One of the finalists for this year's Pulitzer Prize in Music was a piece introduced last March down the Thruway. “7 Etudes for Solo Piano,” by Don Byron was premiered last March in Hallwall’s Contemporary Art Center in Buffalo.
But Byron didn't win. Steve Reich did. Steve Reich
Steve Reich's Double Sextet is "a major work that displays an ability to channel an initial burst of energy into a large-scale musical event, built with masterful control and consistently intriguing to the ear." That's according to the Pulitzer Prize committee, which awarded Reich the 2009 Pulitzer Prize in Music for Double Sextet.
"The piece can be played in two ways," Reich told NPR Monday. "Either with 12 musicians or with six playing against a recording of themselves."
After hearing about the award, Reich said, "While they certainly gave it to composers, like, eventually, Charles Ives, Aaron Copland, John Adams ... there were a lot of very important people that they passed over who were not university types, and I'm not a university type. There's a bend in the road that happened, and that undoubtedly was part of my being selected."
There is a new magazine devoted to classical music, and it's based out of the United States (unlike Grammphone or BBC, which come to us from overseas). This has the potential to really set a course of what "classical music" means in America. I've got my thoughts, and I'd love to hear yours!
Nina Assimakopoulos talks about her flute as if she’s describing a grand passion. It’s been a journey of discovery, boredom, and reawakening. Tonight at 7:00 p.m., she’ll perform a free recital in Room 208, Brodie Hall at SUNY Geneseo. She’ll repeat the concert at Houghton College on Tuesday, April 14th at 11:00 a.m. in the Center for the Arts Recital Hall.
The Bowling Green professor will show off the whole spectrum of sounds possible on the contemporary flute in a program of music by Debussy, Payne, Fukushima, Shulamit Ran, and Ian Clarke's "Zoom Tube."
Click on the sound file below to hear Nina talk about techniques and new repertoire for flute.
Eastman Professor John Marcellus will lead 76+ Trombones on the field at the Rochester Red Wings Opening Day baseball event at Frontier Field on Saturday, April 11.
If you go, you'll see 76+ trombonists from the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester, Ithaca College, and Penn State University. Others in the parade will include Rochester drummers John Beck, Michael Burritt, David Mancini of the Doc Severinsen Orchestra, and Rich Thompson from the Count Basie Band.
They'll march from Main and State to Frontier Field and be joined by Rochester Mayor Robert J. Duffy at 12:30 p.m., at Frontier Field. Then they'll play a few numbers to draw attention to the Rochester Literacy Movement. You're invited to show up with new or gently used books to donate to the city’s youth. All family-friendly books are welcomed, including recent books on tape or CD and ethnically-rich and diverse books, too.
Here's what's on the radar. There's confusion over whether or not Rochester's Artwalk has received $3.4 in federal stimulus funds. Those close to the project say no, but NYS's governor says it's going to happen. No doubt in Toronto: Canadians love the arts! Pegasus Early Music is moving its successful early music concert series to the Downtown United Presbyterian Church (DUPC) next season. Meanwhile, the recession has put DUPC in the unfortunate position of reducing its music director's hours, meaning there will be no lunchtime concerts this spring. American composer Eric Whitacre is writing a new 3-4 minute piece of music and donating it to an auction to benefit choral advocacy organization Chorus America. Any choir can "buy" rights to premiere the piece for $1,500. (As far as I know, no Rochester choirs have taken the bait.) Finally, NPR made the top of New York magazine's current approval matrix for its outstanding ratings, but caused a kerfuffle by announcing it was canceling all of its newspaper subscriptions. New information: Artwalk, the Rochester art trail, IS among 25 projects in New York State that will share $34 million in federal funding. More later . . .
On Saturday night, a panel of judges, including WXXI Music Director Julia Figueras, named Rochester's Classical Idol in the 3rd Annual Contest to benefit the Rochester Oratorio Society.
The First Prize winner was soprano Jacqueline Noparstak of New York City. She walked away with $1,500 and the chance to solo with the ROS. Second Prize and $1,000 went to baritone Evan Jones, and the Third Prize winner was soprano Elena O'Connor, who earned $500 for her performance of Rachmaninoff's mournful art song "Ne krasavica pri mne." Jones won the Audience Favorite Award.