Taylor Mac’s 24-decade popular music history opens at St. Ann’s Tonight


St. Ann’s Warehouse kicks off its 2016-17 season on September 15 with the world premiere of Taylor Mac’s A 24 Decade History of Popular Music. Mac’s epic work, told through 240 songs, traces American history from 1776 to the present day.

Performed by Mac, A 24-decade history of popular music is scheduled to play through October 8 at Brooklyn. The world premiere caps off five years of concert development and staging, including presentations at Vassar Powerhouse Theatre, Joe’s Pub and New York Live Arts.

The show is presented as an “extremely ambitious work of duration”. It’s billed as a series of concerts spanning three decades each, with Mac backed by a 24-piece orchestra and 76 special guests, including burlesque dancers and “foot-tapping Tiny Tims.”

A musician is due out after each decade, until Mac is left to perform the final decade – including original songs, as part of the final three-hour concert, 1986-2016 (October 3) – alone. For once, Mac will also present a 24-hour non-stop marathon performance spanning the entire period of October 8, marking the first time the work has been run continuously.

A 24-decade history of popular music was created by Mac in collaboration with Matt Ray, who arranged the show’s 246 songs and conducts the 24-member orchestra and four backing vocalists. Mac’s intricate costumes are by Machine Dazzle; Niegel Smith co-directs; Jocelyn Clarke is a playwright; the scenography is by Mimi Lien; and the lighting design is by John Torres.

The creative team also includes sound designers Jamie McElhinney and David Schnirman/Hear No Evil Inc.; and makeup artist Anastasia Durasova. Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, founder of Urban Bush Women, is a choreographic consultant.

For tickets and the full concert schedule, visit StannsWarehouse.org, dial (718) 254-8779 and (866) 811-4111. The new St. Ann’s warehouse is located at 45 Water Street in DUMBO, Brooklyn.


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