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This is Your Brain on Opera
New York Times article: Jonathan Berger's "Visitations" Premiére at Stanford.
PALO ALTO, Calif. — I attended two performances of Jonathan Berger’s “Visitations” at the Bing Concert Hall at Stanford last week here. On Friday evening I sat in the primary motor cortex. The following night, my seat was located off to the side, in Broca’s area.
“Visitations,” a double bill of one-act operas about auditory hallucinations, mixes digital sounds with live voices and a chamber ensemble. For the occasion, the acoustics of Bing Hall —Stanford’s new sensual concert hall, with terraced in-the round seating, white inwardly curved panels that evoke billowing sails, and undulating wood paneling — had been configured to represent neuroscientific imaging of a hallucinating brain, with the stage roughly occupying the place of the prefrontal cortex. Read more here.