July 9, VIPA Concert 1: [Switch~ Ensemble]

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Auditorio del Conservatorio Superior “Joaquín Rodrigo” – 19.30h. (7:30 PM)

Jökulsárlón (2016)* – Anna-Louise Walton (1991)
for flute, violin, cello, and percussion

Cyclone (2013) – Rand Steiger (1957)
for solo clarinet and electronics

fragile thread, suspended; unquiet surface (2016)*Jeremy Corren (1994)
for soprano saxophone, percussion, piano, and violoncello

Vertigo (2015) – Mathew Arrellin (1993)
for alto saxophone and fixed media

Komorebi (2016)* – NamHoon Kim (1990)
for flute, clarinet, piano, and percussion

I want you to be (2016)* – Baldwin Giang (1992)
for violoncello and electronics

I. Lento
II. Agitato

Apologies, I Am Here Now (2016)* – Samuel Gillies (1987)
for bass clarinet, alto sax, percussion, cello, and electronics

* world premiere

the [Switch~ Ensemble]switch-composite-mosh2-withtext Zach Sheets, flutes
Madison Greenstone, clarinets
Phil Pierick, saxophones
Lauren Cauley, violin
T.J. Borden, cello
Wei-Han Wu, piano
Megan Arns, percussion
Jason Thorpe Buchanan, artistic director
Clay Mettens, audio engineer

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Jökulsárlón (2016)* – Anna-Louise Walton (1991)
for flute, violin, cello, and percussion

When I first visited Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, I was left speechless by both the sight and sounds before me. As the glacier slowly melts, it creates a lagoon full of ice crystals of all shapes and sizes, which crackle and hiss gently. The vastness of the lagoon seemed to amplify these sounds; they were simultaneously delicate and striking. While writing Jökulsárlón, I attempted to create a sound world that was similarly sparse yet captivating. In reflection of the natural polyphony of the ice, the texture is made up of composite gestures rather than melodic lines.

WaltonHaving moved many times throughout her childhood and adolescence, Anna-Louise Walton now calls New Orleans home, where she is pursuing an M.A. in music composition at Tulane University. Though she did not start composing formally until her junior year at Scripps College, where she received a B.A. in music, she grew up playing the piano and singing from a young age. Ms. Walton’s portfolio includes chamber, choral, and electronic music and her works have been performed in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, Houston, New Orleans, and Italy.

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Cyclone (2013) – Rand Steiger (1957)
for solo clarinet and electronics

Around the time I began this piece, two tornados touched down in Brooklyn (not far from ICE headquarters.) Having grown up in nearby Queens, I was struck by the almost comic novelty of a tornado in Brooklyn and momentarily seized with the sense of excitement that dramatic weather can induce before its real danger becomes apparent. I envisioned the electronics in this piece sweeping up and spinning the musical material the clarinetist plays, just as a tornado sweeps up and churns out everything in its path. Later, as I contemplated using Cyclone as a title, I realized that it would carry a different—and equally specific—meaning to Brooklyn residents, for whom the huge roller coaster at Coney Island is a looming and iconic presence. In the end, the title refers to both cyclones, which gives some clue as to what to expect from the signal processing.

rand_steigerRand Steiger’s music has been commissioned and performed by many ensembles, including the American Composers Orchestra, Boston Musica Viva, Ensemble Intercontemporain, International Contemporary Ensemble, Lontano, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, NYNME, Prism Quartet, San Diego Symphony, San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Talea Ensemble, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where he served as Composer Fellow. Soloists he has composed for include Matthew Barley, Maya Beiser, Claire Chase, Daniel Druckman, Peter Evans, Alan Feinberg, George Lewis, Mark Menzies, Susan Narucki, Vicki Ray, and Steven Schick.

Throughout his career, Steiger has been involved in computer music research, having held three residencies at IRCAM, and enjoying a long fruitful collaboration with Miller Puckette, the leading computer music researcher of his generation. He was Composer-in-Residence at the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology from 2010 to 2013.

Many of Steiger’s works combine orchestral instruments with real-time digital audio signal processing. They also propose a hybrid approach to just and equal-tempered tuning, exploring the delicate perceptual cusp between a harmony and a timbre that occurs when tones are precisely tuned. Some examples of works deploying these techniques include: Ecosphere, developed during residencies at Ircam and premiered by the Ensemble Intercontemporain in Paris; Traversing, written for cellist Mathew Barley and premiered by the Southbank Sinfonia in London; Cryosphere, premiered by the American Composers Orchestra at Carnegie Hall,A Menacing Plume, premiered by the Talea Ensemble in New York, and the Coalescence Cycle, premiered on a portrait concert at Miller Theater in New York by the International Contemporary Ensemble in 2013. He is currently working on string quartets with electronics for the Flux and JACK quartets.

