From John Cage to Afro-Cuban Jazz: Concerts You Do NOT Want to Miss This Season

by Maggie Molloy

Ahh, fall. The leaves are changing, the rain is sprinkling, the sky is cloudy, and the pumpkin spice marketing is in full swing. Those hot summer days are finally behind us and we’re back to our familiar, cozy, flannel-covered fall in Seattle. After all, October is a time for new beginnings, new adventures, and—most importantly—new music.

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Seattle’s 2016-2017 concert season is jam-packed with fresh new music of every shape, style, and structure (or lack thereof). From John Cage to Afro-Cuban jazz,  Astor Piazzolla to Andy Warhol, Benjamin Britten to Brazilian poetry—there is something for everyone. Here are some of our top picks for the season:

On Stage with KING FM: Second Inversion is thrilled to host two concerts this year as part of the second season of On Stage with Classical KING FM! In March, we’ll present the Seattle Marimba Quartet with an eclectic program of classical favorites, modern marimba repertoire, and interactive drumming rhythms drawing from Afro-Cuban, Brazilian, and African musical traditions.

Then in May, back by popular demand, we present the Seattle Rock Orchestra Quintet with the mesmerizing Tamara Power-Drutis for a program that transforms pop songs into art songs, reimagining both classic and modern tunes as intimate chamber works for the recital hall. Check out our videos from last season for a sneak-peek of what you can expect.

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Seattle Symphony: Ditch the conventional concert-going experience of strict seating, fancy attire, and three-hour long performances with Seattle Symphony’s [Untitled] concert series. This season you can catch landmark works by Witold Lutosławski (arguably Poland’s most innovative composer since Chopin), drench yourself in the dramatic soundscapes of Polish composer and singer Agata Zubel, explore the wide-ranging musical styles of Soviet era composers, and even enter into the twisted worlds of two of America’s most confounding cultural icons: pop artist Andy Warhol and jazz pianist Thelonious Monk.

And speaking of jazz: Seattle Symphony will also co-present their annual Sonic Evolution concert with Earshot Jazz this November. Grace Love and the Garfield High School Jazz Band join the symphony for an evening celebrating two extraordinary Seattle musicians: the incomparable composer and record producer Quincy Jones and the legendary blues singer Ernestine Anderson, both of whom attended Garfield High School.

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Meany Center for the Performing Arts: Formerly known as the UW World Series, Meany Center is still just as committed as ever to bringing music from around the world to their Seattle stage. In November, they’ll feature the Grammy-nominated Imani Winds quintet, known around the globe for their dynamic playing, culturally conscious programming, and adventurous collaborations. Argentine tango composer Astor Piazzolla, Cuban-born jazz saxophonist Paquito D’Rivera, and Palestinian-American oud and violin virtuoso Simon Shaheen are just a few of the composers listed on this program.

In January, the New York-based Jack Quartet presents an evening of composed and improvised music along with visiting artists from the internationally acclaimed Six Tones Ensemble and UW School of Music faculty members Richard Karpen, Juan Pampin, Cuong Vu, and Ted Poor. And if you can’t make it to these concerts, don’t sweat—Second Inversion will be broadcasting them live on our online stream.

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John Cage Musicircus: Come one, come all to the John Cage Musicircus this November 19! This multimedia concert “happening” features over over 60 musicians, dancers, performance artists, and poets simultaneously performing pieces from Cage’s expansive body of work, including the Sonatas and Interludes for prepared piano, In a Landscape for (unprepared) piano, Child of Tree for amplified cactus, Third Construction for unorthodox percussion instruments, Cartridge Music for amplified small sounds, 45’ For A Speaker for spoken voice, and much more!

