BACH'S 333 1/3 BIRTHDAY with Oracle Hysterical

Spectrum Underground & Glenn Cornett present a lineup of crazy good musicians remixing Bach on the old guy's 333 1/3 birthday. Oracle (me, Brad Balliett, and Elliot Cole) team up with Hub New Music members Mike Avitabile and Jesse Christenson, to GET THIS PARTY STARTED. There will be vocoders & multiphonics.

Friday, August 24, 2018
7:00pm Oracle + Hub set
8:00-10pm Whole lotta other amazing people
70 Flushing Ave, Garage A, Brooklyn

Majel Connery: The Debut Record

I'm launching a Kickstarter to help fund my first SOLO album. Having spent a year and a half creating the songs on this record, and much longer finding the balls to do it, it’s been humbling, it’s been exhilarating. It’s been a frigging education. AND I AM NEARLY THERE! I’m so happy I could cry. If you like my music, please consider donating! Holy crap I need help! http://kck.st/2Ky3IMq

2018
Radiolab "Gonads" series

June 15 - July 26, 2018

Along with my co-composer, Alex Overington, I was SO HONORED to write and perform wrote the "Gonads" theme song, plus a bunch of other ditties ("Ballad of the Fish," and "Ballad of Daniel Webster"), for this phenomenal series about sex, gender, the biology of reproduction, and the ways those terms simply cannot describe the subtlety or complexity of these things in 2018. Produced by Molly Webster.

Hae Voces at Chapel of the Chimes

June 21, 2018
Thursday, 5:00-9:00pm
4499 Piedmont Ave, Oakland, CA 94611

Violn/voice duo Hae Voces -- Majel Connery and Kristina Dutton -- first met playing at the extraordinary annual Garden of Memory event in 2017. Hosted by Bay Area legend, Sarah Cahill, they are delighted to appear there again in 2018! We'll be playing the whole time in the Chapel of Tenderness. Come find us! Everything you need to know on the New Music Bay Area FB page and tix available here.

Radiolab Live: Sex Ed!

May 16, 2018
Wednesday, 7:30pm
Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, NYU

Radiolab producer Molly Webster and some amazing special guests wrestle with the nature of sex, and also take a crack at responding to the intimate questions you asked in high school but probably never got a straight answer to, like: what is an orgasm and how do I get one? How do I know if I’m gay? Why do people make those sounds when they have sex? How do I masturbate? What is cunnilingus? Am I normal?

TICKETS

Hae Voces at Kala Institute

June 1 & 2, 2018
Friday and Saturday, 8:00pm
1060 Heinz Ave, Berkeley, CA 94710

Hae Voces presents "Rapoport Remembered," a posthumous collaboration with visual artist Sonya Rapoport. sonyarapoport.org/hae-voces Listen here. Tickets here.

Hae Voces presented by Metropolis Ensemble, 1 Rivington, NYC

June 14, 2018
Friday, 8:00pm
1 Rivington Street, 2nd Floor, Buzzer #1, NYC 10002

Violn/voice duo Hae Voces -- Majel Connery and Kristina Dutton -- appears for the first time in NYC with a new EP. Listen to Hae Voces here.

Hae Voces presented by Spectrum Underground

June 15, 2018
Saturday, 8:00pm
70 Flushing Ave, Garage A, Brooklyn NY 11205

Violn/voice duo Hae Voces -- Majel Connery and Kristina Dutton -- appears for the first time in Brooklyn, NY with a new EP. Listen [here][9].

[9]: https://haevoces.bandcamp.com/"Hecuba" Pre-Release at Princeton University

May 6, 2018
Sunday, 5:00pm
Taplin Auditorium, Fine Hall, Princeton University

Hecuba, a concept album based on the original play by Euripides, is Oracle Hysterical's sophomore album on National Sawdust Tracks (formerly Vision Into Art). The live concert of the album is followed by a talkback moderated by Professors of Classics Brooke Holmes and Joshua Billings. This concert is generously sponsored by the Depts. of Classics and Music at Princeton University.

More information here.

