. Interchanging Idioms: February 2014

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Family Day at the Opera

March 22, 2014 | Ellie Caulkins Opera House Lobby

Denver, CO — (February 17, 2014) In collaboration with and sponsored by Arts & Venues Denver, Opera Colorado presents Family Day at the Opera on March 22 at 10:00 a.m. in the lobby of the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. This free family performance will feature anabridged production of The Barber of Seville sung in English. Performed by Opera Colorado’s 2014 Young Artists, Family Day at the Opera features the professional production of The Barber of Seville that Opera Colorado takes directly into schools and community venues across the state of Colorado.
Kevin Taylor at the Opera House will offer family-friendly refreshments and snacks available for purchase in the lobby of the Opera House. Family Day at the Opera includes a short Q&A session after the 50 minute performance, along with hands-on crafts and entertainment. Don’t miss this opportunity to bring your whole family to the Opera and experience the joy of live performance in a fun setting.

About The Barber of Seville
Figaro, Figaro, Fiiiiiigaro!!
Barber by day, matchmaker by night, Figaro puts his charm to work as he helps Count Almaviva woo the beautiful Rosina. She’s such a catch that her greedy guardian Bartolo keeps her under lock and key with the intent of marrying her himself. Crazy antics abound and even Berta the maid gets involved. But, no challenge is too great for Figaro’s madcap schemes! Filled with some of opera’s most famous tunes, this is a comedy not to miss!

Jared Guest……………….Figaro
Brett Sprague……………Count Almaviva
Louise Rogan…………….Rosina
Ben Sieverding…………..Dr. Bartolo
Colleen Jackson…………Berta

Directed by Cherity Koepke | Accompanied by Taylor BaldwinFor more information about Opera Colorado’s Young Artists visit OperaColorado.org.

Time: 10:00 AM

Location:  The Ellie Caulkins Opera House is located at 1101 13th Street Denver, CO 80204, at the corner of 14th and Champa Streets. Entrance to the Opera House is at Curtis and 14th Street.

Tickets:  This performance is free to the public, however space is limited and an RSVP is required. To print out your free tickets and RSVP, please visit Eventbrite at the link below. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/opera-colorado-presents-family-day-at-the-opera-tickets-10008819649. You can also make your reservation by calling Opera Colorado’s Box Office at 303.468.2030. Find out more at OperaColorado.org. Age Recommendation: K – 12

Opera Colorado’s Young Artist Benjamin Sieverding is sponsored by Marlis and Shirley Smith, and Karen Brody and Mike Hughes, and Young Artist Brett Sprague is sponsored by Patrick Spieles and Carol McMurry.  Opera Colorado’s 2014 season is sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth T. Barrow, the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), Magnolia Hotels, The Westin Hotel, The Edge Restaurant & Bar, The Four Seasons Hotel and Rassman Design, and media sponsors The Denver Post5280 MagazineYellow Scene Magazine and Luxe Magazine.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Arapahoe Philharmonic Showcases Classic Traditions with Brahms and Tchaikovsky

Guest Violinist, Josiah Hamill, Winner of 2014 Concerto Competition

Denver – The Arapahoe Philharmonic presents “Classic Traditions” on Friday, March 14, 2014, at 7:30 p.m. with a program featuring Johannes Brahms’ lush Symphony No. 2 and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, one of the most popular and technical concertos for violin, with soloist Josiah Hamill, winner of the 2014 T. Gordon Parks Collegiate Concerto Competition sponsored by the orchestra. Maestro Devin Patrick Hughes conducts this fifth concert in the Philharmonic’s 60th Anniversary Season at Mission Hills Church, 620 SouthPark Drive, Littleton. Hughes and Charley Samson, Colorado Public Radio classical music host and Arapahoe Philharmonic emcee, will give a pre-concert talk at 6:45 p.m. discussing the program. Tickets are $25 (adults), $20 (seniors), and $5 (students/children) and are available online at www.arapahoe-phil.org, by phone at 303-781-1892 or at the door.

