|Date||Artist / Event||Scheduled Program|
|September 9 -
October 3, 1997
|JAZZ FILM SERIES||Curated by jazz radio host Larry Appelbaum, our popular jazz film series returns to the Pickford Theater, September 9 - October 3, with programs on Tuesday and Friday evenings at 7:00 p.m. Opening the series: the U.S. premiere of Don McGlynn's new documentary, DEXTER GORDON: More Than You Know. Also to be screened: performances by Milt Jackson, Mose Allison, Kenny Burrell, Ray Anderson, and a tribute to the Jazz Messengers.|
|October 8-10, 1997||NATHAN KROLL FILM SERIES||Distinguished producer and filmmaker Nathan Kroll introduces a trio of evenings presenting gems from a 60-year career embracing film, television, radio, and sound recordings. Winner of three Peabody awards, an Emmy, and first prizes at film festivals in Venice, Edinburgh, Berlin, Spain, and France, Kroll is admired for recording extraordinary encounters with some of the most important performing artists of our time--legendary figures like Pablo Casals, Andrés Segovia, Helen Hayes, Jascha Heifetz, Martha Graham, Joan Sutherland, and George Szell.|
|October 15, 1997||1897 DANCE EXPOSITION||Put on your dancing shoes, jump in your time
machine, and help us celebrate the one hundredth anniversary of
the Library of Congress Music Division! Dance scholar and producer
Elizabeth Aldrich (known for authentic and visually sumptuous dance
sequences in the films Jefferson in Paris and The Age
of Innocence) creates a centennial spectacle--a vision appropriate
for our founding year, 1897. Her Jonquil Street Foundation Dancers
present a grand evening of quadrilles, waltzes, polonaises, and
two-steps, a dazzling display of dances and amusements from the
1890's. After the performance, we turn the dance floor over to you, as
the Library of Congress Centennial Cotillion Brass Band, under the
direction of Robert E. Sheldon, the Library's Curator of the Musical
Instruments Collections, plays vintage music from the Music Division
vaults. Relive those days with us, as we celebrate our one hundredth
birthday in the Library's magnificent Great Hall.
|October 30, 1997||JUILLIARD STRING QUARTET||First violinist Joel Smirnoff, violist Samuel Rhodes, and cellist Joel Krosnick welcome violinist Ronald Copes to the Coolidge Auditorium as a new partner in a foursome that's celebrating thirty-five years as the Library's resident string quartet. They reopen our concert hall on October 30 with the Quartet in E-flat major, Op. 12 of Mendelssohn; Three Pieces for String Quartet by Aaron Copland; and Schubert's Quartet in D minor, D. 810.|
|October 31, 1997||IL GIARDINO ARMONICO (period instrument
"[Their] Vivaldi was so astonishing that it put worthy local efforts in the shade... Il Giardino Armonico are brilliant players by any standard." - The New York Times
|This stunning period-instrument ensemble from Italy won the 1996 Gramophone Award (Baroque non-vocal category) for its recording of Antonio Vivaldi's double and triple concertos. The group performs the composer's La Follia Variations, RV 63, the Lute Concerto in D major, RV 93, and the Concerto in C major, RV 443 for sopranino recorder. Also on the program, Matthew Locke's incidental music for Shakespeare's The Tempest, and J.S. Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 5, BWV 1050.|
|November 6, 1997||JORGE CABALLERO (guitar)||In 1996, nineteen year-old Peruvian guitarist Jorge Caballero added the Naumburg Guitar Award to his growing list of honors. Hear this sensational young artist in a solo recital of works by Francesco Canova da Milano, Johann Sebastian Bach, Mauro Giuliani, Agustin Barrios, Elliott Carter and Alberto Ginastera.|
|November 7, 1997||BORROMEO and BRENTANO STRING QUARTETS
"Blockbuster" comes to mind for this concert pairing two of the finest string quartets around. "The Borromeo is simply the best there is," raves The Boston Globe. The Philadelphia Inquirer declares that the Brentano players "...could well be the best of the latest generation."
