Works/In Progress: ABOUT
2011 Commission - Jeremy Allen, Composer
Beethoven Sonata Cycle
Ever start something you just never wanted to stop? That's how it felt last April just as we concluded two cycles through Beethoven's Ten Sonatas for Piano and Violin.
The performances (six in all) were given on the campus of Case Western Reserve University in Harkness Chapel and at retirement communities in the Cleveland metro area, and were conceived as a Second Master's Recital project at the Cleveland Institute of Music. The purpose of the project was not only to fulfill the single recital requirement, but to explore Beethoven's creative development over the majority of his composing life, and to make this experience available to those who may not be able to frequent the concert hall. Please listen to a few excerpts from our concerts on the media page.
Many, many thanks to my friend Karl Lo (pictured right), former piano and theory faculty at CIM, for embarking on this journey with me. You can hear his recording of the Complete Sonatas for Piano by Beethoven on Brioso Recordings.
How He Loves - New Recording Project with Arts Mundi
Drink For Life CD!
Stephen Burks, Arranger/Composer
Mauthe String Quartet
(Erica Ward & James Reinarz, violins; Rebekah Newman, viola; and Robert Nicholson, cello)
This music might be a little different to the music you've typically heard me talk about, but I've been so thrilled to be a small part of this project and am excited to see this phase come to completion.
Stephen Burks has done an outstanding job of arranging string parts for Ron's songs, as well as composing original stand-alone 'chorales' related to each of the songs on the album -- and the heartfelt melodies and lyrics of young songwriter Ron Kent have soul and groove. The album makes me feel good, and it has a sweet message. Hope you enjoy.
Download from iTunes orAmazon.com
Get a CD to hold in your hands, frame, or give as a gift.
Announcement of First Commission: Jeremy Allen, Composer
This is my first official commission, and I am very excited to be working with Jeremy on this project. Here is a little bit about the piece:
1. The title is Mercury Retrograde.
2. It was premiered on November 22, 2009.
3. It uses spoons.
Listen to Jeremy Allen's music! Please visit www.allencomposer.com.
Check the Calendar for concert information.
TuneIn to read more about Jeremy and the commission...
Podcast Interview with Composer James Holt
James and I met at the Chamber Music America Conference in January 2009. He is interviewing all kinds of musicians to get their take on working with composers -- something I do intensively with FiveOne.
Listen to the podcast, which was recorded in the lobby of the Westin Times Square in NYC. You can also hear from, among others, members of the Del Sol String Quartet, Adorno Ensemble, Flux Quartet, American Modern Ensemble, Yarn/Wire, Da Capo Chamber Players, Bang on a Can All-Stars, Talea Ensemble, REDSHIFT, ACME, Alarm Will Sound, Signal, ETHEL, Ars Nova Copenhagen, and the Hong Kong New Music Ensemble.
Be sure to give his music a listen as well! I particularly enjoyed the solo piano works.
Check James Holt out: www.jamesholt.net
Nachtmantra for solo violin and digital acoustics, by William Neil
I had the honor of performing this heart-wrenching and mesmerizing work, in close collaboration with Mr. Neil, for performance at the 40th Anniversary Celebration of the joint program between the Cleveland Institute of Music and Case Western Reserve University.
Mr. Neil, who resides in Wisconsin, received his inspiration for Nachtmantra from The Diary of Anne Frank, as she tells of the peacefulness of seeing the night sky after several years in hiding in the Annex. She wrote in her diary: "It's not just my imagination on my part that to look up at the sky, the clouds, the moon and the stars, makes me calm and patient."
The digital part was derived from a 1944 recording of Kurt Furtwangler conducting the Berlin Philharmonic in a performance of Bruckner's Fifth Symphony, and contains an eerily hollow drone which oscillates on the pitches D and C# through virtually the entire piece. The piece climaxes with a shattering of dreams, yet even amidst the descent to darkness, there is found a path to hope and peace.
The work was written in 2006 and premiered at the Julliard School by violinist Noah Geller, to whom the work is dedicated.
To find out more about the piece and William Neil, please visit his website, at www.thecomposerstudio.com
Watch the performance below (Erica on violin, Mr. Neil giving an introduction). Many thanks to William Neil, CIM and CWRU for posting the video!
Interview with Merry Peckham on WCLV Cleveland's Offbeat Program
Taking It To The Streets
Classical musicians are turning up in new settings and bringing a new approach to presenting their music. Students and faculty at CIM take classical music into schools, retirement centers and hospitals. Concerts are being presented all over town, in not so traditional settings. Listen to Erica Ward and Annie Fullard, violinist with the Cavani String Quartet and a tremendous supporter of outreach in all forms, as the discuss how they are both active making sure that classical music is there to be enjoyed by all.
Aired March 22, 2008 and December 13, 2008 on Cleveland's Classical Radio Station, WCLV.