Each Arapahoe Philharmonic concert also provides a Classic Children’s Corner at 7:15 p.m. in the lobby offering a casual introduction of classical music to the next generation of arts advocates.

The Arapahoe Philharmonic’s mission includes providing performance opportunities for emerging talent, and the T. Gordon Parks Collegiate Concerto Competition is one of the ways the orchestra supports young musicians. Named for the founder of the Philharmonic, the competition draws applicants from Colorado and the surrounding states to participate. The top three candidates receive cash awards, with the First Prize Winner also provided the opportunity to perform his or her concerto in a regular season concert. Karlie Denos, from the University of Colorado-Boulder, was awarded Second Prize, and Third Prize went to Luis Salazar from Wichita State University.

Josiah Hamill, the 2014 First Prize Winner, is a violin student of Linda Wang at the Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver. He has appeared as soloist with the Denver Young Artists Orchestra and Littleton Symphony and has been a member of the DYAO, DYAO Conservatory Orchestra, Littleton Symphony and Colorado Young Sinfonia. Hamill is a past volunteer member of the Veteran’s Administration National Medical Musical Group orchestra and the Colorado Symphony’s Instrument Petting Zoo event for young and underprivileged children. A member of DU’s prestigious Joint Dean’s List and Hornbeck Scholars, sustaining a 4.0 GPA while keeping a rigorous schedule of classes, Hamill is proficient in violin, piano, and pipe organ, and maintains a piano teaching studio.

About the Arapahoe Philharmonic

Founded in 1953, the Arapahoe Philharmonic is among the longest established, continuously operating musical resources in Colorado. After thriving under just two conductors between 1953 and 2012, T. Gordon Parks and Vincent C. LaGuardia, Jr., we celebrate our 60th anniversary season with an exciting new conductor, Devin Patrick Hughes. The orchestra’s musicians are primarily volunteers playing for the love of music, with a core of compensated section principals who provide technical leadership and support the excellence of performance.

Concerts in our home of Mission Hills Church in Littleton feature repertoire spanning the centuries, from the great masters to composers of the current day. The Philharmonic is invested in future generations, presenting annual children's concerts, sponsoring outreach to schools, and presenting two collegiate-level competitions, the T. Gordon Parks Memorial Collegiate Concerto Competition and the Vincent C. LaGuardia, Jr. Collegiate Conducting Competition.

Massive Mid-Century Masterpieces Link Two Modern Composers: John Cage & Olivier Messiaen Shared Their Piano Cycles in Paris

Dedicated Proponents, Pianists Adam Tendler & Christopher Taylor Will Reveal the Intricacies of These Linked Works in a Pair of Linked Concerts at Jacaranda Music’s February 22nd Mid-Century Modern Program

Jacaranda's 10th anniversary season continues on Saturday, February 22, 2014 with a dinner break — a break that separates the performances of two 20-movement mid-twentieth-century masterworks by John Cage and Olivier Messiaen. Each cycle is played by an American pianist with whom the music has become synonymous: Adam Tendler and Christopher Taylor, respectively. The consecutive concerts (Tendler at 5:00 p.m. and Taylor at 7:30 p.m.) will take place at First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica, 1220 Second Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401.

Jacaranda’s first decade gave extensive attention to the centenaries of Messiaen (1908-92) and Cage (1912-89). As a nod to that legacy, artistic director Patrick Scott chose for the 10th anniversary two works for solo piano that link the composers after World War II: Cage’s “Sonatas& Interludes” (1946-48) for prepared piano, and Messiaen’s “Vingt Regards sur l'Enfant Jesus” (1944). Both works were influenced in very different ways by the philosophy and music of India. Cage performed his cycle for Messiaen in Paris in 1949, and Messiaen reciprocated with a performance of his cycle by Yvonne Loriod, the work’s extravagantly talented dedicatee, who would eventually become Messiaen’s wife.

