2018 cbdna Eastern division conference program
Concord/Carlisle High School Auditorium
6 march 2018 - 7:00pm
Woolsey Hall, Yale University
10 March 2018 – 4:00pm
“…most of us spend nearly all our time and energy trying to distract ourselves from feeling, or at least from feeling directly or with our full attention. Admittedly, the whole thing's pretty confusing, and hard to talk about abstractly...but surely something must lie behind not just Muzak in dull or tedious places anymore but now also actual TV in waiting rooms, supermarkets' checkouts, airports' gates, SUVs' backseats. Walkmen, iPods, BlackBerries, cell phones that attach to your head. The terror of silence with nothing diverting to do. I can't think anyone really believes that today's so-called 'information society' is just about information. Everyone knows it's about something else, way down.”
― David Foster Wallace, The Pale King
We invite you to feel.
Each piece on this program evokes/captures strong emotions, relentless feelings. These program notes and links are meant to be read and digested before or after the performance. We invite you to feel without distraction during the concert. Thank you for visiting and enjoy!
The University of Massachusetts Amherst Wind Ensemble
Matthew Westgate, conductor
Nadine Shank, piano
*CLICK ON TITLEs FOR MORE INFORMATION
A Glimpse of the Eternal was commissioned by Dr. Richard Mark Heidel and the University of Iowa Symphony Band in celebration of the opening of the School of Music’s brand new Voxman Music Building. The theme of the concert was “coming home,” and I knew I wanted to incorporate that idea into the work in some way. I decided to go to an Iowa-born poet, Ted Kooser (2004–2006 U.S. Poet Laureate, winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in poetry), for inspiration. I’ve long been a fan of Kooser’s poetry; I feel he captures the beauty and essence of the Midwest like no other. While the music is not directly related to the poem which shares the same title, I still wanted the abstract connection to exist. Further, the title relates to this specific concert in that for many, it was their first visit to the new Voxman Music Building: an amazing structure that will serve as the home for the University of Iowa School of Music for years to come.
With works in a variety of genres, Aaron Perrine’s music has been performed by some of the leading ensembles and soloists across the United States and beyond. He is a two-time winner of the American Bandmasters Association Sousa/Ostwald Award for his compositions—Only Light in 2015 and Pale Blue on Deep in 2013. Only Light will also be included on the latest University of Kansas Wind Ensemble Klavier recording, which will be released in late 2016. Additionally, April, another one of his compositions, was a finalist in the first Frank Ticheli Composition Contest and was included in the series, Teaching Music through Performance in Band. His music for band has also been featured at The Midwest Clinic, The Western International Band Clinic, and at numerous all-state, state conference and honor band concerts.
Perrine’s chamber music has received many notable performances. Most recently, Primal—for saxophone quartet—was performed at the 2014 NASA Biennial Conference in Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, and the 2012 World Saxophone Congress XVI in St. Andrews, Scotland. Further, Bridge Suite—for alto saxophone and cello—was performed at the 2012 NASA Biennial Conference in Tempe, Arizona
Perrine has received degrees from the University of Iowa, the University of Minnesota and the University of Minnesota, Morris. He is currently on the faculty at Cornell College. Most of his music is self-published under the name, Longitude 91 Publications, while some titles are published with C. Alan Publications. For more information, please visit aaronperrine.com.
Born in Danbury, Connecticut on 20 October 1874, Charles Ives pursued what is perhaps one of the most extraordinary and paradoxical careers in American music history. Businessman by day and composer by night, Ives's vast output has gradually brought him recognition as the most original and significant American composer of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Inspired by transcendentalist philosophy, Ives sought a highly personalized musical expression through the most innovative and radical technical means possible. A fascination with bi-tonal forms, polyrhythms, and quotation was nurtured by his father who Ives would later acknowledge as the primary creative influence on his musical style. Studies at Yale with Horatio Parker guided an expert control overlarge-scale forms.
