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Posts tagged 'Prism Quartet'

Gavin Bryars' "The Fifth Century" Out on ECM

Gavin Bryars' music moves slowly, intentionally, across planes of time, emotion, and medium. Since his early works such as Jesus' Blood Never Failed Me Yet (1969) and The Sinking of the Titanic (1971), Bryars has fused together text, music, sound, image, and performance, working across and between established music forms and media. Recordings of his work become windows into this unique compositional plane, and ECM has released several renowned albums of Bryars' in the 80s and 90s. 

Now, for the first time in several decades, ECM has released a new album of music by Bryars: The Fifth Century, featuring his major recent work of the same name for chorus and saxophone quartet, as well as his Two Love Songs. The Fifth Century is a setting of texts by English mystic Thomas Traherne, which was commissioned and premiered by The Crossing and PRISM Saxophone Quartet led by Donald Nally. The work unfolds in seven short sections, with PRISM recalling 16th and 17th century organ accompaniment, and The Crossing singing lushly voiced settings that compliment the text's mysticism. 

Bryars also recently saw the world premiere of a new work in the US, titled The Other Side of the River, which premiered on November 17th at Peak Performances' program "See You Later." Part of a "staged concert" performed by Third Coast Percussion, The Other Side of the River, which features marimbas and bells, was performed alongside a new film by Laura Colmenares Guerra, and complimented a performance of David T. Little's Haunt of Last Nightfall. Check out some of Guerra's experimental film work below. 

Lei Liang: World Premiere, New Recordings

The World Premiere of Lei Liang's Inkscape, for percussion quartet and piano, commissioned by the Boston Conservatory, Manhattan School of Music and Third Coast Percussion, will be premiered on October 2, 2014 with Samuel Solomon leading pianist Yukiko Takagi and the Boston Conservatory Percussion Ensemble. Also on the program are two selections from Liang's Garden Eight (arranged for percussion quartet), as well as works by Toru Takemitsu and James Tenney. The concert is free—so if you're in the Boston area be sure to check it out! 

Liang has also seen a string of new recordings in the past year. Bridge Records has just released a solo CD of Liang's work, "Bamboo Lights", which features Listening for Blossoms, Lakescape, Serashi Fragments, Lakescape II, Gobi Gloria, Lake, and Bamboo Lights. These works are performed by some of the most talented ensembles working in the field today, including the JACK Quartet and the Callithumpian Consort

In addition to this album dedicated to Liang's work, several other groups have included his compositions in recent releases: the PRISM Saxophone Quartet has recorded his Messages of White on their new release, "The Singing Gobi Desert". Also, the Zentripetal Duo has recorded Liang's Gobi Canticle on their new self-titled album.

Check out a video of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble performing his Serashi Fragments 

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