Collide Festival features an evening of contemporary percussion works by CF2 composers, January 28 at UCF

On January 28, 2012 at 8:00 p.m, the Furman University Percussion Ensemble (Omar Carmenates, Director), UCF Percussion Ensemble (Thad Anderson, Director) and KnightWinds Ensemble (Dr. Nora Lee Garcia-Valazquez, Director) will come together to perform an array of works by Central Florida Composers.

Robert Raines – A Quickening (Concerto for Flutes and Percussion)
Christopher Marshall – Birds of a Feather
Thad Anderson – Lines: Withheld (percussion quartet for tuned metals)
Charles Griffin – The Persistence of Past Chemistries (percussion quartet: marimba,xylophone, log drums, cajon, caxxixxi, claves)
Charles Griffin – Twisting Magnetic Spins (percussion quartet: vibraphone, timpani, brake drums, gongs, cymbals, etc.)
Two UCF student composers works will be presented.

DEPARTMENT CONTACT:

All events will take place in the UCF Rehearsal Hall Auditorium.
4000 Central Florida Blvd.
407-823-2869
thad@mail.ucf.edu

The program in detail:

Robert Raines: A quickening – Concerto for Flutes and Percussion
(1 piccolo, 6 flutes, 2 alto flutes, 2 bass flutes, (Optional: contra bass flute, sub-contra bass flute) assorted percussion, glockenspiel, crotales, and marimba); Dedicated to Eva Amsler, this piece was made possible by a Grant from the Brannen-Cooper Fund for New Music.

Composer’s notes: This piece illustrates my continued interest in exploring the sonic landscape created by a group of instruments from the same family, an effect heightened by the purity of tone produced by the family of flutes. I have expanded this palette by adding the warmth of the marimba and vivid percussion colors. Extremes of range, tone, texture, and tempo are explored: dense vertical clusters juxtaposed with more horizontal, kaleidoscopic/contrapuntal passages. I have strived to give each member of the ensemble its own voice and a chance to stand alone, while in other sections all of the players are meant to meld into one macro-instrument.

Those technical points aside, I strove to illustrate my personal feelings about the act of creation – music, literature, dance, the visual arts, all I believe share a common creative electricity. I have long been inspired by the following words from Martha Graham, and I kept this quote near while composing this piece. The title is inspired by her words:

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy… a quickening… that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium but will be lost.

It’s not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. Whether you choose to take an art class, keep a journal, record your dreams, dance your story, or live each day from your own creative source, above all else, keep the channel open.–Martha Graham

Christopher Marshall: Birds Of A Feather
One of the discoveries I have made since moving to the United States is the poetry of Emily Dickinson. I encountered some of her poems by chance on the internet and found a great many of them stimulated an immediate musical response in me. So far I have set nine for choir and used those settings as the basis for suites of miniatures for various instrumental combinations. And there are so many more Dickinson poems I would like to use in this way.

The four avian themed miniatures that comprise Birds Of A Feather were taken from the longer wind ensemble work ‘An Emily Dickinson Suite’ and recomposed for the current ensemble with a dedication to Nora Lee García-Velásquez, George Weremchuk and Thad Anderson.

  • To Hear An Oriole Sing – The poet asks why birds sing. Do they consider their song beautiful or is it only beautiful to us? And what part does God play in all this?
  • I’m Nobody – No direct reference to a bird, though the two gossipy ‘nobodies’ could certainly be described as ‘birds of a feather’.
  • If I Can Stop One Heart From Breaking – Our existence is validated only by our acts of kindness to others.
  • Hope Is The Thing With Feathers – I love this poem with its picture of hope as a resilient little bird that keeps singing no matter what life throws at it.

Thad Anderson: Withheld, a piece from my series called Lines, is a percussion quartet for tuned metals. My original intention was to have it performed with tuned pipes, but it could also be performed with an assortment of tuned metals (crotales, glock, vibraphone, chimes, celeste, bell plates, muted gongs, etc…). It was composed with the pipe pitches used for David Lang’s second movement of The So-Called Laws of Nature in mind. The Lines pieces are based on a series of rhythmic “duration lines,” which are used to create both structure and polyrhythmic interest.

