Check out Andrew Timar’s review of Piano and Erhu Project Volume 2 on WholeNote. The album includes my piece Who Made the Inch of Grass, of which Timar writes: “[It] haunted me the most, prompting repeated pleasurable listening.”
Piano and Erhu Project is a collaboration between two fantastic Vancouver musicians, Corey Hamm and Nicole Li. They commissioned Who Made the Inch of Grass in 2014 and have put on several fantastic performances of the piece since.
Like virtually all San Francisco Symphony concerts, I attended because there was a new work being played, in this case Israeli-American composer Avner Dorman‘s Uriah: The Man The King Wanted Dead. A programmatic work based on a gruesome Old Testament story, Uriah complemented the other programmatic work of the evening, Dukas’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, made famous by the Disney animation—but which I had never heard performed live, maybe also because of Disney.
Despite my inherent dislike of late Romantic music, hands down the Dukas was a better piece than the Dorman. (more…)
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
SFCMP kicked off its 40th season with a characteristically eclectic program that reminded me why the concert producer has been able to draw loyal subscribers for decades. The pieces on the program showed an appreciation for the phenomenon of the concert as a social event belonging to a specific community, and the concert reflected the eclectic spirit of American new music. (more…)
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
The San Francisco Contemporary Music Players presented their final concert of the 2009/2010 season tonight, 26 Apr 2010, at the Herbst Theater in downtown San Francisco. On the program were pieces by Greek composer Manolis Manousakis, American Tan Dun, Chinese Guo Wenjing, and Frenchman Philippe Hurel. This program was presented coherently and engagingly, because proper attention was paid not only to selecting and preparing the music, but also to lighting, staging, and technological aspects—a rare achievement. (more…)
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
sfSound’s latest concert on Saturday 23 Jan 2010 was headlined by Ligeti‘s well-known Chamber Concerto, which closed the concert, and was preceded by 10 shorter premières by up-and-comping Bay Area composers, mainly students, but also including some interesting other perspectives, like Deerhoof drummer Greg Saunier. This concept has some definite advantages. It affords opportunities to a lot of less experienced composers in a relatively economically way, while at the same time ensuring an audience for them by programming a new music “hit” like Ligeti’s Chamber Concerto.
However, the format also presents some challenges to audience and ensemble, because a lot of relatively diverse music is presented in the course of an evening. (more…)