The Penguin Cafe Orchestra (PCO) was a collective of performing musicians created by classically trained British guitarist, composer and arranger Simon Jeffes. Jeffes and cellist co-founder Helen Liebmann were core members throughout its life and a number of other musicians joined as the band grew and developed, many of whom appear on the PCO's six studio albums.
The PCO toured extensively during the 1980s and 1990s, and two albums, When in Rome... (1988) and Concert Program (1995) captured the sound of the live ensemble. The Penguin's sound is not easily categorized, but has elements of exuberant folk music and a minimalist aesthetic occasionally reminiscent of composers such as Philip Glass. The Penguin Cafe Orchestra recorded and performed for 24 years until Jeffes died of a brain tumour in 1997.
Famous quotes containing the words penguin, cafe and/or orchestra:
“Give a scientist a problem and he will probably provide a solution; historians and sociologists, by contrast, can offer only opinions. Ask a dozen chemists the composition of an organic compound such as methane, and within a short time all twelve will have come up with the same solution of CH4. Ask, however, a dozen economists or sociologists to provide policies to reduce unemployment or the level of crime and twelve widely differing opinions are likely to be offered.”
—Derek Gjertsen, British scientist, author. Science and Philosophy: Past and Present, ch. 3, Penguin (1989)
“When cafe life thrives, talk is a shared limberness of the mind that improves appetite for conversation: an adequate sentence maker is then made good, a good one excellent, an excellent one extraordinary.”
—Vivian Gornick (b. 1935)
“As the artist
extends his world with
one gratuitous flourisha stroke of white or
a run on the clarinet above the
bass tones of the orchestra ...”
—Denise Levertov (b. 1923)