Performers will be stationed all over Town Hall, with audience members encouraged to explore how the sonic and visual experience shifts as they wander freely throughout the building. Plus, Second Inversion’s own Maggie Molloy will present the pre-concert lecture, perform two piano works, and distribute free copies of her John Cage Diary series as a zine for audience members to take home!

john-cage-musicircusNorth Corner Chamber Orchestra: Celebrate those cozy winter nights with NOCCO’s annual Solstice Celebration, this year featuring the music of Stravinsky, Respighi, Bach, and Seattle composer Angelique Poteat. Then in February for Black History Month, NOCCO performs a program featuring a newly commissioned work by local composer Hanna Brenn and performance artist C. Davida Ingram alongside classics by two Pulitzer Prize-winning African American composers: Scott Joplin and George Walker. And in April, their season wraps up with a brand new world premiere by NOCCO’s principal clarinetist and composer, Sean Osborn, along with well-loved works by Rossini and Haydn.

noccoSeattle Modern Orchestra: These guys are starting their season off with a bang: three new premieres by living composers. First, a U.S. premiere by Lithuanian composer Vykintas Baltakas, then a West Coast premiere by German composer Wolfgang Rihm, followed by a world premiere by American composer Andrew Waggoner featuring Grammy-winning guest pianist Gloria Cheng.

The rest of the season features cutting-edge collaborations with University of Washington’s Solaris Vocal Ensemble and the Paris-based clarinetist Carol Robinson, a world premiere by SMO co-artistic director Jérémy Jolley, the 80th birthday of legendary Seattle trombonist Stuart Dempster, the 90th birthday of renowned Seattle clarinetist and composer William O. “Bill” Smith, and the centennial celebration of American composer Robert Erickson.

gloria-chengUniversal Language Project: ULP is back for another season of interdisciplinary and out-of-the-box collaborations between 21st century musicians and artists of all disciplines. In October: a multi-media work by Marcus Oldham about racial reconciliation (featuring Second Inversion regulars the Skyros Quartet). In January, composer Chris Stover showcases his works for chamber jazz ensemble featuring spoken word, found sounds, and dance inspired by Brazilian poets. Then in March, the season wraps up with a surreal, outer space-inspired performance featuring artist Erin Jorgensen with local musicians, the overtones of her 5-octave marimba merging with intimate whispering and beautifully minimal music in a small stab towards enlightenment.

erin-jorgensenEmerald City Music: Now in its inaugural season, Emerald City Music is on a mission to make classical chamber music accessible to broader audiences in Seattle and Olympia. And they’re not wasting any time: their inaugural season features 45 renowned guest artists from around the world. Each of the concerts offers a uniquely thematic glimpse into the chamber music repertory, featuring classical masterworks and newly composed music alike. Bookended by concerts featuring familiar works by Bach and Beethoven, this year you can also expand your classical music palette with cutting-edge performances of works by the likes of Henri Dutilleux, Thomas Adès, Benjamin Britten, Bohuslav Martinů, Percy Grainger, David Schiff, Per Nørgård, Ryan Francis, Thomas Koppel, and more.

dover-quartetTown Music Series: Curated by Second Inversion Artistic Advisor Joshua Roman, the Town Music Series programs cutting-edge and virtuosic chamber works which bring together the best of old and new classical traditions. Their 2016-2017 season kicks off with cellist Joshua Roman joined by violinist Caroline Goulding for an evening of dynamic duets by Halvorsen, Kodály, and Ravel. Stay tuned for details on the rest of the season!

joshua-romanWayward Music Series: If you’ve got wayward or otherwise unconventional music taste, the Wayward Music Series will keep you satiated all year long. Check their online calendar or subscribe to their newsletter for specifics on upcoming events, which span the new music gamut from contemporary classical to the outer limits of jazz, electroacoustic experiments to explorations of the avant-garde, eccentric instruments to unorthodox sound art, multimedia collaborations and much more.

wayward-music-seriesThese are just a handful of the new music happenings we’re most looking forward to this season—for more up-to-the-minute details on experimental, avant-garde, and otherwise unconventional music events around the Northwest, check out Second Inversion’s full event calendar!

New Music Concerts: June 2016 Seattle * Eastside * Tacoma

SI_button2Second Inversion and the Live Music Project create a monthly calendar featuring contemporary classical, cross-genre, and experimental performances in Seattle, the Eastside, Tacoma, and places in between! 

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Keep an eye out for our this flyer in concert programs and coffee shops around town. Feel free to download, print, and distribute it yourself! If you’d like your concert included on an upcoming flyer drop us a line at least 6 weeks prior to the event.

