Third Avenue Playhouse (TAP) presents the world premiere of the play Velvet Gentleman, written and performed by James Valcq, from May 18 to June 4. Velvet Gentleman is a colorful journey into the mind and music of composer Erik Satie.
The title of the play comes from the composer’s wardrobe. Every day, Satie would dress in one of his seven identical grey velvet suits, purchased from an inheritance he received in 1865. Satie visited his favorite Paris cafes and local haunts daily as he took his 10-km stroll.
In the minds of some observers, Satie was simply an eccentric composer of weird little ditties. True, his early musical education was unsatisfactory, and most of his works were miniatures for the piano, which seemed very much to defy any of the expected conventions of music. Yet he should not be dismissed too hastily, because his ideas were to have a profound influence on many musical developments over a broad timespan. Foremost amongst those composers influenced by Satie was his contemporary Debussy, the later French composer Ravel, and Stravinsky.
The world premiere of Velvet Gentleman was created and performed by TAP’s co-artistic director Valcq. This multimedia theater piece featuring Satie’s music, words and drawings will transport audiences to fin-de-siècle Paris.
Tickets are $28 general admission and $12 students. For more information visit thirdavenueplayhouse.com.