Composer, pianist, and conductor Michael Shapiro joins us to talk about the music on his latest disc, including his John Milton-inspired piano concerto entitled Archangel. In this action-packed work, Shapiro lays out the epic Biblical battle between good and evil as a metaphor for the challenges we all face in our daily lives (which includes the current coronavirus pandemic – something Michael recently fell victim to himself). Also on the disc: orchestral excerpts from an opera based on Federico Garcia Lorca, and a full-throttle realization for orchestra of the famous organ Toccata by French composer Charles-Marie Widor.
LISTEN TO THE CONVERSATION
Voice of Hope is Camille Thomas's second album for Deutsche Grammophon. The Franco-Belgian cellist's program pays tribute to people's ability to triumph over adversity, create harmony in place of chaos, and overcome hatred with love. The album presents the world-premiere recording of Fazil Say's concerto Never Give Up, a response to terrorist attacks in Paris and Istanbul written for and premiered by Thomas, and also includes an exquisite selection of songs, prayers, and laments, Bruch's Kol Nidrei and Ravel's Kaddisch among them.
For June 30, Camille Thomas - Voice of Hope is the WFMT: Chicago 'Featured New Release'
Recently French composer and pianist Lucas Debargue breathed new life into the harpsichord sonatas of Domenico Scarlatti and presents works outside the standard piano repertoire. The Parisian pianist has already climbed the pinnacle of piano artistry with Beethoven, Liszt and Ravel and unleashed full-blown romantic thunderstorms with Schubert's A-minor Piano Sonata no. 14 and the madcap finale of Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit.
On the album, Debargue devotes himself completely to Domenico Scarlatti. He already played four of this Italian master's sonatas on his highly acclaimed début album. Germany's Der Spiegel waxed ecstatic: "Debargue's Scarlatti recalls his mighty predecessors. He displays the subtle touch and feeling once bestowed on these miniatures by Vladimir Horowitz and imparts new sound to Scarlatti's keyboard music. … Debargue touches the outer limits of expression between joylessness and rapture: one may find it overwrought, but it's never less than gripping. And then there's the gentle Glenn Gould touch."
Debargue joins us for this mini-episode of REMOTE with a couple words on some of his pandemic-projects, reading list, and the importance of emphasizing our similarities rather than differences. READ THE Q&A
Max Richter's trailblazing 2015 composition Sleep is now available to download with the launch of a new app. The app enables listeners to reimagine the 8-hour Deutsche Grammophon recording in custom-made musical sessions to help with focus, meditation and sleep which many people will need in the midst of the pandemic lockdown. It brings to a wider audience some of the experience shared by those lucky enough to attend Richter's extraordinary eight-hour overnight performances of Sleep – complete with beds – including LTW's own Tim Cooper who wrote about it here when it came to London in 2017.
READ THE FULL Louder Than War ARTICLE
In episode 925 of "ANIMAJAZZ", conceived and conducted by BRUNO POLLACCI , broadcast TUESDAY June 30 at 20.30, on PUNTORADIO, also streaming on www.puntoradio.fm and in an immediate podcast on http: // animajazz. eu will be the protagonists CARLA BLEY - ANDY SHEPPARD - STEVE SWALLOW - CD "Life Goes On" - "Life Goes On_ III. And On "(ECM).
The third volume of a sequence of albums begun with Trios in 2013 and continued with Andando El Tiempo (2016), Life Goes On – once more recorded in Lugano and produced by Manfred Eicher - features striking new music from American pianist/composer Carla Bley, whose trio with saxophonist Andy Sheppard and bassist Swallow has a long history. (Their first recording in trio format was Songs with Legs, recorded for the ECM-distributed WATT label in 1994.) Bley has composed for ensembles of every size but, over time, the trio has established itself as an ideal unit for expressing the essence of her work. Throughout Life Goes On, Carla's terse, distinctive piano, shaping phrases irreducible as Monk or Satie, is beautifully framed by Swallow's eloquent, elegant bass guitar and Sheppard's yearning saxes. This trio has a unique collective sound, reflecting – as The Telegraph recently noted – "musical mastery of a rare order".
We remind you that "ANIMAJAZZ" can be heard on TUESDAY at 20.30 in immediate podcast on http://animajazz.eu and the "DOWNLOAD" of the episode can be made, free of charge, from the podcasts area. Happy listening.
SEE THE PLAYLIST
The 2020 Juno Awards have wrapped, announcing a list of winners that has been on hold since the COVID-19 pandemic shuttered the in-person Saskatoon weekend of events in March. But tonight, June 29, the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) and CBC combined the usual two-night series of events into an hour-and-a-half-long pre-recorded special, delivering a night that Canadian music fans have been waiting for.