Program Insert - June 2016 onesided (updated)

Racer Sessions
A weekly showcase of original music with a jam session based on the concepts in the opening presentation.
Every Sunday, 8-10pm, Cafe Racer | FREE

Wayward Music Series
Concerts of contemporary composition, free improvisation, electronic/electroacoustic music, & more.
Various days, 7:30/8pm, Good Shepherd Chapel | $5-15

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UW Sound Lab
Students present their explorations into experimental sound, theater and audio design, led by Associate Professor of Composition, Huck Hodge.
Sat, 6/4, 7:30pm, Brechemin Auditorium, UW School of Music | Free
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4 & 5
Bellevue Chamber Chorus & Dunava: Bridges of Song
Experience human connections with this festival of folk music from around the world with delightful songs arranged by Tormis, Holst, Copland.
Sat, 6/4, 7:30pm, St. Luke’s Lutheran, Bellevue | $5-$20
Sun, 6/5, 3pm, Maple Leaf Lutheran | $5-$20

4 & 5
NOCCO: Chamber Dances
Join the North Corner Chamber Orchestra for their season finale, featuring Joan Tower’s Chamber Dances.
Sat, 6/4, 2pm, University Unitarian Church | $13-$30 (under 18: FREE)
Sun, 6/5, 8pm, Royal Room | $13-$30 (under 18: FREE)

4 & 5
sound|counterpoint: Red Earth Project
Early music favorites, a re-imagining of a solo violin sonata by Bach, tunes from jazz and rock greats, and premieres of two new works for period instruments.
Sat, 6/4, 7:30pm, Queen Anne Christian Church | $25
Sun, 6/5, 2pm, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church | $20

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Mostly Nordic: Winds of Change – The Icelandic Spirit
Brother and sister team Saeunn and Skuli bring Icelandic spirit to this program with arrangements of Icelandic folk songs and new works by Skuli.
Sun, 6/5, 4pm, Nordic Heritage Museum | $30-$60

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Wayward Music presents Cursive: Black Anemones
Cursive seeks to perform great, unknown modern works with a modular ensemble. This performance features masterworks by Schulhoff, Fine, Schwantner, & more.
Thurs, 6/9, 8pm, Good Shepherd Chapel | $5-$15

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Seattle Modern Orchestra: Discrete Infinity
SMO presents the US Premiere of Anthony Cheung’s Discrete Infinity along with Gérard Grisey’s Periodes & Claude Vivier’s Samarkand.
Sat, 6/11, 8pm, Good Shepherd Chapel | $10-$20

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Washington Wind Symphony
WWS presents Samuel Hazo’s Ride, Karel Husa’s Music for Prague 1968, Grainger’s Molly on the Shore, Alfred Reed’s Armenian Dances, & more!
Sun, 6/12, 2pm, Kirkland Performance Center | $6-$16

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Seattle Rock Orchestra: Beach Boys Tribute
SRO pays homage to “America’s Band,” with selections from the 1966 album Pet Sounds & a plethora of their surfing and hot rod inspired hits.
Sat, 6/18, 8pm, Kirkland Performance Center | $40

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Seattle Symphony: TUNING UP!
Join SSO for 9 concerts over 2 weeks to celebrate American music from Gershwin’s swing to the Alaskan “sonic geography” of John Luther Adams.
Fri, 6/17, 8pm, Benaroya Hall | $25 “Rhapsody in Red, White & Blue”
Mon, 6/20, 7:30pm, Nordstrom Recital Hall | $25 “The Theremin Returns”
Thu, 6/23, 7:30pm, BH | $25 “From Appalachian Spring to the Red Violin”
Fri, 6/24, 7:30pm, NRH | $25 “Great American Chamber Music”
Sun, 6/26, 4pm, Marymoor Park, Redmond | $25 & up “SSO Plays Gershwin”
Wed, 6/29, 7:30pm, NRH | $25 “Triadic Memories: A Minimalist Masterpiece”
Fri, 7/1, 10pm, Stroum Grand Lobby | $15 “[untitled] 3: In the White Silence”
Sat, 7/2, 8pm, BH | $25 “The Symphony in Hollywood”

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Inverted Space: Geoges Aperghis (Long Piece Fest)
Inverted Space’s season finale features Aperghis’s long dramatic work for actor and eclectic ensemble, including saxophone, accordion and video.
Tues, 6/28, 8pm, Good Shepherd Chapel | $5-$15

FREE COMMUNITY EVENT: So Percussion presents Steve Reich’s Drumming

by Maggie Stapleton

If you’ve been following what’s going on in Seattle this week, I think you’d agree it’s been an incredible showcase of new music performances. There’s more to come, it involves So Percussion, and it’s FREE!