"Hecuba" Concert & Release Party: National Sawdust

May 13, 2018
Sunday, 8:00pm
80 N. 6th St, Brooklyn NY 11249

Oracle Hysterical's sophomore album, HECUBA, drops on National Sawdust Tracks (formerly Vision Into Art) this spring. Join us for a live concert of the full album.

Purchase tickets here.

A New English Grammar with Jeff Dolven and David Scher

April 7, 2018
Friday, 8:00pm
Spectrum Underground, 70 Flushing St., Garage A, Brooklyn 10002

New English Grammar is a multimedia performance based on the eponymous poem cycle by Jeff Dolven, and created in concert with painter David Scher. A workshop premiere involving live music, narration and improvisation takes place at Spectrum (Brooklyn) this spring. Dolven is a poet and professor of English at Princeton; Scher is a painter based in Brooklyn.

2017
"Hecuba" Toledo Museum of Art, OH

September 23, 2017
Saturday, 8:30pm
2445 Monroe St, Toledo, OH 43620

Tickets Here
"Hecuba is both a live concert and an art-rock concept album, based on Euripides' Trojan War tragedy of love, loss, murder, and revenge. “The project folds classic text into a modern sound world; we call it ‘psychedelic electro-acoustic,’” says Doug Balliett, founding member of Oracle Hysterical. “The opportunity to perform this album in conjunction with The Berlin Painter and in a theater inspired by a Greek agora really spoke to us.”



Recording session at Oktaven Audio


Oracle Hysterical & A Far Cry**

October 6, 2017

We're recording and filming Oracle Hysterical's New Music USA project from 2016!

Project: The Sea: Tales of Lapham
Collaborator: A Far Cry
Location: Oktaven Audio



Concert Artists Guild competition

October 12, 2017

Oracle Hysterical competes at the annual Concert Artist Guild Competition.

KQED Women to Watch

August 23, 2017, 7:30pm
Public Works
161 Erie St., San Francisco

A performance featuring KQED Arts’ Women to Watch, a series celebrating 20 local women artists, creatives and makers who are pushing boundaries in 2017. Driven by passion for their own disciplines, from photography to comedy and every other medium in between, these women are true vanguards paving the way in their respective communities.

"Majel Connery has achieved the practically impossible: she makes contemporary opera feel both accessible and hip."

Tickets here. Read the article.

14-Person Poem

June 4, 2017
Whitney Biennial

A performance curated by Jeff Dolven for Asad Raza's "Guest Weekend." Part of the Root Sequence. Mother tongue installation. Learn more here.

Passionate Pilgrim Deluxe Release

June 3, 2017
National Sawdust, 80 North 6th St, Brooklyn, NY

Early music group New Vintage Baroque joins Oracle Hysterical to celebrate the release of Passionate Pilgrim Deluxe album (VIA Records), headlined by the debut of five original songs by composer Majel Connery (deemed “thoroughly Schubertian” by Allan Kozinn, Wall Street Journal). NVB and OH will also perform freshly-minted re-orchestrations by Timo Andres of Benjamin Britten’s Folksong Arrangements for baroque band (featuring tenor Owen McIntosh) and Elliot Cole’s striking living-room opera, Babinagar, based on a folktale from Afghanistan.



Mainline Music presents Oracle Hysterical

May 13, 2017
Starline Social Club, 645 W. Grand Ave., Oakland CA

NYC-based Oracle Hysterical unfurls a trio of chamber pop works co-authored and -performed by the four musician-composers Elliot Cole, Majel Connery, Doug Balliett and Brad Balliett. The program showcases Oracle Hysterical's distinctive alchemy: literary classics paired with musical influences ranging from John Blow to the Beatles to My Brightest Diamond.

The concert presents Doug Balliett's sinister “Cleopatra” cantata (based on the writings of the ancient historian Suetonius); Elliot Cole's song cycle,"Babinigar" (on an ancient Afghani folktale about a snake king and his human bride); Brad Balliett's concerto for solo bassoon, "In Triple Time." Led by conductor Stephen Prutsman, Oracle Hysterical is joined by a local ensemble of classical virtuosi including Jeff Anderle (clarinet), Kyle Bruckmann (oboe), Jill Heinke (flute), Meena Bhasin (viola), Owen Dalby (violin), Robert Howard (cello), Nick Woodbury (percussion), Jennifer Ellis (harp) and Anne Rainwater (piano).

