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Monday–Friday, 9:30 AM–5:30 PM
The story of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem. Courtesy of the Britten-Pears Foundation.
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 | 8 PM
Thursday, May 1, 2014 | 8 PM
Saturday, May 10, 2014 | 8 PM
Thursday, May 15, 2014 | 8 PM
Sunday, May 18, 2014 | 2 PM
David Lang introduces (post)folk
At the start, I have to say that I am something of a composer groupie. I love writing music and I love the other people who write music, no matter what kind of music they write or when they wrote it. I really believe that I belong to an international community of composers, stretching across all boundaries of time and place, regardless of style or category.
It's not the way we are normally taught to listen. Music and the people who make it can get separated from each other—by time, culture, genre, commerce. It makes it easy for us if all the different kinds of music stay separated. If everything sits neatly in a particular category, it gets much simpler to find the music you already know and to avoid the music you don't. But because I am a composer groupie, I always want to listen to music outside of these categories so I can pay attention to the things that different kinds of music and composers might have in common, and to consider their differences.collected stories looks at one of music's more universal functions, namely how often music gets called upon to help tell different kinds of stories. What I am particularly interested in is how the act of composing changes depending on what kind of story the composer is trying to tell.
I started thinking about this in the mid-1990s when I was finishing two commissions at the same time. One was a giant grand opera for Santa Fe, an extravaganza with a big cast and chorus and speaking roles and children and ballet dancers. The other was a loud, aggressively static piece for the English post-rock ensemble Icebreaker. As I went back and forth from one composition to the other, I could really feel my approach change. The opera required me to tell a story, to reveal things in such a way that the audience experienced surprise, shock, elation, and sadness. In the opera, everyone experienced those things pretty much at the same time. The static piece was more like an object, an odd thing that changed very slowly. It didn't tell the listeners much about what they should feel or when they should feel it. I began to notice how my job, my skills, my musicality, my aesthetic sense all changed, depending on the needs of the piece in front of me.collected stories divides the world not by genre or style, but by the various kinds of stories that a piece of music can tell in order to see how the story and the composer work together. The pieces I chose highlight some of the different ways a composer's job changes. But the truth is that everything on this series is music with which I have a long relationship and that I love. All of it. I hope you will too.
Sunday, April 27, 2014 | 6 PM
Benjamin Bagby is descended from a Germanic clan that emigrated from Jutland to northern
England circa 630, from where his branch of the family is known to have emigrated to the
colony of Virginia almost a millennium later. Following 321 years of subsequent family
wanderings, he was born on the shores of Lake Michigan, and 12 years later was captivated
Mr. Bagby has been an important figure in the field of medieval musical performance for
more than 30 years. After voice and German studies in the United States (Oberlin College
and Conservatory) and Switzerland (Schola Cantorum Basiliensis), he and the late Barbara
Thornton formed the legendary ensemble Sequentia in 1977 in Cologne, Germany, where the
ensemble was based until moving to Paris in 2002.
Sequentia is renowned for its more than 30 recordings, including the complete works of
Hildegard von Bingen, re-released by SONY as a box set (nine CDs) in 2014; and Canticles of
Ecstasy, which has sold more than one million copies worldwide and was nominated for a
More recently, Mr. Bagby and Sequentia have shifted focus to reflect a growing interest in
medieval oral poetry from the oldest known sources, leading to a series of programs grouped
under the banner The Lost Songs Project. The resulting recordings include Edda: Myths from
Medieval Iceland, The Rheingold Curse, Lost Songs of a Rhineland Harper, and Fragments for
the End of Time. All of these programs have been heard in New York, and The Rheingold Curse
was also staged by Ping Chong for the 2001 Lincoln Center Festival.
