Of Mind, Medicine and Music
Friday, March 6, 2009 : 3:00pm
Health Sciences Campus
Admission is free.
Antonio Damasio and composer Bruce Adolphe present their neuroscience-inspired musical work Memories of a Possible Future.
The piece was composed by Bruce Adolphe, based on passages from Damasio’s book Descartes’ Error. To create it, Adolphe drew his compositional procedures from Damasio’s description of memory in Descartes’ Error, using note groupings and harmonies as “convergence zones” in which melodic musical fragments are reconstituted rather than developed or varied in a conventional sense. The work was premiered at Lincoln Center in 2003.
Damasio and Adolphe, together with musicians from the USC Thornton School of Music, will present this moving and provocative work in a symposium and performance.
This year, Damasio and Adolphe collaborated to produce Self Comes to Mind, which will be premiered by Yo-Yo Ma at the American Museum of Natural History in New York on May 3.
Antonio Damasio is the director of the USC College’s Brain and Creativity Institute. His groundbreaking work on the neurobiology of mind and behavior, emotion and creativity is some of the most exciting research currently taking place in the field of neuroscience. His research has helped to elucidate the neural basis for emotions and has shown that emotions play a central role in social cognition and decision-making. Damasio’s work has also had a major influence on the current understanding of the neural systems that underlie memory, language and consciousness.
Bruce Adolphe has composed music for many renowned musicians and ensembles, including Itzhak Perlman, Sylvia McNair, the Brentano String Quartet, the Beaux Arts Trio and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. In addition, Adolphe is resident lecturer and director of family concerts for the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, keyboard quizmaster on American Public Media’s Piano Puzzler and founder and creative director of The Learning Maestros, an education company. The author of three books on music, Adolphe has taught at Yale, Juilliard and New York University.
The lecture will be followed by a reception in the Hoyt Gallery.
This event will be presented as part of the Medical Humanities, Arts and Ethics series. Additional events include The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, a lecture by Anne Fadiman on Monday, January 12, and “Trust No One”… or, How One Surgeon Actually Learned To Trust, a lecture by Pauline Chen on Friday, January 23.
Organized by Pamela Schaff (Pediatrics and Keck Educational Affairs), Erin Quinn (Family Medicine and Keck Admissions), Hilary Schor (English and Law) and Peter Crookes (Surgery), and co-sponsored by the Keck School of Medicine’s Program in Medical Humanities, Arts, and Ethics and the USC Pacific Center for Health Policy and Ethics.