Charles Griffin: The Persistence of Past Chemistries
One of the ways that Professor Lynn Margulis of the University of Massachussets defines life in her book What is Life?, is as “patterns of chemical conservation in a universe tending toward heat loss and disintegration. . . . Death is part of life because even dying matter, once it reproduces, rescues complex chemical systems and budding dissipative structures from thermodynamic equilibrium. . . . Preserving the past, making a difference between past and present, life binds time, expanding complexity and creating new problems for itself.”I hit upon the title for this piece after I had already decided to restrict the sonic palette exclusively to instruments made of wood, a way to acknowledge this uniquely human reconstitution of organic matter. Not only do the instruments give the trees from which they came new life, but the musicians also bring new life to their instruments. Furthermore, my music tends to be the sum of sometimes disparate parts that take on new life through their integration; jazz, latino, and minimalist music all coexist in The Persistence of Past Chemistries.

Charles Griffin: Twisting Magnetic Spins was commissioned by the University of North Texas for Mark Ford, the director of percussion studies there. Ever since I wrote The Persistence of Past Chemistries for Ethos Percussion Group several years before, where I restricted the sonic palette to instruments primarily made from wood or organic materials, I wanted to write another piece with the same restriction, but this time with metals. The main solos are taken by the vibraphone and the timpani, but perhaps the bigger challenge for the ensemble is the necessity for the accompanying metallophones to play very softly part of the time. After the premiere, this piece was featured by ASU’s percussion ensemble (J.B. Smith, director) at the 2006 PASIC conference in Austin, Texas as part of the New Ensemble Literature session.

Dan Crozier’s Capriccio performed by Orlando Philharmonic on January 14

On Saturday, January 14, 2012, at 8:00 PM, the Orlando Philharmonic (Christopher Wilkins, conductor, with guest pianist William Wolfram) will present a concert program at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre, that includes CF2 member Dan Crozier‘s Capriccio.

Also on the program will be:
Weber’s Der Freischütz Overture, Hindemith’s Symphonic Metamorphosis; and Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 1.

American pianist William Wolfram was a silver medalist at both the William Kapell and the Naumburg International Piano Competitions, and a bronze medalist at the prestigious Tchaikovsky Piano Competition in Moscow. A versatile recitalist, concerto soloist, and chamber musician, he has won the respect of musicians and critics across the country and abroad. Wolfram has several recordings on the Naxos label, has played recitals in cities throughout the U.S., Asia and Europe, and has performed with dozens of the finest orchestras in the world.

PROGRAM NOTES

Daniel Crozier (b. 1965) – Capriccio
The orchestral piece, Capriccio, is very much in keeping with my recent compositional exploration of the narrative, story-telling power of music. It was a strong interest in opera that led my purely instrumental music in this direction. The music of the great operatic literature, it seems, reaches well beyond the function of simply enhancing a drama on stage. Our perception is that this music somehow “becomes” the story that it tells, effectively taking it over, and expressing what happens on the stage in its own terms with a heightened sense of dramatic sweep and a good deal of emotional specificity. It is the music that essentially controls our experience as we are drawn into the dramatic world of a fine opera.

While it may be a bit problematic to speak of abstract orchestral music in such terms, music that exists apart from any explicit program or extra-musical reference does, I believe, have the capacity to carry on an independent narrative of its own sort, expressed using its own particular kind of syntax. In this spirit, Capriccio strives to create what might be called virtual, rather than concrete, narrative. We might even refer to it, after Mendelssohn, as an “opera scene without words,” in this case a largely comic scene, whose personae appear as musical ideas. As in other forms of drama, interest comes as a result of the way these characters relate to one another in the context of an overall plot, the way they may be transformed by the sometimes intense nature of their interaction, and the larger intensity curve that emerges as part of the process. The piece is concerned with three principal thematic ideas, which, as its title implies, establish a virtuosic atmosphere of bustling, and sometimes dancing, good-humor, not without a little suspense along the way.