|These highly-acclaimed young artists will delight concertgoers with a "battle of the bands." The Brentano offers Haydn's Quartet in B-flat major, Op. 71, No. 1, and the Borromeo performs the Quartet in F major of Ravel. The players will call a truce with the Octet in E-flat major, Op. 20 of Felix Mendelssohn. Not to be missed!|
|November 12, 1997||LEONARD SLATKIN CONDUCTS||A special chamber orchestra concert evoking the historic 1944 collaboration between Aaron Copland and Martha Graham. Appalachian Spring is the centerpiece, heard in its original thirteen-instrument version. Violinist William Steck and cellist David Hardy are the featured soloists for Ellen Zwilich's Romance for violin and chamber orchestra -- a Library of Congress McKim Fund commission -- and Paul Hindemith's Kammermusik No. 3, Op. 36, No. 2. An extraordinary evening!|
|November 18, 1997||MARIETTA SIMPSON and JEROME ROSE (mezzo-soprano and piano)|| Marietta Simpson's "rich tone, searching musicianship, and
imposing stage presence endow everything she sings with great depth
of feeling," says The Atlanta Journal. One of the
most sought-after mezzo-sopranos performing today, Ms. Simpson collaborates
with such luminaries as Charles Dutoit, Lorin Maazel, Kurt Masur,
Simon Rattle, and Robert Shaw.
With pianist Jerome Rose, Marietta Simpson performs Schubert favorites, including An die Musik, and Im Abendrot, and the Zigeunerlieder, Op. 103 of Brahms. Mr. Rose completes the program with the Sonata in C minor, D. 958. of Schubert.
|November 19, 1997||THE NEW YORK VOCAL ARTS ENSEMBLE
"Impeccable musicianship and great joy in performance..." - The New York Times
|Winning first prize at the thirty-sixth Annual
Geneva International Music Competition is one of many notable achievements
of the New York Vocal Arts Ensemble, which counts more than 1500
concerts in its twenty-six year history. The program for this distinguished
ensemble--currently recording the complete vocal chamber music of
Johannes Brahms--includes Lieder, vocal quartets, partsongs,
and motets by Schubert and Brahms.
|November 20, 1997||ORION STRING QUARTET and JEROME ROSE (piano)||Hailed for uniting the best qualities of both the European and American quartet traditions, the Orion serves as quartet-in-residence of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. The artists pair Franz Schubert's Quartet in G major, D. 887, with the Brahms Piano Quintet in F minor, Op. 34.|
|November 21, 1997||MARTIN MASTIK & CHRISTÒPHEREN NOMURA (guitar & baritone)||A wonderful evening of music for voice, guitar, and chamber ensemble, with little-known gems by Franz Schubert, the composer's seldom-performed Quartet in G major, D. 96 for Flute, Viola, Guitar, and Cello. Mr. Nomura also sings Lieder by Brahms, and David Buechner performs the composer's Two Rhapsodies, Op. 79, for solo piano.|
|November 22, 1997||JUILLIARD STRING QUARTET||Our own world-renowned quartet-in-residence joins the celebration with Schubert's Quartet in E-flat major, D. 87, the String Quartet No. 3 by Alban Berg, and the Quartet in C minor, Op. 51, No. 1 by Johannes Brahms.|
|November 23, 1997||
OLAF BAER and WARREN JONES (baritone & piano)
"Baer is at the height of his art, and in the twenty-four songs...he revealed the master's touch," Australia's Manly Daily declared.
|One of the foremost interpreters of Lieder, Baer has appeared in concert halls and opera houses worldwide. In our festival's final concert, he and pianist Warren Jones add works of Hugo Wolf to those of Brahms and Schubert.|
|February 20, 1998||ENSEMBLE CLÉMENT JANEQUIN (six-man vocal ensemble)||Countertenor Dominique Visse leads his stellar six-man vocal ensemble in Fricassée Parisienne, a unique marriage of popular and high Renaissance culture contrasting the touching lyricism of the chanson amoureuse, and the earthy humor of the chanson rustique, with references to popular farce, and to the sounds of war, nature, and street cries.|
|February 24, 1998||JEAN-PIERRE RAMPAL (flute)||Jean-Pierre Rampal celebrates the fortieth anniversary of a work he premiered in the Coolidge Auditorium in 1957: Francis Poulenc's Sonata for Flute and Piano. Join us at 6:30 for Rich Kleinfeldt's onstage interview with Mr. Rampal, a conversation about the Poulenc premiere and his four-decade friendship with the Library of Congress.|
|February 25, 1998||RAMPAL MASTERCLASS||Mr. Rampal will work with a group of gifted students from the Levine School's honors program. This two-hour class will be open to flute lovers, teachers, and students at all levels.|
|February 25, 1998||SKAMPA STRING QUARTET|| Founded in 1989 at the Prague Academy of Music, the Skampa Quartet's
hallmarks are intensity and vigor, passion and finesse. In 1994,
the group became Wigmore Hall's first quartet-in-residence. The London Times reports that the Wigmore concerts are "red-letter
days in London's chamber music season."
