Student Recital: Schubert, Bland, Reich

A varied student recital. The program:

Schubert: Fantasy in C major, D. 934
Luosha Fang, violin; Qing Jiang, piano
This suite dates from 1828, the last year of Schubert’s life. It’s arranged in seven sections, the last of which is a theme and variations based on the 1821 song Sei mir gegrusst.

Bland: Two Madrigals and a Song
Sarah Shafer, soprano; Alec Holcomb, guitar; Gideon Whitehead, guitar;
Jiyeon Kim, guitar; Louis-Xavier Barrette, guitar; David Starobin, conductor

This marks the world premiere of this work by the American composer William Bland. David Starobin, co-head of Curtis’ guitar department, is a champion of Bland’s works. The sections are titled: Madrigal 1: “Every Word a Knife”; Madrigal 2: “I Turned Toward You”; Song: “Is”.

Reich: Electric Counterpoint
Alec Holcomb, guitar
This is a typically intriguing by the American composer Steve Reich. Two versions of this suite exist: one for electric guitar and tape and the other for an ensemble of guitars. Tonight, Alec opts for the former (the tape part featuring two electric bass guitars and 7 electric guitars), This version proves particularly challenging for the live guitarist, who has to play in sync with pre-recorded tracks. The three movements are marked quite simply (in that Reichian minimalist style): Fast, Slow and Fast.

Music Word of the Week: “counterpoint”
“Counterpoint is the coherent combination of distinct melodic lines in music, and the quality that best fulfils the aesthetic principle of unity in diversity.” (from The Oxford Dictionary of Music)

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