In advance of her HBO special Heart of a Dog (previously) premiering on April 24, the amazing Laurie Anderson appeared on Late Night With Stephen Colbert and performed a beautifully discordant song for a small group of dogs. A bit earlier in the show, Anderson spoke about the project and how she came up with the idea with renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma while they were both waiting backstage at a graduation.
I started out doing it because I was giving a speech, and I was backstage in the green room. It was super boring and I’m wearing that, you know, mortar board thing. It was supposed to be a commencement speech and I was feeling really guilty because I was supposed to tell all of these artists– don’t worry about your student loan, you’re going to wipe that out right away. And the cellist Yo-Yo Ma there and because it was going on and on for hours, I said I have this fantasy when I’m doing a concert, I look out and the whole audience is dogs. And he said, ‘I have that fantasy too’. I said, ‘really? And now whoever gets to do it first invites the other one.’ So actually, I invited him to come tonight but he was busy. He’s busier than i am.