Archive for the “Concert Announcement” Category
The Los Angeles Master Chorale (LAMC) continues its epic 50th Anniversary Season with a heartfelt two-part tribute to National Medal of Arts recipient Morten Lauridsen, the choir’s Composer In Residence from 1995 to 2001, the composer most closely associated with the renowned chorus and the most frequently performed American choral composer in modern history. The tribute begins with an exclusive screening of the award-winning documentary film “Shining Night: A Portrait of Composer Morten Lauridsen” and post-screening conversation with Lauridsen, film director Michael Stillwater and LAMC Music Director Grant Gershon on Friday, March 14, 2014, 8 pm, at the historic Alex Theatre in Glendale. The tribute concludes with the Chorale’s highly anticipated all-Lauridsen concert featuring some of his most well known works conducted by Gershon with one work accompanied by composer himself on piano on Sunday, March 16, 2014, 7 pm, at Walt Disney Concert Hall. Lauridsen has been hailed for composing “radiantly beautiful music,” (Wall St. Journal) with “freshness and an affecting emotional pull to it that explains its popularity with singers and audiences across the pond” (Daily Telegraph).
The concert repertoire reflects the extremely fruitful relationship between the composer and the Chorale, which produced such sublime Lauridsen “hits” as O Magnum Mysterium and Lux Aeterna, resulting in the Chorale’s Grammy®-nominated best-selling recording Lux Aeterna (RCM 1998). The Chorale performs O Magnum Mysterium as well as such Lauridsen gems as Mid-Winter Songs, Ave Dulcissima Maria, Canticle/O Vos Omnes, Nocturnes, Madrigali and Les Chansons des Roses.
“Shining Night: A Portrait of Composer Morten Lauridsen” documents this LA-based living legend who spends summers composing on the remote Waldron Island in the Pacific Northwest, and features intimate interviews with him in California, Scotland and Washington, interwoven with performances of his masterworks and commentaries by music contemporaries. Revealed through the lens of his passion for nature and music, Lauridsen expresses a presence of fierce compassion and unwavering dedication to the craft of composition. Winner of two Best Documentary awards and an Audience Choice Award, the film was praised as ‘a heartening rarity’ by Terry Teachout of the Wall Street Journal.
Concert tickets ($29-$129) and film tickets ($15) are available at www.lamc.org or (213) 972-7282. The Walt Disney Concert Hall is located at 111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012. The Alex Theatre is located at 216 North Brand Boulevard, Glendale, CA 91203.
The World Premiere of John Bilotta’s Song of the Hermit Thrush, for soprano, flute, oboe, violin, viola, and cello will be given by soprano Sarita Cannon and the Divisa Ensemble on Saturday, February 22 – 8:00pm at Lucie Stern Ballroom, 1305 Middlefield Road in Palo Alto, California, as part of the NACUSA-SF Composers & Friends concert.
This work for soprano and five instruments was commissioned by videographer Nancy Bogen as part of her new work featuring Russell Oberlin reading Walt Whitman’s When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d.
Other West Coast composers on the February 22 program are Anne Baldwin, Greg Steinke, Karl Schmidt, Paul Rosas, Simon Bokman, and Sondra Clark.
Admission is $17 general and $12 students/seniors. For tickets and more information, call 408-293-2765 or visit http://www.nacusasf.org/.
John Bilotta’s works have been performed by soloists and ensembles around the world. He co-directs, with Brian Bice and Davide Verotta, San Francisco’s annual Festival of Contemporary Music. Visit him at http://www.johnbilotta.com/.
Nancy Bogen was the founder and Artistic Director of The Lark Ascending, a mixed-media performance organization. She is creating a growing catalog of videos, including Textur, based on the music of Austrian composer Katerina Klement, available for viewing at http://vimeo.com/14526527. More about her at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nancy_Bogen.
