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Recap: The Bank

June 10, 2011

Episode 3: The Bank happened at 1 PM at the former HSBC across the street from Peter Luger’s (Broadway & Driggs).  After running the Park twice, our audience of Bob & Mimi + Alex Waterman & family went in search of food, and we (Paul, Gelsey, Brian, Dave & Esther – who earns the audience perseverance award for being at all seven episodes) walked down Driggs Ave in the lovely weather.  Paul & Gelsey got the “coo coos” down:

you coo coo you coo coo too yeah I coo coo for you well I coo coo for you too

while Brian & Dave worked out the tricky syncopations of the rest of “coo coo”.  It shouldn’t be easy to learn a song with the symbolic power of “coo coo”, as indicated in the text of Episode 3, but we mostly got it.  Even though we had a couple of kinks in our rendition, the beaming smile of the composer, seated directly to our right and singing along, made the end of The Bank particularly special.

Upon arriving at the bank, we encountered mostly scaffolding.  At the front steps, we discovered that, like in the reality of Perfect Lives, the bank had no money in the bank!  HSBC vacated the building (temporarily?), so we were able to set up shop on the front steps and proceed uninterrupted.  After posing for a few photographs (below) and eliciting confused looks from Hasidim, cops, & Peter Lugers employees, we kicked things off.

Brian was the lead reader for this episode, and he came well-prepared.  He analyzed the original recording for pauses, audible breaths, and stresses, and used this information to sculpt his own arrangement.  While we were reading from libretti as opposed to scores, Brian’s reading really picked up on the musical focus of the text – the internal rhythms, the interplay of phrases of various lengths, the spectrum between song and speech in a good reading of this material, etc.

More to come real soon, including some audio samples of Tuesday’s activities.

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