Wisconsin Conservatory of Music | Milwaukee, WI
Feb. 21, 2019 7pm

+ Wah | Juri Seo

A light-hearted work for 2-5 percussionists, Wah explores the hypnotic instrument known as a vibratone or wah-wah tube. The players work their way through a series of musical ideas, sometimes independent of one another.

Seo is a professor of composition an Princeton--read about her here.

+ Ember | Alyssa Weinberg (World Premiere)

Ember is a new work for two prepared snare drums, by Alyssa Weinberg, which explores the use of sympathetic resonance and extended techniques for snare drum. The piece was commissioned in 2018 as part of the New Works for Percussion Project, with whom we are frequent contributors.

Composer Alyssa Weinberg (b. 1988) is best-known for crafting visceral, communicative scores, which have been lauded for their “frenetic yet cohesive musical language” (icareifyoulisten) and “heavyweight emotional dimensions.” (bachtrack) Alyssa finds collaboration deeply inspiring, and her music pulls concepts from her work with writers, dancers and visual artists.

A natural organizer and thought-leader in her field, Alyssa founded duende, a series for experimental dance in Philadelphia, along with cellist Gabriel Cabezas and dancer/choreographer Chloe Perkes in 2013. Duende presents events in a variety of settings and alternative venues, emphasizing equality between movement and music, with a deep exploration into the intersection of those two disciplines.

The 2018-19 season will be Weinberg’s most high-profile to date, with premieres and performances by the Minnesota Orchestra, San Diego Symphony, and Chamber Orchestra of San Antonio, as well as commissions for yMusic, the Amaranth Quartet and the New Works for Percussion Project. This season will also feature the premiere of a new cello concerto for Nicholas Finch and the NouLou Chamber Players.

Alyssa Weinberg’s music has been commissioned and performed by some of the most accomplished artists and ensembles around the world, including eighth blackbird, So Percussion, Iarla Ó Lionáird, the Aizuri Quartet, the Louisville Orchestra, and the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, and Alyssa counts Arx Duo and Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra among her frequent collaborators. Alyssa has received commissions and awards from Chamber Music America, FringeArts and the Pennsylvania Ballet, the Barnes Foundation, and the Curtis Institute of Music.

Alyssa Weinberg received an Artist Diploma from the Curtis Institute of Music, an M.M. in Composition from the Manhattan School of Music, and a B.M. in Composition and Theory at Vanderbilt University. Her teachers have included Richard Danielpour, Donnacha Dennehy, Jennifer Higdon, David Ludwig, Steve Mackey, and Dan Trueman.

Weinberg is currently a doctoral fellow at Princeton University.

+ Rhizosphere | Nate May

"The rhizosphere is the layer of soil where roots can be found. Thanks to these roots it is a site of constant interaction, evolved over millions of years to mutually benefit a diverse cast of organisms, from the plants themselves to the tiny strands of fungi that behave as a complex of nutrient processing and chemical communication. In this piece, each player has an exciter (contact-based speaker) attached to a cymbal, a microphone, and a pitched percussion instrument. The sounds made by one player’s instrument are picked up by that player’s microphone and delivered to the other player’s cymbal after a delay of slightly over one second. No effects are applied by the computer, but rich sonic phenomena arise from the interaction between sounds heard directly and those refracted through the cymbals. I am grateful to Evan Miller and Andrew Seivert of Neutrals Duo, who commissioned this piece and provided me with the resources to make it possible." - Nate May (2017)

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+ Karakurenai | Andy Akiho

A post-minimalist meditation exploring rotating rhythmic cells.

Akiho sets up an ostinato in a 31/16 meter, the ostinato's odd meter is then paired with quarter-note patterns in the performer's right hands. These quarter-note cycles are gradually augmented from a 1-beat cycle, to a 20-beat cycle, creating an ever revolving metrical dissonance.

+ Passacaglia | Anna Ignatowicz

“Passacaglia took me pretty close to Bach, but stylistically it is for me neither a late Baroque nor a neo-Barqoue work, i.e. there is no stylization.” -Anna Ignatowicz

Anna Ignatowicz-Glińska was born in Warsaw on 26 May 1968. She studied composition with Włodzimierz Kotoński at the Frederic Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw, from which she graduated in 1996; she also studied piano improvisation with Szabolcs Esztenyi. Works by Ignatowicz-Glińska have been performed at the Warsaw Autumn and Musical Polonica Nova festivals, and have been recorded by Polish Radio, DUX, Acte Prealable, and AUDITE. She was the winner of the first prize of Critic's Chapter at the Young Composers Forum in Cracow, and is a scholar of the Union of Stage Authors and Composers.

+ it's the rainbow hologram that gives this credit card it's marketing intrigue | Filament

With a title lifted from Don DeLillo's White Noise, this work for vibraphone, cymbals, and live electroacoustic processing was composed and premiered by DeLane Doyle and Aaron Gochberg in 2019.

A melodic idea, beautiful in it's simplicity, is slowly buried underneath a wash of digital noise. This slow process is meant to mirror the ways in which we allow digital media to be an escape from our daily realities. It is too a look at the role of advertisements in our culture, in this age of data brokerage and inescapable hyper-targeted ads.