Maya Beiser’s All Vows
Maya Beiser, cello
Films by Bill Morrison
Music by Michael Gordon, Michael Harrison, Glenn Kotche, David T. Little, Mohammed Fairouz, Evan Ziporyn, Led Zeppelin, Nirvana, Janis Joplin, and Howlin Wolf
March 21 & 22, 2014 at 8pm
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Forum
701 Mission Street | San Francisco, CA
Tickets: $30 in Advance / $35 at the Door Student, Senior, Teacher: $25 in Advance / $30 at the Door YBCA Members: $25; YBCA:You FREE at 415.978.ARTS or www.ybca.org
Watch Maya’s new NPR Tiny Desk Concert featuring music from All Vows:http://bit.ly/NPRTinyDeskMaya Maya Beiser online: www.mayabeiser.com
San Francisco, CA — Cellist Maya Beiser brings her newest production, All Vows, to the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (701 Mission Street) on March 21 and 22, 2014 at 8pm. Featuring performances by Maya with drummer Glenn Kotche and bassist Ryan Brown, All Vows explores the dichotomy between the physical, external world we inhabit and the inner landscape of our secret selves. It includes the Bay Area premieres of Michael Gordon‘s All Vows and Michael Harrison‘s Just Ancient Loops, both with original film by Bill Morrison, as well as world premieres by Glenn Kotche, David T. Little, Mohammed Fairouz, and new arrangements by Evan Ziporyn. [Jherek Bischoff will not be performing, as previously announced.] The first half of All Vows begins with a carefully curated set of “uncovers” crafted by Evan Ziporyn. Maya goes deep inside music by Led Zeppelin, Nirvana, Janis Joplin, and Howlin Wolf to reveal the core of each song as a musical masterpiece – a totem of our collective consciousness forged by our shared, popular culture. Composer and drummer Glenn Kotche of Wilco contributes Three Parts Wisdom, a rhythmic and multilayered new work written for Maya that shifts between solo cello and solo cello with multiple pre-recorded cello tracks, evoking the experience of the individual alone and as part of a collective. Composer David T. Little, also a drummer and well-known for his dramatic classical and operatic compositions, has written Hellhound for Maya, a new work based on legendary bluesman Robert Johnson’s 1937 song Hellhound On My Trail, which tells the story of a man pursued by demons, unable to rest. The second half of All Vows delves into our inherent desire for ritual and meaning, and begins with Arab-American composer Mohammed Fairouz’s new Kol Nidrei for cello and prerecorded sounds, in which the full text is sung in Aramaic and also engages echos of ancient cantorial styles. Michael Gordon’s All Vows takes theKol Nidrei as its starting point, and reimagines it entirely. Gordon’s All Vows is paired with original film by acclaimed artist Bill Morrison, who uses archival footage, chemical process, and animation to create a stunning visual tapestry that illustrates, in Morrison’s words, “the implication of an unknowable future as reflected through a dissolving historical document.” Tsmindao Ghmerto (Holy God), arranged by Evan Ziporyn, is based on a 13th century Sanctus from the orthodox Georgian Liturgy. In Ziporyn’s arrangement, Maya’s voice and the voice of her cello weave a double helix of sanctity and intimacy. The text, sung in Hebrew, is Maya’s own adaptation of a poem by the Israeli poet Yehuda Amichai. Composer Michael Harrison’s Just Ancient Loops, with a film by Morrison that presents a unique view of the heavens, unveils every aspect of the cello – from its most glorious and mysterious harmonics to earthy, rhythmic pizzicatos – all utilizing “just intonation,” an ancient tuning system in which the distances between notes are based upon whole number ratios. Throughout her adventurous and versatile career, Maya Beiser has redefined the concert experience, creating music that transcends genres with large sonic and visual canvases. The Boston Globe declares, “With virtuoso chops, rock-star charisma, and an appetite for pushing her instrument to the edge of avant-garde adventurousness, Maya Beiser is the post-modern diva of the cello.” New Yorkmagazine writes, “Beiser in not the sort of musician who zigzags around the planet playing catalog music for polite and sleepy audiences. She throws down a gauntlet in every program.” Maya has conceived, performed and produced her critically acclaimed multimedia concerts, including World To Come, which premiered as part of the inaugural season of Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall; Almost