Thursday, January 6, 2011

Klaus Nomi Week: "Lightning Strikes"

[Nomi's] vision was naive, quaint, almost foolish, but forceful in its purity and innocence. Even at his most wildly ridiculous ("Lightning Strikes") or quaveringly sublime (Purcell's "Death") there was an acknowledgment of impending apocalypse that lent it conviction. For Klaus, apocalypse was a metaphor for purification, and as the oddball optimist surrounded by cynical detachment and resignation, he dared to believe in a better world.



Klaus was a face - elfin and painted as a Kabuki robot. He was a style - a medieval interpretation of the 21st century via Berlin 1929. He was a voice, almost inhuman in range, from operatic soprano to Prussian general. He was a master performer - a master of theatrical gesture. Above all he was a visionary. He said the future is based on the needs of the artist, deciding how to live and living that way every minute. Klaus, the man from the future, lived that way in the present, and held out his hand saying, "Come with me. You can do it too."