Soldier Songs at Prototype

David T. Little’s opera Dog Days got a lot of buzz for its 2012 production in Montclair, NJ. Little’s 2006 opera Soldier Songs will be presented tonight through 1/18 as part of the Prototype showcase of recent operas.

Brooklyn Vegan has an interview with Little here. Also check out the embedded video trailer below.

 

PROTOTYPE Festival 2013 – David T. Little’s Soldier Songs from PROTOTYPE Festival on Vimeo.

Thursday: Beck plays Wuorinen at the Stone

Steven Beck.Photograph: (C) Beowulf Sheehan

Steven Beck.
Photograph: (C) Beowulf Sheehan

Charles Wuorinen is not only a formidable composer; he’s also a talented pianist. I remember well his playing during composition lessons I took with him at Rutgers: always up to tempo with nary a note dropped. Although his piano music is frequently quite challenging, it is also gratifying to play. Thus it is not surprising that estimable artists such as Garrick Ohlsson, Marilyn Nonken, and Alan Feinberg have championed his work. In recent years, Steven Beck has become another persuasive advocate on behalf of the composer. This Thursday at the Stone in downtown NYC, Beck will perform an all Wuorinen concert consisting mostly of solo works (cellist Jay Campbell guests on the duo Orbicle of Jasp).

Event Details
Steven Beck plays the music of Charles Wuorinen
January 10 at 8 PM
The Stone
Corner of Avenue C and 2nd Street
NYC
$10

Program

Orbicle of Jasp (1999) (with Jay Campbell, cello)
Bagatelle (1988)
Etude (for Chords and Dynamic Balance) (2011) – American premiere*
Capriccio (1981)
Josquin: Ave Christe (1988)
Haroun Piano Book (2009)

* commissioned by the Busoni Piano Competition

 

Friday: Nono CD Release Party

Miranda Cuckson and Christopher Burns originally planned to celebrate the release of their latest CD, a recording of Luigi Nono’s “la lontananza nostalgica utopica futura” back in November. After Storm Sandy, the formal release was pushed back to January. In the interim, the NY Times named it one of 2012′s best CDs and we added an excerpt of the recording to our “Favorite Things 2012″ Mix.

Tonight, at long last, Miranda and Chris get to properly celebrate the Nono disc, performing it tonight (Friday) and Saturday at Spectrum. In addition, listeners will get to hear a demonstration of the 5.1 surround version of the recording and another work by Burns. Details below.

Event Details

Date and time: Friday, January 4, 2012, *7 PM
Place: Spectrum
121 Ludlow Street, Second Floor, New York, NY
Tickets: $15 general/$10 students and seniors

–Live performance by Miranda and Chris of Leggii 3 and 4 from “la lontananza nostalgica utopica futura”

–Demo of the recording featuring Richard Warp’s realizations of the electronics in 5.1 channel surround sound

–Miranda performs Chris’ composition “come ricordi come sogni come echi: six
studies on Nono’s ‘la lontananza nostalgica utopica futura’ for solo violin”

–Open forum with the artists

 

Date and time: Saturday, January 5, 2012, *7 PM

Place: Spectrum
121 Ludlow Street, Second Floor, New York, NY
Tickets: $15 general/$10 students and seniors

–Miranda Cuckson and Chris Burns perform Dai Fujikura’s “prism spectra” for viola and live surround electronics, which they are recording for an upcoming CD

–Chris Burns presents his own compositions: “Opalescence”, a glockenspiel solo performed by Trevor Saint, and “Xenoglossia” for live electronics

–Richard Warp demonstrates his new brain-computer spatialization interface

 

12/21: AME prepares for the “End of the World”

According to Mayan reckoning and eschatology, Friday, December 21st, 2012 will be the end of the world. Many of us hope that Mayan prognosticating proves overly pessimistic. But American Modern Ensemble and Talujon aren’t taking any chances. At 8 PM EST, they’re ringing in doomsday with a concert of clarion percussion works and other modern chamber music at the DiMenna Center in New York.

