Sunday, September 23, 2012 at 7:00 p.m.
PONCHO Hall, 710 East Roy Street, Seattle, WA
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Paul Taub (flute), Valerie Muzzolini Gordon (harp), Peter Mack (piano), Mara Gearman (viola), and Paige Stockley Lerner (cello) present a concert of classic and contemporary chamber music featuring works by Durufle, de Falla, Takemitsu, and the Seattle premiere of a new composition by Gabriela Lena Frank.
With each new piece, Frank becomes a more exciting and necessary voice.Los Angeles Times
Maurice Duruflé - Prelude, Recitative and Variations - flute, viola, piano
Toru Takemitsu - And Then I Knew 'Twas Wind - flute, viola, harp
Manuel de Falla - Suite Populair Espagnole - cello, piano
Gabriela Lena Frank - Rapsodia Andina - flute, viola, cello, harp
Identity has always been at the center of composer Gabriela Lena Frank’s music. Born in Berkeley, California, to a mother of mixed Peruvian/Chinese ancestry and a father of Lithuanian/Jewish descent, Frank explores her multicultural heritage most ardently through her compositions. Inspired by the works of Bela Bartók and Alberto Ginastera, Frank is something of a musical anthropologist. She has traveled extensively throughout South America and her pieces reflect and refract her studies of Latin-American folklore, incorporating poetry, mythology, and native musical styles into a western classical framework that is uniquely her own. Frank’s compositions also reflect her virtuosity as a pianist — when not composing, she is a sought-after performer, specializing in contemporary repertoire.
Recent premieres of Frank’s works include “Inca Suite” for guitarist Manuel Barrueco and the Cuarteto Latinoamericano; “Peregrinos” for the Indianapolis Symphony; “Quijotadas” (2007) for the Brentano String Quartet; “Jalapeño Blues” (2006) for Chanticleer based on the Spanglish poetry of renowned Chicano poet Trinidad Sánchez; “Compadrazgo” (2007), a double concerto for David Finckel and Wu Han with the ProMusica Orchestra; “La Llorona: Tone Poem for Viola and Orchestra” (2007) for the Houston Symphony; “Ritmos Anchinos” (2006) for the Silk Road Project; “Cinco Danzas de Chambi” (2006) for viola and piano commissioned by the Aspen Summer Music Festival; “Canto de Harawi” (2006) for the Da Camera Society of Houston; “Manchay Tiempo” (2005) for the Seattle Symphony; “Inkarrí” (2005) for the Kronos Quartet; and “Three Latin-American Dances” (2004) for the Utah Symphony Orchestra. “Three Latin-American Dances” was subsequently recorded by the Utah Symphony and has been hailed as “dazzling” and exhibiting “wit, brilliance, atmosphere, and poetry (Classics Today), and “a rare treasure of modern orchestral music” (Hong Kong/China Hi Fi Review). “Leyendas: An Andean Walkabout” (2001), performed by the Chiara String Quartet, was released in early 2007.
Frank attended Rice University in Houston, Texas, where she earned both a BA (1994) and MA (1996). She studied composition with Paul Cooper, Ellsworth Milburn, and Sam Jones, and piano with Jeanne Kierman Fischer. Frank credits Fischer with introducing her to the music of Ginastera, Bartók, and other composers who utilized folk elements in their work. Frank received her DMA (2001) in composition from the University of Michigan where she studied composition with William Albright, William Bolcom, Leslie Bassett, and Michael Daugherty, and piano with Logan Skelton
About the Performers
While still early in her career, violist Mara Gearman is already an accomplished player with extensive experience in both orchestral and chamber music settings. She regularly performs with the chamber groups American String Project and Seattle Chamber Players, and has collaborated with such prestigious performers as Ani Kavafian, Peter Wiley, Vladimir Feltsman, and Dale Clevenger, the legendary principal horn of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She is also a founding member of the Barston String Quartet as well as Trio Tara with pianist Oksana Ezhokina and Laurie DeLuca, clarinet. Gearman has held or been awarded a number of orchestral appointments, including principal viola (at age twenty) under maestro Rossen Milanov, and principal viola at the Kansas City Symphony and at the Oregon Symphony under music director James DePriest. Currently she is the second desk violist for the Seattle Symphony Orchestra under maestro Gerard Schwarz. As a solo performer Gearman has won solo awards at the Primrose and Tertis International Viola Competitions, performing viola solos ranging from American composers Alan Shulman and Derek Bermel to Hungarian composer Miklos Rozca. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, her primary teachers included Roberto Diaz, Pinchas Zukerman, and Karen Tuttle, as well as additional study in Canada, Germany, Holland, and Switzerland with Nobuko Imai, Barbara Westphal, and Gerard Causse.
