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R.E.M.'s Mike Mills talks about his new classical concerto, 'Out Of Time' turning 25 and more

Mike Mills, left, and Robert McDuffie

Mike Mills, left, and Robert McDuffie



When Mike Mills and celebrated violinist Robert McDuffie bring their new Concerto for Violin, Rock Band and String Orchestra to the Mahaffey Theater on Friday, you’ll only hear one song by Mills’ old band R.E.M. — a rendition of the 1992 song Nightswimming.

But that doesn’t mean rock fans should feel like outsiders.

“This is a fun show; it’s not a sit-on-your-hands classical concert,” the bassist said in a recent phone interview. “It’s a place where the audience can go and have a good time.”

It’s been five years since R.E.M. broke up, and this is Mills’ biggest solo project since. At the Mahaffey, he’ll be joined by McDuffie, a rock band and a 15-piece string orchestra, playing not just their Concerto but also selections by John Adams and Philip Glass. Mills anticipates there will be some R.E.M. fans in the crowd, but knows that classical music fans — and performers — will get something entirely different out of the experience.

“Especially when we work with the younger players, they really enjoy doing something outside of the canon,” he said. “They really enjoy getting outside the classical world. Bobby’s the rock star, not me.”

Click here for details on their Mahaffey Theater show. And for more with Mike Mills, click here.

[Last modified: Wednesday, October 19, 2016 10:07am]


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