Making its Washington debut, the Skampa offers Mozart's Quartet in D Major, K. 575, Janácek's Quartet No. 1 "Kreutzer Sonata," and Beethoven's Quartet in E-flat Major, Op. 127.
|February 25, 1998||FLUTE MAKING AND THE CRAFT OF THE COMPOSER with BRENT MICHAEL DAVIDS||A noontime lecture-demonstration introducing listeners to a young Native American composer whose music moves between the worlds of the Kronos String Quartet, the National Symphony, and Native American Song. Mr. Davids, a member of the Mohican Nation, is an internationally recognized composer and flutemaker who will demonstrate his glass flutes in this Coolidge Auditorium session.|
|February 27, 1998||SANDRA MILLER (flute)
with MARY OLESKIEWICZ (flute), ROB TURNER (flute), DAVID SCHULENBERG (harpsichord), NANCY WILSON (violin), DAVID MILLER (viola),
LISA TERRY (cello), and JAMES RICHMAN (harpsichord)
|Period flute specialist Sandra Miller brings together a group of accomplished colleagues for an evening of music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart -- the Flute Quartet in D major, K. 285 -- C.P.E. Bach, J.J. Quantz, and Anton Diabelli. Ms. Miller is replacing Konrad Hünteler, who is ill. She is joined by flutist and musicologist Mary Oleskiewicz, an internationally recognized performer, writer, and lecturer on the Baroque flute; David Schulenberg, author of The Instrumental Music of J.S. Bach, and a widely recognized performer on early keyboard instruments; Rob Turner, a flutist who is also a wellknown flutemaker; Nancy Wilson, violin; David Miller, viola; Lisa Terry, cello; and James Richman, harpsichord.|
|March 4, 1998||GRAND MUSIC CINEMA (live music
Grand Music Cinema transports you to a time when the new medium of film plus live music equaled a unique and compelling art. Conductor and musicologist Gillian Anderson has reconstructed and restored the original orchestral scores for more than twenty of the great silent classics, performing them in Europe, the United States and South America.
Film composer Elmer Bernstein (The Age of Innocence, The Ten Commandments, The Magnificent Seven) has created a new violin-and-piano score, commissioned by the McKim Fund in the Library of Congress, for a visually stunning, hand-painted Dutch gem from the earliest days of the cinema: The 400 Tricks of the Devil (The Adventures of a Professor) Fantasie-Film . Come join us for the premiere of Bernstein's score and the evening's featured work, a 1926 MGM version of La Bohème, starring Lillian Gish as Mimi and John Gilbert as Rodolfo.
|March 5, 1998||GOLDEN AGE OF TANGO (lecture and demonstration)||Musicologist Susana Salgado, the Library's Consultant
for Iberian and Latin-American music, brings together violinist José
Miguel Cueto, pianist Nancy Roldán, and bandoneón player
Raúl Jaurena--with tango dancers Daniela and Armando--for a
night devoted to the history of the tango, and its relationship to
the films of Carlos Gardel.