Apart from his research and ensemble work with Sequentia, Mr. Bagby devotes his time to
the solo performance of Anglo-Saxon and Germanic oral poetry. An acclaimed solo performance
of the Beowulf epic is an ongoing project, with performances given yearly worldwide; a DVD
production of his performance, filmed in Sweden by Stellan Olsson, was released in
In addition to his activities as singer, harpist, and director of Sequentia, Mr. Bagby
writes extensively about performance practice. He lectures and teaches throughout Europe
and North America. Since 2005, he teaches medieval music performance practice at the
Université Paris-Sorbonne. In 2011, Mr. Bagby was awarded the Howard Mayer Brown Award for
lifetime achievement by Early Music America. Visit sequentia.org and bagbybeowulf.com for
The Harry Partch Institute Ensemble performs using original the instruments invented and
built by American composer Harry Partch. The ensemble consists of many skilled performers
whose backgrounds span a wide range of musical traditions and genres. All have a passion
for integrating music with other media and engaging in what Partch termed corporeal
performance-using the human body in a musically meaningful way. The Harry Partch Institute
Ensemble and the Partch Institute currently reside at Montclair State University in New
David Lang introduces collected stories
Beowulf ("Battle")Benjamin Bagby
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 | 6 PM
In 2007, while on tour supporting his album None Shall Pass, indie rapper-producer
Aesop Rock wrote a fan e-mail to folk singer-songwriter Kimya Dawson. A few years later,
they reconnected during the creation of arts-and-oddities blog 900Bats, which in
turn sparked the pair's collaborative musical efforts. After appearing on each other's
respective recent solo records-Rock's Skelethon (Rhymesayers) and Dawson's
Thunder Thighs (Great Crap Factory)-both found more worth pursuing within the
group dynamic, and The Uncluded was hatched.
The Uncluded's debut album, Hokey Fright, was recorded over the course of a year
using a variety of locations and devices, from voice-memo recorders to full-service
studios. Rock and Dawson wrote, performed, and recorded the whole album, with the exception
of drums on "Delicate Cycle," which were played by James McNew of Yo La Tengo.
Having both experienced loss in recent years, conversations about mortality served as a
starting point for what would eventually become an album as much about finding therapy
through writing and sharing as it is about being okay with admitting fear in the face of
adversity. There is a sense of self-exploration and discovery that happens during the
songs, as if the two are doing the problem-solving in front of you. While much of the album
maintains a serious tone, Dawson and Rock's oddball humor plays an integral part in
humanizing the obstacles that can initially seem too massive to process.
Kimya Dawson is a Grammy-winning, platinum-selling singer-songwriter who is most widely
known for her work on the Juno soundtrack and with her former band, The Moldy
Peaches. She has released seven solo albums, including Alphabutt for
Aesop Rock is a critically acclaimed hip-hop artist and producer, recognized for his dense
and abstract word play. He has released six solo albums, three EPs, and a 45-minute piece
of music designed for runners, commissioned by Nike. His lyrics have been published in
The New York Times bestseller Hip Hop Speaks to Children, as well as Yale
University's Anthology of Rap.
Ensemble Signal offers audiences access to a diverse range of contemporary works through
performance, commissioning, recording, and education. Since its debut in 2008, Signal has
performed more than 90 concerts-including premieres of over 20 works-and co-produced five
Signal was founded by Co-Artistic and Executive Director Lauren Radnofsky, and Co-Artistic
Director and Conductor Brad Lubman. The ensemble regularly performs with Mr. Lubman and
features a super-group of independent artists from the modern music scene. Signal is
flexible in size and instrumentation, enabling it to meet the ever changing demands on the
21st-century performing ensemble.
At home in concert halls, clubs, and international festivals alike, Signal has performed at
the Lincoln Center Festival, Ojai Music Festival, Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall, Miller
Theatre, (Le) Poisson Rouge, Tanglewood Music Festival of Contemporary Music, Cleveland
Museum of Art, Wordless Music Series, and Bang on a Can Marathon.
