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'Once More, With Feeling!' featuring Alex Temple & Julia Holter

  • Constellation 3111 North Western Avenue Chicago, IL, 60618 United States (map)
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Listening to Alex Temple and Julia Holter talk about setting an indelible mood or coaxing listeners into an unexpected frame of mind is a masterclass in artistic dexterity. For this event, we take a spin through Alex’s Behind the Wallpaper.

An essential element in developing an infatuation for an unfamiliar work is to peek behind the curtain, so to speak. Behind the Wallpaper is an alluring musical suite, composer Alex Temple is an irresistible musical creator and thinker, and vocalist Julia Holter is one of the most enchanting singers we’ve come across. Why not get everyone in the same room together to explore just how this wide-ranging piece morphed from an idea to a composition, and what ingredients are synthesized to create such a convincing musical narrative?

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Alex and Julia are artists well-versed in the rigors of classical music, but unconstrained by them or any preconceptions about genre hierarchies. The story is the thing. The pleasure of the music is the thing. The occasional contradiction of the lyrics and the music is the thing. But most importantly, listening to Alex and Julia talk about how to set an indelible mood, or coax listeners into an unexpected frame of mind, is a masterclass in artistic dexterity.

Once More, With Feeling! offers a rare second listen – on the same night – to an unfamiliar work, giving concertgoers the chance to deepen their appreciation and enjoyment of the music. On-stage conversation with the composer illuminates the subtleties of and inspirations for the music, and audience members are able to ask questions in the moment – making any worries or preconceptions about “not getting it” disappear.


Excerpts from Behind the Wallpaper (2013-14) – Alex Temple

Spektral Quartet’s 2019-20 concert season is supported by the generosity of the following foundations. We are so grateful for this funding and the support of the many individuals who give to our organization. If you are interested in supporting our work, please visit to learn more.

Earlier Event: February 19
'Fanm d'Ayiti' at University of Maryland
Later Event: February 29
UT Dallas (Richardson)