The Flexible Orchestra with a core of bassoons and contrabassoons performs September 28th, Thursday, 7:30 at the Ukrainian Restaurant, 140 Second Av. At 9th Street, conducted by our wonderful, Tara Simoncic.
It’s a “Concerto Program” with works by Daniel Goode (the orchestra’s founder), Krystina Bobrowski from San Francisco, David Demnitz from Gamelan Son of Lion, and violist/composer, Stephanie Griffin of the Momenta Quartet. In addition, as a gesture to the history of “multiples” of one instrument, we will revive Mary Jane Leach’s “Feu de Joie” for solo bassoon and six recorded bassoons. The soloist will be Sara Schoenbeck, our first bassoonist.
Goode’s “Concerto for Lecturer and Orchestra” is a setting of his wife, Ann Snitow’s lecture on how to survive backlash—ominously relevant to now. Ann will perform the solo lecture.
David Demnitz’s “Savor Pelog/Shading: Clarinet Concerto” is written for Goode playing his instrument. It was originally a piece for gamelan orchestra, which he as transcribed for the Flexible Orchestra.
Bobrowski’s premiere will feature her on french horn. Stephanie Griffin will feature herself on viola.
For further information, write Daniel Goode at
No reservations are needed for the concert. For before the concert dinner reservations, call the restaurant at:
Remember the concert starts at 7:30!
Sunday, September 18, 2016 at 7:30 PM
The Loft of Daniel Goode and Ann Snitow
167 Spring Street – bell #3
New York, NY 10012
subways: E. C, 6, 1, N and R
tickets $15/ $10
no advance reservations
Can you imagine a piece that combines the athleticism of an uphill marathon run on a continuously steepening course with an ethereal, other-worldly sound that takes you out of-body?
I’m excited to invite you to a truly rare experience, the first performance in decades of Bill Hellermann’s extraordinary solo flute piece Three Weeks in Cincinnati in December. The athleticism in this piece is a non-stop circular breathing run for close to an hour! And what is being circular breathed? A highly evolved, gorgeous multiphonic world shimmering though a continuous breath tremolo! This incredible duality between the physical and ethereal makes for a musical and emotional experience unlike any other. Those who heard the premiere of this piece at Phill Niblock’s loft in 1979 remember it vividly.
Before I coalesced my identity as a composer-performer, there was a period in the 1970s when I asked a number of composers to write works for me. Of the solo flute pieces from that time, Three Weeks… is by far the most unique and indeed the very best.
I’ve wanted to revive this work for quite some time, and now it’s happening! I’ll be recording Three Weeks in Cincinnati in December for New World Records on September 21 and 22, and this public performance is a celebration of the work and the wonderful friendship and collaboration between Bill and I that made it possible.
I’ll also be performing two of my pieces for solo contrabass flute, Afterimage, Before and Our Cells Know. An extremely athletic work in its own, maximally percussive way, Afterimage, Before is surely the first flute work dedicated to Ginger Baker, my favorite rock drummer. Our Cells Know, the title track of my recent solo contrabass flute CD on Tzadik Records, is a lyric work dedicated to the beautiful spirit of Stephanie Stone.
Bill Hellermann on Three Weeks in Cincinnati in December:
“Three Weeks in Cincinnati in December is the last of four compositions I wrote In the late 70’s for solo instruments. They all feature a focus on a specific instrumental technique that was both unusual and difficult. Three Weeks… was exceptional in that it featured three such techniques taking place simultaneously: circular breathing for close to one hour, a continuous diaphragm tremolo, and a succession of beautiful yet very challenging multiponics.. The piece was conceived of and written in close collaboration with the extraordinary flute virtuoso, Robert Dick. Without his involvement I would never have dared to write such a piece and without him it never could have been performed. The intent of all the pieces in the group of four was to explore the special tension attained through the intense physical and mental focus demanded of the performer. This results in sounds I feel have a very complex, not entirely predictable, beauty.
The title is from a chance remark made by Peter Gordon during a conversation around the time I was finishing this piece.”
Bill Hellermann graduated from the Univ. of Wisconsin in Mechanical Engineering and arrived in NYC in 1962, where he performed in the Village as Guilliermo Brillante, flamenco guitarist. Following a series of minor miracles he became a composition student of Stefan Wolpe’s, got a DMA in Composition at Columbia, did post graduate studies with Morton Feldman at the Chock Full of Nuts at 116th & Broadway and wound up in SoHo exhibiting sculpture, scores, and photographs, as well as composing and performing. In the 70’s he was a curator at PS 1, The Clocktower and the Alternative Museum, where he launched the first exhibitions of sound sculpture and audio art — in the process bringing into usage the term “Sound Art.” Among his many awards is a Prix de Rome from The American Academy in Rome.
