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Skidmore College

Carnegie Hall Premieres Series returns to Skidmore

October 1, 2010

Carnegie Hall Premieres Series returns to Skidmore


Ensemble ACJW at Zankel debut
(Stefan Cohen photo)

Ensemble ACJW performs in concert at Skidmore's Arthur Zankel Music Center at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 8. The program features the world-premiere of American composer Timothy Andres' Trade Winds;Brahms' String Sextet in B-Flat Major, Opus 18; and Franz Schubert's Der Hirt auf dem Felsen  (The Shepherd on the Rock), D. 965, which is said to be the last song written by that composer. 

A pre-performance talk moderated by Skidmore Music Professor Benjamin Givan will take place at 7 p.m.Admission to the talk and the concert is free and open to the public.

Ensemble ACJW comes to Zankel and the Skidmore campus through an ongoing partnership between the college and The Academy - a program of Carnegie Hall, the Juilliard School, and the Weill Music Institute, in partnership with the New York City Department of Education. ACJW ensembles have performed at Skidmore once each semester since 2007, presenting the upstate premieres of works commissioned by Carnegie Hall, and exciting audiences with their musical energy and technical brilliance. The Ensemble's post-master's-level students also bring musical programs into area schools while they are in residence at the college.

Timothy Andres, the 25-year-old composer whose work will be performed by Ensemble ACJW, is also a pianist of note. Last season he performed at the Music Center at Strathmore in Bethesda, Maryland, and in the "Wordless Music Series" at Miller Theater at Columbia University. "New music cannot be intimidating when played with this degree of skill and zest," wrote Boston Globe critic Richard Dyer of a recent solo concert by Andres. His compositions meld a classical-music upbringing with diverse interests in the natural world, graphic arts, technology, cooking, and photography. His recent commissions include new works for Metropolis Ensemble , ACME Quartet, members of the New World Symphony, the Albany Symphony, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Andres studied composition during high school at Juilliard's pre-college division, and earned bachelor's and master's degrees at Yale University.

About Trade Winds (2010)
A septet written for clarinet (doubling on bass clarinet), string quartet, percussion, and piano, Trade Winds is a chaconne surrounded by two bookends: a big, busy introduction and a short, hesitant coda. The meat of the piece, though, is the exchange of long, vocal lines passed back and forth between the instruments over repeating harmonies, leading to the obligatory ground-shifting moment. Andres states on his website that "chaconnes and passacaglias have always been some of my favorite things to write. As a listener and a composer, I love the security that comes from being supported by a predictable bass line, and just as much, the feeling of real, physical change evoked by a departure from that bass line." After its world premiere at Zankel,
the septet will receive its Carnegie Hall premiere on Oct. 12.


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