His compositions and performances are recorded on the Centaur, CRI, Crystal, Einstein, Koch, Mode, New Albion, New Dynamic, New World, Nonesuch, and Tzadik labels. Recent works for instruments and electronics are available on Ecosphere a portrait CD/DVD on EMF, and A Menacing Plume, a portrait CD on New World Records.

Steiger is a Distinguished Professor, and holder of the Conrad Prebys Presidential Chair in the Music Department at U.C. San Diego, and is a 2015 Guggenheim Fellow. In 2009 he was a Visiting Professor at Harvard University.

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fragile thread, suspended; unquiet surface (2016)*Jeremy Corren (1994)
for soprano saxophone, percussion, piano, and violoncello

“along slender threads

of delicate twisted green

transluscent dewdrops

strung as small fragile jewels—”

—Solo Henjo

ssl_jan1Jeremy Corren’s music has been performed by the TAK Ensemble, counter(induction, Josh Modney and Erin Lesser of the Wet Ink Ensemble, and the Nebula Ensemble. Awards and honors include the Richard and Brooke Kamin Rapaport Fellowship and the title of U.S. Presidential Scholar of the Arts. Since 2015, he has composed and performed at a number of music festivals within and outside the United States, including New Music on the Point, the Banff International Workshop in Creative Music, and the Walden School Creative Musician’s Retreat. As a pianist­/improviser, he has recently performed with Tyshawn Sorey for Vijay Iyer’s Metropolitan Museum of Art residency and at the Earshot Jazz Festival in Seattle; he has also recorded with the Dre Hocevar Large Ensemble and Sam Pluta for an upcoming 2016 release on Clean Feed Records. Education in composition include Zosha di Castri, Eric Wubbels, and Sean Friar, and participation in seminars with George Friedrich Haas, Fred Lerdahl, and George Lewis. He is currently completing his undergraduate studies at Columbia University.

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Vertigo (2015) – Mathew Arrellin (1993)
for alto saxophone and fixed media

Vertigo was written during the winter of 2015.

14023_10204088087256257_8209702486113724357_nMathew Arrellin’s music has been performed by new music specialists, including chamber group New Music New Mexico (UNM), guitarist Pablo Gomez (UCSD), oboist Kyle Bruckmann (Oakland, CA), and the Low-Frequency Trio (Mexico). Additionally, Arrellin has collaborated with dancers, and his pieces have been included in several contemporary choreography showcases.

In the Spring of 2015, he was the recipient of UNM’s Scott Wilkinson Composition Competition Prize for his piece Permutations (2014) for cello solo, which he subsequently performed during that year’s John Donald Robb Composer’s Symposium.

In May of 2016, Mathew received a Bachelor’s degree from the University of New Mexico with a multi-concentration in cello performance, theory, and composition, where he studied under Dr. David Schepps, Dr. Richard Hermann, and Dr. José ­Luis Hurtado respectively. In September of 2016, he will begin his doctoral studies in composition at Northwestern University.

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Komorebi (2016)* – NamHoon “Matthew” Kim (1990)
for flute, clarinet, piano, and percussion

“komorebi” in japanese means when the sunlight is filtered through the leaves and branches of the trees. In this piece, i wanted to work with the idea of instruments being an extension of the body and also the body acting as an extension of the instrument. Every performer has many identities other than being a pianist or a flutist. In this piece i explore the connection between the performer as a human and the performer as a musical instrumentalist. And these two identities, like the meaning of the word komorebi, filter each other to create a result of sounds that are limited and compressed.

IMG_7360Born in 1990 in Seoul, South Korea, NamHoon “Matthew” Kim’s family immigrated to an U.S. island called Saipan, where he was educated until middle school. At the age of 15, his passion for music led him to leave home and move to Vienna, Austria. In Vienna he met and learned from many wonderful teachers such as Detlev Müller-Siemens, Wolfgang Liebhart, etc. He graduated both from the Koservatorium Wien Privat Universität and Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunt Wien, majoring in composition and music theory. After graduating he moved to Boston to study with John Mallia and Malcolm Peyton at the New England Conservatory of Music. After finishing his masters at the New England Conservatory of Music, he went on to study his Ph.D at Brandeis University with Eric Chasalow, David Rakowski, and Yu-hui Chang, where he is currently also a teaching fellow.