Human, a collaboration with visual artist Shirin Neshat; and Provenance, which forms the basis of her best selling album. Top New York critics have consistently chosen her Carnegie Hall concerts on their “Best Of The Year” lists. Maya’s last production, Elsewhere: a CelloOpera, premiered in October 2012 at Carolina Performing Arts followed by a sold-out run at the BAM Next Wave Festival. Elsewhere is an imaginative retelling of the Biblical legend of Lot’s wife, created by Maya with director Robert Woodruff. About Maya Beiser: Raised in the Galilee Mountains in Israel, surrounded with the music and rituals of Jews, Muslims, and Christians, while studying classical cello repertoire, Maya has dedicated her work to reinventing solo cello performance in the mainstream classical arena. A featured performer on the world’s most prestigious stages, Maya has appeared as soloist at the Sydney Opera House, New York’s Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall and BAM, London’s Barbican, Royal Albert Hall, and South Bank Center, and the World Expo in Nagoya, Japan. She has collaborated with artists across a wide range of musical styles, including Brian Eno, Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Tan Dun, James Newton Howard and Carter Burwell, among many others. In 2011, Maya was invited to present at the exclusive TED conference. Her TEDtalk performance has been watched by close to one million people and translated to 32 languages. In summer 2013, she was a featured guest alongside such luminaries as Yoko Ono, Marina Abramović, Isabella Rossellini, and Shirin Neshat at ICASTICA 2013, an international festival celebrating women artists working in all artistic fields in Arezzo, Italy. Highlights of Maya Beiser’s recent US tours include performances at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Royce Hall in Los Angeles, Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, Mondavi Performing Arts Center, Ravinia Festival in Chicago, Celebrity Series in Boston and International Festival of Arts and Ideas in New Haven. Other recent performances include major venues and festivals in Barcelona, Paris, Amsterdam, Torino, Tokyo, Taipei, Athens, Mexico City and Bogota. She has appeared with many of the world’s top orchestras performing new works for the cello including the St. Paul Camber Orchestra, Montreal Symphony, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Sydney Symphony, China Philharmonic, and Shanghai Philharmonic among many others. Maya’s vast discography, released on Sony Classical, Nonesuch, Koch (now E1) Innova and Cantaloupe labels, include five solo albums and many studio recordings and film music collaborations. Her 2010 album Provenance topped the classical and world music charts on both Amazon and iTunes. Maya’s latest recording, Time Loops, was selected among NPR’s top 10 recordings of 2012. Collaborating with renowned film composer James Newton Howard, Maya is the featured soloist on several film’s soundtracks including M. Night Shyamalan’s The Happening, Denzel Washington’s The Great Debaters, Edward Zwick’s Blood Diamond, Rupert Sanders’ Snow White and the Huntsman and M. Night Shyamalan’s After Earth. Maya Beiser is a graduate of Yale University. Her major teachers were Aldo Parisot, Uzi Weizel, Alexander Schneider, and Isaac Stern. Maya was the founding cellist of the new music ensemble, the Bang on a Can All-Stars. She is managed by Opus 3 Artists. Maya can be found on Twitter, tweeting as @cellogoddess, a moniker bestowed upon her by The New Yorker.www.mayabeiser.com
Featuring the World Premiere of George Tsontakis’ String Quartet No. 6
Inspired by Schubert’sString Quartet No.15 in G Major
and Webern’s Langsamersatz and Five Movements for String Quartet
“artistry of uncommon insight & cohesion” – Gramophone
2014 marks the 15th Anniversary of the Cypress String Quartet (“artistry of uncommon insight and cohesion,” Gramophone) presenting Call & Response in the SF Bay Area — 15 years of expanding the chamber music repertoire and inspiring the imaginations of audiences young and old. This year’s Call & Response features the world premiere of award-winning composer George Tsontakis’ String Quartet No. 6, performed alongside the works that inspired it: Schubert’s seminal String Quartet No.15 in G Major and two masterpieces by Webern, his ultra-romantic Langsamersatzand the contrasting Five Movements for String Quartet. A pre-concert talk with George Tsontakis will begin at 7:15pm.