Tendler, described as "an exuberantly expressive pianist" who "vividly displayed his enthusiasm for every phrase" by Los Angeles Times music critic Mark Swed, will perform the 60-minute Cage work at 5 p.m. without pause and from memory. Recognized by the American Pianists Association, Tendler has performed modern American piano music in all of the United States.

After a dinner break, Taylor, bronze medalist at the 1993 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition and called "one of the most impressive young pianists on the horizon today" by the Washington Post, will perform the two-hour Messiaen work from memory at 7:30 p.m. with an intermission. Taylor’s "...blazing performance of Messiaen's [''Twenty Ways of Looking at the Infant Jesus'']… is likely to stand as a point of reference for many seasons to come," wrote the Boston Globe.

The massive piano masterpiece has additional significance for Jacaranda. Messiaen’s work was the centerpiece of a one-off, three-concert celebration organized in 2002 by series founders Scott and Mark Alan Hilt to observe the 10th anniversary of the composer’s death. The mini-festival’s location was First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica, where Hilt would soon be appointed Music Director. The enterprise grabbed the attention of the Los Angeles Times’ Swed, who noted that, while there had been an abundance of Messiaen tributes in the world’s major cities, only the enterprising duo ventured a Southern California tribute. Nine months later, Jacaranda was born.

General admission tickets for either of the February 22 Cage/Tendler or Messiaen/Taylor concerts alone are $35; $20 for students. Admission to both concerts is $60; $30 for students. For tickets and a restaurant guide, as well as special Jacaranda food and beverage discounts, go to jacarandamusic.org. Tickets are sold online or at the door. Information: (213) 483-0216.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Kronos Quartet 40th Anniversary Celebration at Carnegie Hall, March 28

World Premiere by Terry Riley

NY Premiere by Philip Glass

Special Guests: Bryce Dessner, Wu Man, Jherek Bischoff, Brooklyn Youth Chorus, + Musicians from Face The Music

As a highlight of its 40th anniversary season, Kronos Quartet takes the stage in Carnegie Hall’s fabled Stern Auditorium on Friday, March 28 at 8 pm. The one-night-only concert features a world premiere by Terry Riley, and boasts a stellar array of guest artists. Composer Bryce Dessner of The National will play electric guitar on Aheym, the title piece from his acclaimed new Anti- CD of works written for Kronos. Pipa virtuoso Wu Man, a frequent partner, will be heard in the New York premiere of Philip Glass’s Orion: China. Protean indie-rock composer Jherek Bischoff joins in on electric bass for A Semiperfect Number, which he premiered with Kronos last July at Lincoln Center Out of Doors.

Spotlighting Kronos’s commitment to mentoring young artists, the program also includes appearances by the Brooklyn Youth Chorus and musicians from Face the Music. Add works by Laurie Anderson, Clint Mansell, and others, and the result is a living snapshot of the ensemble’s singular achievement: “a body of work unparalleled in its range and scope of expression” (NPR). 

P R E M I E R E S   +   H I G H L I G H T S

Terry Riley’s The Serquent Risadrome is his 27th new score for Kronos Quartet, a remarkable collaboration that has spanned more than three decades and resulted in numerous recordings. It takes its title from a “short futuristic tale” he wrote, using mostly made-up words, called The Autodaydreamographical Anteriopod (also the basis for his 2008 work Science Fiction). The Serquent Risadrome was commissioned by Carnegie Hall.

Philip Glass composed Orion for the 2004 Cultural Olympiad in Athens, enlisting leading performer/composers from around the globe to partner with his ensemble. Says Glass, “Orion, the largest constellation in the night sky, can be seen in all seasons from both the Northern and Southern hemispheres. It seems that almost every civilization has created myths and taken inspiration from Orion.” For the Orion: China section he collaborated with Wu Man, cited by the Los Angeles Times as “the artist most responsible for bringing the pipa to the Western world.” Orion: China was subsequently arranged for pipa and string quartet.