January 24th, 2016
Birthday Concert #1: Chamber Music
167 Spring Street, 7:30 PM
with Joseph Kubera, piano; and Pauline Kim Harris, violin
Sonata for Violin and Piano (2014)
Piano Sonata #1* (2015, premiere)
OoMPAH for piano (2002, revised: 2007)
Relaxing at the Piano (‘70s) – performed by the composer
Piano Sonata #2* (2015, premiere)
Sonata for Violin and Piano (reprise)
• The two piano sonatas use piano music composed in 1959, extended and developed with newly composed material.
Birthday Concert #2 takes place on February 12th, 7:30 PM at the Cell: 338 West 23rd Street. Premiere of Clarinet Quintet, for clarinet solo (Moran Katz) and string quartet (Momenta Quartet) and a revival of Tunnel Funnel for chamber orchestra (Flexible Orchestra conducted by David Gilbert who premiered it in 1988), dubbed by VV critic, Kyle Gann, “Tune of the decade.”
DEAR FRIENDS, yes,
My delightful two-octave toy piano, pulled out of the back of a closet to star in my one-act, autobiographical opera, Irina, along with many other stars of the orchestra, like dramatic soprano, Kamala Sankaram, like wonderful ballet dancer au point, Mayu Oguri, like virtuoso principal violist AND composer, Stephanie Griffin, and like Maestra Extraordinaire, Tara Simoncic, our conductor since 2004.
Not to mention the other fabulous, amazing, dedicated performers, and old friends like Fritz Kraber on flute and with only a little reluctance on wooden piccolo (for only a few bars—thank you Fritz!)
TOMORROW, THURS, MARCH 31st AT THE UKRAINIAN RESTAURANT (great borscht) at 8 PM, 140 Second Av. at 9th St. $20 at the door. We’ve had standing room only at past concerts, so don’t delay. Show up!
And the fabulous ending to all endings: Phil Corner’s Ideal AMEN. He takes the ending of the Berlioz Requiem and ends and ends and ends that fabulous chameleon-like piece.
Oh, and Lev Ljova Zhurbin’s window into our eastern european past, its emotional melodies and thoughts, the slow-fast form of so many of those folk pieces.
I could go on. Violas extraordinary, all those sounds they can do: in Toronto composer, publisher, experimentalist, Gayle Young’s Departures. And Dean Rosenthal’s dedication to “deductive music” pioneered by Tom Johnson, last year’s Flexible Orchestra composer. And still more: Stephanie Griffin’s passionate new piece for SEVEN violas!
It’s the last year of “VIOLAS PLUS.” The Flexible Orchestra flexes into a new sound next year. So get the old sound now while it lasts!
SEE YOU THERE!
Here’s the info. Put it into your book! In addition to the premieres mentioned we have two to add:
Stephanie Griffin, principal violist with the Flexible Orchestra:
Poem from Exile (2015) for seven violas, and:
Lev Ljova Zhurbin:
Pastorale – Bagel for violas and clarinets
Hope to see you all there! Yours, Daniel
Here’s the ad announcement from the Calendar for New Music: (See Above)
Clarinet Quintet – 15:07
Emilie-Anne Gendron, violin (Momenta)
Karen Kim, violin (Momenta)
Stephanie Griffin, viola (Momenta)
Michael Haas, cello (Momenta)
Jay Elfenbein, contrabass
Chris Nappi, mallet instruments
Marijo Newman, piano
David Gilbert, conductor
Moran Katz, clarinet with the Momenta Quartet in Clarinet Quintet
But first, my favorite signs around me as we marched, leisurely, I have to say, pleasantly, were:
“There is no PLAN-et B”
“Shower together—Save water”
“Extinction is forever”
“Their greed crushes our spirit” (a sad looking young man in a baseball cap wore this T-shirt)
“Save the Humans” (spoken by a bunch of endangered animals, pictured)
We were still about a couple hundred yards from the head of the march at Columbus Circle at 1 PM when a mighty noise was scheduled to happen. Later I learned why it started a little early: there was to be a minute of silence before the giant noise made by everyone. And as surely as people can hardly be silent for long, that minute was cut short, so the big noise started about a minute or so before 1 PM. But it was a wonderful sound wafting over Columbus Circle to where we stood south of the front-most part of the marchers.
Later, when we had joined, and more than once, and mysteriously—why did it happen? a large mostly vocal noise swept up from behind us. We joined, and it subsided. It was thrilling each time. Ann and I had loud metal rattles from India, and a couple of mouth whistles. Some drums with a “sol-do” (up) tonality were happening near us, fun to play along with. We got quite tired by 42nd St. and took the subway home. Struck up conversations with others on the subway that never would have happened on a normal day.
I heard that at Wall Street civil disobedience today (the day after), the “people’s mike” technique was used to forward information to the protesters. (That’s this fabulous innovation of Occupy Wall Street in which succeeding rows or clumps of people repeat the message to the next group and on and on as necessary to reach the whole crowd.)
The estimate was of 311,000 people at the Sunday march.
Thumbnail Review #41