This is the second time George Tsontakis has been commissioned by the Cypress Quartet through the ensemble’s Call & Response program. Tsontakis wrote hisString Quartet No. 5 for the group in 2005, in response to Beethoven’s Late Quartets. It was the first quartet Tsontakis had composed in 20 years, and is written in memory of composer George Rochberg, who died in 2005.
Of his String Quartet No. 6, Tsontakis says, “Even though my sixth quartet was composed seven years after my fifth, can I help but make a degree of my response a reaction to the call of my own fifth quartet? My sixth mirrors my fifth in many ways, but at the same time progresses from it. Most notably, the sixth has truly fast music. In the second part of the sixth, “Blaze,” the gently flowing sixteenth-note patterns of a major second of the fifth quartet now become the driving force of the tautly-wound texture – a relentless scherzo of sorts but always liquid and flowing, as in the treatment in the fifth.”
Through its signature Call & Response program the Cypress Quartet commissions and premieres new string quartets from both emerging and celebrated composers, asking them to write in response to established chamber repertoire. Call & Response creates a dynamic dialogue between the past and present, between performers and composers, and among audiences of all ages. The Cypress Quartet’s annual Call & Response concert has earned a strong West Coast following; the major concert is preceded by performances throughout the Bay Area in community centers, unorthodox spaces, and schools. Since its inception in 2000, Call & Response has reached more than 25,000 Bay Area residents.
As Tsontakis puts it, “The Cypress’ tenacious support of and interest in procuring living music – in the form of living composers – keeps the continued line of concert music both vital and consequential.”
This year, the Cypress will give free, preview performances for the Bay Area community at the Berkeley Public Library on February 27 at 12pm and at the San Francisco Community Music Center on March 1 at 11am. For details visitwww.cypressquartet.com/special-projects/call-response
Friday, March 14, 2014 at 8pm
Marines Memorial Theatre | 609 Sutter St. | San Francisco, CA
Preferred Seating: $45 advance/$50 door | General Seating: $35 advance/$40 door | Seniors $20 / Students $15
www.cypressquartet.com/special-projects/call-response or 415.392.4400
Opera newcomers will thrill to the captivating music of this beloved work by Georges Bizet, featuring the alluring Gypsy girl Carmen, the Spanish soldier who loves her and the brave bullfighter who wins her heart.
Created from San Francisco Opera’s performance of Carmen for Families in 2011, this one hour movie is a wonderful first opera experience. The performance is in English, with English subtitles and is recommended for ages 10 and up.
Advance registration is not required. Seating will be first-come, first-served.
For more information, visit www.sfopera.com/familymovies.
Alex Treger, Music Director of American Youth Symphony
Ukranian-born piano sensation Valentina Lisitsa – heralded for performances of “unexpected depth” (Baltimore Sun) and one of the world’s most watched classical musicians with more than 62 million YouTube views – makes her American Youth Symphony (AYS) debut to perform Rachmaninoff’s scintillating Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini at the orchestra’s “Springtime in Paris Gala,” which includes a free concert on Sunday, March 9, 2013, 6 pm, at UCLA’s Royce Hall, followed at 8 pm by an optional fundraising soirée and bistro dinner to benefit AYS. Music Director Alexander Treger, currently in his 16th season leading AYS, also conducts Gershwin’s beloved An American in Paris, Adam Schoenberg’s Up!, an uplifting fanfare commissioned by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and debuted in 2010, and Ravel’s brooding but captivating La Valse. The 106-member American Youth Symphony, noted for its innovative programming and inspiring performances, is attending the post-concert gala as well.
