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Posts tagged 'Bridge Records'

The Daedalus Quartet Premieres Fred Lerdahl's "Chaconne"

Fred Lerdahl's writing for string quartet has, since 1978, played with musical form and syntax to achieve strikingly dramatic and engaging works. Lerdahl's three string quartets can be heard on a pristine recording performed by the Daedalus Quartet, for whom Lerdahl's Third Quartet was commissioned in 2008, completing the trilogy.

Now Lerdahl, with support from New Music USA, has written another work for Daedalus—entitled Chaconne—which diverges from Lerdahl's asymmetrical "spiral form" and instead explores the symmetrical periodicities inherent in the form of the chaconne. Eight bars of paired symmetrical phrases spell out the name of the Daedalus Quartet in the names of pitch-classes, using the German spelling of Eb (D-A-E-D-A-Es); Lerdahl uses this motive throughout the work to make a piece that is, in his words, "outward and transparent, one that projects delight in playful patterns."

Listen to Lerdahl's first three quartets performed by Daedalus below. 

Lei Liang: World Premiere, New Recordings

The World Premiere of Lei Liang's Inkscape, for percussion quartet and piano, commissioned by the Boston Conservatory, Manhattan School of Music and Third Coast Percussion, will be premiered on October 2, 2014 with Samuel Solomon leading pianist Yukiko Takagi and the Boston Conservatory Percussion Ensemble. Also on the program are two selections from Liang's Garden Eight (arranged for percussion quartet), as well as works by Toru Takemitsu and James Tenney. The concert is free—so if you're in the Boston area be sure to check it out! 

Liang has also seen a string of new recordings in the past year. Bridge Records has just released a solo CD of Liang's work, "Bamboo Lights", which features Listening for Blossoms, Lakescape, Serashi Fragments, Lakescape II, Gobi Gloria, Lake, and Bamboo Lights. These works are performed by some of the most talented ensembles working in the field today, including the JACK Quartet and the Callithumpian Consort

In addition to this album dedicated to Liang's work, several other groups have included his compositions in recent releases: the PRISM Saxophone Quartet has recorded his Messages of White on their new release, "The Singing Gobi Desert". Also, the Zentripetal Duo has recorded Liang's Gobi Canticle on their new self-titled album.

Check out a video of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble performing his Serashi Fragments 

Fred Lerdahl’s String Quartets Now Available on PSNY

It's been an exciting month-and-a-half here at PSNY since our launch - and we're not letting the cold weather hold us back. We have been adding more and more works to our catalogue, and we're extremely proud to announce that all three of Fred Lerdahl's string quartets are now available!

Lerdahl writes:

"The First Quartet takes the form of 15 geometrically expanding variations...Its sequel, the Second Quartet, continues the expansion with two more variations of 9 and 13 minutes. The Third Quartet constitutes in its entirety a last expanded variation. At the same time, it interposes reminiscences from the two earlier quartets."

Listening to these quartets (and I would suggest you do so by checking out the recent complete recording on Bridge Records) is both an aural and an intellectual investigation into our emotional response to musical form. Starting from the first chord of the first quartet, and going until the last variation of the third, one can hear Lerdahl's tonal theory in practice, a rich exploration of the possibilities of the string quartet. All three works can be programmed in sequence or performed separately. 

Here's the first part of the first quartet, which sets the precedent for the following two works:

These quartets will make a great holiday present to the Violist in your life! (See what I did there?) 

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