UVA Arts, University of Virginia

Vol 01 Fall 14 Library
Photo: Dan Addison
Creative Writing & Music

The Ceiling Floats Away

Former U.S. Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize-winner Rita Dove of the Engliss Department’s Creative Writing Program and IDEA Award-winning composer Matthew Burtner of the Music Department have received a $30,000 Art Works Grant in the New Media presentation category from National Endowment for the Arts grant to create and present “The Ceiling Floats Away.” The piece features Ms. Dove reading her poetry, accompanied by Burtner’s original instrumental and computer music. The work will uniquely engage audiences through the creation of “Nomads,” an original smart phone app designed for the piece that will enable audience members to offer their own sound and text contributions in counterpoint with the composed artwork. “‘The Ceiling Floats Away’ explores creative artwork as a part of living culture,” Burtner said, “a guide for an emergent public artwork. I am absolutely thrilled to be able to set Rita’s words to music, and offer this form of public interaction with her poetry through the Nomads technology.”

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