Poulenc Trio Collaborates: Animating Trains of Thought

Poulenc Trio Collaborates: Animating Trains of Thought 2016-12-16T11:46:47+00:00

Project Description

What do thoughts look like? How do they sound?

Trains of Thought: Animated is a new collaboration between The Poulenc Trio, composer Viet Cuong and animators Elizabeth and Alden Phelps.

Three years in the making, this new work combines Cuong’s kinetic score and the Phelps’ stunningly beautiful stop-motion animation into a breathtaking live mixed-media experience.

Premiering 2017.

The Poulenc Trio

Plays well with others. Collaboration is the Trio’s favorite way to work. “Musicians should work with artists, and make beautiful things together.”

Composer Viet Cuong

A rising star. Composition fellow at Princeton, currently pursuing his PhD. A composer whose music “leaves you breathless,” according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Animators Elizabeth & Alden Phelps

A dynamic duo. Maryland-based husband and wife visual arts team, whose prolific and diverse output spans puppetry, theater, music and animation.

Thoughts Sound Like This

My goal in writing Trains of Thought was to aurally bring life to the mind’s stream of consciousness. Ideas are usually interconnected in the mind through a cohesive sequence of events, but their journeys and destinations can be unpredictable. In this way, the piece deals with the listener’s expectations and attempts to convincingly manipulate them. As the mind deviates from and returns  to an original idea, the idea’s return is often informed by its travels. References to the exciting kinetic energy of an actual locomotive can be heard. –Viet Cuong

Phenomenal. Trains of Thought is the best new work I’ve heard in years
Jonathan Palevsky, Classical WBJC-FM

And They Look …

Simply Amazing.

Minutes of Music
Days of Production
Frames of Animation

Production Images

In April 2016, The Poulenc Trio visited animators Elizabeth and Alden Phelps at their studio in Maryland to learn about the artists’ process and to give feedback on Trains of Thought: Animated. These production photos were shot during the visit.

Available for 2017

Trains of Thought: Animated will premiere in late 2016, and will be available on Poulenc Trio programs starting  in the 2017-18 concert season. For more information, contact Lisa Sapinkopf at +1 (800) 923-1973.