Composer Peter Boyer developed “Ellis Island: The Dream of America” back in 2001 to celebrate the American Immigrant experience using historical photo montages, monologues based on immigrant stories, and original symphonic orchestration.
Emulating the Art of a Symphony
In 2018, our team was brought on to elevate the artistry of projected images for a broadcasted performance on ‘PBS Great Performances.’ The show alternates between orchestra-focused interludes and monologues of immigrant stories expressed by actors on stage. The canvas for our projection design was a 72’ curved screen fixed over the orchestra.
Working in the Abstract
We conceptualized using abstract paintings during spoken word segments, providing a tonal expression and backdrop to the immigrant’s journey. Paint techniques and surface materials were chosen to reflect on each story being told.
During musical interludes, we developed thematic montages using historical photos from the Ellis Island Museum. Each montage incorporates a surface material from its corresponding abstract painting, achieving a cohesive experience for the audience from beginning to end.
A POETIC Finale
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
- Emma Lazarus
(Pedestal of the Statue of Liberty)