CNM Concert Season 42

David Gompper, Director
Chris Gainey, Res. Asst.



2007-08 CNM
Concerts IV-VIII


Notes & Bios
 
 Introduction
& Schedule 


 Ming-Hsiu YEN 

 Timothy A. DAVIS 

 Nebojsa S. MACURA 

 Lembit BEECHER 

 David FARRELL 

 Christopher GAINEY 

 

   SEASON: 
   CONCERT: 


 PROGRAM NOTES & BIOS




2008 MidWest Composers Symposium

featuring composers from the Universities of
Cincinnati, Indiana, Iowa and Michigan


Symposium Concert I

8:00 p.m. on Friday, February 8, 2008
Clapp Recital Hall
University of Iowa, School of Music



CONCERT I

CONCERT II

CONCERT III

CONCERT IV

CONCERT V









Sorrowful Beauty (2003, rev. 2007)
    for clarinet and string quartet
Ming-Hsiu YEN (1980) (MI)
Yasmin Flores, clarinet
Samuel Stapleton, violin I
Anna Draper, violin II
Peter Calhoun, viola
Laura Shaw, violoncello

In Memoriam (2006, rev. 2008)
Timothy A. DAVIS (1980) (IA)
Kevin Pearce, conductor
The University of Iowa Chamber Orchestra

Sprawl-Dystopia (world premiere)
Nebojsa S. MACURA (1982) (CCM)
Jeremy Starr, conductor
The University of Iowa Chamber Orchestra

— interval —

The Art of Remembering (2007)
Lembit BEECHER (1980) (MI)
Emily Fenton, flute
Yasmin Flores, clarinet
Ginny Armstrong, percussion
Sung-Hee Lee, piano
Samuel Stapleton, violin
Peter Calhoun, viola
Laura Shaw, violoncello

Re-Callings (2007)
David FARRELL (1982) (IN)
Véronique Mathieu, violin solo
Emily Fenton, flute
Lissa Stolz, oboe
Yasmin Flores, clarinet
Jeff Tilshman, bassoon
Phil Runkel, horn
Brian Umlah, trumpet
Jonathan Allen, trombone
Megan Aube & Chris Sande, percussion
Sung-Hee Lee, piano
Anna Draper, violin
Peter Calhoun, viola
Laura Shaw, violoncello
Asli Mediha Yetisener, double bass

Three Movements
    from No Sleep for the Wicked (2007)
Christopher GAINEY (1981) (IA)
Emily Fenton, flute/piccolo
Yasmin Flores, clarinet/bass clarinet
Sam Stapleton, violin
Laura Shaw, violoncello
Sung-Hee Lee, piano
Chris Sande, percussion
Jeremy Starr, conductor


 




 
MING-HSIU YEN
Sorrowful Beauty

I am always amazed and touched when I see small flowers growing between rocks or in the deserts. These flowers may not be the prettiest ones in the world, but with strength they survive. They are a powerful image for us. Many times when we suffer we ask why we are alive. I think these flowers give us an answer.
Ming-Hsiu Yen, a native Taiwanese, is currently a candidate of the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Composition at the University of Michigan. She holds degree in both Composition and Piano Performance from the University of Michigan (MM) and the Eastman School of Music (BM). Winner of the governmental Literary and Artistic Creation Competition (Taiwan), the Second Sun River Composition Competition (China), League Of Composers/ISCM-USA Competition, PRISM Commission Award, and New Music Project Commission Award, her compositions have been performed in France, Japan, Taiwan, China and United States, by Yinqi Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, University Symphony Orchestra of University of Michigan, Brave New Works, and Prism Quartet, and have been presented in festivals, such as Pacific Music Festival, Aspen Music Festival, Brevard Music Festival, SCI National Student Conference, Midwest Composers' Symposium, Indiana State University Contemporary Music Festival.


 
TIMOTHY A. DAVIS
In Memoriam

Written in 2005 and revised in 2008, In Memoriam developed as a reflection of tragedy on both a universal and personal level over the course of my lifetime (25 years at the time). A composition entitled as such usually refers to someone specific. Yet, when composing this work I thought more of "us" than "me," and how "we" as a society mourn people lost to us, leaving "us" behind to continue their memory.
Timothy A. Davis (b. Springfield, Massachusetts) studied composition with Thomas Oboe Lee at Boston College (BA, 2002) and Bruce MacCombie at the University of Massachusetts (MMus, 2006). Tim is currently earning his PhD in composition at the University of Iowa, studying with David Gompper. He is a recipient of a Masterworks Prize from ERM Media: "In Memoriam" (2005) was selected for inclusion in an upcoming volume of the "Masterworks of the New Era" CD, recorded by members of the Prague Radio and Czech Philharmonic Symphony Orchestras.


