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Posts tagged 'Phil Kline'

Phil Kline and Gregory Spears Premiere New Works with String Orchestra of Brooklyn

On June 8th, the String Orchestra of Brooklyn presents two world premieres of new works by Phil Kline and Gregory Spears, along with a new arrangement of Julius Eastman's classic Gay Guerilla. Vocalist Theo Bleckmann will perform four songs from his ongoing collaboration with Kline entitled Florida Man, so named after the enigmatic tales of people from that eponymous state which have long fascinated Kline. The composer writes: 

I began collecting Florida Man headlines a few years ago. Found texts fascinate me; they’re like secret messages not meant to be set to music. It was important to me that they were authentic, so I vetted them to see if there were actual news stories attached. Did this couple really sell golden tickets to heaven? No, they didn’t. Did this guy really get arrested for a joyride with an owl? Yes, he did! Interestingly, while the Florida Men were characteristically wacky, the Florida Woman stories were sadder. I was drawn into a kind of dialog with these characters, with whom I felt a kinship much keener than I would have imagined.

Bleckmann will perform four songs, including "Waffle House," and "Search and Destroy," which uses the lyrics from Iggy Pop's song of the same name, in honor of his recent residence in the Sunshine State. Florida Man, which is a song cycle in progress, will be published by PSNY upon completion. In the meantime, check out an excerpt from Kline's Exquisite Corpses below:

Spears will premiere a new concerto for two trumpets and string orchestra, performed by the SOB and soloists Brandon Ridenour and Andy Kozar. Spears takes common extramusical associations of the trumpet—the sounds of ceremony, war, and formality— and has composed a piece that he "had no narrative, and yet would play with those associations and let them interact with one another in unexpected ways." The texture of two trumpets against a string orchestra allows Spears to compose a contrapuntal concerto that evokes a pastoral and conversational quality.  

For a taste of Spears's instrumental writing, check out his 2010 String Quartet, Buttonwood

Jennifer Koh's "Shared Madness"

The New York Philharmonic's second Biennial is underway, bringing new music programming to venues across the city. In addition to Lincoln Center, the NY Phil is programming concerts at venues in Brooklyn like National Sawdust, a venue that is quickly becoming a vital center for contemporary music. Following its first installment on May 24, violinist Jennifer Koh returns to National Sawdust on May 31 for the second part of her commissioning project entitled "Shared Madness". The program is indeed a bit of a mad idea: 30 virtuosic show-pieces, commissioned and premiered by Koh, all performed over two evenings. As Koh puts it, her program seeks to explore "the meaning of virtuosity in the 21st century." 

Among the composers Koh chose to commission are Timo Andres, Christopher Cerrone, Anthony Cheung, Vijay Iyer, Phil Kline, and Andrew Norman. Koh's recent "Bridge to Beethoven" project saw close collaboration between her and Iyer, Norman, and Cheung, in addition to Jörg Widmann. Be sure to stop by National Sawdust to experience the "shared madness"!

New Music Mondays: Phil Kline, Douglas J. Cuomo

Time for another installment of New Music Mondays, that joyous day of the week when we make even more new works available through PSNY! Since our launch in November 2011, we've made over two hundred and fifty works available as digital downloads, and this week we add some more to our roster: two arias from Douglas J. Cuomo's opera Doubt, and the full score to Phil Kline's Out Cold, for voice and ensemble. 

"The Boy's Nature" and "The Doubt Sermon", for mezzo-soprano and baritone, respectively, are two celebrated arias from Cuomo's 2013 opera, Doubt, which was commissioned and premiered by the Minnesota Opera with a libretto by John Patrick Shanley, after his Pulitzer Prize-winning play. The play was also adapted into a film in 2008. 

Phil Kline's Out Cold is a 45-minute song cycle for voice and ensemble, which the composer calls "a cycle of torch songs, written under the influence of Schubert, Sinatra, and Nelson Riddle." Commissioned by American Opera Projects, this cycle premiered at BAM in 2012. 

Selections from Out Cold can be seen here: 

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