The Amerian String Teacher Association (ASTA) penned a glowing review in the February, 2016 edition of their journal of Henryk Wieniawski’s “Polonaise Brillante No. 2“, edited by Jascha Heifetz’s student Endre Granat as part of the Lauren Keiser Music Publishing Heifetz Collection. Of this “irresistible work”, the review states, “the editor Granat, provides a new critical edition that he studied from the master. This urtext edition is based on the composer’s manuscript and the first printed edition (Schott 1875). If you do not have this piece in your collection, this is the edition to go for. If you do, it will be helpful to compare with the ones you have.” This title is currently available from your favorite music retailer or through Hal Leonard.
Moores Symphony Orchestra at the University of Houston will perform “Concerto Alfresco” on Dec. 3rd 2015, conducted by Franz Krager with trumpet soloist Allen Vizzutti. This work was awarded First Prize in the Doc Severinsen International Composition Contest and premiered by the University of Tennessee Symphony, Allen Vizzutti trumpet soloist.
Peter Lieuwen’s CD “Overland Dream” (MSR #1581) received a glowing review from David DeBoor Canfield at Fanfare Magazine in the July/August 2015 Issue. The American Record Guide’s review by Sullivan in the Sept/Oct 2015 issue praised Lieuwen’s work on this recording for its “clear melodic lines, dreamy lyricism, and jazzy syncopation.” The album includes two works published by Keiser Classical–Guitar Sonata and the title track Overland Dream for clarinet and piano trio.
Donald Crocket’s new CD Blue Earth was released in May on BMOP/sound (#1042). With performances by violist Kate Vincent, and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project directed by Gil Rose, the recording has been well reviewed by “Gramophone” in their September 2015 issue. Additionally, on July 8th, 2015, he was interviewed by Jim Svejda on KUSC Classical about his new CD, how he comes up with the perfect title and why he thinks the viola gets a bad rap. The album contains Crockett’s works Wedge, Viola Concerto, and Blue Earth, all published by Keiser Classical.
Donald Crockett will make two stops in a trip to Ohio this fall, first at the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM) from Oct 29th – Nov 2nd, with performances by the CIM New Music Ensemble of Whistling in the Dark, to be sung on the water, and to airy thinness beat with CIM faculty member, viola soloist Kirsten Doctor. Then from Nov 2nd – 3rd he visits Oberlin Conservatory, working with composition students and presenting his new CD’s music to Stephen Hartke’s Composition Studio Class.
On Nov 19th and 21st, Don will be in New York City as vocal ensemble C4 performs his choral piece Daglarym/My Mountains on two concerts. These performances will be followed by a recording session of the piece for C4’s upcoming second CD. The work is available from your favorite retailer or through Hal Leonard.
On May 29, 2015 APM Radio show “Performance Today“, hosted by Fred Child and longtime home of Bruce Adolphe’s Piano Puzzler, celebrated the composer’s 60th birthday. The broadcast kicked off with an introduction to Polly Rhythm the parrot, which Adolphe fondly refers to as his “walking, talking, flying 10th birthday present.” That was followed by a feature solo performance by violinist Joshua Bell of Adolphe’s J.S. Bach inspired Einstein’s Saraband: The Loneliness of Genius. Emily Ondracek-Peterson’s moving performance of this work can be heard in this video by Colorado Public Radio. The Saraband is one of five movements of a larger work to be included in Imaginary Film’s documentary motion picture by Nicholas Barris Einstein’s Light, soundtrack to be released on Sony Records this November. We are proud to announce that Keiser Classical will publish the performance edition later this season; email us for more details. The world concert premiere will take place in Amsterdam on 11/25/15, Joshua Bell as soloist.
Bruce Adolphe’s Chopin Dreams, a 25-minute solo piano work in which Adolphe imagines Chopin living and composing in New York today, was given its world premiere by the Italian pianist Carlo Grante in Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, on September 15th, 2015. Rorianne Schrade of the New York Concert Review wrote, “the work is brimming with all the poetry and virtuosity one would hope for in a work inspired by the great Frédéric Chopin, but its tonal language is deliciously modern.” Read full review. Grante will play the European premiere in the Brahms-saal of the Musikverein in Vienna, on November 26th, 2015. The work is in six movements: New York Nocturne; Jazzurka; Piano Popping; Brooklyn Ballad; Quaalude; and Hora. For more information write to Keiser Classical.
California resident composer Stephen Hartke was awarded the 2013 GRAMMY for Best Contemporary Classical Composition for his chamber work Meanwhile: Incidental Music to Imaginary Puppet Plays. The piece was commissioned for the Chicago new music ensemble eighth blackbird by the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition. Their album featuring Meanwhile as the title track also received a GRAMMY for Best Chamber Music Performance is available from Cedille Records, CDR90000133. Read on for more about the work and how to order a limited-edition autographed score.
Reflecting on the occasion Hartke writes, “It was nice to get the award, especially because of eighth blackbird, who have been such big supporters of me and my work in general.” Indeed, the ensemble has toured extensively with Meanwhile, performing it frequently since the 2007 premiere at the University of Richmond, VA. The Los Angeles Times recaps both awards in its February 10 article.
Like several of Hartke’s works, Meanwhile grew from a long-standing fascination he’s had for various forms of Asian court and theater music, and from a fantasy in which Hartke writes, “I imagine myself the master of my own fictional non-Western musical tradition.” In preparing to write this piece, he studied video clips of quite a number of puppet theater forms, ranging from the elegant and elaborate, nearly-life-sized puppets of Japanese Bunraku, to Vietnamese water puppets, both Indonesian and Turkish shadow puppets, and to classic Burmese court theater that mixes marionettes with dancers who look and act like marionettes. All of these theatrical forms have their own distinct musical styles and structures, by which the composer was especially fascinated by the stark vividness of their instrumental coloration and the often unexpected structural quirks that they have evolved as these traditions have taken shape over the centuries and become stylized.
Meanwhile is a set of incidental pieces to no puppet plays in particular, but one in which the imaginary scenes have given rise to an idiosyncratic sequence in which the sound of the ensemble has been reinvented along lines that clearly have roots in these diverse Asian models. It is played as a single movement, with 6 distinct sections. The piano is prepared for much of the piece with large soft mutes used to transform the color of the middle register into something that rather resembles the Vietnamese hammer dulcimer. The viola is tuned a half-step lower in order to both change its timbre and to open the way for a new set of natural harmonics to interact, sometimes even microtonally, with those of the cello. The percussion array includes 18 wood sounds, from very high Japanese Kabuki blocks to lower range slit drums, plus 4 cowbells, 2 small cymbals, and a set of bongos. Finally, there is a set of Flexatones, which are rather like small musical saws and are played by the pianist with a mallet, their pitch being altered by pressing down on their metal flanges. The tone is rather like that of small Javanese gongs.
To download a free PDF perusal score, visit our downloads page.
We are offering a Limited Edition Score which features full color covers designed by Stephen Hartke, hand-autographed by the composer. To purchase, order by February 28, 2013 by clicking here. For performances, contact our rental department.
For additional media and stories about Meanwhile, click below.
Indiana University Press; David Baker: A Legacy in Music (2011) biography abstract posted at Project Muse. The music of David Baker is published by Keiser Classical (BMI), and by Advance, Associated Music, Creative Jazz Composers, Dunsinane, Fema , JC Penney, Edward B. Marks, Sierra, Three Fifteen West Fifty-Third Street, and Walrus Companies.