Tonight at the Magnet: Memphis Symphony Orchestra’s Opus One with DJ Redeye. This one of a kind show will combine a live orchestra with a hip-hop DJ. Has this ever been done before? What will it sound like? Opus One talked with horn player and composer Robert Patterson about the preparation for the show.
Have you ever composed music to be played along with DJ tracks before?
Never. In fact, I did not really even understand the tools that a DJ uses.
Are there any particular challenges that this presents?
Sure: we are shooting in the dark! But I one thing that interested me about the project was smashing two completely different genres together without worrying too much about where the shards land. The biggest challenge may turn out to be handing off from the orchestra to the DJ, because he will have to sync his time to the orchestra, at least initially. One of my jobs was to provide enough time in the orchestra part for this to happen.
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve encountered while working on this project?
I knew that a 21st century DJ is an entirely different animal from those we listened to on AM radio when I was a kid. Getting a closeup look at his gear was really fascinating.
Click over to OpusOneMemphis.org for a glance at tonight’s program, as well as some very cool information about the event and what Opus One is all about. And visit Memphis Symphony Orchestra’s page to donate.