Read the review.

"Contriving the Chimes" by Caroline Shaw

APRIL 21, 2017 BUY TICKETS

In a first-time collaboration, Mohr Visiting Artist Majel Connery and the St. Lawrence String Quartet partner with the Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Caroline Shaw and famed opera director Christopher Alden to present a workshop staging of Shaw’s latest commission, the vocal quintet Contriving the Chimes. Based on Isaac Newton’s “Before Whitsunday 1662,” Shaw’s work for voice and string quartet sets to music a list of sins penned by a boyish 19-year-old Newton. Shaw’s playful, seemingly improvised textures offer a cheeky counterpoint to Newton’s earnest confessions. Together with a song cycle by Doug Balliett, August is also cruel, Shaw’s work appears for the first time in a workshop staging by Alden.

POST-SHOW DISCUSSION. The evening concludes with a panel conversation led by dramaturg and University of Chicago professor David J. Levin.



"Aeolus" with Ken Ueno and Thomas Tsang

APRIL 7, 2017

AEOLUS is a new opera combining throat singing, multiphonics, indie-rock and electronics making its premiere at National Sawdust. It is written and performed by Ken Ueno (Rome and Berlin Prizes winner) in collaboration with FLUX Quartet (“legendary for its furiously committed, untiring performances,” Alex Ross), and the “haunting, Björk-like vocals” (SF Classical Voice) of Majel Connery. AEOLUS is inspired by the mythological keeper of the winds, Aeolus, from the Odyssey. In the classic tale, wind shapes human destiny. In the opera, wind, reinterpreted as breath, is a compositional tool. AEOLUS charts Ueno’s personal odyssey, linking impressionistic scenes from memories, found objects and literary fragments from the composer’s past. Musically, the opera juxtaposes “arias” by Ueno and Connery; virtuosic, voiceless passages by FLUX; and meditative textual interludes.



Wellesley College
Mellon Visiting Artist Residency


with Ken Ueno and Thomas Tsang

April 6, 2017

April 2-7 Ueno, Connery and Tsang are at Wellesley College under the auspices of a Mellon Visiting Artist residency at the Newhouse Center to present a musical preview of Ueno's new opera, Aeolus, on campus. The residency concludes with a performance at Jewett Auditorium featuring the FLUX Quartet.

Passionate Pilgrim


album release

Janurary 21, 2017

Oracle Hysterical's, "Passionate Pilgrim," drops on the National Sawdust label, Vision Into Art, on Feb 10, 2017. Join us for a concert and release party at National Sawdust, January 21. “The Passionate Pilgrim” is a song cycle co-written by composer-performer collective Oracle Hysterical (Elliot Cole, Majel Connery and Doug and Brad Balliett). In this collaboration with baroque period ensemble, New Vintage Baroque, “The Passionate Pilgrim” brings an all-but-forgotten poem cycle back to life. Once believed to have been penned by a “W. Shakespeare,” the collection was stripped of its stature when the Shakespearean parentage of all but four poems was revealed as a fake. Here, finally, this orphaned cycle enjoys new pride of place, reimagined as tuneful Baroque pop. The album’s instrumentation includes a mix of Baroque and modern instruments pitched at 415 and 440 hz, respectively. Get the album on iTunes!

2016
The Sea: Tales of Lapham


Commissioned by and performed with A Far Cry
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston 25 Evans Way, Boston, 2115, MA

October 6

The Sea is an evening-length symphonic song cycle inspired by the literary magazine, Lapham’s Quarterly. It is commissioned by and performed with Grammy-nominated A Far Cry. Using Lapham’s “The Sea” issue as eclectic libretto, Oracle Hysterical weaves music from texts by history’s greatest seafarers, explorers, and aquatic fabulists, from Shakespeare to Homer, and John Donne to the Book of Jonah.

The Sea premiered in Boston at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum where Grammy-winning A Far Cry has served as ensemble in residence since 2010. Before its Boston debut, The Sea received preview performances at Spectrum (NYC); Joslyn Art Museum (Omaha); and MANA Contemporary/High Concept Labs (Chicago). This project is supported by a grant from New Music USA. (Woot!)

Learn more.