Skip to main content

Perspectives: Gabriel Kahane & Caroline Shaw: Hexagons

Perspectives: Gabriel Kahane & Caroline Shaw: Hexagons


Perspectives: Gabriel Kahane & Caroline Shaw: Hexagons

Gabriel Kahane and Caroline Shaw present their new work inspired by the magical realism of Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges’s 1939 short story, “The Library of Babel.” 

Caroline Shaw is a musician who moves among roles, genres, and mediums, trying to imagine a world of sound that has never been heard before but has always existed. She is the recipient of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in Music, several Grammy awards, an honorary doctorate from Yale, and a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship. She has worked with a range of artists including Rosalía, Renée Fleming, and Yo Yo Ma, and she has contributed music to films and tv series including Fleishman is in Trouble, Bombshell, Yellowjackets, Maid, Dark, and Beyonce’s Homecoming. Her favorite color is yellow, and her favorite smell is rosemary.

Gabriel Kahane is a musician and storyteller whose work increasingly exists at the intersection of art and social practice. Hailed as “one of the finest songwriters of the day” by The New Yorker, he is known to haunt basement rock clubs and august concert halls alike, where you’ll likely find him in the green room, double-fisting coffee, and a book.

He has released five albums as a singer-songwriter including his most recent LP Magnificent Bird (Nonesuch Records), hailed by the San Francisco Chronicle as “a gorgeous, intimate collection of musical snapshots.” As a composer, he has been commissioned by many of America’s leading arts institutions, including the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Carnegie Hall, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and the Public Theater, which in 2012 presented his musical February House.

A frequent collaborator across a range of musical communities, Gabriel has worked with an array of artists including Paul Simon, Sufjan Stevens, Andrew Bird, Phoebe Bridgers, Caroline Shaw, and Chris Thile. In 2019, Kahane was named the inaugural Creative Chair for the Oregon Symphony. Kahane relocated with his family to Portland, Oregon in March of 2020. Their freakishly self-possessed cat, Roscoe Greebletron Jones III, when not under investigation for securities fraud, continues his fruitless attempts to monetize his Instagram account.

American composer Caroline Shaw invites songwriter Gabriel Kahane for a duo concert that bridges worlds and aesthetics.

On their collaboration, Gabriel Kahane writes:
"Caroline Shaw and I began working together in 2011, when she was a member of ACME and played several gigs as a violinist on shows of mine. But it’s been primarily in the last few years that our musical relationship has deepened. I’ve learned from Caroline to embrace (further) the side of myself that is emotionally direct. That quality is, perhaps, what I admire most in Caroline: she is always herself in everything she writes. Caro and I plan to organize our collaborative piece around Jorge Luis Borges’ 1939 short story, “The Library of Babel,” a text which has long fascinated both of us. I imagine we will also dip into the repertoire, finding ways to shift from piano and violin repertoire to, say, songs for the two of us accompanied by OP-1 synthesizers or violin loops. Making those sound worlds elide will be the pleasure and challenge of this project."

Presented by NCH

Book Now
Tuesday 11 Mar 2025
The Studio

10% discount for Friends of NCH
10% discount for Groups of 10 or more

Share this event
Facebook twitter


Other Concerts in the Perspectives Series