"sounds like no other music"—Miami Herald | "spectacular, profoundly contemporary"—Gramophone | "magnificent"—Fanfare | "breathtaking, spellbinding"—Philadelphia Inquirer | "profoundly direct emotional appeal"—Audiophile Audition | "almost preternaturally beautiful"—Philadelphia City Paper
I’m so happy to report that The Same Stream, the new choir formed by Westminster’s James Jordan, has chosen a work of mine to be on their inaugural recording. “The Stars Shine,” the last movement of The Consolation of Apollo, is included on The Same Stream. It’s an honor to be included with music by Thomas LaVoy and Cortlandt Matthews.
Here’s a promo for the release:
The wonderful English sound engineer Andrew Mellor is part of the recording team on this. Release date is December 28th, and you can pre-order here.
James Jordan heard The Crossing’s premiere of The Consolation of Apollo and immediately programmed “The Stars Shine” with his Westminster Williamson Voices, then brought it over to The Same Stream for this project. Thank you to James Jordan, and thank you to The Same Stream choir… and thank you to Donald Nally and The Crossing!
The Baroque/New music group Mélomanie is featured in the current Chamber Music America magazine, coinciding with the release of their new CD Excursions. The CD includes my work for them, The Nobility of Women (with guest-artist Priscilla Herreid), and the article includes a bit of an interview with me about working with them. (I liked working with them.)
Check out the article (click on the picture), and check out the CD. In addition to Nobility there’s lots of wonderful music by my colleagues Ingrid Arauco, Jennifer Margaret Barker, Sergio Roberto de Oliveira, and Roberto Pace.
The Brazilian composer Sergio Roberto de Oliveira, holding the poster for Mélomanie‘s concert in Rio de Janeiro on November 22nd, during the international four-day festival Compositores de Hoje. I was honored to meet Sergio in Wilmington at our release party for Excursions. My chamber work The Nobility of Women is on the CD, along with terrific music by Sergio, Ingrid Arauco, Jennifer Margaret Barker, Mark Hagerty, and Roberto Pace. It’s being explained to me how my name is pronounced in Portuguese!
Stories of suffering and joy define our culture on Now Is the Time, Sunday, June 30th at 10 pm. Elena Ruehr’s Averno sets the poetry of Pulitzer-winning Louise Glück, the 2003–04 U.S. Poet Laureate. The door to the underworld in Roman myth is at Lake Averno or Avernus (left). Averno the cantata explores cycles of death and growth in the story of Demeter’s daughter Persephone and her abduction by Hades.
Chelm in Poland is the venue for countless tales of Jewish humor, such as the man who leaves for a new city, gets turned around during the night, and walks back to his hometown thinking it’s a new place. There are three sections to Sages of Chelm by Matthew H. Fields; we’ll have time to hear the last. Following I. Khutzpah and II. Tsores (“Troubles”), we’ll listen to the happy resolution in Simchas, which means “Joy.”
It’s a monument of contemporary solo piano literature on Now Is the Time, Sunday, June 23rd at 10 pm. Frederic Rzewski’s The People United Will Never Be Defeated is a staggering set of 36 variations on a Chilean folk song for solo piano.
Beginning with a simple statement, Rzewski weaves a complicated scheme of penumbras of the tune. Some are complicated, some are bluntly simple. For all its interweavings, the work grows into a musical edifice that is frankly gorgeous. Nicolas Slonimsky calls Rzewski (a virtuoso pianist as well as composer) “a granitically overpowering piano technician, capable of depositing huge boulders of sonoristic material across the keyboard without actually wrecking the instrument.” This is music that must be met.
from Frederic Rzewski: The People United Will Never Be Defeated
It’s surprising remembrance on Now Is the Time, Sunday, June 16th at 10 pm. In her Cantata da Requiem, World War II Poems of Peace, Gloria Coates gathers unlikely texts—including a BBC 1942 weather report—into a haunting cry.
Philip Blackburn remixes Robert Moran’s 9/11 memorial Trinity Requiem, combining the shards of that beautiful piece into something new and lovely, Requiem for a Requiem.
David Chesky’s Psalm III for string orchestra hints at resurrection, and the Quartet No. 3 of Philip Glass, a memorial to the Japanese author Yukio Mishima and originally for string quartet, is made new in the liquid playing of the Oasis Saxophone Quartet.
It’s all movement and angles on Now Is the Time, Sunday, June 9th at 10 pm. Sergio Cervetti’s two harpsichord pieces Candombe and Alberada spin and dance, while Elizabeth Brown’s chamber work Liguria bends deliciously (she’s also the flutist).
Another composer/performer is the Philadelphia area’s Steve Bowman, whose electronic Odd Angle of the Isle is mixed down from live club dates (no sequencers! no multi-tracking!). Steven Winteregg imagines an orchestral bullet train speeding through France with a brisk TGV, but David Evan Thomas’s Thrum nudges the Minneapolis Guitar Quartet through layers and soft waves to close the program.