It’s probably true that the myth of the suffering artist is well and truly dead – if Duchamp’s pissoir was the spade, then the Zen-detachment of 4’33” was the shovel – but that didn’t make it any less startling to read Keeril Makan’s unvarnished portrait of his recent struggles with depression, printed this past January in The New York Times:
The act of composing is in a dynamic relationship with my emotional life. As a result, my compositions are informed – sometimes quite viscerally – by my depression. Listening to the progression of my work over the past decade provides a sonic map of my journey from darkness to a place of relative openness and light, a transformation made possible through self-care and mindfulness meditation.
Keeril Makan – Photo by Scott Irvine
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coLABoratory: Playing It UNsafe (Workshop V) | American Composers Orchestra
coLABoratory: Playing It UNsafe is the first and only professional research and development lab to support the creation of cutting-edge new American orchestral music through no-holds-barred experimentation, encouraging composers to do anything but play it safe.The composers participating in coLABoratory this season are Du Yun, Troy Herion, Raymond J. Lustig, Judith Sainte Croix, and Dan Visconti, selected from a national search for their willingness to experiment and stretch their own musical sensibilities, and their ability to test the limits of the orchestra. This season, coLABoratory will include a unique incubation process of workshops, public readings, collaborative feedback, and laboratory performances of music, open to the public, taking place from November 2012 through April 2013. Each composer’s work is developed with the orchestra over the course of the season in a process that includes ACO’s Music Director George Manahan, ACO’s artistic leadership Robert Beaser and Derek Bermel, mentor composer Morton Subotnick, plus ACO advisors and members of the orchestra.
Tuesday, April 2 at 2 PM
The DiMenna Center, 450 W 37th St., New York, NY
Premiere of Violin Sonata No. 2 | Robert Sirota
Robert Sirota – Photo by Brian Hatton
Violinist Laurie Carney and pianist David Friend will give the world premiere of Robert Sirota’s Violin Sonata No. 2. Sirota wrote the sonata for Carney, a founding member of the American String Quartet (ASQ), and dedicated it to their mothers who both passed away recently. The concert will also include Brahms’ Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 2 in A Major; Messiaen’s Theme and Variations; and Faure’s Piano Quartet in C Minor with violist Daniel Avshalomov (also of the ASQ) and cellist William Grubb (Carney’s husband).
Tuesday, April 2 at 7:30 PM
Manhattan School of Music’s Greenfield Hall, 120 Claremont Ave., New York, NY
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Posted by Christian Gentry »
Boston Musica Viva | Part 1: The Preservationist
Last November, I began this post with the intention of writing a (double) review of two concerts in the Boston area. In this two part series I comparatively investigate Boston Musica Viva‘s Allusions (November 16) and Sound Icon‘s Les Aventures Spectrales (November 17). This investigation reveals distinct curatorial choices like the presentation of program, musical content, and interaction(s) with audiences. Both concerts, despite their unique differences, maintain similar ritualistic underpinnings of classical art music concert experience. Yet the programming within both concerts reveals two historically omnipresent, albeit distinct, ideals of preservationism and progressivism. Although this dichotomy is not new to “new-music-writ-large,” let alone the music histories with their very core narrative circulating mercurially and gradually between these poles, but given the constant ebb and flow within the concert structure of contemporary music, a moment of self-examination and close reading may be beneficial for performers, composers, critics, and audiences.
Boston Musica Viva (Photo by Aram Boghostan/Boston Globe)
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Posted by Thomas Deneuville »
MATA 2012 is happening right now for the first time at Roulette, and we wanted to take the time to talk to one of the composers featured on the April 20th concert SIGNS AND SIGNALS: David Coll. David has studied at the University of Illinois, IRCAM in Paris (Cursus and Cursus 2), and at the University of California-Berkeley, receiving his PhD in December 2010. He now lives and works in Belgium.
Position, Influence (2010), for soprano and electronics will be performed by Mellissa Hughes this coming Friday and we were really curious about that piece…
How did you discover the de Gaulle speeches that you used as a textual source for Position, Influence?
It was part of the journey of gathering material for the piece. I remember spending a lot of time with Pasolini actually, but his poetry was underwhelming compared to his highly charged films. I looked at Isidore Isou as well, but nothing came together. Finally, getting more into the Enrages and the Situationists, I realized I needed to look at some historical documents. I subscribed to INA (Ed. French for National Audiovisual Institute) and all of a sudden I see de Gaulle (Ed. Charles de Gaulle was a French general and statesman who led the Free French Forces during World War II. He later founded the French Fifth Republic in 1958 and served as its first President from 1959 to 1969). What an incredible look and figure, I thought.
In fact the pieces opening line (Je ne me retirerai pas / I will not step down! (from office)) is the only fragment that is De Gaulle. And it is his first statement after returning from abroad and having the Mai 68 events already in full force. After that, the piece moves in many directions, and the text is mine actually.
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