Pauline Oliveros 80th birthday celebration (concert review)

Pauline Oliveros 80th birthday celebration (concert review)
Is there any career that gives better birthday celebrations than being a composer? Pauline Oliveros turns 80 later this month and RPI, where she teaches, pulled out all the stops on Thursday night (5/10/12) at EMPAC in Troy. There was music and speeches, cake and champagne, plus party favors (a newly issued DVD). The vaunted acoustics of the EMPAC concert hall were even spiffed up for the occasion. A computer-aided loudspeaker...
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“Catch the Tiger” with pianist/inter-media composer Jaroslaw Kapuscinski

“Catch the Tiger” with pianist/inter-media composer Jaroslaw Kapuscinski
Eighty-eight keys just aren’t enough for Jaroslaw Kapuscinski. He knows his way around the black and white notes of a tradition piano keyboard plenty well, having studied at the Chopin Academy in his native Warsaw. But for the last 20 years he’s created and performed original works that combined the piano with video. Kapuscinski will appear at EMPAC on Saturday night (4/16) in a program titled “Catch the Tiger.” “I...
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Nicholas Chase at “Other Minds”

Nicholas Chase at “Other Minds”
Nicholas Chase will be in good company this week at the Other Mind Festival in San Francisco.  He’s a composer fellow hobnobbing with Louis Andriessen and other more senior composers, all on hand for the week-long series of events, now in its 16th season. Nick is a Ph.D. candidate in the iEar program at Rensselaer Polytechnical Institute in Troy, NY. Though he’s been in the Capital Region for at least a couple...
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Verdensteatret: “And all the Question Marks Started to Sing” (preview and review)

Verdensteatret:  “And all the Question Marks Started to Sing” (preview and review)
“It looks like a group of very bad, very nervous engineers have been there.” That’s the Norwegian multi-disciplinary artist Lisbeth J. Bodd’s attempt to describe “And All the Question Marks Started to Sing.” During our long-distance interview it probably didn’t occur to her that the theater piece would actually be appearing at an engineering school. “All the Question Marks…” will be performed tonight and...
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Queeries for composer/soprano Kristin Norderval

Queeries for composer/soprano Kristin Norderval
Kristin Norderval has come a long way from the received expectations of what sopranos should do. “I remember singing Frasquita in ‘Carmen’ in Sarasota,” she told the New York Times in 2001 (“Downtown Divas Expand Their Horizons.”)  ”I couldn’t bear the end of the opera, passively watching Carmen become a victim. I always wanted to run out on stage and yell: ‘There he...
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Laurie Anderson’s “Delusion”

Laurie Anderson’s “Delusion”
“I’m a so-called ‘multi-media artist’ but I have no idea what that means,” says Laurie Anderson, who brings her latest show, “Delusion” to EMPAC on Friday and Saturday nights. For those unaware of Anderson’s mix of music, stories, and visuals, the other jargony term commonly applied to her is probably no-less helpful:  performance artist. Maybe it’s better to focus on what she actually produces. In addition...
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Queeries for Jeffrey Krieger, the Electric Cellist

Queeries for Jeffrey Krieger, the Electric Cellist
He’s the principal cellist in the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, but Jeffrey Krieger is widely known in new music circles as an electric cellist. For some 20 years now he’s played the electrified instrument and collaborated extensively with a wide range of composers in the creation of multimedia performance works involving computer and videos. A 1993 fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts made possible extensive...
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Oliveros wins Columbia U’s Schuman Prize

Oliveros wins Columbia U’s Schuman Prize
Pauline Oliveros has won the William Schuman Award from Columbia University. She’s the first woman composer to be so honored since the award was established in 1981.  The most recent winner was John Zorn in 2006. The prize “honors the lifetime achievement and lasting significance of a contemporary American composer” and comes with a $50,000 purse. A celebratory concert and tribute will be given in Miller Theater on...
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CD Review: 12 Songs of Charles Ives, Theo Bleckmann and Kneebody

CD Review: 12 Songs of Charles Ives, Theo Bleckmann and Kneebody
Twelve Songs by Charles Ives Theo Bleckmann and Kneebody Theo Bleckmann could sing me to sleep anytime he likes, even if he doesn’t want to snuggle.  The German-born, New York-based singer and composer has got a warm and engaging voice and oodles of good taste and insight.  He’s given an imaginative yet intimate treatment to songs of Charles Ives in a new disc with the experimental quintet Kneebody. The CD on Winter...
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Queeries for composer Corey Dargel

Queeries for composer Corey Dargel
A Brooklyn resident and Texas native, Corey Dargel is a 32 year-old composer and singer.  His music has appeared on NPR and even merited a Tweet from Rachel Maddow. After catching a performance of Dargel at Here in Manhattan, Alex Ross wrote: “Gaunt in appearance and impish in spirit, he sings in a plaintive, innocent-sounding voice, his texts zigzagging between raw confession and cerebral absurdity.” What are you working...
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