Lisitsa is considered the first classical music “YouTube star” to have converted her Internet success into a global concert career in the principal venues of Europe, the USA, South America and Asia. That success, which also includes an exclusive recording contract with Decca, is the direct result of the recognition she received when viewers flocked to the Internet to watch a collection of hundreds of videos of her practicing piano that she posted on YouTube in an effort to jumpstart a once floundering career. Decca and others in the classical music industry took notice of her impassioned playing and extremely large following, which led to the reinvigoration of her career.
“Valentina Lisitsa is a remarkable talent whose playing resonates deeply with both live and YouTube audiences,” says Treger. “We are very pleased to present her in her American Youth Symphony debut.”
AYS has trained more than 2,300 musicians since it was founded, and many of its alumni hold principal positions with the world’s top orchestras, the Chicago Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic and San Francisco Symphony, among them. Additionally, AYS’s free concert series, which has drawn more than a quarter of a million people to the Royce Hall since its inception, provides vital music outreach to the community.
AYS’s 2013/14 season wraps with “The Alumni Project,” where AYS musicians share a stand with celebrated alumni to perform Strauss’ An Alpine Symphony. This season finale also features gifted young violinist Nigel Armstrong, a finalist in the 2011 Tchaikovsky International Competition and former AYS Concertmaster.
Reservations are recommended but not required for the American Youth Symphony’s free concert at Royce Hall, but tickets for the post-concert fundraising gala, which begin at $500 per person, must be reserved in advance. Royce Hall is located on the campus of UCLA at 10745 Dickson Plaza in Westwood, CA, 90095. For more information, please call (310) 470-2332 or log on to www.AYSymphony.org.
North/South Consonance, Inc. continues its 34th season of free-admission concerts this Sunday afternoon February 16 when banjo virtuoso Ken Perlman joins conductor Max Lifchitz and the Grammy nominated North/South Chamber Orchestra for the premiere of Harold Schiffman’s Banjo Concerto.
The multigenerational program — part of the Composers Now Festival — honors Schiffman on the occasion of his 85th birthday while also featuring first performances of works by younger American composers including Brian Wilbur Grundstrom, Joseph Rubinstein, William Toutant and John Winsor.
The concert will take place at the intimate and acoustically superior auditorium of Christ & St Stephen’s Church (120 West 69th St – bet Bway & Columbus) on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. It will start at 3 PM and end at 4:45 PM. No tickets necessary.
ABOUT THE PERFORMERS
Hailed as “the Heifetz of the Banjo” Ken Perlman is the acknowledged master of the 5-string banjo. The Glasgow (UK) Herald noted: “Perlman can make his instrument do more or less anything he wants it to” as his pioneering claw-hammer style picking helps spotlight the power and expressiveness of the wide range of music he performs. Perlman has toured across North America, Great Britain, Ireland, Western Europe and Australia. An acclaimed teacher of folk-music instrumental skills, Perlman has authored widely respected banjo and guitar instruction books and has been on staff at prestigious teaching festivals around the world.
Active as composer, pianist and conductor, Max Lifchitz was awarded first prize in the 1976 International Gaudeamus Competition for Performers of Twentieth Century Music held in Holland. Robert Commanday, writing for The San Francisco Chronicle described him as “a young composer of brilliant imagination and a stunning, ultra-sensitive pianist.” The New York Times music critic Allan Kozinn praised Mr. Lifchitz for his “clean, measured and sensitive performances” while Anthony Tommasini remarked that he “conducted a strong performance.” Payton MacDonald writing for the American Record Guide remarked:”Mr. Lifchitz is as good on the podium as he is behind the piano.”
ABOUT THE COMPOSERS
Harold Schiffman (b. 1928 in North Carolina) has been described by the international press as “a most distinguished composer whose well-crafted and communicative music repays repeated hearings.” He taught composition at Florida State University from 1959 until 1983 and also directed that institution’s New Music Festival. Especially written for Ken Perlman, Schiffman’s three-movement Banjo Concerto is cast in a traditional fast-slow-fast pattern. Inspired by Appalachian’s melodies, the work’s musical language recalls Baroque-era lute music while offering the soloist ample opportunity for technical display.