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Photo Credit: David Andrako

So Percussion kicked off a week long residency with UW World Series and UW School of Music at Meany Hall on Sunday evening. In a presentation on UW World Series’ International Chamber Music series, music of Steve Reich, Glenn Kotche, John Cage, and Bryce Dessner filled the hall with hypnotic precision, leaving a percussion-hungry audience satisfied.

Since then, they’ve been busy working with students, performing impromptu pop-ups around campus, talking shop, and to bookend their visit, So Percussion will offer a collaborative performance of Steve Reich’s “Drumming” with University of Washington School of Music Students on Thursday, February 4 at 6pm in the Meany Studio Theatre. This event is free & open to the public and presented by the UW World Series in partnership with The UW School of Music and Henry Art Gallery.

They also made a stop by our studios to shoot a couple of videos, which will be up and running in a couple of weeks. Look how much fun these guys are!

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We put tomorrow’s “Drumming” performance in the “you better not miss this!” category. We’ll see you there!

Seattle New Music Concerts: February 2016

SI_button2Second Inversion and The Live Music Project have partnered to create a monthly calendar featuring contemporary classical, cross-genre, and experimental performances in Seattle, the Eastside, and Tacoma. 

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Keep an eye out for our this flyer in concert programs (and in coffee shops!) around town. Feel free to download, print, and distribute it yourself! And if you’re interested in being a part of this collaboration, drop us a line!  
Program Insert - February 2016 - onesided

Wayward Music Series
Concerts of contemporary composition, free improvisation, electronic/electroacoustic music, & more.
Various days, 7:30/8pm, Good Shepherd Chapel | $5-15

Racer Sessions
A weekly showcase of original music with a jam session based on the concepts in the opening presentation.
Every Sunday, 8-10pm, Cafe Racer | FREE

Gabriel Kahane & Brooklyn Rider
This show samples their new collaborative album, The Fiction Issue, and is co-presented by Second Inversion.
February 1, 8pm, Tractor Tavern | $15

Counterpoint | Phase: All Steve Reich
Gloriously hypnotic sounds: clarinet, marimbas, cello, violin
February 2, 8pm, On the Boards | $10

Seattle Symphony [untitled] 2
This program includes works by New York Experimental composers Feldman, Wolff, Cage, and Brown.
February 5, 10pm, Benaroya Hall Lobby | $15

Sunday Sunset Concerts with Erin Jorgensen
An intimate concert as the sun sets and the week ends. Think more punk rock yoga nidra than classic concert.
February 7, 7:30pm, Velocity Kawasaki Studio | $10

Lake Union Civic Orchestra: Higdon’s blue cathedral
This deeply moving tribute by Higdon is paired with Beethoven’ Symphony No.2 & Lalo’s Cello Concerto.
February 12, 7:30pm, Town Hall Seattle | $13-18

NW Symphony Orchestra: Huling, Tonooka, Jones, & more
This show features local composers, including a premiere by Tonooka featuring trombonist Ko-Ichiro Yamamoto.
February 12, 7:30pm, Highline Performing Arts Center, Burien | $12-15

North Corner Chamber Orchestra: The 3 B’s (with a twist)
Bach and Brahms get nudged out by Barber and Bartok on this reimagining of the typical “3 B’s” of classical music!
February 20, 2pm, University Christian Church (2/20)
February 21, 7:30pm, Royal Room (2/21)
$15-25, FREE for Music Students & Youth (under 18)

STG Presents: Kronos Quartet: Vrebalov’s Beyond Zero
This new work commemorates the centennial of the outbreak of World War I & integrates film by Bill Morrison.
February 20, 8pm, Moore Theatre | $20-75

