/ News / Curtis 20/21 Ensemble Presents New Works for String Quartet by Student Composers May 4

Curtis 20/21 Ensemble Presents New Works for String Quartet by Student Composers May 4

Streamed Live on YouTube (Curtis.edu/YouTube); Resident ensemble Zorá String Quartet performs; Panel discussions include Tod Machover, visiting faculty

PHILADELPHIA—April 26, 2018—The Curtis 20/21 Ensemble presents Succession, its final program of the 2017–18 season on Saturday, May 4 at 8 p.m. in Gould Rehearsal Hall. The Zorá String Quartet, Curtis’s quartet in residence, premieres works by six Curtis student composers, created with guidance from the award-winning technology and music pioneer Tod Machover, visiting faculty at Curtis for the 2017–18 school year. The evening begins with a pre-concert conversation between David Ludwig, chair of composition studies and artistic director of Curtis 20/21, and Mr. Machover; and ends with a panel discussion as each composer further discusses his or her original work. The concert and discussions will be streamed live on YouTube (Curtis.edu/YouTube) beginning at 7:30 p.m. EST.

Tying in to Curtis’s all-school project, “The Edge Effect,” the program title “Succession” describes a gradual change in an environment as species influence each other over time, replacing old systems with new ones. Seen as a kind of succession in music, the increasing use of technology and electronics allows composers to explore nearly endless possibilities of sound and color. Each student composer has worked closely with Mr. Machover to further develop his or her own skills in this ever-evolving medium. 

Tickets to the performance are free, but must be reserved in advance. Visit Curtis.edu/Performances or call (215) 893-7902 to reserve.

The Curtis Institute of Music’s all-school projects are interdepartmental, educational, and cultural extravaganzas characterized by a simultaneous, intensive examination of a specific composition, genre, or era across the academic curriculum, performance studies, and extracurriculum. This year’s project, “The Edge Effect,” is inspired by an ecological phenomenon wherein two ecosystems meet, resulting in the greatest diversity of life. Curtis students will explore this “edge effect” as it relates to music. On stage and in the classroom, students will focus on the results of external influences on musicians as they have manifested over centuries in the creation and performance of concert music.

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, faculty, and alumni. The ensemble has appeared at major U.S. venues such as the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall, and has presented concert portraits of iconic composers in residence John Corigliano, George Crumb, Krzysztof Penderecki, and Steven Stucky, among 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 Zorá String Quartet is in its second season as quartet in residence at the Curtis Institute of Music through the Nina von Maltzahn String Quartet Program. In 2016–17, the quartet debuted with Curtis on Tour, gave recitals in New York and Washington, D.C. on the Young Concert Artists Series, and performed throughout the U.S. In 2017–18 the ensemble toured the United States with clarinetist David Shifrin and tenor Dominic Armstrong as part of Curtis on Tour; debuts at London’s Wigmore Hall and Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum; and performs with violist Roberto Díaz and cellist Peter Wiley on the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society series. 

The Zorá String Quartet won the grand prize and gold medal at the 2015 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition; first prize and several concert prizes at the 2015 Young Concert Artists International Auditions; and the Coleman National Chamber Music Competition. In 2016 the quartet participated in the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Encounters program, concluding with a performance at Alice Tully Hall, and appeared at Chamber Music Northwest and the Oregon Music Festival. The group has also participated in chamber music residencies at the Banff Centre (Canada); in the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival (Connecticut); and in the Advanced Quartet Studies program of the Aspen Music Festival, where they worked intensively with Earl Carlyss, the Takács Quartet, the Pacifica Quartet, and the American String Quartet.

The Zorá String Quartet previously served as graduate quartet in residence at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, working with the Pacifica Quartet and Atar Arad. In 2014 the ensemble was string quartet in residence at the Beethoven-Haus in Bonn, Germany. The name “Zorá,” means “sunrise” in Bulgarian. The quartet's members are violinists Dechopol Kowintaweewat and Hsuan-Hao Hsu, violist Pablo Muñoz Salido, and cellist Zizai Ning.

Tod Machover is recognized as one of the most innovative composers of his generation, and celebrated for inventing new technologies that expand music’s potential. His work has been awarded prizes and honors from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Fromm and Koussevitzky music foundations, the National Endowment for the Arts, the German and French ministries of culture, and the World Technology Network. He was the first recipient of the Arts Advocacy Award from the Kennedy Center’s National Committee for the Performing Arts, and was honored as Musical America's 2016 Composer of the Year. His opera Death and the Powers was a finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Music.

Mr. Machover’s latest addition to his collaborative “city symphonies” series, Philadelphia Voices, was premiered by the Philadelphia Orchestra under Yannick Nézet-Séguin in April 2018, followed by a New York debut at Carnegie Hall. His Symphony in D for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra was the subject of an award-winning documentary in 2017.

Mr. Machover’s compositions have been commissioned and performed by Ensemble InterContemporain, Ensemble Modern, Houston Grand Opera, and the San Francisco Symphony; the Tokyo, Kronos, and Ying string quartets; and renowned artists such as Yo-Yo Ma and Joshua Bell, among many others.

Mr. Machover studied with Elliott Carter and Roger Sessions at the Juilliard School, served as composer in residence at the Lucerne Festival, and was the first director of musical research at Pierre Boulez's IRCAM in Paris. He is the Muriel R. Cooper Professor of Music and Media at the MIT Media Lab and director of its Opera of the Future group. He is currently a visiting professor at the Royal Academy of Music and the Curtis Institute of Music.

 


 

CURTIS 20/21 ENSEMBLE
Succession: The Zorá String Quartet Performs New Works by Curtis Student Composers

Saturday, May 4 at 8 p.m.
Pre-concert talk at 7:30 p.m.
Gould Rehearsal Hall, Lenfest Hall, 1616 Locust Street

 

Zorá String Quartet

Dechopol Kowintaweewat, violin
Hsuan-Hao Hsu, violin
Pablo Muñoz Salido, viola
Zizai Ning, cello


Program to include:

BRAUN                       Meditation

Zorá String Quartet

Dechopol Kowintaweewat, violin
Hsuan-Hao Hsu, violin
Pablo Muñoz Salido, viola
Zizai Ning, cello

Chelsea Komschlies, vocals


CUONG                      Dripstone

Zorá String Quartet


DAI                              Lo-Re-Lei

Zorá String Quartet
Dai Wei, vocals

 
DiBERARDINO          ‘in seven points’

Zorá String Quartet


KOMSCHLIES             Terribilis Est Locus Iste

Zorá String Quartet
Chelsea Komschlies, vocals

 
MOSES                        theology after breakfast sticks to the eye or or did the saint survive?

Zorá String Quartet

 

 

Streamed live on YouTube (Curtis.edu/YouTube) beginning at 7:30 p.m. EST.

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

This concert is performed in memory of Rosalyn Tureck, a keyboard artist, teacher, and scholar whose multi-faceted career was driven by a deep musical curiosity.

 

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