Signal's fearless programming ranges from minimalism and pop-influences to the iconoclastic
European avant-garde. The ensemble has worked with artists and composers who include Steve
Reich, Helmut Lachenmann, Irvine Arditti, Michael Gordon, David Lang, Julia Wolfe, Oliver
Knussen, Hilda Paredes, and Charles Wuorinen. Educational activities have included
workshops with emerging composers at the June in Buffalo festival, where Signal is a
Signal's recordings are available on Philip Glass's Orange Mountain Music, New Amsterdam
Records, Mode Records, and Cantaloupe. Recent highlights included performing in the 2013
Lincoln Center Festival's production of Monkey: Journey to the West. Upcoming
highlights include the co-commission of a new work for large ensemble by Steve Reich.
Ensemble Signal's season is made possible, in part, by support from New Music USA's Cary
New Music Performance Fund and The Amphion Foundation.
Conductor and composer Brad Lubman has gained widespread recognition during the past two
decades for his versatility, commanding technique, and insightful interpretations.
Conducting a broad range of repertoire from classical to contemporary works, Mr. Lubman has
led major orchestras, including the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Netherlands Chamber
Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra,
American Composers Orchestra, New World Symphony, and The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. In
addition, he has worked with some of the most important European and American ensembles in
contemporary music, including Klangforum Wien and Asko | Schönberg, as well as the Los
Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group, Boston Symphony Chamber Players, and Steve Reich and
Mr. Lubman is an associate professor at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York,
where he has directed the Musica Nova ensemble since joining the faculty in 1997. He is
also on the faculty of the Bang on a Can Summer Institute.
During the 2013-2014 season, Mr. Lubman returns to the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra in
Munich and continues his collaboration with the Remix Ensemble Porto, followed by debuts
with the NDR Sinfonieorchester and the Residentie Orkest. He also continues his conducting
activities in the US, appearing with his Ensemble Signal at Carnegie Hall, and leading the
Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Orchestra of St. Luke's.
Iarla Ó Lionaird has enjoyed a long and unique musical career in Ireland. From his iconic
early recording of the vision song "Aisling Gheal" as a young boy to his groundbreaking
recording Grá agus Bás with Dublin's Crash Ensemble, he has shown a breadth of
artistic ambition that sets him apart in the Irish-music fraternity. A recipient of
numerous awards and honors-among them two Grammy nominations-Mr. Ó Lionaird has worked with
a stellar cast of international composers, including Nico Muhly, Gavin Bryars, and David
Lang. He has also performed and recorded with such luminaries as Peter Gabriel, Nick Cave,
Robert Plant, and Sinead O'Connor.
Mr. Ó Lionaird's unique singing style has carried him to stages and concert halls all over
the world, from New York's Carnegie Hall to the Sydney Opera House and beyond. His voice
has also graced the silver screen, with film credits extending from Gangs of New
York to Hotel Rwanda and the upcoming Calvary, starring Brendan
Gleeson. He is the vocalist with the critically acclaimed Irish-American band The Gloaming.
This year, Mr. Ó Lionaird is Traditional Artist in Residence at the University College
Cork, where he is teaching both undergraduate and postgraduate courses on the aesthetics of
sean-nós song. He holds a master's degree in ethnomusicology from the University
of Limerick, where he is currently completing his Ph.D. in music.
Born and raised in Brattleboro, Vermont, Sam Amidon released his fourth album of songs in
2013 on Nonesuch Records. Entitled Bright Sunny South, Mr. Amidon describes
it as "an interior, wandering journey through your own soul." On the album, he sings
and plays banjo, fiddle, acoustic guitar, and piano. Bright Sunny South follows
2010's I See the Sign and 2008's All Is Well, collections of
re-worked folk songs recorded with the Icelandic label/collective Bedroom Community
and featuring orchestral arrangements by Nico Muhly. In addition to his solo albums, Mr.
Amidon has frequently collaborated with Nico Muhly, Doveman, Beth Orton, and Bill Frisell.
He has also appeared as a guest on albums by Tune-Yards, Aoife O'Donovan, Glen Hansard, and
the Blind Boys of Alabama.
Violist Nadia Sirota is best known for her singular sound and expressive execution, coaxing
solo works from the likes of Nico Muhly, Daníel Bjarnason, Judd Greenstein, Marcos Balter,
and Missy Mazzoli. Her debut album, First Things First, was released in 2009
on New Amsterdam Records and named one of The New York Times' records of the
year. Her sophomore album, Baroque, was released in March 2013 on
Bedroom Community and New Amsterdam. In addition to her work as a soloist, Ms.
