Alvin Singleton's Complete Argoru Series Performed at the Curtis Institute of Music
Mar. 01, 2021
Eight soloists from the Curtis Institute of Music's Ensemble 20/21 performed composer-in-residence Alvin Singleton's complete Argoru series of solo masterworks as part of a "Portrait of Alvin Singleton" concert on March 6. Additionally, on March 7, the concert was broadcast from the Curtis Institute of Music's Facebook Page and student performers who were coached on the Argoru series by Mr. Singleton responded in real-time to questions from the audience. The concert stream will remain available to view on the Curtis Institute's website.
The title "Argoru" comes from the Ghanaian Twi language meaning "to play." Singleton composed this kaleidoscopic series of solo works for eight different instruments over a period of more than thirty years. The composer will add to the series with Argoru IX, for solo violin, which has been commissioned by the Curtis Institute and will premiere there in spring 2022.
David Serkin Ludwig, artistic director of Ensemble 20/21, recently spoke to Mr. Singleton from his home in Atlanta. In this short video, he shares memories of what drew him to composition and some adventures while living in Europe, thoughts on his musical voice, and disbelief in how three decades can fly by!
Alvin Singleton in Conversation with David Serkin Ludwig
Digital scores for all of the works in Alvin Singleton's Argoru series can be purchased at Project Schott New York (PSNY):
Argoru I (1970) for solo piano
Argoru II (1970) for solo cello
Argoru III (1971) for solo flute
Argoru IV (1978) for solo viola
Argoru V/a (1984/rev. 2011) for solo bass clarinet
Argoru VI (1988) for solo marimba
Argoru VII (1994) for solo vibraphone
Argoru VIII (2002) for solo snare drum
On March 24, musicians of the Ensemble Modern, under the baton of Vimbayi Kaziboni, perform Alvin Singleton's Again as part of the 2021 MaerzMusik Festival. The group gave the German premiere of the work last November as part of their Festival NOW 2020!. This project, “Afro-Modernism in Contemporary Music,” was curated by the American musician, composer and academic George Lewis and features works by Alvin Singleton, Tania León, Daniel Kidane, Andile Khumalo, Hannah Kendall and Jessie Cox. The MaerzMusik Festival will be streamed online this year. Attendees can stream each day's events by clicking here.
To learn more about Alvin Singleton, please visit schott-music.com.
for chamber orchestra
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