Northwest Triptych: New Music for Orchestra
- Featured: Asplund, Baker, & Delaurenti
- Release Date: 7/23/2002
Christian Asplund is a Canadian-American composer whose teachers have included Alvin Curran, Thea Musgrave, John Rahn, and Stuart Dempster. His music has been described in the press as 'inscrutable,' 'creepy,' and 'absolutely beautiful.' He arrived in Seattle in 1993, and soon after co-founded the Seattle EXperimental Opera, which has produced five of his operas. Asplund has also performed regularly in northwest jazz festivals and clubs as an out-jazz violist and harmoniumist. His music appears on several CDs and is broadcast regularly. He is the recipient of several grants and awards, and two of his articles have appeared in 'Perspectives of New Music.' Asplund currently lives in Norman, Oklahoma with his wife and three daughters, where he is assistant professor and chair of the composition department at the University of Oklahoma. Contact Christian Asplund at email@example.com. About Symphony No. 4 Symphony No. 4 is a large-scale work for chamber orchestra with four percussion soloists. Asplund's writing contrasts the typical percussion timbres (wood, metal, stretched skins, etc.) with the more unusual percussive sounds of paper. In one section, three of the percussionists slap, rattle, and strike paper bags, while another rhythmically tears pages out of a phone book. Asplund mixes these percussive textures into the orchestral sound, creating a new sound that flows and turns and pulls the listener along with it. This symphony, like much of Asplund's music, explores contrasts: loud, unrelenting, repetitive sections are juxtaposed with long-tone glissando passages; extended percussion cadenzas fade into bombastic melodic lines. Tom Baker has been a prominent composer and performer in Seattle since arriving in 1994. As co-founder of the Seattle EXperimental Opera (SEXO) and curator of the Seattle Composers' Salon, he is dedicated to composing, producing, and promoting the new music for which the region is fast becoming known. Tom's works have been performed throughout the United States and Canada, as well as in Europe. He has been guest conductor for the Seattle Creative Orchestra, composer-in-residence for the Esoterics, and has received awards from the Jack Straw Foundation, the Washington State Arts Commission, and Artist Trust. Tom completed his Doctorate of Musical Arts in 1996 at the University of Washington and has studied composition with Chinary Ung and John Rahn. Contact Tom Baker at firstname.lastname@example.org. About Negative Space Negative Space is a musical mobile of floating sounds that circle one another while seeming somehow to remain unaware of each other's presence. It relies on a sparse texture and long, fluid gestures to create a world of sound that seems to fold into itself and become a static object, free of time. Musical events are elongated through slowly evolving textures, extensions and collisions of sound. The foreground and back-ground relationships of these events become blurred so that the musical gesture may be both figure and ground in the context of the larger sonic environment. Often, the listener must choose his or her own focus; which is the musical event, and which is the negative space around it? Christopher DeLaurenti is a composer and new music rabblerouser. A vital presence in the Northwest new music scene, Christopher has performed at many leading experimental music festivals, including OmniMedia v0.5, the 4th Olympia Experimental Music Festival, as well as on Sonarchy, broadcast live on KCMU-FM in Seattle. He serve's as Ship's Sturgeon aboard the Tentacle, a bi-monthly print magazine that chronicles adventurous and experimental music in North America's Pacific Northwest. Christopher is also part of 'rebreather,' who improvise live electronic music from the digital glossolalia of sabotaged consumer electronics, homebrew circuits, and obsolete devices. Christopher's music has been heard in countries around the world, from England's BBC Radio 3 to Latvian Radio, as well as across the United States and Canada. Contact Christopher DeLaurenti at email@example.com. About Three Camels for Orchestra Three Camels for Orchestra scrambles and reinvigorates the syntax of symphonic music through the riotous deployment of triumphant cadences, arctic blocs of sound, tuttis, and sonic homophones. It is a work of sharp edges and quick turns; it creates a musical world that is at once both familiar and alien. Working with recorded sounds and 'secret' tape splicing techniques, DeLaurenti weaves together diverse musical material into a distinctive texture, resulting in a dense, fast-moving, rather lucid collage of instrumental sounds. The musical fragments are like the spokes of a wheel; they are meaningless until combined together, each part contributing to the whole. When the piece is moving at full speed, there is no time for reflection upon the spokes; only the wheel itself is perceived.
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