Music of Today: Garth Knox, viola
The UW School of Music presents new and improvised music by internationally renowned violist Garth Knox.
February 22, 7:30pm, Meany Theatre | $10-15

Town Music: we do it to one another
Joshua Roman presents his commissioned song cycle to Tracy K. Smith’s Pulitzer Prize-winning “Life on Mars.”
February 25, 7:30pm, Town Hall Seattle | $5-25

Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra: World Sounds
SMCO presents the winning works of the 2nd International Composition Competition for Young Composers.
February 27, 8pm, First Free Methodist Church | $15-20

STG Presents: Trader Joe’s Silent Movie Mondays
A viewing of Ben Hur – A Tale of the Christ, featuring the original score performed live with Seattle Rock Orchestra.
February 29, 7pm, Paramount Theatre | $25.50

Archives:
January 2016

2015-16 SEASON PREVIEW: Fresh music, from Britten to Bowie

by Jill Kimball

With Seattle’s ever-growing and ever-diversifying population, it’s easy to see why our city has become a top destination for up-and-coming composers, young musical talent, and adventurous concert formats. The 2015-16 season is so packed with new music concerts that, on most weekends, you’d need both hands (and maybe a few toes) to count them. From revitalized Britten to badass multimedia concerts to the classiest Bowie you’ve ever heard, there’s a little something for everyone. Read on for our top picks of the season.


The Town Music series at Town Hall Seattle, curated by our own Artistic Advisor Joshua Roman, is a bastion for cutting-edge music. The season kicks off with a young Russian violinist’s interpretations of Bach’s beautiful, complicated Sonatas and Partitas. And the rest of the season is anything but staid: it includes the premiere of a work composed over two continents, a dynamic performance of Britten’s second string quartet, and a new piece by Roman himself, featuring Pulitzer Prize-winning poetry by Tracy K. Smith and the up-and-coming soprano Jessica Rivera.


Another go-to destination for edgy music with global influences is the UW World Series, an arts season at Meany Hall featuring big names and even bigger ideas. This season is packed with exciting concerts that feature mainstays on the Second Inversion stream. In October, the ETHEL quartet teams up with Native American flutist Robert Mirabal for a concert focused on water’s essential role in all our lives. If drums and mallets are your thing, you must check out So Percussion’s set of modern classics by Reich, Cage, and more. For those who prefer concerts that combine edgy work with timeless pieces, go see the young, bearded Danish String Quartet (they take on music by Beethoven, Schnittke, and a composer from their homeland, Per Nørgaard), pianist Jeremy Denk (he’ll work in some Hindemith and Nancarrow between the Bach and Byrd), or the Daedalus String Quartet (a Huck Hodge world premiere is sandwiched between Beethoven chamber works). If you can’t make it to some of these much-anticipated concerts, don’t worry: we’ll have your back with a live broadcasts or a video from each one.


The UW World Series isn’t the only destination for new music on the University of Washington campus. The School of Music itself has an impressive lineup of concerts. On Halloween weekend, we’re excited to hear the Chicago-based Ensemble Dal Niente perform the works of Seattlites Huck Hodge, Joël-François Durand, and Marcin Pączkowski, among others. In late April, the Carnegie Hall resident ensemble Decoda caps off its weeklong UW residency with a Meany Hall concert of new and old music. And finally, some UW students pay homage to Harry Partch, who created new instruments along with new music, with performances of some of his work.

The UW isn’t the only higher education arts game in town, of course. Cornish College of the Arts is a wealth of compositional talent and its concert season, Cornish Presents, attracts world-class acts every year. Cornish teacher Wayne Horvitz starts off the new-music feast with his piece “Some Places are Forever Afternoon/11 Places for Richard Hugo,” performed with chamber groups Sweeter Than The Day and the Gravitas Quartet. A few days later, flutist Camilla Hoitenga teams up with composer and sound designer Jean-Baptiste Barrière for an electronic concert with video. In December, Paul D. Miller, better known as DJ Spooky, uses interviews from survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs to create a moving original composition. And for an ultimate exploration of music from both sides of the Pacific, stop by PONCHO Hall in November, when a famous gamelan ensemble joins four Seattle string players for a performance of new, local music.


