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Brian Butler with Kenneth Anger and other musicians, live score for The Dove and The Serpent, LA><ART ANNEX, Hollywood, May 25, 2011

Posted in reviews and commentary with tags , , , , , , on June 7, 2011 by Carol Cheh

Los Angeles’ long history of fascination and experimentation with alternative religions and the occult never seems to stop manifesting in latter-day fragments of cultural production. Following right on the heels of Anna Mayer’s intimate generative fire (which in turn followed a performance by magician and interdisciplinary artist Derek Del Gaudio at LA><ART ANNEX, which I missed) was this highly anticipated musical set by Brian Butler and his friend Kenneth Anger, both of whom have a well-known allegiance to mystical practices.

I once saw Anger speak at a Cinefamily screening of occult films that came out of LA. Following a viewing of Wormwood Star, a poetic portrayal of artist and occultist Marjorie Cameron, he briefly described how he had lived as Cameron’s slave, sleeping faithfully on the floor next to her bed. He was deviously compelling, having the air about him of someone who had been profoundly re-adjusted by his life experiences. A deeply influential filmmaker and one of the key figures in LA’s underground history, Anger is of course nothing short of a living legend, and I talked to many people at this performance who had excitedly come out just to see him.

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