Tango buffs can see clips from Gardel's 1930's Paramount films El día que me quieras (The Day You Love Me), Cuesta abajo (Downward Slope), Tango Bar, and El Tango en Broadway. Ms. Salgado will present her lecture in English.
|March 11, 1998||NEWBAND (live music with film)||Composer Dean Drummond conducts Newband--juxtaposing conventional instruments with unique Harry Partch inventions like the cloud chamber bowls and the chromelodeon--in his new score for the controversial 1924 German expressionist classic, Der Lezte Mann. Directed by F.W. Murnau, with a screenplay by Carl Mayer and photography by Karl Freund, the film features Emil Jennings in one of his greatest roles: an aging doorman at the cosmopolitan Atlantic Hotel.|
|March 20, 1998||L'EUROPA GALANTE WITH FABIO BIONDI (violin)||The hot young Italian violinist Fabio Biondi has "reinvented" Antonio Vivaldi's Four Seasons, according to European critics and music lovers. Sensuous sound, clarity, and a vivid palette of instrumental colors characterize this virtuosic period instrument ensemble from Milan. Biondi kicks off our Violin Summit on his first American tour, conducting and playing concertos by Vivaldi (including the Four Seasons) and Locatelli.|
|March 21, 1998||
"Elegant calculation...this is a talented instrumentalist, with the kind of high-gloss tone that pulls sensuously at the listener's ear." - The New York Times
|Winner of the Avery Fisher Career Grant and the Young Concert Artist International Auditions, Chee-Yun is "a rising star among a pack of young virtuoso violinists," says The Cincinnati Enquirer. Known for "doing something different" in her programs -- a concerto for violin and gamelan by Lou Harrison, and arrangements of Leonard Bernstein's West Side Story -- the Korean-born Chee-Yun has appeared at the Mostly Mozart, Aspen, and Spoleto festivals, and has collaborated with such conductors as Pinchas Zukerman, Gerard Schwarz, and Michael Tilson Thomas. Recital program to be announced.|
|March 29, 1998||
HOURYU-KAI (Japanese Noh Theater)
Houryu-kai, one of Japan's most revered artistic ensembles, will appear at the Coolidge Auditorium of the Library of Congress for a special performance on Sunday, March 29 at 6:00 p.m. Washington audiences will be offered a rare opportunity to see an evening-length Noh presentation by Houryu-kai, an internationally-recognized troupe of players trained in the Hohshoh School tradition. The company is led by Ryuzoh Tazaki, who was designated one of Japan's "Important Intangible Cultural Assets" in 1991.
|The featured work for the March 29th Noh performance
is Funabenkei (Benkei Aboard Ship), a story about the involuntary
separation of Minamoto-no-Yoshitsune, a tragic hero of the late
12th century, from his lover Shizuka-gozen. Benkei, Yoshitsune's
retainer, insists that honor dictates that the two must separate,
to appease a family conflict with Yoshitsune's brother Yoritomo.
After Shizuka's departure Yoshitsune and his men take to the sea,
on a voyage of exile. Their ship is attacked by a vengeful warrior
ghost from the Taira clan, whom Yoshitsune has vanquished, but Benkei's
priestly powers overcome the angry ghost, which fades away into
the netherworld. Also to be presented with Funabenkei is a farce, Kyogen: Fukuro-Tamabushi
(The Owl-Mountain Priest) with Ishida Yukio as Shite, a mountain
priest; Nomura Mansai as Ado, the big brother; and Koado, the little
brother, Ishida Tanro.
The Noh performance is being presented under the auspices of the Music Division and the Asian Division of the Library of Congress, in cooperation with the 1998 National Cherry Blossom Festival and the Embassy of Japan.
|April 3, 1998||
PAUL DRESHER ENSEMBLE
"This may be a chamber concerto in size of musical forces...but the scope and effect ranged from rock band to Wagnerian orchestra...tantalizing, strikingly original and immensely satisfying" (Octavio Roca, The San Francisco Chronicle).
|David Abel joins the Paul Dresher Ensemble for Fresh With a Vengeance, and the world premiere performance of Dresher's recently completed Concerto for Violin and Electro-Acoustic Band. Mr. Abel and pianist Julie Steinberg will also premiere a new work for violin and piano by Dresher, commissioned by the McKim Fund in the Library of Congress.|
|April 9 and 10, 1998||BEAUX ARTS TRIO
Time magazine writes about pianist Menahem Pressler, violinist Ida Kavafian, and cellist Peter Wiley: "Among the world's piano trios, there is none better ... the Beaux Arts players' real virtuosity lies in their ability to become one instrument."