Charles Ives’ Decoration Day, a dreamy haze of almost-forgotten memories and half-remembered tunes, depicts recollections American Civil War through the eyes of a Connecticut youth at the end of the nineteenth century. The work, originally published as the second movement of Ives’ New England Holidays Symphony for orchestra, is a musical representation of the composer’s childhood memories of that eponymous holiday. Each movement depicted a celebration from the four seasons, moving from Washington's Birthday (Winter), to Decoration Day (Spring), The Fourth of July (Summer), and ending with Thanksgiving and Forefathers' Day (Autumn).
His postface to Decoration Day reads: In the early morning the gardens and woods around the village are the meeting places of those who, with tender memories and devoted hands, gather the flowers for the Day's Memorial. During the forenoon as the people join each other on the Green there is felt, at times, a fervency and intensity--a shadow perhaps of the fanatical harshness--reflecting old Abolitionist days. It is a day as Thoreau suggests, when there is a pervading consciousness of "Nature's kinship with the lower order-man."
After the Town Hall is filled with the Spring's harvest of lilacs, daisies, and peonies, the parade is slowly formed on Main Street. First come the three Marshals on plough horses (going sideways), then the Warden and Burgesses in carriages, the Village Cornet Band, the G.A.R. [Grand Army of the Republic], two by two, the Militia (Company G), while the volunteer Fire Brigade, drawing a decorated hose-cart, with its jangling bells, brings up the rear-the inevitable swarm of small boys following. The march to Wooster Cemetery is a thing a boy never forgets. The roll of the muffled drums and "Adeste Fideles" answer for the dirge. A little girl on a fencepost waves to her father and wonders if he looked like that at Gettysburg.
After the last grave is decorated, Taps sounds out through the pines and hickories, while a last hymn is sung. The ranks are formed again, and "we all march to town" to a Yankee stimulant-Reeves inspiring Second Regiment Quickstep-though, to many a soldier, the sombre thoughts of the day underlie the tunes of the band. The march stops-and in the silence of the shadow of the early morning flower-song rises over the Town, and the sunset behind the West Mountain breathes its benediction upon the Day.
David Biedenbender's music has been described as “simply beautiful” by (twincities.com) and is noted for its “rhythmic intensity” (NewMusicBox) and “stirring harmonies” (Boston Classical Review). His music has also been by described as “modern, venturesome, and inexorable…The excitement, intensity, and freshness that characterizes Biedenbender’s music hung in the [air] long after the last note was played” (Examiner.com).
Biedenbender has written music for the concert stage as well as for dance and multimedia collaborations. His work is often influenced by his diverse musical experiences in rock and jazz bands as an electric bassist; in wind, jazz, and New Orleans-style brass bands as a euphonium, bass trombone, and tuba player; and by his study of Indian Carnatic Music. His present creative interests include working with everyone from classically trained musicians to improvisers, acoustic chamber music to large ensembles, and interactive electronic interfaces to live brain data. He has had collaborated with and been commissioned by many renowned performers and ensembles, including Alarm Will Sound, the PRISM Saxophone Quartet, the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, the U.S. Navy Band, the Stenhammar String Quartet, the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonie Baden-Baden (Germany), VocalEssence, La garde Républicaine, and the Eastman Wind Ensemble, among many others.
David Biedenbender serves as assistant professor of composition at MSU's College of Music. Before joining Michigan State's faculty, he was assistant professor of music composition and theory at Boise State University. He holds degrees in composition from the University of Michigan and Central Michigan University, and has also studied at the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study, the Aspen Music Festival and School, and in Mysore, India, where he studied Carnatic music.
David contributes: Schism is about divisions. I wrote Schism in 2010 in the midst of the turbulent national mid-term elections, a time that, in the context of more recent political turmoil, actually seems quite tame. I was overwhelmingly frustrated by the sophomoric mud-slinging and ridiculous lies being told by many politicians and the variously allied media, but I was also somewhat amused by what was nothing short of a nationwide goat rodeo*. Much of the musical material is transcribed almost note for note from an improvisation I played on the piano and recorded in the early stages of sketching the piece. I remember being interested in combining the pointillism of Anton Webern’s music with a bluesy rock groove, so much of the piece is based on a single, simple, eighth note based, divided melodic line that jumps around the piano in very large leaps. I think of the musical affect as similar to the compound melodies in J.S. Bach’s Unaccompanied Cello Suites, where a single melodic line is perceptually transformed through large leaps into multiple voices, though, in the end, I used the ensemble to actually hold out the notes the piano could not to add color, character, and attitude to the independent voices. I also wanted to play with the notion of groove by dividing it in unusual and unexpected ways, almost like running a few of the licks and grooves through a meat grinder.
