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|Posted: Sun Feb 22, 2004 3:04 pm Post subject:
American Composers Orch - Improvise! - Apr 28
Calendar Event: April 28, 2004
Wednesday, April 28, 2004
Carnegie Hall — Isaac Stern Auditorium
Improvisation meets the orchestra...the centerpiece of a week-long festival
Steven Sloane, conductor
Anthony Davis, piano
ALVIN SINGLETON: When Given A Choice (World Premiere, Commissioned by the Serge Koussevitzky Foundation in the Library of Congress and American Composers Orchestra)
EARLE BROWN: Event: Synergy II
ANTHONY DAVIS: Wayang V (New York Premiere)
GEORGE LEWIS: Virtual Concerto (World Premiere, ACO Commission)
DUKE ELLINGTON: Les Trois Rois Noirs
Improvise! at Carnegie Hall: April 28, 2004
ACO’s concluding Carnegie Hall concert of the season takes place Wednesday evening, April 28, 2004 at 8pm. Entitled Improvise!, the performance explores music that integrates improvisation and the symphony orchestra, forming the centerpiece of a week-long festival devoted to that subject. (For information on the festival, see below.) Two new works composed specially for this concert receive their world premieres. The first is a new piece by Alvin Singleton, commissioned by ACO and the Serge Koussevitzky Foundation. The other is George Lewis’s Virtual Concerto, scored for computer-controlled piano and orchestra. Composer-pianist Anthony Davis is featured in the New York premiere of his Wayang V for piano, percussion and orchestra. Completing the program is Event: Synergy II by graphic-notation pioneer Earle Brown, and music of Duke Ellington.
All the composers included in the program embrace improvisation in their work, each with a distinct background and individual approach, but with a common belief in the artistic promise and possibilities to be found in music that provides the musical “space” for performer input and collaboration.
Alvin Singleton was born in Brooklyn and educated at New York University and Yale. As a Fulbright Scholar, he moved to Rome and worked in Europe for 14 years, returning to the U.S. to become Composer-in-Residence with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. He subsequently served as Resident Composer at Spelman College in Atlanta, and as UNISYS Composer-in-Residence with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. He is the recipient of a 2003 Guggenheim Fellowship. His 20-minute premiere will feature collective improvisation from the orchestra within the context of strict parameters established and notated by the composer.
George Lewis’s Virtual Concerto will expand the boundaries of the orchestra through improvisation and technology. The work will feature a computer-controlled Yamaha Disklavier (a digital-acoustic player piano) as “soloist.” Both the computer and the orchestra will have a set of materials to work from—some fully notated, others suggesting parameters for improvisation—with the choices made by one impacting the music performed by the other in real time. A native of Chicago with a degree in philosophy from Yale, Mr. Lewis began studying trombone in 1960. He is known for his software compositions, real-time composing and listening machines that interact with performing musicians. Mr. Lewis is a faculty member of the Music Department at University of California at San Diego, and has served as music curator for The Kitchen in New York. He recently received a MacArthur “Genius” Grant.
Anthony Davis is a composer-pianist whose work encompasses jazz, opera, Broadway, and concert music. The composer serves as soloist in his Wayang V, a piece that “synthesizes Stravinsky, Schoenberg, Ellington, Monk, Mingus and even Indonesian gamelan into beguiling and thickly woven fabric. His music argues that African-American and European influences are hopelessly entangled in American culture,” says the Detroit Free Press. Davis first came to prominence with his opera X, The Life and Times of Malcom X, which played to sold-out houses at the New York City Opera in 1986. Davis made his Broadway debut composing the music for Tony Kushner's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Angels in America: Millennium Approaches. Amistad, about a shipboard uprising by slaves and their subsequent trial, premiered at the Lyric Opera of Chicago in November 1997. Davis studied at Yale and Wesleyan. His music has been performed by the New York Philharmonic, the San Francisco, Chicago, Pittsburgh, and Atlanta Symphonies, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Beethoven Halle Orchestra of Bonn, as well as ACO.