Alia Musica Pittsburgh returns January 30th with their annual Winter Chamber Concert; featuring the best of this summer’s recital series, including pieces by composers near and far, such as Burkhardt Reiter, Steven Stucky, Francis Poulenc, and many others. Come join us at James Laughlin Hall on the Chatham University campus (music building) at 7:00 PM. Tickets are $12 at the door, $10 in advance (through the website www.alia-musica.org, or from an Alia Musica Pittsburgh member).
loadbang is an exciting, New York-based contemporary music group featuring Pittsburgh native Andy Kozar. loadbang comes into Pittsburgh this week for two concerts—on Saturday night at Garfield Art works and on Sunday night at Trinity Lutheran Church in Freeport. Andy was in town in June and I had a chance to sit down and talk with him about how loadbang formed and what to look forward to during their concerts here. One of the highlights is sure to be a new piece by David Lang, composed especially for loadbang, in which Lang resets the lyrics to Waiting for the Man by the Velvet Underground. You can find out about how it came to be and more in the video below.
David Stock was kind enough to share a few thoughts about his Eighth String Quartet with PNMNet. The Biava Quartet will premiere the new work on Saturday night as part of the Pittsburgh Chamber Music Society’s Pittsburgh Commissions Project. The Biava will hold an open rehearsal of the piece Friday the 6th, 1 p.m., Room 322 at The Duquesne U. School of Music.
My Eighth String Quartet was written in the summer of 2007, in my composing haven, Santa Fe. It is in three movements, basically fast-slow-fast. The first is a relatively compact series of restless, agitated sections, with occasional glimmers of cantabile motifs. The middle movement features long, singing lines, often like a chorale. The final movement, much to my surprise, turned out to be a fugue, a descendant of Beethoven’s Grosse Fugue! Ihave no idea why a fugue seemed right; I was walking my dog early one morning, and the idea of a not-so-grosse fugue popped into my head! Counterpoint was always my worst subject as a student, so I never included one in all my LONG years of composing since then.
I usually think of myself as primarily an orchestral composer, but find I really like writing quartets. Once I heard the Biava Quartet on a recording, I knew I wanted to compose a quartet for them. I’m very grateful to the Pittsburgh Chamber Music Society for giving me the opportunity to do so; the score is dedicated to the Biava Quartet. –DS
The Biava Quartet returns for the fourth and final installment of Pittburgh Chamber Music Society’s Bridges Festival. The Biava will premiere a new string quartet by Albert Glinsky along with Ginastera Quartet No. 1, Op. 20 and Grieg’s String Quartet in g minor, Op. 27.
As the second installment of the Pitsburgh Chamber Music Society’s Bridges Festival, the Bugallo-Willaims Piano Duo will perform Amy Williams new piano composition as well as excerpts from Gyorgy Kurtag’s Jatekok, transcriptions of music by by Machaut, Frescobaldi, Purcell, and J.S. Bach, Conlon Nancarrow’s Studies for Player Piano, and Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring.
While most of the media attention this week is deservedly on the PSO’s “Special Concerts” with John Adams, there’s still more new music happening over the weekend. Music on the Edge presents the remarkable clarinetist Jean Kopperud and the equally remarkable Stephen Gosling on piano. The duo will perform an entire recital of premieres, including a new piece by Eric Moe and several short pieces by David Felder for clarinet, bass clarinet, and processed sound. If you were at the MOTE concert honoring Eugene Phillips last January, you may remember that Felder was also featured as Lehar composer-in-residence and his sonically rich works for acoustic instruments and live electronics were very well received.
Also, MOTE is offering everyone who shows up a free cup of hot chocolate (even though by Saturday the forecast is calling for a high of 18° …woohoo!) so how can you go wrong?
(Full disclosure: promoting MOTE is part of my job at Pitt, and I also like hot chocolate.)
Pittsburgh Arts and Lectures and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra present PSO Composer of the Year John Adams for and Author Talk and Book Signing based on his new autobiography Hallelujah Junction: Composing an American Life.
$15 General admission, $5 students with ID. Order online or call 412-622-8866