Full-time locavores may not be satisfied until everything about the concert, from composer to performer to creator, is Northwest-based. If you want all local, all the time, your concert season destination should be the Universal Language Project. Founded by trumpeter and composer Brian Chin, the project draws on local talent to present a commissioned premiere in every concert. This season, we’ll hear music inspired by local landscapes written by Karen P. Thomas, Brian Cobb, and Tim Carey; music for strings performed by Seattle-based Scrape Ensemble; and an interactive concert with stunning visuals by Scott Kolbo.


And if that’s not enough to whet your new music appetite, the Seattle Modern Orchestra‘s upcoming season has even more new music. Each of its three main concerts features a premiere of some sort, from Orlando Jacinto Garcia’s From Darkness to Luminosity to an as-yet-unnamed work by Ewa Trębacz to the U.S. premiere of Anthony Cheung’s 2011 work Discrete Infinity.


In the last few years, Benaroya Hall has become an internationally recognized center for cutting-edge new music, from the avant garde to the crossover. If you’re into the former, you probably already know about the Seattle Symphony’s famed [untitled] series, which takes place in the Benaroya lobby fashionably late at night. This [untitled] season proves it means business with a season kickoff made up entirely of world premieres, then goes on to focus on New York City’s avant garde scene and an Arctic-themed piece by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Luther Adams. If the latter is more your taste, check out the undefinable Sonic Evolution series, which this season focuses on the way different artists influence each other across genres and the phenomenon of indie music and film.


Finally, if you’re looking to get some culture but indulge in musical guilty pleasures at the same time, your go-to season should be the Seattle Rock Orchestra‘s. The ensemble that famously covers popular music on orchestral instruments has put together a killer 2015-16 series, which includes a David Bowie showcase, a collection of Mowtown music, and an evening devoted to Neil Diamond. A quintet from SRO also closes out Classical KING FM’s inaugural concert series with a very exciting Eastside concert featuring covers of Beck, Bjork, Radiohead, and more.

These are only a few highlights from an expansive, diverse, and exciting upcoming concert season. For a full listing of shows around the Northwest that’ll make you rethink classical, check our full event calendar.

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CONCERT SPOTLIGHT: June 11-13

by Maggie Molloy 

This week’s concert calendar spans the musical gamut from viola da gamba to Morton Feldman!

Morton Feldman’s “For John Cage”

Morton Feldman

In true New York fashion, composer Morton Feldman first met John Cage at a New York Philharmonic performance of Anton Webern’s Symphony, Op. 21. Disturbed by the audience’s disrespectful reaction to Webern’s work, the two had each individually stepped out into the lobby, where they began talking.

Both composers went on to become pioneers of indeterminate music—and perhaps more importantly, close friends. The two influenced each other over the course of their careers, and in 1997 Feldman wrote “For John Cage,” a 75-minute piece for violin and piano.

This week the University of Washington’s contemporary music ensemble, Inverted Space, is concluding its Long Piece Fest with a performance of this epic (and lengthy) work. Violinist Luke Fitzpatrick and pianist Brooks Tran will breathe life into this unique piece, which is meant to be performed at a barely audible volume. The piece combines Feldman’s expansive harmonies with Cage’s interest in silence and stasis, thus delicately exploring poetic dissonance in a state of prolonged stillness.

The performance is this Thursday, June 11 at 7:30 p.m. at the Chapel Performance Space at the Good Shepherd Center in Wallingford.

 

Joshua Roman Performs Gregg Kallor’s Chamber Music

joshua-roman-683x455Cellist Joshua Roman is well-known in the Seattle classical music community—after all, he became the youngest principal player in Seattle Symphony history at just 22 years old. But his reputation as a gifted and innovative musician expands far beyond just his Seattle achievements. He has performed as a soloist around the world, and this week we have unique opportunity to hear him perform in one of the major classical music centers of America: New York City.