|These perennial favorites return to Coolidge Auditorium with the Trio in B-flat major, K. 502 by Mozart, Beethoven's Trio in C minor, Op. 1, No. 3, and the Trio in A minor by Tchaikovsky.|
|April 10, 1998||MENAHEM PRESSLER MASTERCLASS||Presented in cooperation with the Levine School of Music.|
|April 11, 1998||ARCADO STRING TRIO||Arcado is a category-defying string trio uniting the impressive talents of bassist Mark Dresser, cellist Hank Roberts and violinist Eyvind Kang, musical explorers charting new sonic landscapes. Dresser's new Library of Congress commission for violinist Mary Rowell stretches the boundaries of conventional string playing, with an experimentalist's take on structure and technique. Kang's tours with Bill Frisell, and Hank Roberts's credentials as "the most respected improvising cellist on the international scene," make this evening an unbeatable package.|
|April 16 and 17, 1998||JUILLIARD STRING QUARTET||On April 16 and 17, 1998 the Juilliard performs Beethoven's Grosse Fuge, Op. 133; Mozart's Piano Quartet in G minor, K. 478 with pianist Thomas Sauer. Plus a world premiere: Donald Martino's Three Sad Songs, for viola and piano.|
|April 18, 1998||NEW YORK FESTIVAL OF SONG / EVIDENCE OF THINGS NOT SEEN||Ned Rorem's new song cycle draws on the poetry of W.H. Auden, Walt Whitman, Theodore Roethke, Langston Hughes, Robert and Elizabeth Browning, and others. Meet the composer at this full-length evening of song, along with four superb singers and the two New York Festival of Song directors, pianists Michael Barrett and Steven Blier. A seventy-fifth birthday co-commission of the Library of Congress and the New York Festival of Song.|
|April 23, 1998||IRINA REES (harpsichord)
A graduate of the Russian National Academy of Music in Moscow, Irina Rees won First Prize at the Southeastern Historical Keyboard Society's Fourth International Competition in 1996.
|Rees brings subtle articulation, excellent agility, and a feel for refined colors in her program of Forqueray, Duphly, J.S. Bach, Frescobaldi, and others.|
|April 25, 1998||JELLY ROLL! (two-man cabaret) - Starring
Vernel Bagneris and Morten Gunnar Larsen, Piano
Winner of the Obie Award, the Lucille Lortel Award, and Best Off-Broadway Musical, Outer Circle Critics Award
"Bagneris is one of those musical-comedy performers whom you get to see only two or three times in your life..." - Whitney Balliett, The New Yorker
"One of the most revivifying entertainments to be found on Broadway or off..." - Vincent Canby, The New York Times
|"A 90-minute tribute to the now-legendary Jelly Roll Morton,
the New Orleans jazz pianist, composer, arranger and bandleader
as well as the self-styled creator of jazz," writes critic
Vincent Canby. Jelly Roll! is a dazzling two-man cabaret evening
of sketches honoring the sixtieth anniversary of Morton's epoch-making
1938 recording sessions in the Coolidge Auditorium with folklorist
A master of the American vernacular, actor, author, song-and-dance-man Vernel Bagneris wrote and starred in the hit shows One Mo' Time, Further Mo', and Staggerlee. With his longtime musical partner, the brilliant Norwegian pianist Morten Gunnar Larsen, Bagneris crafted Jelly Roll!, conjuring the jazz genius in riveting re-creations of his words and music. "...Bagneris is laid-back, effortless, and swinging. When he sings, he recalls Fred Astaire, and when he dances, his feet--in the lingo of Honi Coles, praising Bill Robinson--never touch the ground," Balliett enthused in The New Yorker. The Associated Press dubs Larsen "a pianist with lightning fingers and early jazz in his soul..."; "It takes two to make Jelly Roll," comments Martin Gayford; Bagneris and Larsen "are clearly the two halves of one great man" (John Simon).
