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Steve’s click picks #2

Continuing our weekly listen to (and look at) a few composers and performers that you may not know yet, but should… And can, right here and now, since they’re nice enough to offer a good chunk of listening online:

Andreas Weixler (b. 1963 / Austria)

Composer, media artist and university lecturer, Weixler takes a strong interest in integrating digital and visual elements into his work, often in interactive, fluid situations. The site offers a good sampling of recordings (and some video), whether acoustic, electroacoustic, or multimedia (the last with plenty of description and images as well as sound).

Simon Steen Andersen (b. 1976 / Denmark)

A look at Simon’s site will show you a busy guy: the work list says he’s been extremely prolific, the concert list says a lot of people want to play his stuff, and there’s a half-dozen new works in progress as I write this. Much of what you’ll hear when you click that speaker graphic on his main page is pretty virtuostic, with a love for instrumental high-drama.

Nadia Sirota (b. 1982 / US, NY)

Nadia’s a young violist whose path seems almost ridiculously “fast-track”, throwing herself into as much in the last ten years than most do in two or three times that. Yet she’s never simply given herself over to the big-classics star-route; Nadia seems to be investing just as much energy and real enthusiasm in performing works by her close contemporaries. On her “sounds” page, new work by Ryan Streber, Nico Muhly, Marco Balter, Judd Greenstein and even another Sirota (Robert) stand every bit as proudly beside the Hindemith, Ligeti and Bergsma.

Comments

Comment from Lanier Sammons
Time: October 13, 2006, 12:24 pm

Steve, thanks. This is a nice batch. I’m pleased to see some electronic stuff appear – I think it gets a little underrepresented around here. I also particularly like Marco Balter’s “Ut” on the Sirota page. All around good stuff – glad somebody’s doing this.

Jerry, I think the catergories aren’t working properly – I tried clicking “click picks” to get back to Steve’s first post, but I just got the front page.

Comment from Steve Layton
Time: October 13, 2006, 1:26 pm

There’ll be a lot more electronic (and electroacoustic) links, Lanier. Anybody who knows me knows how much I think that snobby exclusion of electronic from “pure” classical is misguided; electronic and digital are just another group of instrumental resources. Besides, the electronic guys tended embrace the possibilities of the web early on, while the “acoustic” composers dragged their feet.

Another example of how the web truly is a web: I actually found Marco Balter first, and on Myspace of all places! His recording there of Ut is what led me to Nadia’s page.

Comment from Steve Smith
Time: October 13, 2006, 4:30 pm

Steve, thanks for this. I’m an admirer of Nadia’s work, but hadn’t stumbled upon her nicely designed site. Not found on her Sounds page is another Nico Muhly piece, “Keep in Touch,” which includes the sampled voice of singer Antony; it’s on Nico’s new CD, “Speaks Volumes,” and it’s terrific. I look forward to hearing the rest of this.

In case it’s not common knowledge, that “other” Sirota, Robert, is Nadia’s father, the new president of the Manhattan School of Music. Nadia’s also got a viola-playing brother, Jonah, in the Chiara String Quartet.

Comment from Steve Layton
Time: October 15, 2006, 8:25 pm

On a related note, Nadia and her pal Liz Gately have started a blog, drop-dead-simply titled “New Music Blog”, to pass along the word on stuff happening around NYC that looks good to them. All you “locals” might go & take a peek.