Ipsa Dixit

Kate Soper

Friday, December 9, 2016
Ipse dixit /IP-suh DIK-sit/: noun (Latin).
Literally "he, himself, said it."

An uproven yet dogmatic statement, which the speaker expects the listener to accept as valid without proof beyond the speaker's assumed expertise.

Ipsa dixit:
"she, herself, said it . . ."

Ipsa Dixit is an evening-length work of theatrical chamber music by American composer Kate Soper. Exploring the intersection of music, language, and meaning, the piece blends elements of monodrama, Greek theater, and screwball comedy to skewer the treachery of language and the questionable authenticity of artistic expression. Each of the piece’s six movements draw on texts by thinkers such as Aristotle, Plato, Freud, Wittgenstein, Jenny Holtzer, and Lydia Davis, delivering ideas from the linguistic disciplines of poetics, rhetoric, and metaphysics through extended vocal techniques and blistering ensemble virtuosity. Developed in pieces since 2010, Soper’s EMPAC residency will culminate in the first performance of the work’s entire cycle, featuring percussionist Ian Antonio, violinist Josh Modney, and flutist Erin Lesser.

Kate Soper is a composer and vocalist whose work is notable for its engagement with rhetoric and theatricality. Trained in piano and extended vocal techniques, her compositional style has been called “exquisitely quirky.” As the managing director of the NYC-based new music ensemble Wet Ink, she regularly performs as a soprano on new works by emerging composers. She is a recent recipient of Guggenheim and Radcliffe fellowships, and is currently on the faculty of Smith College in Northampton Massachusetts.

Kate Soper: composition + voice
Ian Antonio: percussion
Erin Lesser: flute
Josh Modney: violin

Argeo Ascani
Ipsa Dixit
December 9, 2016, 8PM

EMPAC 2016–17 presentations, residencies, and commissions are supported by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Jaffe Fund for Experimental Media and Performing Arts.