Meet the man and his music in Jelly Roll! an unforgettable evening of musical theater.
|May 1, 1998||ANTHONY BRAXTON (Ghost Trance Music)
"...Completely stimulating performances -- spellbinding in fact...hope for future generations of music." -- DOWN BEAT
|The uncompromising integrity of musical philosopher Anthony Braxton earned the composer a coveted MacArthur Fellowship in 1994. A formidable saxophonist and master improviser, Braxton creates ambitious and visionary compositions--his opera, Trillium R, multimedia collaborations with video and graphic artists, large-scale music theater and performance art works--that transcend genre and integrate performance traditions: what Braxton describes as the "trans-African" and the American experimentalist perspectives. The program includes the premiere of his Ghost Trance Duo for Violin and Piano.|
|May 2, 1998||
MILTON BABBITT SYMPOSIUM
Milton Babbitt is one of the most important composers and music theorists of the twentieth century. Born in Philadelphia on May 10, 1916, he was educated at the University of Pennsylvania (mathematics, 1931), New York University (music, 1932-35, B.A.), and Princeton University (music, M.F.A., 1942). At Princeton Mr. Babbitt was on the music faculty 1938-42 and 1948-60 and on the mathematics faculty 1943-45; he was named Conant Professor of Music at Princeton in 1960 and he has been Professor Emeritus there since 1981. He has also been on the composition faculty at the Juilliard School of Music since 1973. He has taught at Darmstadt, Tanglewood, Salzburg, and the New England Conservatory. Among numerous awards and honorary degrees, in 1982 he received a Pulitzer Prize Special Citation for life's work.
Milton Babbitt is a long time friend of the Music Division in the Library of Congress. Beside having several of his own works premiered at the Library, since 1977 Mr. Babbitt has served on the Coolidge Foundation Committee, lending valuable assistance to the Music Division regarding commissioning of the works of other composers. Most recently, he agreed to donate his papers to the Library. The Babbitt collection will give a unique and valuable insight into many of the most important musical developments in our recent past--developments Mr. Babbitt himself fostered.
| * 10:00 a.m. - Introduction (Stephen Soderberg,
Music Division) and Welcome (Jon Newsom, Chief, Music Division)
* 10:10 a.m. - Babbitt, Stravinsky, and the Serial "Tyranny" of the 1950s and 1960s (Joseph Straus, Queens College and Graduate School, City University of New York) ABSTRACT: According to many standard accounts, serialism dominated American musical life in the 1950s and 1960s, at least in classical music circles. In an empirical study that draws on contemporary books, magazines, and newspapers as well as lists of grants, awards, and faculty positions, I will challenge that account and demonstrate that serialism, if it dominated anywhere, did so only at the very periphery of American musical life. As a proof of my revisionist account, I will study the case of Babbitt and Stravinsky. Babbitt is usually taken as the principal exponent of serialism in America and Stravinsky the most prominent convert to that approach. I will attempt to measure the influence exerted on Stravinsky by Babbitt and other members of the serial community in order to discover if Stravinsky was bowing to pressure from a dominant group or pursuing his own, idiosyncratic compositional agenda.
* 10:50 a.m. - What's the Use of the Twelve-Tone System? (Joseph Dubiel, Columbia University) ABSTRACT: Most discussion of Milton Babbitt's music focuses on its being "twelve-tone." Babbitt's writing strongly directs attention to this fact; yet Babbitt also emphasizes that this fact may not account for much about any particular twelve-tone piece (especially compared with what the fact of being tonal may account for about a tonal piece). It is not simple to understand how observations of twelve-tonishness might be indispensable at the same time as they are relatively unrevealing. An important possibility to consider is that the very limitation of what the twelve-tone system implies about a twelve-tone work is the crucially interesting characteristic of the system: thus twelve-tone theory in general might be considered remarkable precisely for how lightly it grasps its objects. Obviously this claim will require careful elaboration in order not to be seen as mere evasion of the reasonable demand for theoretical constructs to have perceptual meaning. Such elaboration will be undertaken in the lecture.
