It doesn’t get much better than Eighth Blackbird’s benefit program last Monday night. Not only did the group curate a fantastic selection of pieces, but the Violet Hour created cocktails to reflect each individual piece. A champagne cocktail influenced by Philip Glass? I think Eighth Blackbird and Violet Hour mixologist Robby Haynes have discovered a pairing that rivals the Sunday newspaper with coffee.
The benefit began with a 45-minute concert at Heaven Gallery. The first piece on the program is among my favorites in the group’s repertoire, Glass’s Music in Similar Motion. Six voices move in parallel and repeat a 35-cell melody. Much of the joy in seeing Music in Similar Motion performed is the musicians’ virtuosic focus—an element that is lost in recordings. The piece was paired with Champagne Cocktail #2, a sparkling, absinthe-soaked sugar cube, lemon twist. It was delicious.