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Posts tagged 'Third Coast Percussion'

Christopher Cerrone Portrait Concert at Columbia's Miller Theatre

Christopher Cerrone has taken inspiration for many of his works from the worlds of literature and poetry; on March 29th, he will see the premiere of a new work entitled "A Natural History of Vacant Lots" that instead draws from the poesis of the urban landscape.

Echoing the etymological root of the term "poesis" (ποίησις)—to bring something into existence that did not exist before—Cerrone's new piece takes inspiration from a 1987 book that surveys the life that emerges from vacant city lots, a cyclical process that unfolds organically and that can create surprising results. As Cerrone told Broadway World, "Though the growth of the material is extremely gradual, the things that emerge from the cycle of chords are sometimes surprising and veer quite far from the original material." This material is heard developing around the audience in a dimly-lit concert hall, emerging from two vibraphones and several loudspeakers into what New York Magazine calls a "dense sonic tangle."

A Natural History of Vacant Lots will be performed by Third Coast Percussion, with whom Cerrrone has worked extensively, and who co-commissioned the work along with Miller Theatre. Third Coast will also perform Cerrone's 2016 Goldbeater's Skin, accompanied by the soprano Rachel Calloway, and his 2012 work Memory Palace, arranged for percussion quartet. Check out the solo version of Memory Palace below. 

Third Coast Percussion Premieres Christopher Cerrone's "Goldbeater's Skin"



On February 4th
, Grammy-nominated Third Coast Percussion and mezzo-soprano Rachel Calloway premiered a new work byChristopher Cerrone at the University of Notre Dame's DeBartolo Performing Arts Center entitled Goldbeater's Skin. Goldbeater's Skin, which was commissioned by Elizabeth and Justus Schlichting and the DeBartolo PAC, sets poems by G.C. Waldrep from the book of the same name.

Waldrep lived for many years in an Amish community in North Carolina, and his poems reflect that "earthy mysticism"; Cerrone takes the percussive title of Waldrep's collection and realizes it with his signature blend of poeticism, lyricism, and texture. In the South Bend Tribune, Third Coast Percussionist David Skidmore notes that "There are a lot of ways to describe what [Cerrone] does, but it's best described as 'beautiful music,' which is saying a lot."

Cerrone has set many American poets' work to music, and he is the third member of the Sleeping Giant collective to work with Third Coast Percussion, which has previously commissioned works by Timo Andres (Austerity Measures, available on PSNY) and Ted Hearne (Thaw). Check out the world premiere of Austerity Measures below. 

Gavin Bryars' "The Fifth Century" Out on ECM

Gavin Bryars' music moves slowly, intentionally, across planes of time, emotion, and medium. Since his early works such as Jesus' Blood Never Failed Me Yet (1969) and The Sinking of the Titanic (1971), Bryars has fused together text, music, sound, image, and performance, working across and between established music forms and media. Recordings of his work become windows into this unique compositional plane, and ECM has released several renowned albums of Bryars' in the 80s and 90s. 

Now, for the first time in several decades, ECM has released a new album of music by Bryars: The Fifth Century, featuring his major recent work of the same name for chorus and saxophone quartet, as well as his Two Love Songs. The Fifth Century is a setting of texts by English mystic Thomas Traherne, which was commissioned and premiered by The Crossing and PRISM Saxophone Quartet led by Donald Nally. The work unfolds in seven short sections, with PRISM recalling 16th and 17th century organ accompaniment, and The Crossing singing lushly voiced settings that compliment the text's mysticism. 

Bryars also recently saw the world premiere of a new work in the US, titled The Other Side of the River, which premiered on November 17th at Peak Performances' program "See You Later." Part of a "staged concert" performed by Third Coast Percussion, The Other Side of the River, which features marimbas and bells, was performed alongside a new film by Laura Colmenares Guerra, and complimented a performance of David T. Little's Haunt of Last Nightfall. Check out some of Guerra's experimental film work below. 

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