For Immediate Release
September 13, 2023


Williamstown, Massachusetts—On Saturday, September 30 at 4 pm, the Clark Art Institute hosts a concert by the BlackBox Ensemble on its Fernández Terrace, located by its Reflecting Pool. The Sound of Space Between Us is a site-specific performance connecting sound and movement through physical space. 

In this performance, the Clark’s grounds are used as a meeting place for music and dance to converse about our public place in the ecosystem and our private paths with(in) it. The musicians are choreographic agents, responding to each other, the dancers, and the audience in real time while stationed around the space, whether working as parts in a predetermined map or improvising as a unit. The performance features work by Annie Nikunen, Meg Stuart, Anna Thorvaldsdottir, Dai Fujikura, Morton Feldman, and inti figgis-vizueta, with choreography by Annie Nikunen and Joelle Antonia Santiago. The Sound of Space Between Us was conceived and curated by Annie Nikunen (flutist of BlackBox Ensemble) and Leonard Bopp (Artistic Director of BlackBox Ensemble). 

Nikunen and Bopp maintain strong connections to the regional area. Bopp grew up in Albany and attended Williams College, and both Bopp and Nikunen studied at the Tanglewood Music Center (Lenox, Massachusetts) this past summer—Nikunen as a composition fellow, and Bopp in the Conducting Seminar.

Founded in 2018, the BlackBox Ensemble is a collective of young contemporary music performers based in New York dedicated to exploring the experimental boundaries of the music of our time. The group’s performance at the Clark kicks off their ambitious 2023–24 season, with major performances slated in New York and beyond, including touring engagements in Washington, DC, Florida, Michigan, and throughout the Northeast. The BlackBox Ensemble aims to present contemporary classical music in a format that is approachable, innovative, and impactful.

Referred to as the " flute player in NY” by The Observer, Nikunen is a New York-based multidisciplinary sound-movement artist, drawing from both sound and movement in her process and combining them in her practice. As a composer, flutist, choreographer, dancer, curator, and radio broadcaster, she uses physical space as a vector and vessel to invite dialogue between ear, eye, and body. As an Artist Ambassador for Creatives Care, Nikunen applies her passion for these subjects, creating communities where artists feel connected and heard. Nikunen studied composition at New York University and previously studied music at Barnard College and Columbia University—where she also studied contemporary flute performance at the Manhattan School of Music with Tara O’Connor.

Bopp is a New York-based conductor and trumpet player. After graduating from The Juilliard School Pre-College Division (where he studied trumpet with Raymond Mase), Bopp attended Williams College and the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre, and Dance (where he studied with Kenneth Kiesler). In the summer of 2022, Bopp was selected as a recipient of the American Austrian Foundation/Faber Young Conductors Fellowship at the Salzburg Festival. In addition to his work with the BlackBox Ensemble, Bopp is the chamber orchestra conductor at the Kaufman Music Center’s Face the Music program.

Santiago is a New York-based artist whose work straddles dance, performance, and film. A Fulbright Scholar and recipient of the Harriet Hale-Woolley Award for the Arts (Paris), Santiago has presented collaborative and solo work at the New York University (NYU) Tisch School for the Arts, International Studio and Curatorial Program, and Columbia University Ballet Collaborative Workshop. Santiago directs the NYU Tisch School of the Arts Summer High School Dance program and has guest lectured at the Peabody Conservatory at Johns Hopkins University. Santiago studied at the Barnard College of Columbia University.

Free. Bring a picnic and your own seating. Rain moves the performance to October 1 at 4 pm. For more information, visit

The Clark Art Institute, located in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts, is one of a small number of institutions globally that is both an art museum and a center for research, critical discussion, and higher education in the visual arts. Opened in 1955, the Clark houses exceptional European and American paintings and sculpture, extensive collections of master prints and drawings, English silver, and early photography. Acting as convener through its Research and Academic Program, the Clark gathers an international community of scholars to participate in a lively program of conferences, colloquia, and workshops on topics of vital importance to the visual arts. The Clark library, consisting of some 300,000 volumes, is one of the nation’s premier art history libraries. The Clark also houses and co-sponsors the Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art.

The Clark, which has a three-star rating in the Michelin Green Guide, is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Its 140-acre campus includes miles of hiking and walking trails through woodlands and meadows, providing an exceptional experience of art in nature. Galleries are open 10 am to 5 pm Tuesday through Sunday, from September through June, and daily in July and August. Admission is free January through March and is $20 from March through December; admission is free year-round for Clark members, all visitors age 21 and under, and students with a valid student ID. Free admission is also available through several programs, including First Sundays Free; a local library pass program; and EBT Card to Culture. For information on these programs and more, visit or call 413 458 2303.

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