ground level, along the water between West Street and the Hudson River
220 Vesey Street, New York City, NY, 10281
A, C to Chambers Street; E to World Trade Center, 2, 3 to Park Place
|7:30PM||Live Music by Akua Dixon Quartet|
|10:15PM||Q&A with director Adam Kahan|
The Case of the Three Sided Dream (Adam Kahan | 87 min.)
A multi-instrumentalist whose music was shaped as much by intense reverie as political zeal, Rahsaan Roland Kirk’s innate virtuosity completely altered the way jazz was perceived, while simultaneously forcing a generation of musicians to rethink their entire approach to playing. Weaving seamlessly between interviews with those who knew Kirk and footage of his stunningly visceral live performances, Adam Kahan’s meticulously crafted documentary explores the legacy of this relentlessly innovative performer.
Blind from infancy, Kirk’s reality was underpinned by an understanding of the world around him, which was rooted primarily in sound. Through communicating sonically with his surroundings, Kirk developed a unique ability to see in music, as everyday items were re-imagined as instruments and each seemingly insignificant noise revealed its own rhythm and cadence. It was in dreams that Rahsaan Roland Kirk’s most brilliant visions—such as playing multiple horns at once—would often be granted. Quoted many times as claiming to belong to the ‘Religion of Dreams’, Kirk’s playing, while somehow otherworldly in its inimitable dexterity at the same time came to embody those dreams, in the same way as his instruments became extensions of his own body.
Interspersed with interpretive animation sequences which mirror the quixotic ethereality of Kirk’s music, Three Sided Dream provides a poignantly realized account of a musician who despite being blind and paralyzed from the age of forty, remained unwavering in his commitment to exploring the contours of the sonic landscape until the day he died.
Regardless of whether you are familiar with the music of Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Three Sided Dream is a fascinating documentary which deftly encapsulates the music in all its raucous dynamism, attesting to the energy which emanated from his every note. Prior to the screening Rooftop is also delighted to present a special live jazz performance.