The Riverside Symphony and pianist Xak Bjerken, under the baton of George Rothman, gave the New York premiere of Stephen Hartke's Concerto for Piano and 20 players, Ship of State, on 11/16/2018, the fourth performance since the World Premiere. On December 12, 2018, his cello concerto Da Pacem received its premiere at Oberlin under the baton of Robert Spano with cellist Darrett Adkins. This issue includes these and other recent highlights for the composer.
Donald Crockett's And the River for two piano soloists and orchestra, jointly commissioned by the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra, Oberlin Conservatory and the Aspen Music Festival, received its premiere May 12 of 2018 with the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra.
Los Angeles-based composer and conductor Donald Crockett has long been at the forefront of American chamber music. It is apparent that Crockett remains a leading force in new music as both champion and creator, as we explore his new works and performances in this issue.
Composer Don Freund has enjoyed several fine performances during the 2017-18 season, during which he celebrated his 70th birthday. On July 27, Alarm Will Sound performed HARD CELLS at the Mizzou International Composers Festival in Columbia, MO. The ensemble has become known over the past twenty-plus years since its founding at the Eastman School for creative programming and proved equal to the challenge of this jazzy minimalist work.
Stephen Hartke has been hailed as ”one of the most distinctive and important living composers” by The New York Times.
His album, "The Ascent of the Equestrian in a Balloon," recorded by the Boston Modern Orchestra Project with conductor Gil Rose, was voted one of the “Best Classical Music” recordings in 2017 by The New York Times.
SHIP OF STATE, Chamber Concerto for Piano and 20 Instruments by Stephen Hartke will receive its premiere on March 9, with Xak Bjerken, piano and the Oberlin Sinfonietta, Tim Weiss, conductor. Additional performances will follow on April 11, with the University of Southern California Thornton Edge Ensemble, Donald Crockett, conductor; and on April 15, given by Ensemble X, led by Tim Weiss. This performance is the first of two concertos by Hartke to receive its premiere this year.