CLoSer October 2013 – The Morning After the New Babylon

Posted on: October 24, 2013 in: Hot Tunes Cold War

As with any good party, half the fun is the morning dissection of the previous night’s events. We may have bagged up our cushions and packed up the bar, but we can’t stop talking about yesterday’s CLoSer.

From Shostakovich‘s spellbinding score, to the mesmerising performance by the Orchestra and Hugh Brunt, it was genuinely impossible to look away from the action last night. The New Babylon was darkly surreal, and the influences of the USSR’s newly-secured Communist regime under which it was created were inescapable. The New Babylon also boasted some pretty heavy-handed Soviet propaganda. Kozintsev’s film positively vilified the Parisian bourgeoisie, caricaturing their decadent, vulgar lifestyles. The resemblance of the leader of the Paris Commune to a young Lenin was, frankly, uncanny and I honestly don’t know if I was more impressed by the determination of the casting director to track down Lenin’s doppelganger, or the extent of Kozintsev’s shameless political brown-nosing.

Those of you who made it last night may have noticed the talented James Berry taking photographs of yesterday’s festivities, and we’ve included some of our favourites in this post.

Our next CLoSer event will be our Alternative Love Songs Valentines event in February, promising a bittersweet offering of baroque, modern and contemporary love songs sung by soprano Elin Manahan Thomas and singer-songwriter Mara Carlyle.

CLoSer: Alternative Love Songs
Wednesday 12 February 2014
Village Underground