Welcome to the 2011 White Light Festival, the second iteration of our annual exploration of music’s power to illuminate our interior lives. From the powerful opening chords of Beethoven’s Missa solemnis to an exploration of light itself by Jennifer Tipton, to a meditation by Toni Morrison, Peter Sellars, and Rokia Traoré on the darkness of the soul that leads to the transcendence of love, the White Light Festival offers experiences of passionate beauty and occasions of profound insight into the many dimensions of our individual selves and the collective shared forces of the human condition. The Festival closes in a fitting fashion with the bonding power of spiritual ecstasy as Ensemble Sarband, joined by whirling dervishes from the Muslim Mevlevi tradition, draws startling connections between J.S. Bach’s Passions and the Sufi mystics.
In our technology-driven and distracted world, authentic encounters with one’s interior self and its inherent potential are increasingly infrequent. Throughout human history remarkable works of music and art have helped show us the extraordinary dimensions of human experience and life that lie within all of us—if only we pause in our rush to the finish line and turn our gaze inward. The White Light Festival hopes to provide moments to pause and explore the spaciousness and breath within.
It is my great hope that you will join us for many of these expansive experiences, and that you’ll connect with the artists and your fellow audience members after performances at the White Light Lounges. We look forward to seeing you often.
Ehrenkranz Artistic Director