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Posts tagged 'Carnegie Hall'

Ted Hearne Premieres "Baby (an argument)" with Ensemble ACJW

Ted Hearne has long considered vocal music his "home turf," authoring powerful, politically-charged works such as Katrina Ballads, Consent, and But I Voted for Shirley Chisholm—each centered around voice, text, and the interplay with instruments. His newly-commissioned work, Baby (an argument) works with voice, but in this piece, voices come not from bodies that are present, but rather from recordings—samples of r&b recordings from years past. Mixed together with the instrumental sounds on those recordings, these samples are warped, transformed, and spatially positioned on stage between pianist and percussionist, perched at opposite ends of the stage. 

The result interpolates the sound world of r&b—Hammond organs, Rickenbacker bass, synthesized vocal pads—through live instruments, including winds, brass, piano, and percussion. The single word, "baby", is slowed, skewed, broken into syllables; framed as "an argument", the piece forces the listener to ask who is addressing whom—and how. Baby questions the intersection between argument and affection, slowly meditating on the sounds we make when we engage in both. 

Commissioned by Ensemble ACJW, Baby will premiere on February 12th at Skidmore College, where the ensemble is in residence, and will later move to Carnegie Hall on February 15th. PSNY composer and pianist Timo Andres will be a featured guest artist with ACJW for this performance. 

Sleeping Giant at Carnegie Hall and Le Poisson Rouge

On January 18th, the members of the composer collective Sleeping Giant premiered a new work, Hand Eye, commissioned for the Grammy-award winning sextet eighth blackbird, at Carnegie Hall. Each composer—including PSNY composers Timo Andres, Andrew Norman, Ted Hearne, Christopher Cerrone, in addition to Robert Honstein and Jacob Cooper—composed a piece inspired by a work of art in the collection of the Maxine and Stuart Frankel Foundation. The works they chose ranged from painting to sculpture, resulting in compositions ranging from Hearne's By-By Huey, which meditates on the murder of Huey P. Lewis, to Andres' Checkered Shade, which draws inspiration from Astrid Bowlby's pen and ink drawings

Earler in the month, Sleeping Giant also premiered six new works for cellist Ashley Bathgate, inspired by Bach's suites for solo cello. Perhaps the most paradigmatic set of compositions for solo cello, Bach's suites have become canonical repertoire in the 20th century, and have served as models for many contemporary composers. Sleeping Giant continues this tradition by composing six new movements that form Ashgate's evening-length performance, Bach Unwound. Check out Bathgate performing Jacob Cooper's Arches with the Bang on a Can All-Stars in 2015 for a taste of her playing.  

Hannah Lash: Composer/Harpist

The composer at the writing desk: from Beethoven to this day, this is the enduring image of the scene of musical composition. But what about the composer at her instrument? Many of today's (and yesterday's) most vibrant composers also enjoy careers as instrumentalists: Timo Andres, Kate Soper, Alex Mincek, Ted Hearne, Vijay Iyer and many other PSNY composers inherit the composer-performer tradition by performing their own works and those of others. 

Hannah Lash is no exception to this rule. After premiering her own Concerto for Harp and Chamber Orchestra at Carnegie Hall in October, Lash has recently signed with Ariel Artists, joining the ranks of exciting musicians such as violinist Rachel Lee Priday, the Tesla Quartet, and the Mobius Trio. Check out Lash's own performance of her recent concerto (arranged for chamber ensemble) at Yale, where she is a full-time composition faculty member of the School of Music:  

Lash's upcoming performance schedule includes concerts at Yale, Spectrum, Miller Theatre and The Greene Space for the New York Philharmonic's Biennial. Be sure to catch her in 2016!

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