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Kettle Corn New Music Presents Scott Wollschleger's "Brontal Symmetry"

On February 11th, Kettle Corn New Music presents a concert at New York City's Scandinavia House that features Scott Wollschleger's Brontal Symmetry for piano trio, alongside works by Hans Abrahamsen, Kaija Saariaho, Ingraham Marshall and Anna Thorvaldsdottir. The Longleash Piano Trio will perform Wollschleger's work, and will be joined later by violist Anne Lanzilotti. Composer and presenter Alex Weiser sat down with Wollschleger to discuss his compositional practice and his concept of "brontal", which is obliquely etymologically related to "brontasaurus."

"Brontal" speaks both to the paleolithic nature of certain modes of being and to the absurdities of urban life. Wollschleger specifiies a "brontal motion" as an ascenscion from low to high (recalling, and inverting, the Schenkerian claim of high-to-low movement); but rather claiming this quality as a universal feature of nature, Wollschleger links it to cryptic and contingent compositional practice, a repetition that spins out in his music from the middle to both beginning and end. Wollschleger describes Brontal Symmetry as a kind of static unfolding of brontal musicality, with the composer directing the listener to hold micro- and macro-levels of attention throughout the piece. Yet the kind of repetition in this piece doesn't only happen in the dimensions of pitch and timbre; Wollschleger's "Brontal" repetition emerges in performance as fragmentary, and leaves the listener with a similarly fragmented memory.  

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