Sirota is a member of yMusic, ACME (American Contemporary Music Ensemble), and Alarm Will
Sound, and has lent her sound to recording and concert projects by such artists and
songwriters as Grizzly Bear, Jónsi, and Arcade Fire. She also hosts a radio show on
WQXR's Q2 Music, for which she was awarded the 2010 ASCAP Deems Taylor Award in
Radio and Internet Broadcasting. Ms. Sirota is the recipient of Southern Methodist
University's 2013 Meadows Prize, awarded to pioneering artists and scholars with an
emerging international profile.
She received her undergraduate and master's degrees from The Juilliard School, where she
performed as co-founder of the AXIOM ensemble, initiated the
Castleman/Amory/Huang studio's New Music Project, and created the Juilliard Plays
Juilliard program for student composers and performers. As a chamber musician, Ms.
Sirota has collaborated with such artists as Joseph Kalichstein, Itzhak Perlman, and the
Silk Road Ensemble, as well as with members of the Kronos Quartet, Chiara String Quartet,
and Peabody Trio. In the fall of 2007, Ms. Sirota joined the faculty of the Manhattan
School of Music for its new master's program in contemporary performance.
Nico Muhly has composed a wide scope of work for ensembles, soloists, and organizations
that include the American Symphony Orchestra, Boston Pops, Carnegie Hall, Chicago Symphony
Orchestra, countertenor Iestyn Davies, violinist Hilary Hahn, choreographer Benjamin
Millepied, New York City Ballet, New York Philharmonic, Paris Opéra Ballet, soprano Jessica
Rivera, and designer-illustrator Maira Kalman.
Among Mr. Muhly's most frequent collaborators are his colleagues at Bedroom Community, an
artist-run label headed by Icelandic musician Valgeir Sigurðsson. Bedroom Community was
inaugurated in 2007 with the release of Mr. Muhly's first album, Speaks Volumes.
In spring 2012, Bedroom Community released Mr. Muhly's three-part Drones in
collaboration with pianist Bruce Brubaker, violinist Pekka Kuusisto, and violist Nadia
Born in Vermont in 1981 and raised in Providence, Rhode Island, Mr. Muhly graduated from
Columbia University with a degree in English literature. In 2004, he received his master's
from The Juilliard School, where he studied under Christopher Rouse and John Corigliano.
His writings and full schedule can be found at nicomuhly.com.
David Lang introduces love/loss
Thursday, April 24, 2014 | 6 PM
David Lang introduces memoir
John Cage's Indeterminacy Parts I and IIJohn Cage | David Tudor
Thursday, April 29, 2014 | 6 PM
A peculiar style of singing is found in the tiny Siberian country of Tuva. Called khoomei,
or throat singing, the songs are typically performed by soloists who each specialize in a
particular variant of khoomei. The amazing technique of Tuvan throat singing is still a
mystery to Western science, but listen closely and you will hear the singers produce up to
four notes at once, singing melody and accompaniment simultaneously.
In 1992, Kaigal-ool Khovalyg, Alexander Bapa, his brother Sayan Bapa, and Albert Kuzevin
founded the quartet as a means of concentrating on the presentation of traditional songs of
their homeland. While they devoted themselves to the preservation of these songs, their
concerts demonstrated the significance of combining tradition and innovation. The musicians
later decided to rename the ensemble as "Huun-Huur-Tu"-a name that means "Separation of
Light Rays on the Prairie."
Huun-Huur-Tu presents its style of throat singing in the context of wonderfully tuneful
songs, employing instruments reminiscent of the banjo and fiddle. The combination of
earth-rumbling growling and whistle-like harmonics, along with the ethereal jaw harp and
shaman's drum make these songs both lively and deeply spiritual.
