End-of-January Miscellany

Things have been quiet here at Secret Geometry lately, mostly because I have been concentrating on making progress with the Oboe Quartet I am writing for Peggy Pearson and Winsor Music. But I want to catch up on a few things:

– my Meditation for Candlemas will be heard at this Sunday’s Eucharist at Emmanuel Church, Boston – 10 AM service, Ryan Turner conducts. This was the first piece I wrote for Emmanuel back in 1994; seven more motets have followed. (Check the worklist and audio excerpt links above)

– here are some pictures from the Dolce Suono Ensemble premiere of Badinerie Squared. Flutists Mimi Stillman and Jeffrey Khaner were brilliant in my little duet. Here they are with colleagues Charles Abramovic, harpsichord and Gabriel Cabezas, cello – the four offered works by C. P. E. and J. S. Bach as part of the program.

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Mimi had invited a long list of composers to write short pieces for this program, here’s are most of them, as well as the performers:

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L to R: Jeffrey Khaner, myself, Robert Maggio, Charles Abramovic, Heidi Jacob, Mimi Stilman, Gabriel Cabezas, Jeremy Gill, and Jan Kryzwicki.

– the other concert that I haven’t written about was the “Voice of the Wail!” program at Penn on January 23. Maureen Francis and Matt Bengston did a beautiful job with two songs from my Holy the Firm, as well as Waltzing the Spheres. Here we are after the program:

 

Francis JP Bengston

Penn alum Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon was our guest for the concert, with three impressive short pieces. His piano trio, Jácaras, was especially striking: economical, full of quicksilver gestures. Here he is after the program:

zohn-muldoon

 

– The New York premiere of Waltzing the Spheres will be on the February 10 New York Festival of Song program at OPERA America’s National Opera Center, 330 Seventh Avenue (at 29th Street). I don’t know who the performers are yet, but I do know I have consistently heard strong performances on NYFOS concerts.

OK, time to get back to composing and let the blog get back to napping. I expect to be here more often in a few weeks.

 

Wail Ahoy

“Wail of the Voice” (the phrase is a play is on Penn emeritus professor George Crumb’s chamber work Voice of the Whale), the annual concert of music by Penn faculty and alums, is coming right up, Friday, January 23 at 8 pm in Rose Recital Hall, which is located on the fourth floor of Fisher-Bennett Hall on the Penn campus at 34th and Walnut in Philadelphia. Admission is free. Maureen Francis, soprano, and Matthew Bengston, piano, will be doing two songs from my cycle Holy the Firm, as well as my Susan Scott Thompson setting, Waltzing the Spheres. There also will be a piano trio by Jay Reise, and three pieces by Penn alumnus Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon.

Tuesday morning miscellany

– audio of music by Pultizer finalist Fred Lerdahl here; video of music by finalist Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon here.

-Alex Ross podcasting about  Wagner.

-I plan to catch a couple of performances in Boston when I visit for the premiere of my new motet. Dawn Upshaw sings at Jordan Hall on Friday, April 29; her unusually varied program is here. (I count 22 composers on that list.) Brandeis is holding its annual electronic music marathon the next day, again, lots of variety as lined up by curator and superb electronic (and acoustic) composer Eric Chasalow; excellent performers as well.