Airs Sunday, June 16 on WHYY-TV at 6 p.m.; online Monday, June 17.
The annual Dean's Honors Recital, saluting the top student performances of the year at the Curtis Institute. The program:
Reich: Clapping Music
Mari Yoshinaga & Tomasz Kowalczyk, percussion
The title says it all, and for Mari and Tomas, the percussion is their own clapping hands. Steve Reich wanted to create a work in which performers use the most basic of instruments—their own bodies. One performer claps a variant of a basic African bell pattern, while the other slowly varies the pattern over this four-minute piece.
Biber: Sonata representativa
Maia Cabeza, violin; Caroline Robinson, harpsichord
Dating from 1669, this charming baroque sonata "represents" the sounds of various animals. Listen for depictions of nightingale, cuckoo, frog, hen, quail and cat, as well as a bumptious musketeer's march.
Ian Clarke: Zoom Tube
Diondre McKinney, flute
Everything from rhythm & blues, to Karlheinz Stockhausen, to South American flute-playing inform this short work by the English flutist and composer, dating from 2001. Even Diondre's voice can be heard in this imaginative romp.
Barber: Two Songs
Elizabeth Zharoff, soprano; Milos Repicky, piano
No special Curtis program can be complete without a selection from Samuel Barber, the great 20th century composer and Curtis graduate. Here, Elizabeth offers two songs by Barber: "Sure on this shining night" and "Despite and Still."
Barrios: Julia Florida
Jordan Dodson, guitar
Augustin Barrios Mangore was a Paraguayan composer and guitarist who created this lovely barcarola, or "boat song," a favorite of guitarists everywhere. This performance also caps the first season of the classical guitar program at Curtis.
Debussy: Images: Book One
Michelle Cann, piano
This three-movement piano suite from 1911 comes from the composer in his full maturity and renown. While the opening Reflets dans l'eau can be seen as full-blown Impressionism, the following movements Hommage a Rameau and Mouvement break that stylistic mold, as Debussy successively pays tribute to the baroque father of French music and creates a dazzling keyboard tour-de-force.
Smith: Children of the Fire
The Curtis Composition Department is represented by this work written by student composer Gabriella Smith for the "One Book, One Philadelphia" festival, and performed by Curtis' all-student ensemble 39, devoted to contemporary music.
Musical Word of the Week: Bell pattern
A bell pattern is a rhythmic pattern, often a key pattern, struck on an Idiophone, in most cases, a metal bell or a hollowed piece of wood, or wooden claves.