The Academy in Peril and Jocularity: Bill Murray, Jan Vogler and Friends live in Philly

Bill Murray, Jan Vogler & Friends: New Worlds at Kimmel Center | photo by John Vettese

The current theory behind all things “Bill Murray” is to expect the unexpected of the 67-year-old lion of comedy. Murray hangs out with Scandinavian students in Scotland and washes dishes. Murray visits Austin during South by Southwest and hits up house parties. Murray sends wild rice to a Charleston restaurant table filled with women with the caveat, “Don’t gobble it.” Murray crashes an engagement party and gets his photo taken with the betrotheds. Murray pops up at Oscar’s Tavern in Rittenhouse Square on leave from his son’s wedding. How odd then could a chamber-devised album (New Worlds) of recitations of the writings Ernest Hemingway, Walt Whitman and Mark Twain teamed with the compositions of Stephen Foster, George Gershwin and Leonard Bernstein be within that framework? Or a live performance art concert of those same musical moments at a damn-near-sold-out Academy of Music with forlorn cellist Jan Vogler, vexing violinist Mira Wang and prancing pianist Vanessa Perez? Continue reading →


Bill Murray, Jan Vogler and Friends bring New Worlds collaboration to The Kimmel this April

Bill Murray, Jan Vogler | photo by Peter Rigaud

A lady that was born in Venezuela, a lady that was born in communist China, a man that was born in communist East Berlin, and a fella from around Chicago walk into a studio. No, this isn’t the beginning of a Bill Murray joke, but rather a Bill Murray collaboration project between all the aforementioned characters.

A project born out of curiosity for each other’s crafts, Bill Murray, Jan Vogler, & Friends joined forces to record the 13-track album, New Worlds, which the group is now touring behind. Raised on opposite ends of the globe, Murray and Vogler build this transatlantic connector to showcase core American values through literature and music. Continue reading →