Valerie Muzzolini Gordon is Principal Harp of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, a position which she has held since the age of twenty-three. In demand both nationally and internationally, she has performed as guest Principal Harp of the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio-France and the Nice Philharmonic, and has also appeared with the Philadelphia Orchestra. As soloist, she has performed with the Seattle Symphony, the Nice Philharmonic, and the Vancouver Symphony. She has performed at prestigious festivals worldwide, including Tanglewood and Verbier, Switzerland, and has played under the batons of such renowned conductors as Sir Simon Rattle, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Kurt Masur, Seiji Ozawa, and Bernard Haitink. An active chamber musician and avid proponent of new music, she performs regularly with the Seattle Chamber Players, the Seattle Chamber Music Society, and Music of Remembrance. Born in Nice, France, she began her musical education at the Nice Conservatory, from which she received top honors. She continued her studies at the Curtis Institute with Marilyn Costello and Judy Loman, followed by graduate work at Yale University with Nancy Allen.
An avid performer of contemporary music, cellist Paige Stockley Lerner is the founder of the Saint Helens String Quartet, a quartet devoted exclusively to performing the music of the 20th century. The quartet has premiered numerous new works at Benaroya Hall, and has participated in the Seattle Symphony’s “Made in America” and “Bridging the 48th Parallel: Music from Central Europe” festivals. With noted director Nick Schwartz Hall, the quartet also created a theatre piece about the Czech composer Erwin Schulhoff, premiered at Cornish in 2007 and presented by the Seattle Symphony that same year. Currently, as artists-in-residents at the Jack Straw Foundation, the quartet is recording their first CD featuring the works of Peter Schickele, Philip Glass, and Ken Benshoof. In addition to her quartet work Stockley Lerner also performs regularly with the Pacific Northwest Ballet Orchestra, the Auburn Symphony, and with the Seattle Symphony records soundtracks for movies and television. She is also the artistic director of the “Second Sundays in Snohomish” series and frequently participates in the Seattle Chamber Music Society’s public school outreach program. A former student of Toby Saks, Valentin Hirsu, Michael Haber, and Ardyth Alton, Stockley Lerner earned a B.A. in Political Science and English from the University of Washington and her M.M. degree at the Manhattan School of Music. She also spent a year in Krakow and Prague on a European Mozart Academy fellowship. She has been a member of orchestras in Connecticut, Castille y Leon, Spain, and Mexico City, as well as a freelance cellist in New York City.
Irish pianist Peter Mack has been thrilling audiences in Washington state since he settled here in 1985. He has also performed throughout the United States and Europe, as well as in Australia and the former Soviet Union. He is the winner of the New Orleans, Young Keyboard Artists and Pacific International Piano Competitions. His prize in the Sherman-Clay competition included a Steinway grand piano. Peter Mack is well known for his extensive repertoire, having performed twenty-five concertos with orchestras. A choral scholar at Trinity College Dublin, and a fellow of Trinity College London, he has a doctorate in piano performance from the University of Washington. Dr. Mack is equally in demand as a performer, clinician, convention artist, and teacher. Pupils of Peter Mack are frequent winners of local, national, and international competitions. He is Professor of Piano Performance at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle. Peter Mack is a Steinway artist.
Born in New York City, Paul Taub has been a resident of Seattle and a Cornish faculty member since 1979. He holds a B.A. from Rutgers University and an M.F.A. from the California Institute of the Arts, and has studied with some of the world’s greatest flutists including Michel Debost, Samuel Baron, Marcel Moyse, and Robert Aitken. As a founding member of the Seattle Chamber Players, Taub has played an active role in the Seattle contemporary music scene and has performed and recorded American and world premieres by internationally known composers such as Robert Aitken, John Cage, George Crumb, Janice Giteck, Sofia Gubaidulina, Wayne Horvitz, Ned Rorem, Toru Takemitsu, Reza Vali, and Peteris Vasks among others. As a soloist, he has appeared with the Northwest Chamber Orchestra, the Olympia Chamber Orchestra, Philharmonia Northwest, the Everett Symphony, the Young Composers Collective, and the Esoterics. Taub’s program of international solo flute music has been presented at numerous festivals and universities throughout the U.S., Canada, and France. He has been a featured performer at National Flute Association conventions in Los Angeles (1992), Atlanta (1999), and Las Vegas (2003). He has recently completed terms as a member of the Boards of Directors of both Chamber Music America and the National Flute Association.
PONCHO Hall, 710 East Roy Street, Seattle, WA
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