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Curtis 20/21 Ensemble Presents #Persona on February 22

Streamed live on YouTube (Curtis.edu/YouTube), concert features works exploring composer identities

PHILADELPHIA, PA—February 12, 2020The Curtis 20/21 Ensemble presents #Persona, the second of three programs in the contemporary music ensemble’s 2019–20 season, on Saturday, February 22 at 8 p.m. in Gould Rehearsal Hall at the Curtis Institute of Music. A preconcert conversation led by Artistic Director David Serkin Ludwig will begin at 7:30 p.m. The program and conversation will be streamed live at Curtis.edu/YouTube.

The program combines works by past and living composers, including several Curtis alumni, to explore the concept of identity through composition. By expressing their personal selves in the creation of these works, the composers highlight their individual ethnicity, sexuality, religion, or national origin. The student musicians of the Curtis 20/21 Ensemble are preparing this intriguing repertoire in collaboration with the internationally-known chamber ensemble Imani Winds, guest coaches for the #Persona program.

Prelude to the Holy Presence of Joan d’Arc by Julius Eastman (Piano and Composition ’63) opens the concert. The work for solo baritone voice is a companion to a larger work for ten cellos and depicts the saints who appeared to religious martyr Joan of Arc in Eastman’s noted minimalist style.

Recent Curtis alumni Chiayu Hsu (Composition ’00) and Riho Maimets (Composition ’14) offer chamber works with their Urban Sketches and Infinite Blue Heights, respectively. A selection from David del Tredici’s Three Baritone Songs and Reena Esmail’s The Light is the Same highlight the versatility of the Curtis student performers.

The program closes with Luciano Berio’s eclectic Folk Songs, which sets familiar songs from countries including Armenia, France, and Azerbaijan, in a haunting work for strings, flute, harp, percussion, and voice.

The preconcert conversation, beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Gould Rehearsal Hall, features David Serkin Ludwig and composer Reena Esmail as they discuss composition as a means of personal expression.Tickets for $20 are available from Curtis Patron Services at (215) 893-7902 or Curtis.edu/Ensemble. The concert and preconcert conversation will also be streamed live at 7:30 p.m. EST on YouTube (Curtis.edu/YouTube) and Facebook Live (Facebook.com/CurtisInstitute).

Flexible in size and scope, the Curtis 20/21 Ensemble performs a wide range of music from the 20th and 21st centuries, including works by Curtis students and alumni. The ensemble has appeared at major U.S. venues such as the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, and the Miller Theatre, as well as international venues. The ensemble has presented concert portraits of iconic composers in residence Unsuk Chin, John Corigliano, George Crumb, Krzysztof Penderecki, and Chen Yi, among many others. Of the ensemble's Joan Tower portrait program, the New York Times wrote, “Ms. Tower could hardly have hoped for more passionate performances.” The Curtis 20/21 Ensemble is led by artistic director David Serkin Ludwig.




CURTIS 20/21 ENSEMBLE: #Persona


Saturday, February 22 at 8 p.m.
Gould Rehearsal Hall, 1616 Locust Street, Philadelphia
Preconcert conversation at 7:30 p.m.


Prelude to the Holy Presence of Joan d’Arc
Patrick Wilhelm, baritone


“Matthew Shepard” from Three Baritone Songs
Patrick Wilhelm, baritone
Reese Revak, piano


Urban Sketches
Yan Liu, clarinet
Sai Sai Ding, cello
Tianxu An, piano


Infinite Blue Heights
Aimi Kobayashi, piano
Szuyu Su, piano


The Light is the Same
Fuki Wang, flute
Russell Hoffman, oboe
Yuhsin Su, clarinet
Thomas Roy-Rochette, bassoon
Kenshi Miyatani, horn


Folk Songs
Sage De-Agro-Ruopp, mezzo-soprano
Naomi Ford, flute
Yoonseo Kang, percussion
Thomas Kolakowski, percussion
Alexandra Tihonova, harp
Chi-Ta Chen, viola
Nygel Witherspoon, cello
Yuwon Kim, conductor


Tickets: $20, sold by Curtis Patron Services at (215) 893-7902 or Curtis.edu/Ensemble.

Streamed live on YouTube (Curtis.edu/YouTube) and Facebook (Facebook.com/CurtisInstitute) at 7:30 p.m. EST.

Generous support for the Curtis 20/21 Ensemble is provided by the Daniel W. Dietrich II Foundation.


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