* 11:50 a.m. - Rigors of Subjectivity (Marion A. Guck, University of Michigan) ABSTRACT: Milton Babbitt is known for, among other things, certain methodological claims he has made, particularly his stipulation that music scholars must take the language of science as their model of verbal adequacy. What he meant was that certain standards of precision must be adhered to, not, as so many people seem to have thought, that a particular style of language must be used in musical descriptions. I wrote about these issues once before, and I propose to return to them in light of greater experience with Babbitt's precepts in order to consider why they might matter to those, like myself, who view musical analysis as interpretive rather than an explanatory. To exemplify these as well as other methodological and analytical concerns Babbitt has taught us to care about, I will provide an account of Brahms' Intermezzo in Eb Major, Op. 117, no. 1, a piece that raises interesting questions about the appeal of its simplicity and complexity at much the same time.
* 12:30 p.m. - Milton Babbitt's "Three Theatrical Songs" in Perspective (Allen Forte, Yale University with Richard Lalli, Yale University, baritone) ABSTRACT: This presentation aspires to provide informative perspectives on Babbitt's three remarkable songs, both as they relate to traditional music for the American musical theater and with respect to the special idiomatic features that identify them as innovational, representing an original approach to the theater song that is of the highest musical quality.
* 2:30 p.m. - Listening to Milton Babbitt's Electronic Music: the Medium and the Message ( Robert Morris, Eastman School of Music) ABSTRACT: Over the last four decades, Milton Babbitt has been often cited as a "pioneer" in two areas of twentieth-century music: serial and electronic music. Even if Babbitt is less remembered today for his contributions to the development of American electronic music, he certainly was a major figure in its history; in fact, he was the first major composer to make music of substance on a digitally-controlled synthesizer. And the ten electronic works Babbitt composed from 1961 to 1979--most of them for synthesized tape and instruments--still shine as examples of the best of the genre. My paper examines Babbitt's conception of the electronic medium which includes his consideration of issues in psychoacoustics that directly bear on the perception of musical sound, synthesized or otherwise. I sample passages from two of Babbitt's early electronic pieces--the Composition for Synthesizer and Ensembles for Synthesizer--to show how Babbitt was able to use the medium to implement his innovative musical interests of the 1960s, such as the time point system and the articulation of arrays of pitch classes and time points. Examples and discussion of later electronic works indicate the means by which Babbitt resolved or confronted the problematics of "programmed" electronic music.
* 3:10 p.m.- Reflections (1974) for Piano and Synthesized Tape, by Milton Babbitt (Performed by Robert Taub,
Institute for Advanced Studies, Princeton University)
* 3:50 p.m. - Still Being an American Composer--Milton Babbitt at 80 (Andrew Mead, University of Michigan)
* 4:30 p.m. - Response (Milton Babbitt, Princeton University and The Juilliard School of Music)
|May 3, 1998||MARK O'CONNOR (violin)||Hear this master musician in the company of five good friends from Nashville. Still at the top of the charts for his Appalachia Waltz, phenomenal violinist and composer Mark O'Connor performs music from his newest Sony release, Liberty! The American Revolution. In his scores for the six-part PBS series, scheduled to air in fall 1997, O'Connor spins compositions reflecting the American musical melting pot, with sounds from the fiddle, guitar, banjo, harpsichord, dobro, and pennywhistle. Actor Clay Jenkinson takes the role of the Library's violinist founder, Thomas Jefferson, in an evening that premieres a new O'Connor commission for the Library of Congress.|
|May 8, 1998||CONTINUUM (new music specialists)||Led by founding directors Joel Sachs and Cheryl Seltzer, this much-admired group of New York new music specialists focuses on the Caucasus republics: Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia. Vibrant, meditative music from the mountains bridging Europe and Asia. Composers featured include Franghiz Ali-Zadeh, Giya Kancheli, and Oleg Felzer, whose Sonata for Violin and Piano, commissioned by the McKim Fund in the Library of Congress, will receive its world premiere.|
|May 13, 1998||THE MARTHA GRAHAM DANCE COMPANY||On the occasion of the acquisition by the Library
of the Martha Graham Archives
* Martha Graham's Appalachian Spring
* Tony Award-winning choreographer Susan Stroman's Gershwin Graham--"But Not For Me" (World Premiere)
Gershwin Graham--"But Not For Me" was commissioned with the generous support of the Ira and Leonore S. Gershwin Fund and AT&T.