Huun-Huur-Tu has toured extensively in the US, Canada, Europe, Japan, and Australia, and
has an international fan base. The group has also collaborated with Frank Zappa, Ry Cooder,
The Chieftains, Johnny "Guitar" Watson, the Kronos Quartet, L. Shankar, and the Bulgarian
As director of music and the arts at New York's historic Trinity Wall Street, Julian
Wachner oversees an annual season of more than 900 events, in addition to directing the
Trinity Baroque Orchestra, NOVUS NY, and the Choir of Trinity Wall Street. He was nominated
for a 2012 Grammy Award for Trinity's recording of Handel's complete Israel in Egypt. Mr.
Wachner is also music director of the Grammy Award-winning Washington Chorus, with whom he
won Chorus America / ASCAP's Alice Parker Award for adventurous programming in 2011.
Recent and upcoming engagements include those with the Lincoln Center Festival, BAM Next
Wave Festival, Hong Kong Philharmonic, TENET, Portland Baroque Orchestra, and Philharmonia
Baroque Orchestra. He has appeared as guest conductor with The Philadelphia Orchestra, the
Montreal and Pittsburgh symphony orchestras, Spoleto Festival USA, Handel and Haydn
Society, Glimmerglass Opera, and Hawaii Opera Theatre. In 2011, he founded the Twelfth
Night Festival of early music, presented in collaboration with Gotham Early Music Scene and
featuring many of New York's leading Baroque and Renaissance ensembles.
Nicholas Phan has appeared with many of the leading orchestras in North America and Europe,
including the St. Louis Symphony, The Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic,
Chicago Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, The Cleveland
Orchestra, Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, and English Chamber
Orchestra. He has toured extensively throughout Europe with Il Complesso Barocco and
appeared with the Edinburgh, Ravinia, Rheingau, Saint-Denis, and Marlboro music festivals,
and at the BBC Proms. In opera, Mr. Phan has appeared with the LA Opera, Houston Grand
Opera, Seattle Opera, Glyndebourne, Oper Frankfurt, and Maggio Musicale Fiorentino. In
recital, he has been presented by Carnegie Hall, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the
Philadelphia Chamber Music Society. He is the artistic director of Collaborative Arts
Institute of Chicago, an organization devoted to promoting the art song and vocal chamber
Mr. Phan's most recent solo album, Still Falls the Rain (Avie Records), was named one of
the best classical recordings of 2012 by The New York Times. His growing discography
includes the Grammy-nominated recording of Stravinsky's Pulcinella with Pierre Boulez and
the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO Resound), his debut solo album Winter Words (Avie
Records), and the opera L'Olimpiade with the Venice Baroque Orchestra (Naïve).
Grammy Award-winning Dashon Burton recently brought home a second prize from the 2012 ARD
International Music Competition in Munich (no first prizes awarded), along with the First
Prize in Oratorio at the 49th International Vocal Competition in 's-Hertogenbosch, the
Netherlands. These awards follow his 2012 first place wins in both the 2012 Oratorio
Society of New York Competition and the Bach Choir of Bethlehem's Young American Singer
During the 2013-2014 season, Mr. Burton makes his debut with The Cleveland Orchestra in
Janáček's The Cunning Little Vixen, conducted by Franz Welser-Möst; performs in
the St. Matthew Passion with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra and on tour in
the Netherlands; and debuts with Boston's Handel and Haydn Society in Handel's
Samson. He also performs in Handel's Messiah with the Oratorio
Society of New York at Carnegie Hall. In summer 2014, he sings Bach's St. Mark
Passion at the Oregon Bach Festival and the St. Matthew Passion at the
Carmel Bach Festival.
Renée Anne Louprette is the director of music and organist at the Church of Notre Dame in
New York City, having previously served as organist and associate director of music and the
arts at Trinity Wall Street and associate director of music at the Church of St. Ignatius
Loyola. She has performed extensively throughout Europe, North America, and Australia, and
has appeared with the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, Queensland Symphony
Orchestra, Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, American Symphony Orchestra, Clarion Music
Society, Voices of Ascension, The Dessoff Choirs, and Piffaro.