In one of the most unusual collaborations of the evening, Kronos will partner with four young string quartets from Face the Music, forming a small string orchestra for Osvaldo Golijov’s arrangement of El Sinaloense (The Man from Sinaloa) by Mexican composer Severiano Briseño. Face the Music is a program of the Kaufman Music Center, where Kronos Quartet in residence this season. It is the only teen ensemble in the US dedicated to the creation and performance of music by living composers.

Aleksandra Vrebalov’s Bubbles is her fourth score for Kronos, and pairs the quartet with the Brooklyn Youth Chorus. The title comes from a John Cage quote: “Silence. Sounds are only bubbles on its surface. They burst to disappear.” Vrebalov also sets Robert Creely’s poem The Language, which begins with the lines, “Locate I / love you some- / where in / teeth and eyes, bite / it but take care not / to hurt, you / want so / much so / little. Words / say everything.”

Along with Dessner’s driving, intense Aheym and Bischoff’s exuberant A Semiperfect Number, the program is completed by Laurie Anderson’s meditative Flow; film music by Clint Mansell from Requiem for a Dream and The Fountain, which Kronos recorded for those soundtracks; and arrangements of the traditional Scandinavian folk song Tusen Tankar (arr. by Kronos, trans. by Ljova), Syrian musician Omar Souleyman’s La Sidounak Sayyada (arr. by Jacob Garchik), and early blues singer Geeshie Wiley’s 1930 song Last Kind Words (arr. by Garchik). Additionally, a short documentary celebrating the group's history will be screened for the first time, directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Sam Green

T H E   P R O G R A M   A T - A - G L A N C E

Kronos Quartet

– David Harrington, violin

– John Sherba, violin
– Hank Dutt, viola
– Sunny Yang, cello

Bryce Dessner, guitar

Wu Man, pipa

Jherek Bischoff, bass guitar
Musicians from Face the Music:
– Quartet This Side Up, Pulsar Quartet, Pannonia Quartet, Face the Music Quartet
Brooklyn Youth Chorus
Dianne Berkun-Menaker, Artistic Director


BRYCE DESSNER  Aheym (Homeward)

TERRY RILEY  The Serquent Risadome – World premiere
GEESHIE WILEY  Last Kind Words (arr. Jacob Garchik)
OMAR SOULEYMAN  La Sidounak Sayyada (I'll Prevent the Hunters from Hunting You)
TRADITIONAL  Tusen Tankar (A Thousand Thoughts) (arr. Kronos Quartet, trans. Ljova)
SEVERIANO BRISEÑO  El Sinaloense (The Man from Sinaloa) (arr. Osvaldo Golijov)
LAURIE ANDERSON Flow (arr. Jacob Garchik)
PHILIP GLASS Orion: China (arr. Michael Riesman) – NY Premiere
JHEREK BISCHOFF  A Semiperfect Number
CLINT MANSELL  Lux Aeterna from Requiem for a Dream (arr. David Lang)
CLINT MANSELL  Death is the Road to Awe from The Fountain (arr. Kronos Quartet)

Friday, February 7, 2014

American Composers Forum Announces Finalists in National Composition Contest

left to right: Michael Laurello, Todd Lerew, Kristina Warren

Three student composers are chosen from 250+ applicants

In partnership with the acclaimed new music ensemble So Percussion, the American Composers Forum is pleased to announce the finalists in the 2014 American Composers Forum National Composition Contest: Michael Laurello (Yale School of Music), Todd Lerew (CalArts), and Kristina Warren (University of Virginia). Each finalist will receive a cash prize and be asked to compose an eight- to ten-minute piece for So Percussion. The resulting pieces will be workshopped with the finalists in residence, and premiered by So Percussion on July 20 at Princeton University, as part of the So Percussion Summer Institute 2014. One of the works will be chosen to receive the final prize, which includes an additional cash award and future public performances by So Percussion.