Brian Wilbur Grundstrom was honored with the 2013 Washington DC Outstanding Emerging Artist. He studied at the Gettysburg Conservatory and also attended the ASCAP/NYU Buddy Baker Film Music Workshop. His musical style has been described as “innovative in its use of melody and harmony which, although firmly rooted in the tonal tradition, is entirely new.” Chenonceau was written last summer after the composer visited the magnificent French castle in the Loire Valley known for the formal elegance and beauty of its gardens.
Active as tenor and composer, Joseph Rubinstein (b. 1986) studied at Columbia University and The Juilliard School before winning the 2012 Brian Israel Prize and a fellowship from America Opera Projects. His music is concerned with dramatic narrative and storytelling while being defined by vivid musical characterizations and striking juxtapositions. Shebesh Variations is a set of variations fashioned around an original Jewish-tune. Taking its cue from the meaning of the Yiddish word shebesh — something from the past that is buried or forgotten – the piece is an attempt to portray how sprawling, cosmopolitan East European cities of today have slowly grown up and around the remnants of old settlements from the past.”
Long time Los Angeles resident, William Toutant is the writer and host of “The KCSN Opera House” and also served as the Executive Director of the Romanian American Music Days Festival in Constanta, Romania. His works have been performed in Mexico, Nicaragua, France, Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic, Spain, and Romania. Written especially for the occasion, Toutant’s Administrative Suite is a series of musical impressions or “memories” of the many years the composer served as Dean of the Mike Curb College of Arts, Media and Communication at California State University, Northridge. Eccentric, Nostalgic and Bureaucratic are the titles of the three movements.
Active as clarinetist and composer, John Winsor has taught at the Armed Forces School of Music and the Virginia Governor’s School for the Arts. Winsor won the Delius Award twice; has received several commissions from the Virginia Music Teachers Association; and also collected the 2000 Film Scoring Competition prize. The Faerie Queen is a fairly calm and atmospheric piece which is intended to evoke the impression of fairies flitting about. It employs pleasant instrumental colors and structural transparency resembling the music of Ravel and Debussy.
ABOUT NORTH/SOUTH CONSONANCE
Since its inception in 1980, North/South Consonance has brought to the attention of the New York City public over 1,000 recent works by composers hailing from throughout the Americas and elsewhere and representing a wide spectrum of aesthetic views. It activities are made possible in part, with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.
For the complete concert series schedule please visit
To stream, download and/or purchase the more than 60 compact discs released under the North/South Recordings label please go to
To learn about North/South Consonance’s Call for Scores go to
Joelle Wallach’s The Firefighter’s Prayer will be presented by Voces Intimae as part of their Texas Lekka! Roundup of Texas Art Song Composers concert on Sunday, February 16 – 3:00 PM at Zion Lutheran Church, 6121 E. Lovers Lane (at Stillman) in Dallas. Lekka is South African slang meaning “to promote your nation’s exceptional talent.”
Joelle writes about The Firefighter’s Prayer, “On the windshields of fire trucks and firehouse windows around the United States, copies of the traditional “Firefighter’s Prayer” are glued. For generations, its traditional words have had personal meaning to firefighters across the continent, a core of faith for lives built on daily acts of bravery and heroism. Touched by the traditional words, I found a melody hidden inside the prayer, built on elements of Irish folksongs of loss and longing.” Read her complete notes and hear a recording of the song at http://www.joellewallach.com/firefighter_solo.html.
Other composers on the program are Simon Sargon, Francis Osentowski, Robert Rodriguez and Margaret Barrett. More about Texas Lekka! at http://www2.vocesintimae.org/concert-previews.html.
General admission to the February 16 event is $20, Seniors $15 and students free. For more information, call 214-478-7847 or visit http://www2.vocesintimae.org/.