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I want you to be (2016)* – Baldwin Giang (1992)
for violoncello and electronics

I. Lento
II. Agitato

The title of this piece comes from Saint Augustine’s conception of love: Volo ut sis. In Augustine’s view, to love requires nothing less than a complete and selfless affirmation of another’s being; to love another person is to wish only for their existence, independent of our will. However in its translation to the contemporary indiviual, we are left with a syntactic yearning to complete the sentence as I want you to be ___ (eg. I want you to be beautiful, I want you to be better, etc). Explored through a dynamic relationship between performer and electronics that negotiates the fragile space between the self and the other, my piece draws on the internal angst and struggle to know love selflessly.

In the slow and impassionate first movement, the electronics and cello begin in close duet effected by granular synthesis of the cello’s gestures, building towards climactic gestures reaching across the entire range of the cello. The fast and virtuosic second movement begins with violent gestures from the solo cellist, that are later heard in dialectic with soft and beautiful electronics based on sounds in the continuum between harmonics and air tones. Throughout the piece, the electronics employ sample-based synthesis (restricting samples to sounds exclusively generated by the cello) to create vivid and dramatic textures based on processing of extended techniques that both extend the sound world of the cello and blur the distinction between electronic and acoustic sounds.

downloadBaldwin Giang (b. 1992) is a composer interested in acoustic and electro-acoustic mediums, whose music aims to empower communities of audiences and performers by creating concert experiences that are opportunities for collective political judgment. Baldwin is a recent graduate of Yale University, earning a B.A. with Honors in both Music and Political Science. At Yale, Baldwin earned the Beekman Cannon Friends Prize awarded for the best senior musical composition, and the Abraham Beekman Cox Prize awarded to the “most promising and gifted composer” in his class. As a winner of the 2015 PARMA composer competition, his piece for orchestra, To Remember is Always Forgetting will be published in their annual anthology of works. Other recognition includes first runner-up in the 2016 Michigan Music Teacher’s Association Commissioned Composer Competition and honorable mention in the New York Youth Symphony’s 2015 First Music Competition.

Baldwin is currently a Regent’s Fellow at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, pursuing a Master’s in Music Composition, studying under Evan Chambers. His past teachers include Kathryn Alexander, Konrad Kaczmarek, Michael Klingbeil, and Stephen Gorbos. Recent projects include a saxophone solo premiered at the North American Saxophone Alliance Conference in March 2016, and an upcoming short film score to Connecktion by writer/actor/director Anna Weng.

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Apologies, I Am Here Now (2016)* – Samuel Gillies (1987)
for bass clarinet, alto sax, percussion, cello, and electronics

“Apologies, I am here now” was a phrase that stared back at me from an email sometime in 2015, or possibly 2014… it doesn’t matter. In essence it meant very little, merely an acknowledgement of availability by the sender in response to an earlier missed call. Yet, in an instant I forgot this context and the phrase took on an almost crushing intensity. And then, almost as suddenly, it didn’t.

1958386_10152200730693350_1147373116_nSam Gillies is a composer and sound artist with an interest in the function of noise as both a musical and communicative code in music and art. His work treads the line between the musically beautiful and ugly, embracing live performance, multimedia, and installation art forms to create alternating sound worlds of extreme fragility and overwhelming density. Sam’s chamber music has been commissioned by the Vocal Constructivists, UK; the New Music Ensemble, UK; TURA New Music, AUS; and Decibel New Music, AUS; and he frequently performs live as an electronic artist, having toured in Australia, Japan, Europe and the United Kingdom. Sam’s work has been programmed for numerous international festivals, including the Dark Music Days Festival, Iceland; The Toronto Deep Wireless Festival of Radio Art, Canada; the Totally Huge New Music Festival, Perth; Stoke Newington Contemporary Music Festival, UK; and the International Computer Music Conference, Perth (2013), Greece (2014), and USA (2015).

In 2016 Sam was awarded the Liz Rhodes Scholarship in Musical Multimedia from the University of Huddersfield, where he will start his PhD in September under the supervision of Dr Julio d’Escriván. Sam recently completed a Masters in Music (Composition) at Goldsmiths, University of London under the supervision of Dr Patricia Alessandrini.