Miranda Cuckson by Beowulf SheehanRoman will be performing a dazzlingly lyrical piece titled “Undercurrent” by composer and pianist Gregg Kallor, the inaugural composer-in-residence at SubCulture in NYC. The performance also features world premieres of two new pieces written by Kallor, performed by violinist Miranda Cuckson, mezzo-soprano Adriana Zabala, and baritone Matthew Worth.

gregg-kallor2-683x1026Kallor’s works blend classical and jazz traditions with a distinctly New York flavor. But since it’s a long flight to NYC, we thought we’d bring the music to you: Second Inversion is going to record the live performance and broadcast it later on our website for your listening pleasure.

The performance is this Thursday, June 11 at 7:30 p.m. at SubCulture in New York. We’ll keep you updated on the details for our Second Inversion broadcast!

Colleen and Hanna Benn

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Violas da gamba may have been popular instruments during the Baroque period, but for the past several centuries the violin family has dominated the classical music scene—which is why one French musician is giving the age-old viola da gamba a new-age makeover.

Colleen is the alias of Cécile Schott, a French musician who reimagines the possibilities of acoustic instruments by taking them out of their usual contexts and pushing them into new musical territory. Over the course of her five albums, she has created a wide-ranging repertoire of compositions spanning from meditative and mysterious to playful and percussive. This weekend, she’s coming to Seattle to present a performance which merges old and new music traditions: viola da gamba with live electronic processing and singing.

Seattle composer and vocalist Hanna Benn will open the show with a rare solo set.

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The performance is this Saturday, June 13 at 8 p.m. at the Chapel Performance Space at the Good Shepherd Center in Wallingford.  UPDATE: This concert is sold out! Please refer to Colleen‘s website and Hanna‘s SoundCloud for future performance info.

 

LIVE CONCERT SPOTLIGHT: May 27-31

by Maggie Molloy

This week’s imaginative concert calendar has everything from opera to oboe trios to Edgar Allan Poe!

Inverted Space Presents “Don Perlimplín” and Maderna-Fest

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Italy has long been a center for innovations in vocal music—the Italians created opera in the late 16th century and, to this day, they still maintain a rich and dynamic vocal music tradition. This weekend, the University of Washington’s Inverted Space Ensemble is celebrating the musical contributions of one contemporary Italian composer in particular: Bruno Maderna.

An influential (but often-overlooked) figure of the avant-garde, Maderna was a 20th century composer known for his expressive musical freedom and commitment to the modernist cause. He moved in the same circles as composers like Karlheinz Stockhausen, Pierre Boulez, and Luciano Berio.

This weekend, Inverted Space is presenting the U.S. premiere of Maderna’s experimental opera “Don Perlimplín,” based on a play about love and loss by the 20th century Spanish dramatist Federico García Lorca. But that’s not all! The celebration continues with “Maderna-Fest,” a four-day festival of Maderna’s music and musical influences. Performances are as follows:

Inverted Space will perform small-scale chamber works by Maderna and Berio this Wednesday, May 27 at 7:30 p.m. at Jack Straw Cultural Center in the U District.

The group will perform the premiere of “Don Perlimplín” this Friday, May 29 at 7:30 p.m. at UW’s Meany Studio Theater.

The musicians will also perform three café concerts featuring vocal and instrumental works by Maderna, Pergolesi, Purcell, and Berio. The first is this Saturday, May 30 at 6 p.m. at Café Solstice in the U District, the second is this Saturday, May 30 at 8:30 p.m. at Stone Way Café in Fremont, and the final performance is this Sunday, May 31 at 8 p.m. at Café Racer in the U District.

Ursula Sahagian Performs Viet Cuong

Ursula-Sahagian-600x400How many live oboe trios have you seen? None? Well this weekend, you have the opportunity to change that.

This weekend, oboist Ursula Sahagian and friends are presenting an evening of riveting music for double reeds written by composer Viet Cuong. The group will perform his award-winning Suite for Oboe Trio, as well as his “Trains of Thought” for oboe, bassoon, and piano. Sahagian will also perform two of Cuong’s works for solo oboe: “Six Canadian Scenes” and the world premiere of “Soda Apple.” Both pieces push the oboe to the edge of its technical limits and beyond.

The performance is this Saturday, May 30 at 8 p.m. at the Chapel Performance Space at the Good Shepherd Center in Wallingford.