The National Composition Contest is open to composers currently enrolled in graduate and undergraduate institutions in the United States; this year’s installment drew more than 250 applicants from 39 states. Each finalist receives an award of $1,000 plus an additional stipend of $750 to help defray expenses associated with attending the workshop and studio performance. Along with further performances of his/her piece, the winning composer will receive an additional $2,000.

“The Forum is thrilled with the opportunity to connect new voices with extraordinary ensembles like So Percussion,” said John Nuechterlein, Forum president and CEO. “Similar to our previous collaborations with eighth blackbird and JACK Quartet, the discovery process is exhilarating for the performers and immensely rewarding for the selected composers. The So Percussion Summer Institute showcase is also an exciting new twist that offers an exceptional opportunity for the composers to network with a large community of performers.”

Says Adam Sliwinski of So Percussion, "The American Composers Forum competition offered So Percussion a chance to reach out and find exciting young compositional talent. We expressly requested to judge blindly, and the three finalists all caught our ears in unique ways. There were so many excellent submissions. The ACF has established a wonderful precedent for a competition that is favorable for everybody involved, and we're ecstatic to get three new pieces out of it!"

The competition began during the 2010-11 season as the Finale National Composition Contest, partnering with the group eighth blackbird. JACK Quartet was the ensemble for 2011-12. The competition went on hiatus last season, returning in September 2013 under its new name, the American Composers Forum National Composition Contest.


Michael Laurello (b. 1981) is an American composer and pianist. He has written for ensembles and soloists such as the Yale Baroque Ensemble, Sound Icon, the 15.19 Ensemble, NotaRiotous (the Boston Microtonal Society), guitarist Flavio Virzì, soprano Sarah Pelletier, pianist/composer John McDonald, and clarinetist and linguist/music theorist Ray Jackendoff. Laurello is an Artist Diploma candidate in Composition at the Yale School of Music, studying with David Lang and Christopher Theofanidis. He earned an M.A. in Composition from Tufts University under John McDonald, and a B.M. in Music Synthesis (Electronic Production and Design) from Berklee College of Music where he studied jazz piano performance with Laszlo Gardony and Steve Hunt. He has attended composition festivals at highSCORE (Pavia, Italy) and Etchings (Auvillar, France), and was recently recognized with an Emerg ing Artist Award from the St. Botolph Club Foundation (Boston, MA). In addition to his work as a composer and performer, Laurello is a recording and mixing engineer.

Todd Lerew (b. 1986) is a Los Angeles-based composer working with invented acoustic instruments, repurposed found objects, and unique preparations of traditional instruments. Lerew is the inventor of the Quartz Cantabile, which utilizes a principle of thermoacoustics to convert heat into sound, and has presented the instrument at Stanford's CCRMA, the American Musical Instrument Society annual conference, the Guthman Musical Instrument Competition at Georgia Tech, and Machine Project in Los Angeles. He is the founder and curator of Telephone Music, a collaborative music and memory project based on the children's game of Telephone, the last round of which was released as an exclusive download to subscribers of music magazine The Wire. His solo piece for e-bowed gu zheng, entitled Lithic Fragments, is available on cassette on the Brunch Groupe label. H is pieces have been performed by members of the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, the Wet Ink Ensemble (New York), the Now Hear Ensemble (Santa Barbara), and the Canticum Ostrava choir (Czech Republic).

Composer and vocalist Kristina Warren (b. 1989) holds a B.A. in Music Composition from Duke University and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Composition and Computer Technologies from the University of Virginia. Recent works include Three Sonnets of Elizabeth Barrett Browning (soprano, electronics), Folk Studies No. 1 (Up in the A.M.), No. 2 (Vimeda Sakla), and No. 3 (Shousty) for voice-based electronics, and Pogpo (electric guitar quartet). Warren’s research interests include voice, electronics, and questions of aleatory and performance practice in conjunction with various non-Eurocentric musics, such as folk music and Korean p’ansori. Warren’s compositions have been performed across the US and in Europe, and she has been fortunate to study composition with Ted Coffey, Judith Shatin, Anthony Kelley, Scott Lindroth , and John Supko.