 
NEBOJSA MACURA
Sprawl-Dystopia

Written in September-October 2007, shortly after the composer's relocation to a new city, Sprawl-Dystopia is a commentary on suburban life. Although its programmatic nature and accessible musical language show a common thread with Romantic tone-poems, the work presents an antithesis to the idealized portraits of nature and rural life evoked by Romantic composers. Instead of majestic forests and shepherds' pipes, the landscape here consists of endless strip malls and concrete parking lots, six-lane highways with a constant stream of cars hurtling at breakneck speed, and treeless subdivisions where the streets are nearly always devoid of people, with row upon row of identical houses hiding untold secrets behind closed doors. While the word "dystopia" generally refers to a bleak world in a work of fiction, the listener can decide whether the world portrayed here is real or imaginary.
Nebojsa Macura was born in 1982 in Belgrade, Serbia, and immigrated to the United States in 1990. He holds a Master of Music from the University of British Columbia, and a Bachelor of Music from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Ensembles that have performed his compositions include CCM Chamber Players, Turning Point Ensemble, and the University of Wisconsin Contemporary Chamber Ensemble. His music has been featured at Music07 (Cincinnati), Sonic Boom Festival (Vancouver, Canada), the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra Jean Coulthard Readings, and the Eine Kleine Lunch Musik concert series at the Vancouver Art Gallery. Currently, Macura is pursuing a DMA at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where he studies with Joel Hoffman.


 
LEMBIT BEECHER
The Art of Remembering

The Art of Remembering is about my grandmother, Taimi, and more specifically, about the way she tells stories. She was born in Estonia in 1922 but in 1944 was forced to flee when the Red Army invaded. Over the next five years she lived through an amazing series of escapes and adventures finally making it to the United States in 1949. During the war she had lost almost everything - her homeland, husband and promising career as a young concert pianist. In recent years, my grandmother has often told me stories about this time. I love hearing her speak. There is a calm lilt, something serene about her voice, as if she were speaking about something very ordinary. But every now and then her voice will break for a moment, or she will pause and it becomes clear that there is a pain and sorrow beneath the placid surface of her storytelling that is still quite raw. It is this sense that I tried to capture in my piece.
Lembit Beecher is a composer, conductor and pianist currently working on his DMA at the University of Michigan. His teachers have included Evan Chambers, Bright Sheng, Karim Al-Zand, Pierre Jalbert, Kurt Stallmann and Bernard Rands. Continually trying to expand his musical and artistic vocabulary, Lembit has studied jazz piano, modern dance, ethnomusicology and participated in workshops and master classes with Stephen Schwartz, Bobby McFerrin and Paul Berliner. Born of Estonian and American parents, Lembit grew up under the redwoods in Santa Cruz, California, a few miles from the wild Pacific. Since then he has lived in Boston, Houston, Ann Arbor and Berlin. This varied background has made him particularly sensitive to place, ecology and the strong emotional relationships that people forge with patterns in nature. He is also interested in the way people tell stories, through songs, sounds, gestures and words.


 
DAVID E. FARRELL
Re-Callings

Re-Callings features a solo violin against the background of a mixed chamber ensemble. The work is loosely divided into three main sections, each of which frequently moves through varied musical ideas and constantly shifts in character and mood - I feel that Re-Callings tries to push this restless surface into some sort of cohesive form. The return of motives is often unpredictable, though the initial music heard in the piano seems to have the greatest structural significance and transformative power.
David E. Farrell is a composer from Chicago, IL. He received a B.M. in Composition/Theory from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign; he received an M.M. and is currently pursuing a D.M. in Composition from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. His teachers have included Stephen Taylor, Zack Browning, P.Q. Phan, and Claude Baker. David's music has been performed by ensembles such as the University of Illinois Chamber Orchestra and the Indiana University Symphonic Band, and as part of the Music07 festival hosted by the University of Cincinnati.

Canadian violinist Véronique Mathieu holds degrees from the Conservatoire de Musique de Québec, McGill University, and Indiana University. She is currently pursuing her Doctorate under the guidance of Mark Kaplan at Indiana University, while working as an Associate Instructor in violin. She is also the Associate Concertmaster of the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic.Veronique performed in various festivals in Austria, Canada, Costa Rica, France, Israel, Switzerland, and the United States. She was recently invited to participate in the 2007 Lucerne Academy Festival under Pierre Boulez. Véronique wishes to thank the Canada Council for the Arts for its generous support through the loan of the 1715 Dominicus Montagnana violin.


 
CHRISTOPHER GAINEY
No Sleep for the Wicked


  I. "...Now fades the glimmering landscape on the sight,
And all the air a solemn stillness holds.."
- Thomas Gray
IV. "...The clocks are striking, calling to each other,
And one can see right to the edge of time..."
- Rainer Maria Rilke, trans. Bly
VI. "In all its raucous impudence
Life writhes, cavorts in pallid light..."
- Charles Baudelaire, trans. Shapiro

No Sleep for the Wicked is a ballet in seven parts based on my battles with insomnia. Each movement evokes a different state of mind that comes as a result of sleep deprivation. As one of my favorite pastimes is reading poetry when I can't sleep, I have chosen a line of poetry as the title for each movement. The poetry has been selected based upon the mood that the music is meant to portray.
Christopher Gainey completed his BM and MM at the Peabody Conservatory in composition, guitar performance and music theory pedagogy. At Peabody he was awarded the Gustav Klemm prize in composition and his Iago for violin solo, which is now being published in the SCI Journal of Music Scores, won first prize in the 2006 Virginia Carty DeLillo composition competition. He was awarded a commission from the Baltimore Classical Guitar Society to compose Chupacabra for two guitars, which was subsequently published by Vogt&Fritz in Sweinfurt, Germany. His Nantucket Sleighride for orchestra and four guitars has been recorded by the Kiev Philharmonic as part of ERM Media's "Masterworks of the New Era" series. He is currently a doctoral student in composition studying with David Gompper, and is the recipient of the 2007-2008 Henry and Parker Pelzer Prize in composition.