Winner for 'Classical album of the year: large ensemble' is Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, conducted by Kent Nagano, The John Adams Album.
Released to coincide with Nagano's final season with the Montréal Symphony, The John Adams Album contains his key orchestral works conducted by one of his greatest, lifelong champions "Like all great pieces, each time one returns to them and restudies them, I'm able to find something more - new dimensions that I haven't seen before, other reflections of innovation and genius." - Kent Nagano on John Adams
SEE ALL WINNERS ON CBC PAGE
How can it be possible that we're only halfway through the year? On its relentless whiplash toward the middle, the first six months of 2020 have reframed, redefined, shocked, torn down, confounded and crumbled our expectations, our priorities, our concepts of distance and closeness, of responsibility, of tragedy, of joy. They changed how we listened to music, too: so often alone, through wires and screens and glitches and delays. But in six full months packed with moments where we needed music to cope with challenges new and old, there was so much to see us through. These artists had their lives upended as well – it's amazing to look back on this six months of music and realize they made nearly all of it before the year even began. They'll give us so much more in the months to come, no doubt, as reckoning continues to rise to the surface of their songs. (Oh yeah, there's also a Beyoncé visual album on the way.)
Below, you'll find more than two dozen records from 2020's first six months that are worth holding onto for the next six, and beyond. We didn't vote on them. Each is the favorite of one member of the NPR Music team. You can find our favorite songs of the first half of 2020 here.
With a wink to heart-on-sleeve Romantic piano concertos by Rachmaninov, British composer-conductor Thomas Adès unleashes perhaps the most pleasing concerto written yet this century. A jolt of sheer joie de vivre, the piece features flamboyant orchestration (a duet for xylophone and piccolo?), sizzling passages deftly navigated by pianist Kirill Gerstein and a central slow movement that pushes yearning to new emotional levels. Adès Conducts Adès dropped in February and I listened to its concerto nonstop, until the pandemic hit hard. Then I turned to the grim and masterful Totentanz (Dance of the Dead). Adès was inspired by a 15th-century frieze depicting the figure of death waltzing with representatives of each rung of society, from Pope to peasant and finally an infant. Baritone Mark Stone sings the role of death with self-assured devilry, while mezzo-soprano Christianne Stotijn sensitively interprets his impotent victims. In orchestration that is massive, beautiful and frightening, Adès's music singularly underscores the inevitability of death in deadly times. -Tom Huizenga
SEE THE FULL LIST
Sony Music Masterworks today releases Not Our First Goat Rodeo, the long-awaited follow-up album to the GRAMMY Award-winning The Goat Rodeo Sessions, with Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, and Chris Thile.
In the fall of 1968, a sixteen-year old high school student named Danny Scher had a dream to invite legendary jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk and his all-star quartet to perform a concert at his local high school in Palo Alto, CA.
Blues Hall of Famer Bettye LaVette has decided to release her stirring rendition of "Strange Fruit" ahead of schedule as it says as much about the history of American racism and the state of the country today.
Guitarist John Scofield celebrates the music of his friend and mentor Steve Swallow in an outgoing and spirited recording, made in an afternoon in New York City in March 2019 - "old school" style as Scofield says, acknowledging that more than forty years of preparation led up to it.
Mark Abel releases 5th recording for Delos - 'The Cave of Wondrous Voice' / PERFORMING ARTS MONTEREY
Posted: June 16, 2020 12:00 AM
| By: Admin
THE HYPERTRAGIC NOTCH
AFTER A BRIEF STAY at Stanford University in the late 1960s, Mark Abel was active on the New York rock scene during the 1970s and early 1980s, leading his own groups, producing the bands The Feelies and The Bongos, and playing on albums of Tom Verlaine and former Left Banke mastermind Michael Brown. He returned to California in 1983 and worked in mainstream journalism for two decades, eventually becoming foreign editor of the San Francisco Chronicle. He moved away from rock during that period, immersed himself in classical and gradually began developing his hybridized style. Six CDs of Abel's music have appeared in the past dozen years. The Dream Gallery, a 69-minute song cycle for seven soloists and chamber orchestra depicting the lives of imaginary archetypal Californians, caught the interest of pianist Carol Rosenberger, director of the Delos Productions label, leading to its recording by the La Brea Sinfonietta. This is Mark's fifth release on Delos and is devoted to chamber, including Four Poems of Marina Tsvetaeva with soprano Hila Plitmann, the first of which provides the album with its title.