Ms. Louprette was appointed to the organ faculty of Mason Gross School of the Arts at
Rutgers University in September 2013. She has also served on the faculties of The Hartt
School of the University of Hartford and the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair
State University. Ms. Louprette holds degrees from the Centre d'études supérieures de
musique et de danse de Toulouse, Conservatoire à rayonnement régional de Toulouse, and The
Hartt School. She has been a featured artist at national and regional conventions of the
American Guild of Organists and is in frequent demand as a master class teacher.
Oboist ToniMarie Marchioni is the assistant professor of oboe at the University of
Kentucky; a member of the IRIS Orchestra in Memphis, Tennessee; and an alumna of Ensemble
ACJW. She has also appeared with the National Symphony Orchestra, American Ballet Theatre,
Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra,
Georgia Woodwind Quintet, and Continuum. In 2010, she performed the Martinů Oboe Concerto
with the Orquesta Filarmónica del Ecuador, and in 2008, she gave the US premiere of
Jonathan Harvey's Sprechgesang concerto for oboe and English horn. Ms. Marchioni
has worked as a teaching artist with Sinfonía por la Vida in
Ecuador, and has held faculty positions with the University of Georgia, Las Vegas Music
Festival, and the American Festival for the Arts in Houston, Texas. A native of
Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, Ms. Marchioni holds degrees from Harvard University and The
Shelley Monroe Huang has appeared as soloist with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra,
Eastman Philharmonia, and New Music New Haven. As a concert bassoonist and
contrabassoonist, she has performed with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra; American Composers
Orchestra; and the Charlotte, Albany, New Haven, and Princeton symphony orchestras. Before
completing her doctorate at Stony Brook University under the tutelage of Frank Morelli, she
earned degrees from the Eastman and Yale schools of music. In recent years, she has also
appeared as the bassoon fellow of Carnegie Hall's Ensemble ACJW and is currently visiting
professor of bassoon at Guangzhou Conservatory in China. Ms. Huang is a dedicated chamber
music player and an avid contemporary musician, recently performing Sofia Gubaidulina's
Concerto for Bassoon and Low Strings, and giving the world premieres of Huang Ruo's
Wind Blows and Book of the Forgotten.
Violinist Emily Popham Gillins has been blessed to perform internationally as a soloist
and chamber musician since her debut at age 11 with the Louisville Orchestra. As a member
of Ensemble ACJW from 2010 to 2012, she appeared in venues that range from Weill Recital
Hall to Rikers Island. She has been a featured artist at the Library of Congress as first
violinist of the Degas String Quartet, and toured North Carolina for residency work at
universities and elementary schools.
She has collaborated with artists such as Emanuel Ax and Rachel Barton Pine, and played
backup strings for Harry Connick Jr., Sting, and Peter Gabriel. Last season, she appeared
as soloist with the Henderson Symphony Orchestra, and frequently performs with Decoda, IRIS
Orchestra, and New York Chamber Soloists. She lives in New York City with her husband
Kevin, a wind and brass technician, and their daughter Beverly.
TENET celebrates its fifth anniversary as one of New York's preeminent vocal ensembles.
Its artistic director Jolle Greenleaf has won acclaim for the ensemble's innovative
programming, virtuosic singing, and command of repertoire that spans the Middle Ages to the
present with a focus on early music. TENET features distinguished soloists who shine in
one-voice-to-a-part singing and as joined voices in small ensembles.
They regularly present critically acclaimed performances throughout the US and abroad.
Highlights include collaborations with many ensembles, including Dark Horse Consort, the
Sebastians, and New York Polyphony; and performances at The Metropolitan Museum of Art,
Berkshire Bach Festival, Festival Casals de Puerto Rico, Yale University, Da Camera Society
of Los Angeles, and Costa Rica's International Music Festival. TENET sponsors the annual
Green Mountain Project performances of Claudio Monteverdi's Vespers of 1610.
Recordings of TENET and the Green Mountain Project are widely available. Visit TENETnyc.com
for more information.
David Lang introduces spirit
Wednesdau, April 23, 2014 | 6 PM