Below, check out program details and a video for Robert Paterson’s “Stealing Thunder,” one of the pieces on the program.

Program:

Daniel Iglesia – Hard Square
percussion quartet
Hannah Lash – Glockenliebe*
percussion quartet
Eric Nathan – Four to One
string quartet
Robert Paterson – Stealing Thunder**
percussion sextet & tape
George Rochberg – Contra Mortem et Tempus
flute, clarinet, violin, piano
Daniel Wohl – Slow Wave
percussion quartet

*World Premiere / **NYC Premiere
On-stage discussion with Selected Composers

Friday, December 21st, 2012, 8 PM
DiMenna Center – Cary Hall
450 West 37th Street, New York, NY
Ticket info here

(Re)New Amsterdam: an Interview with Doyle Armbrust

As many of you know, during Storm Sandy New Amsterdam Presents and New Amsterdam Records’s headquarters in Red Hook, Brooklyn was decimated by flooding. Ever since, the label’s staff, led by co-directors William Brittelle, Judd Greenstein, and Sarah Kirkland Snider, have been working on rebuilding. Not only have they been concerned with their own business, but the community minded folks at New Amsterdam have also been advocating for aid to help their neighborhood in Red Hook.

New Amsterdam’s plight hasn’t gone unnoticed by the broader new music community. And not just in New York. On December 16th, Chicago musicians are presenting (Re)New Amsterdam (ticket info here), a benefit to raise money for the organization. One of the concert’s organizers, Doyle Armbrust, violist, writer, and curator of the (Un)Familiar Music Series at Chicago’s Empty Bottle, spoke with Sequenza 21 about the show.

Christian Carey: Hi Doyle. Thanks for taking the time to tell us about the upcoming benefit for New Amsterdam Records. How did the idea emerge for musicians to give a concert in Chicago to help out a record label that’s based in Red Hook, Brooklyn?

 

Doyle Armbrust: The idea for a New Amsterdam fundraiser came from the generous brain of Marcos Balter, whose scores have been recorded on the New Am label. This year, I’ve launched a new-music series, (Un)familiar Music, with the sole purposes of artist advocacy and breaking the new-music scene out of the concert hall setting. With its policies of allowing artists to retain the rights to their music as well as 80% of an album’s proceeds, the philosophies of New Am and (Un)familiar are wonderfully congruous. It was an obvious fit as Marcos and I saw it. Much more important than all of that, though, the Chicago new-music scene is a far more collaborative than competitive one. We believe in this often quixotic and illusory career path, and specifically the music being written today, and when we hear that our colleagues in another state are suffering, our hearts break. I moved back to Chicago after living in Los Angeles and Miami in large part because I missed this compassionate spirit of my home city. I’m grateful that the passionate response by the new-music community here has proved the point for me once again.

 

 

CC: How did you go about assembling the artists putting on the show? Which groups are participating?

 

DA: Once we secured the date with The Empty Bottle, (Un)familiar’s home base, calls and emails went out to just about every new-music ensemble in Chicago…and just about every new-music in ensemble immediately agreed to play. In some cases we have members of ensembles performing solo works, or smaller chamber pieces, due to availability and the size of the venue, but the program is an absolute knockout. Performers include: Abominable Twitch / Access Contemporary Music / Can I Get An Amen / Chicago Q Ensemble / CUBE / Dojo / Eighth Blackbird / Ensemble Dal Niente / Ensemble Vulpine Lupin / Fifth House Ensemble / Fulcrum Point / Gaudete Brass / Grant Wallace Band / Searchl1te / Spektral Quartet / Third Coast Percussion.

 

 

CC: Was there a collaborative or thematic aspect to selecting the program? Any highlights among the selections you’d like to preview for us?