The scurrying, opening idea highlights the woodwinds in its first appearance. The second is a tension building perpetual motion that precipitates the first climax. The appearance of the third idea heralds the beginning of the piece’s central episode, or “trio” section. Here the mood relaxes in a kind of swung dance for the two bassoons that is periodically interrupted by rude, mocking clarinets. The dance and the mocking figures vie for position over the course of this section in a competition that eventually lands the music in a tutti. After the trio closes it is the second idea, the perpetual motion, which returns, now quiet and mysterious in the upper register of the orchestra. This idea builds very gradually, and is developed and expanded over a longer period of time and with more intensity and athleticism than it had been earlier. The climax that it had been able to achieve during its first appearance is dwarfed by one a good deal larger here, that now coincides with the fist idea’s triumphant return. After a coda that builds quickly to yet one more culmination, the two bassoons make a failed attempt to resume their dance, summarily cut off by a final, brief reference to the piece’s opening gesture.

CALL FOR SCORES

CENTRAL FLORIDA COMPOSERS FORUM (CF2) ANNOUNCES AN OPEN CALL TO CENTRAL FLORIDA COMPOSERS.

Please submit proposals for inclusion of recently composed music on a concert of works by CF2 composers. All styles are welcome.

Concert date and details:

WHEN: April 29th at 7:30pm
WHERE: Timucua White House
2000 S. Summerlin Ave.
Orlando, FL 32806

Submission details:

HOW:
Submit electronically the following materials/information:
1. Name of composer
2. Title of work submitted
3. Recording if available (MIDI mockups are okay)
4. Instrumentation
5. Duration of work
6. PDF of the score
7. Names of all performers (They must be arranged for in advance as part of your submission. See below.)
8. Program note (1 or 2 paragraphs max)
9. Biographical statement for the composer (150-200 words)
10. Digital photo of the composer (200px wide minimum)

WHERE: Submit material to Charles Griffin at cgriffin293@gmail.com
WHEN: NO LATER THAN MONDAY, FEBRUARY 12, 2012.

Composer is responsible for providing all performers for their own work. CF2 will provide the venue and publicity. All Central Florida area composers may submit work for consideration, regardless of membership status within CF2.

Composing for the guitar workshop January 21 at 2PM

Central Florida Composers Forum and Accidental Music Festival will present a forum on composing for the guitar from 2-4PM on January 21st at the home of Benoit Glazer. Topics discussed will include masterworks of 20th Century guitar repertoire, counterpoint, polyphony and voice leading on the guitar, and chamber music. Participation is free and open to all ages. Details will also be announced regarding a composition competition sponsored by Central Florida Composers Forum and Accidental Music Festival.

Guest speakers will include :

Eladio Scharrón, professor of classical guitar at University of Central Florida
Christopher Belt, artistic director of Accidental Music Festival
Charles Griffin, Central Florida Composers Forum

January 21st
2PM-4PM
2000 S. Summerlin Ave
Orlando, FL 32801

Town Hall Meeting on December 3, 2011 for Film, Video, Gaming, Animation & Music

PLEASE FORWARD THIS INFORMATION TO ANYONE YOU THINK SHOULD BE PRESENT

The Central Florida Composers Forum is organizing a Town Hall meeting to start a conversation between local composers, video game designers and filmmakers. The purpose of this particular meeting is to introduce ourselves to each other and discuss a possible collaborative project.

In short, we would like to start a conversation about building an event in 2012 where new short films or videos and also live game play are accompanied by newly composed live music by our composer members.

Our long-range goal is to create a community of connected collaborators to everyone’s mutual creative and professional benefit.  Please come!

The meeting will take place:
DATE: Saturday, December 3rd
TIME: from 11AM to 2PM
PLACE: the home of Benoit Glazer
2000 S. Summerlin Ave.
Orlando, FL 32806

Please bring a snack or drink to share.
Please RSVP to Charlie Griffin via email: cgriffin293@gmail.com 

MISSION STATEMENT
The Central Florida Composers Forum is a new organization of composers and new music practitioners dedicated to engaging the creative and larger community of Central Florida through the promotion of original and innovative music programming. Central Florida Composers Forum strives to be part of a larger cultural conversation where the musical, visual and other performing arts connect with audiences, foster vital collaborations, and produce multidisciplinary performances. Cultivating an audience for new music through education, workshops and outreach programs that create memorable artistic experiences for youth and community members are also central to the mission of Central Florida Composers Forum.