Alonzo King ballet set to sounds of nature for San Francisco performance

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Bernie Krause of Glen Ellen, who has made a career of recording natural sounds, has found a new outlet for his art.

Krause collaborated with choreographer Alonzo King and composer Richard Blackford to create a new dance piece, which will have its world premiere in San Francisco in April.

The Alonzo King LINES Ballet will perform the untitled piece April 3-12 at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.

Krause, 76, has spent more than four decades traveling around the world, building an archive of over 4,500 hours of field recordings of 15,000 species in their natural habitats.

He worked as a studio guitarist in the late 1950s and performed with the folk group The Weavers in the 1960s. He and musical partner Paul Beaver pioneered the use of the synthesizer in popular music in the late ‘60s.

Blackford and Krause collaborated previously to produce a 30-minute symphony, “The Great Animal Orchestra: Symphony for Orchestra and Wild Soundscapes,” featuring the 70-piece BBC National Orchestra of Wales and incorporating recorded natural sounds. Krause is also the author of the book “The Great Animal Orchestra: Finding the Origins of Music in the World’s Wild Places,” published in 2012.

The Alonzo King LINES Ballet spring season also will feature the return of King’s Concerto for Two Violins, with the Philharmonia Baroque Chamber Players performing live.

Ticket prices run from $30 to $65. A gala performance April 11 will star Grammy Award-winning singer Lisa Fischer, featured in the film “Twenty Feet from Stardom,” with tickets priced at $600.

Information: 415-978-2787,

You can reach staff writer Dan Taylor at 521-5243 or Read his Arts blog at

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