DA: When programming (Un)familiar shows, my aim is to have the ensembles perform whatever they are most amped about. Marcos and I have continued that trend here, and I’m happy to report there will be no filler anywhere in this 4-hour show. I can’t possibly pick a most-anticipated entry, because the setlists are so dynamite. That said, as a Beat Furrer fanatic, I’m looking forward to hearing Ensemble Vulpine Lupin (a recent addition to the Chicago family) dig into “Invocation VI” and because this is a Cage year, I can’t wait to see Third Coast Percussion destroy with “Third Construction.”

CC: Any chance that the concert will be recorded?

WFMT will be recording the concert.

CC: What ways would you suggest non-Chicagoans help New Amsterdam and others affected by Storm Sandy?

 

DA: I wouldn’t presume to tell folks specifically how to donate, but I will say that I did have a wrestling match in my cranium over the often fraught issue of aid. There will always be someone in more dire need of assistance, as there is in the case of now-homeless victims of Sandy. I can also return from a record-buying binge and realize that someone won’t eat today, but I HAD to have that Harry Partch first-pressing. It’s a constant hypocrisy that most of us deal with on a daily basis. In the case of this event, I see an opportunity to help in some small way fellow musicians with whom I share similar artistic struggles. I have resources to magnify that aid, through my series and the generosity of my friends here in Chicago. We can rally together and throw a monster of a concert that people will excitedly pay to come witness. Together, through this incredible music we’ve dedicated our lives to championing, we can effect some tiny degree of relief.

 

 

12/10 Premiere at Connecticut College

Monday, December 10
Percussion and New Music Concert.
Peter Jarvis, director
7:00 pm Evans Hall
Tickets $5; Students & Seniors $3, free to CC Students, Staff & Faculty

Program includes works by Elliott Carter, John Cage, David Saperstein, Gene Pritsker, and James Romig.

Program Note: Fuller Brush Music - Christian Carey

Fuller Brush Music for drum set is an etude for playing with brushes and for playing in a prevailingly soft dynamic range. The performer employs various brushes and dampening techniques to balance the kit for this more delicate sound world. Commissioned by Calabrese Brothers Music, it is dedicated to Peter Jarvis.

Composed 2010 in South Amboy, NJ and New York, NY.

 - Christian Carey


12/14: Aeolian Chamber Players celebrate 50th Anniversary

On December 14, Aeolian Chamber Players celebrates its fiftieth anniversary of music making at Symphony Space. (Tickets and more info here.) A longtime commissioner of new works, ACP found it fitting to celebrate with another commission: Huang Ruo’s Two Shades. It will be heard alongside other 20/21 pieces from their repertoire by Ralph Shapey, William Bolcom, George Crumb, Luciano Berio, and others.

 

Monday: Jenny Q Chai gives Stroppa lecture recital

Dissecting Stroppa

On Monday December 3rd, pianist Jenny Q Chai is giving her DMA lecture recital at my old stomping grounds: Manhattan School of Music. Chai has become a persuasive advocate for a wide range of repertoire, but, after meeting him in Darmstadt some five years ago, the piano music of Marco Stroppa has become one of her keenest passions. Her lecture recital, which she plans to give in a lab coat (!), will focus on Stroppa’s Innige Cavatina. Below, check out a recording of the work from Jenny’s SoundCloud.

Saturday: Tallis Scholars at St. Mary’s (Concerts)

Tonight I’m covering the Tallis Scholars, who are performing “Masterpieces for Double Choir” at the Church of St. Mary the Virgin as part of Miller Theatre’s early music series. Selections include works by Lassus, Vivanco, Arvo Pärt (I’m interested to hear the Tallis Scholars sing this composer’s work!), and Praetorius. Below here a sample of their rendition of the latter’s “In Dulci Jubilo.”

 

Event Details
Saturday, December 1, 2012
8:00 PM
Church of St. Mary the Virgin (145 W. 46th Street)

To order tickets online: click here