I don’t think it’s confining, but I think it’s challenging. For the most part, you get into an orchestra rehearsal four days before the premiere, you get two rehearsals, and then you have the premiere and that’s it. Of course, this doesn’t happen with Kaleidoscope, since it’s conductorless and there are a lot of rehearsals. But in general, you have very little room for error; therefore, you write music where there isn’t room for error, whereas in a chamber work, I’m more willing to say, “Let’s try this!” or “Let’s change this!”Read More
I was aware of what it would be like to have the pianists in that position; not as pianist-conductors or pianist-leaders, but as soloists in a democratic conductorless music-making experience. I thought about when I write a rhythm or a layer, how that will translate in the rehearsal process. It’s perhaps not my most rhythmically challenging piece, but it’s plenty challenging nonetheless. Let’s just say it’s not going to feel like it’s in 4/4... And also in choosing the instrumentation, I had a fair amount of freedom in that. I decided on a chamber orchestra of just 19 players instead of a full string section: it’s a double string quartet plus bass, with wind, brass, and percussion. This way the individual voices are the primary colors, instead of having a mass of voices.Read More
Katherine Balch’s Responding to the Waves will be given its west coast premiere on April 28th and 29th. I spoke with Katie about feeling like a loner, joyful shivers, and Virginia Woolf. There’s a bonus cocktail recipe at the end of the interview for mixology fans!
David Hertzberg’s Spectre of the Spheres will be given its west coast premiere on April 28th and 29th. I had the pleasure of corresponding with the Los Angeles native about his eclectic musical background, his haunting work, and bugs.Read More
Gregor Mayrhofer’s Oktett will be given its US premiere alongside Schubert’s Octet in F Major on March 10th and 11th. I caught him just after he attended a concert at the Berlin Philharmonie, where he is an assistant conductor to Sir Simon Rattle. No big deal.Read More