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Listening Lab - March 2020

Listening Lab: New Music

Presented by Eve Joslyn Madalengoitia

at the Hudson Valley Performing Arts Lab

March 3, 2020  - Playlist with links  and resources

Each of the links will take you to the video or audio of the piece played, and can also lead you to more info about the artist, performer and work. In some cases you will see the entire album (play more music!) or the artist’s profile on Bandcamp or Soundcloud. All of these are ways to hear more from the artist or record label, stream music, and purchase pieces to support the artists. 

1  Sarah Kirkland Snyder, Thread and Fray, 2006

chamber strings, winds, marimba. From from Wax and Wire by Latitude 49; 4:05 minutes

Latitude 49 is a sextet dedicated to championing the works of living composers. The members' diverse musical backgrounds directly influence the diversity in artists they create work with. 

2  Arvo Part, Fratres, 1980

Violin and piano. From BSP by Paolo Ghidoni and Stefano Giavazzi; 9:42 minutes (not the exact link that was played - also look for this piece in various instrumentations)

Composed in Pärt's very own Tintinnabuli-style, Fratres allows many different settings because it is not bound to a specific timbre. “The highest virtue of music, for me, lies outside of its mere sound. The particular timbre of an instrument is part of the music, but it is not the most important element. If it were, I would be surrendering to the essence of the music. Music must exist of itself … two, three notes … the essence must be there, independent of the instruments.” (Arvo Pärt)

3  Angelica Negron, Turistas, 2018

From PCF 2018 Commissions, played by Bang on a Can; 8:35 minutes

4  Ruby Fulton, I'm sorry Not Sorry, 2018-2020

From This is my Letter to the World by Kate Amrine; 4:28 minutes

This is My Letter to the World is an exploration of music for trumpet inspired by politics and social concepts. In her second album, Kate Amrine chooses to address pressing topics facing each of us. Many of these pieces bring up issues that are extremely important to everyone and I hope that upon listening, you will act and inspire others to do everything they can to make this world a better place.” These works are meant to start a conversation and inspire people to reflect. And yes, increase awareness to what is possible on the trumpet. 

// BREAK //

1  NPR story: The Sound Of The Hagia Sophia, More Than 500 Years Ago; 4:37

2   Lost Voices of the Hagia Sofia, Choral stichologia (Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross in Constantinople, from the office of Sung Matins, Antiphon 7, selected verses of Psalm 109-112, “Palaion) Sung by Cappella Romana; 3:21 

3   Julianna Barwick, Nebula, 2020

vocal and electronics; 5:34

4  Jóhann Jóhannsson, The Sun's Gone Dim and the Sky's Gone Black, 2006

From IBM 1401- A User's Manual; 6:59

Jóhannsson's father worked at IBM as a maintenance engineer for the 1401 Data Processing System, an early and popular business computer that arrived in Iceland in 1964. At that time, keeping a computer up and running involved knowledge of machinery as much as electronics; you needed to understand how ball bearings worked and know where to pour the motor oil. His father was also a musician, and he figured out a way to program the machine's memory so it emitted electromagnetic waves in a pattern that could be picked up by a radio receiver. The IBM 1401 was taken out of service in 1971, and his father gave it a farewell ceremony that included playing some of the short melodies he had composed. These tracks were recorded.

5  Caroline Shaw, Its Motion Keeps, 2013

Commissioned and performed by the Brooklyn Youth Chorus; 7:27 minutes

Britten's attraction to his native English folk songs and hymns comes through in so much of his music, from his choral and opera works to his chamber music and vocal arrangements. Taking a step in that direction, and then sideways and back and around, Its Motion Keeps is based on the words from the first verse of the American shape note hymn Kingwood, found in The Southern Harmony (1835) and other early 19th century hymn books. (Very likely it is a text that immigrated from England.) It begins with a palindromic viola pizzicato line that gestures to the continuo lines of Henry Purcell, to whom Britten wrote several homages. The choir echoes this contour at first and soon splits into swift canonic figures like those found in "This Little Babe" from Britten's Ceremony of Carols, eventually expanding into the "swirling spheres" above string arpeggiations in a texture that recalls the vivace movement of his second string quartet (one of his homages to Purcell). The ecstatic double choir section evokes the antiphonal sound of the early English choral tradition, with harmonies overlapping overhead in the reverberant stone cathedrals, creating brief dissonances while one sound decays as the next begins. The last line, "Time, like the tide, its motion keeps; Still I must launch through endless deeps," is just one of those perfect, beautiful lyrics — resilient and bittersweet.

Listening lab March 3 playlist
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