The Sybil (1922) is a powerful and unusual poem depicting the ancient oracles, which some mythologies contend were decayed trees into which God breathed a temporary life and human form - only to disappear into an astral whirlwind when their time of service elapsed.
Sibyl: burnt out, sibyl: stump. All birds perished, but God has come.
Sibyl: drunk up, sibyl: waste. All veins shriveled: the zealot prays!
Sibyl: has-been, Sybil: gape Of fate and death - Ancient tree among maids.
Sovereign tree in the naked wood – At first, fire rustled as foliage should.
Then under closed eyelids – rushed and stunned, Through dried-up channels God spewed in.
And, swiftly despairing of outside help: With heart and voice fallen: into myself!
Sibyl: all-seeing! Sibyl: vast! Annunciation was done in that
Immortal hour, when grass turned gray, And fleeting maidenhood became a cave
Of wondrous voice… A whoosh of stars - Sibyl: as she quits this earth.
David Shifrin, clarinet • Carol Rosenberger, piano • Hila Plitmann, soprano Fred Sherry, cello • Sabrina-Vivian Höpcker, violin Dominic Cheli, piano • Sarah Beck, English horn
This album sings and dances, with Mark Abel's "colorful blend of styles that serve the emotional nature of each work to bracing and poignant effect" (Gramophone) and further clarifies why Abel is "one of the most interesting figures in American contemporary music" (Pizzicato).
Abel's idiom eludes easy pigeon-holing-its contours extend from art song to larger forms with orchestra to a full length chamber opera, Home Is a Harbor.
The program begins with Intuition's Dance, a combination of frolic and dreamy ruminations featuring the incomparable clarinetist David Shifrin and pianist Carol Rosenberger. (Together again for the first time since their memorable albums for Delos, recorded in 1984!) Next comes the remarkable Hila Plitmann singing the powerfully moving Four Poems of Marina Tsvetaeva-the first-ever setting of Tsvetaeva's poetry in English translation. Plitmann is joined by Rosenberger and English hornist Sarah Beck.
The California-based composer Mark Abel, who "employs a colorful blend of styles that serve the emotional nature of each work to bracing and poignant effect" (Donald Rosenberg, Gramophone, August 2016) has released a new recording-his fourth in recent years-entitled Time and Distance on the Delos label. Drawing on a variegated lifetime of artistic, journalistic, political, and poetic endeavors, Mr. Abel has composed five art songs for voice and piano, three of which are based on his own texts, one on a poem by Kate Gale, and one composed to five poems by Joanne Regenhardt. Time and Distance features performances by Grammy Award-winning soprano Hila Plitman; mezzo-sorpano Janelle DeStefano, pianist Tali Tadmor, pianist Carol Rosenberger, Bruce Carver on percussion, and Mr. Abel at the organ.
Mark Abel's critically heralded previous release on Delos, the orchestral cycle The Dream Gallery, signaled a radical and culturally relevant new approach to the American art song. With TERRAIN OF THE HEART, Abel takes a fresh look at the idiom while working within the genre's more traditional framework: as a recital vehicle for solo voice and piano. Abel's lyrics leave a lasting impression. They burrow all the deeper into one's consciousness when amplified by his sophisticated musical fusion of classical and rock, aimed at broad-minded listeners – classically couth or not.
11 NEW 42 Total
SYND: CBC Markets include: Los Angeles, Denver, Minneapolis, Cleveland, New Orleans, Honolulu Online: WGOE, Sanluisobispo.com, MusiClassical, RadioIO, gapplegate
American composer Mark Abel's song cycle, The Dream Gallery: Seven California Portraits, will be released by Delos Music digitally March 6 and on CD March 27, 2012. With The Dream Gallery, Abel has written both music and lyrics to a 70-minute work that explores a character-driven psychogeography of modern California, a state that he has been continually fascinated by and sometimes frustrated with over three decades of living there. A former rock musician-producer on the cutting-edge New York scene of the late '70s, Abel shifted careers to become a top journalist in San Francisco. He has devoted himself to composition in recent years, releasing two previous albums featuring a wide array of his "postmodern art songs." For The Dream Gallery, the composer sought out some of California's most talented, sympathetic singers and players to bring his latest creation to vibrant life.
8 New 'ON' this week: 51 Total Direct:Music Choice Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Cleveland, Detroit, New Orleans, Berkeley CA, Wichita KS Online: Crystal Ball Report, WGOE, Live 365