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Nineteen Thirteen's Cello and Drums Sync Together in 'Music for Time Travel'

Doug Seymour

Sometimes all that is needed to create art is a starting point.

The Milwaukee duo of cellist Janet Schiff and drummer Victor DeLorenzo have been performing as Nineteen Thirteen for the last couple of years. But, it wasn't until Schiff was asked to play live cello to accompany a theater piece at Danceworks that the two had the creative inspiration to make an album. 

"It got us into the recording studio making new pieces of music for this [Danceworks] performance," says Schiff.

Their first full-length recording is called Music for Time Travel, and it is layered with a distinctive sound – looping cello lines mixed with various kinds of percussion. 

Since the pieces on the album were originally developed as movement performance accompaniments, the tracks are shorter in length than the average four minute pop song. Nonetheless, DeLorenzo figures that "when we start interpreting this stuff live, we will expand on some of the pieces."

In a live performance, it will also take time for Schiff to build cello loops on her looping pedals. 

DeLorenzo says that the title of the album refers to not solely a Back to the Future scenario, but also to "time travel in a way that one might ponder the loss of a loved one, or thinking about a great moment in one's life, or something to do with traveling without leaving or arriving. [It refers to] traveling through the auspices of one's mind."

The duo will perform on the same bill as the Avett Brothers tomorrow evening at the BMO Harris Pavilion on the lakefront.

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Bonnie North
Bonnie joined WUWM in March 2006 as the Arts Producer of the locally produced weekday magazine program Lake Effect.