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Posts tagged 'Sound Icon'

Lerdahl and Carrick Performed by Sound Icon in Boston

Fred Lerdahl, composer, music theorist, and long-time professor at Columbia University, will be the composer-in-residence at the Boston University Center for New Music twice in the upcoming season: first in September, and later in January 2017. To kick off the residency, Boston's new music sinfonietta Sound Icon will perform Ledahl's Time after Time in their season opening concert on September 30 at Boston University's CFA Concert Hall.

Bridge Records, which has released numerous recordings of Lerdahl's work, including Time after Time, calls Lerdahl "one of the least known among "major" American composers." Of his singular style, Bridge writes that "a Lerdahl composition might at any moment be tonal or atonal, it might luxuriate in Lerdahl's rich melodic and harmonic gifts, or it might make reference to various musics of our past." 

            
(pages from Time after Time)

Time after Time, scored for Pierrot ensemble (flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, percussion), was commissioned and premiered by the Washington Square Contemporary Music Society in 2000 and a finalist for the 2001 Pulitzer Prize in Music. The work employs Lerdahl signature "spiral form", in which simple ideas become deeply elaborated and more complex with each cycle. Listen to an excerpt:

Sound Icon's program also includes a performance of PSNY composer Richard Carrick's dark flow, a double quartet for saxophone, trombone, acoustic guitar, percussion, violin, piano, cello and cibalom. Carrick takes inspiration for this work from the "hypothetical and unexplained flow of galaxy clusters toward a particular point in deep space," a phenomenon described as "dark flow." Carrick elaborates: 

In astrophysics, dark flow refers to the hypothetical and unexplained flow of galaxy clusters toward a particular point in deep space.  Interestingly, some speculate this influence on galaxies comes from a part of the universe that no longer exists, but somehow still carries an influence on matter.  This "invisible pull" is something that exist deep in music as well, something strongly felt but not easily defined.


Check out a performance of dark flow with the Either/Or Ensemble: 



The program, presented by the Boston University Center for New Music on September 30, also includes performances of works by Rick Burkhardt and features soprano Jennifer Ashe.

Sound Icon Performs Ken Ueno's "Zetsu"

Sound Icon, Boston's acclaimed contemporary music sinfonietta, gives the East Coast premiere of Ken Ueno's Zetsu on November 12th at Boston University's CFA Concert Hall, presented by Boston University's Center for New Music. The performance features violinist Gabriela Diaz, for whom Ueno originally wrote this "person-specific" piece, and who premiered the piece along with the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players in February 2015. Zetsu is inspired by the ceramics of Nishida Jun, whose works are in the collection of Boston's Museum of Fine Arts. Like Jun's ceramics, Zetsu attempts to analogize the creation of a protean form of music, which Ueno accomplishes by crafting both new ways of playing instruments and new instruments themselves, such as percussion idiophones using microtonal tunings specific to the harmonic spectrum of the piece, and the "Hookah Sax"—a saxophone augmented with a 7' length of plastic hookah tubing: 



Ueno writes that, formally, the piece "pushes and pulls gestures and textures to extremes: the slowly evolving shimmer in the solo violin of the opening gives way to discrete, rhythmically clarified polyphony for the ensemble. The soloist returns with an intricate part ranging widely in articulation and tessitura, microtonal contours lending an organic, improvised, very human intensity."

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