10 Questions with Robert Honstein

March 20, 2017

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Composer Robert Honstein is in the proverbial hot seat this week for our latest installment of #10Questions. Find out how he survives restaurants with a toddler and why he'd feel at home in a monastery.

What is your profession?

Where do you live?
Jamaica Plain 

What's a cool project you're currently working on?
Working on a new album featuring two big solo pieces of mine: 'Grand Tour' for piano, performed by Karl Larson and 'An Economy of Means' for prepared vibraphone and performed by Doug Perkins. Each piece is about 30 minutes long and kind of epic in sweep and what they demand from the performer. Hoping to have it released this fall or winter!

What's your current favorite Boston bar or restaurant?
Row 34. I have a two-year-old son and sometimes after going to the Children's Museum my wife and I will treat ourselves to some yummy oysters afterward. They also have a ridiculous beer selection. I've learned that you can go to almost any restaurant with a toddler if you get there at 5 PM and leave by 6 PM.

What does it mean to live a creative life?
Show up and do the work. Always be open to new things. Constantly bother your friends and family about titles for your latest piece.

What would your fantasy superpower be and why?
Easy, stop time. I've always wanted this power, like that TV show Out of This World where the girl puts her fingers together and freezes earth-time. I'd use my extra time to do all kinds of things—take a nap, read a few books, find all my lost socks.

What is your favorite #bosarts experience from the last few months (or of all time!)? 
Maria Finkelmeier's "Know No" at the Boston Center for the Arts' Cyclorama. Maria and Masary Studios did an incredible job transforming the Cyclorama into an immersive space full of light and sound. It was awesome to see such an ambitious project supported by the BCA and to see the Cyclorama—which is a gorgeous, unique space—transformed in such a compelling way. 

If you weren't in Boston in 2017, what city and era would you be most at home in?
Pretty sure it would be a monastery circa 12th century. I can get really ascetic and I love routine. I feel like I'd be into making illuminated manuscripts all day with breaks every few hours to sing some organum.

Who would play you in the film (or musical or operatic) adaptation of your life?
I'd rather score the film than actually be in it. I'll let the movie stars play me. I'm fine with that.

Name the next three fascinating #bosarts people we should send these questions to next.
Audrey Harrer, Lilit Hartunian, Shaw Pong Liu

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