The LFB: How did the Unyfi project come about?
David Lefkowitz: I like to write about concepts and I reflected feelings through music about the last decade. I wanted to create a show based on change; on transformation. On the conscience of humanity and on growth as a society though our own failures and accomplishments. And to inspire the world through music and empower people to break their shells and live more from the heart.
DL: I’ve always liked liked multimedia. I worked with Chris Florio, another professor in the Interactive Media department on several shows. And we did a lot with multimedia – video switching designs and effects live. I wanted to put on an experience and to deliver music in a fresher and new and exciting way that people can relate to – to use multimedia to deliver concepts as Roger Waters did in the Wall.
LFB: What can we expect from the show besides a musical performance?
DL: This show is a musical – It is a real play. It has as much acting in it [as music] and a script with eight characters with different personalities who go about transformation. The band performance is a focus as well – there is an eight piece band including a three piece string section all on stage. I have an artist Franklin Marval at the end of the show doing a live painting to a song. It’s very inspiring. There are some other surprises as well.
DL: I did pretty much everything with the music composition and video. The concept and characters were my own as well as many ideas I wanted to see in the acting.
The script was put together by the Calliope Project Theatre Troupe in the direction of Elizabeth Ramirez and Jon McCargar. It was put together from improvisation during rehearsals. Basically the group built the script from the ideas discussed. The theatre group is highly professional and they added a component to the show that really is the glue of it all and makes this a unique show. The theatre group is the comic relief as well as the component that brings emotion to the audience through the characters and their problems and their ability to see themselves and enter a state of enlightenment. The actors join together and become a powerful positive force in the end which promotes hope for a better society.
LFB: How many hands do you have on deck, so to speak? This seems like the kind of performance that would require a very large crew, let alone performers.
DL: We have a substantial crew. A lighting designer, front of house audio engineer, stage manager, backstage technician, computer operator, video jockey doing visuals on side screens.
DL: There will definitely be a video release. We have video and multitrack audio of the dress rehearsal and it looks amazing!! It is very clean looking and professional. I am very impressed and happy about this project. We will be recording the show twice on Saturday – Once before the show as a run through.
LFB: What’s the long-term goal for Unyfi? Can we expect more performances, or another album?
DL: I’d like this to become a rolling show. Something that we can do on a continual basis – we will need significant financing and turn this into a business model.
LFB: Thanks for taking some time out to chat, David. It’s clear that you’ve got a busy few days ahead. Good luck!
Unyfi: A Rock and Roll Arts Show
With The Calliope Project Theater Troupe
7 Medford St.
Arlington, MA, 02474
Saturday, June 29
$28 ($18 for students) • All Ages • 7:00