Joelle Wallach served as Composer in the Metropolis as part of her Con-Edison Music in the Metropolis Composer Residency at New York City’s Turtle Bay Music School for most of Fall 2013. The 4Tay label has released two CDs of her music – The Door Standing Open – a collection of songs and chamber works (CD 4034) and The Nightwatch – more songs and solo piano works. More about her at http://www.joellewallach.com.
Frankenstein: Of Monsters and Men, a major new oratorio with powerful themes of rejection, misunderstanding and regret composed by 100 high school students from downtown Los Angeles’ Ramón C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts and based on Mary Shelley’s classic 1818 novel, is being premiere by the students in conjunction with the Los Angeles Master Chorale Chamber Singers, instrumentalists and soloists in free matinee and evening performances on Thursday, February 20, 2014, at noon, and Friday, February 21, and 7 pm, at the high school’s main auditorium. (Ample free on-site parking is available.) Compelling arias and rousing choruses tell the dark gothic tale of the eccentric scientist Victor Frankenstein, who creates a grotesque monster during a laboratory experiment, and then, horrified by the result, regrets giving life to the creature he just made. The students composed the melodies and lyrics for the oratorio, which is told in several musical movements. The performances are the culmination of the Los Angeles Master Chorale’s award-winning “Voices Within” artists-in-residence program, designed to foster collaboration among students to create and perform their own original choral works.
Shelley’s novel, written when she was only 21 years old, resonates with students on a variety of levels. For the oratorio, students have focused on Shelley’s theme of being outcast as their libretto portrays the tale of a lonely creature shunned by his creator and misunderstood and feared by everyone else.
The 9th through 12th grade students worked closely over a 20-week period with the guidance and mentorship of singer Alice Kirwan Murray, lyricist Doug Cooney and composer Jonathan Beard, as well as their own choir teachers, Desiree Fowler and Stormy Sacks. They learned how to adapt a classic work of literature, write a libretto based on the adaptation and create the melodies and harmonic structure for each movement of the oratorio. They also learned techniques for capturing the “voice” of the characters and how to propel the momentum of the plot and paint the mood of a scene. After the work was completed, students auditioned for feature roles and received vocal coaching to prepare for the culmination performance. This is the fourth year LAMC has offered its “Voices Within” program at the school.
An oratorio is an extended musical composition with a text dramatic in character for solo voices, chorus and orchestra, performed with minimal action, costume and scenery. Complex and sophisticated musical works, they challenge even season composers, making the student’s accomplishments particularly noteworthy.
This massive undertaking is an extension of the Los Angeles Master Chorale’s award-winning music education program, “Voices Within,” which was originally designed to teach fifth graders collaborative and compositional skills by composing and performing their own original songs and has engaged over 25,000 children and created over 350 original songs since its launch in 2001.
Encouraged by previous successful collaborations involving elementary and middle school students, and with the support of the California Arts Council’s Artists-in-School Program, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, and the National Endowment for the Arts, the Los Angeles Master Chorale adapted the “Voices Within” curriculum to address the advanced maturity of high school students, specifically choral students at the new visual and performing arts high school in downtown LA.
The concert is free, and seating is first come, first served. Cortines High School for Visual and Performing Arts is located at 450 N. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Campus parking is free (enter on Cesar Chavez Avenue).
The Fire Pink Trio will present Women of Note!, a concert of music by women for harp, flute and viola on Saturday, February 15 at 7:30 PM in Watson Hall of University of North Carolina School of the Arts, 1533 South Main St. in Winston-Salem. This will be part of the music@watson concert series.
The Trio will present Trio in 4 Movements by Libby Larsen, Lullaby for 3 by Adrienne Albert, St. Nicholas Suite by Krinio Papastavrou and From the Song of Amergin by Hilary Tann.
Tickets are $15/$13 students. For more information, call 336-721-1945 or visit http://www.uncsa.edu/.
The Trio, consisting of Jacquelyn Bartlett, harpist, Sheila Browne, violist and Debra Reuter-Pivetta, flutist came together in 2008. More about them at http://firepinktrio.com/.