi in 1983 when it screened (I believe, if I dare remember back that far!) at the Castro Theater some 27 years ago!! Lord. Time flies when you're havin' fun, eh?

Decades later, Koyaanisqatsi still holds up and the music is just as thrilling and energetic. The images prove to be something of a time capsule. The timelapse photography capturing the mutability of clouds and the corpuscular flow of traffic still sweeps me up and I was particularly struck by the speeded-up sequence of entering San Francisco via the now-demolished freeway. That freeway entrance had a curve to it that remains in my body to this day. It felt neat to be reminded that film and memory are brethren afterall.

No comments: