Plastic Flowers (2001-04)

Plastic Flowers is a song cycle that I composed for my ensemble “Jason Cady & The Artificials.”  The music and lyrics explore themes of absence, negation, and the trajectory from art to artifice to artificiality.  By “artificiality” I refer not only to synthetic timbres and digital editing, but also to formalist approaches toward composition.

Plastic Flowers is dedicated to Jessica Pavone.  It premiered July 15, 2005 at Tonic in New York City.

“Issued on Jessica Pavone’s Peacock Imprint, Jason Cady’s one-act opera Post-Madonna Prima Donna is Mauricio Kagel meets Jeff Springer The Opera. To what extent Cady’s piece is intended as a commentary on the former Mrs Ritchie is kept, perhaps, deliberately vague. But a glitzy surface turns in on itself as the lone singer (Deanna Neil) starts to sing about the technicalities of the music she’s singing — musical material becoming more important than the Material Girl — tells its own story. And a pattern emerges: Plastic Flowers is a song cycle obsessed with artificiality, while Odi Et Amo is a reinvention of the Baroque cantata. Thoughtful satire, sharp composition.”

— Philip Clark, The Wire