Schism was originally written for the chamber orchestra Alarm Will Sound. This version for winds and percussion was commissioned by a consortium of ensembles led by Robert Carnochan and the University of Texas at Austin Wind Symphony as well as Michael Haithcock, University of Michigan; Chris Knighten, University of Arkansas; Steven D. Davis, University of Missouri–Kansas City Conservatory of Music.
*A goat rodeo is a slang term for a chaotic situation, often one that involves several people, each with a different agenda/vision/perception of what’s going on; a situation that is very difficult, despite energy and efforts, in which to instill any sense or order.
After a long and productive life, David Maslanka passed away in his Missoula, Montana home on August 6, 2017. The news shocked and saddened musicians around the world. For many, Maslanka is viewed not only as a superb composer, but as an exceptional human being whose music taught us how to strengthen our own souls from within and share them freely with the world. His sudden and recent absence is a fresh wound that still hurts, but his life and music serve as great sources of comfort and healing.
Born in 1943 in New Bedford, Massachusetts, David Maslanka went on to attend the Oberlin College Conservatory, the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, and Michigan State University before establishing his professional life in New York. He taught music theory and composition at the State University of New York at Geneseo, Sarah Lawrence College, New York University, and Kingsborough Community College of the City University of New York. In 1990, he moved to Missoula, Montana where he made a living as a freelance composer for the rest of his life. Right up until his death, Maslanka frequently traveled to visit conductors and ensembles that were preparing his music for performance. Countless musicians – including many here at UMass – have fond memories of interactions they had with David and the strong impact it had on their personal life and musical sensitivity. We are thankful to have been a part of his last commission: this piece.
About the Concerto for Piano No. 3, David provided the following note: “The opening of Concerto No. 3 is devoted to the exposition of a Bach chorale melody, “Als vierzig Tag’ nach Ostern” (“Forty Days After Easter”). Some years ago I used this melody as the basis for a movement of another piece, This is the World, for two pianos and two percussionists. The essence of the movement is solo piano with vibraphone. It is an extremely inward and beautiful movement. I gave it the title, “Do You Know My Name?,” the implication being, “do you truly know who I am; do you see my soul?” I used the end of this movement as the end of this new concerto.”
Music for Prague 1968 (1968) – Karel Husa
I. Introduction and Fanfare
IV. Toccata and Chorale
Karel Husa, winner of the 1993 Grawemeyer Award and the 1969 Pulitzer Prize for Music, is an internationally known composer and conductor. An American citizen since 1959, Husa was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, on August 7, 1921. After completing studies at the Prague Conservatory and, later, the Academy of Music, he went to Paris where he received diplomas from the Paris National Conservatory and the Ecole normale de musique. In 1954, Husa was appointed to the faculty of Cornell University where he was Kappa Alpha Professor until his retirement in 1992. He was elected Associate Member of the Royal Belgian Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1974 and has received honorary degrees of Doctor of Music from several institutions, including Coe College, the Cleveland Institute of Music, Ithaca College, and Baldwin Wallace College. Among numerous honors, Husa has received a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation; awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, UNESCO, and the National Endowment for the Arts; Koussevitzky Foundation commissions; the Czech Academy for the Arts and Sciences Prize; the Czech Medal of Merit, First Class, from President Vaclav Havel; and the Lili Boulanger award. Recordings of his music have been issued on CBS Masterworks, Vox, Everest, Louisville, CRI, Orion, Grenadilla, and Phoenix Records, among others.
Karel Husa wrote: "It was late August 1968 when I decided to write a composition dedicated to the city in which I was born. I thought about writing for Prague for some time because the longer I was away from the city, the more I remembered the beauty of it.
During the tragic and dark moments for Czechoslovakia in August 1968, I suddenly felt the necessity to write this piece so long meditated. As I watched day and night, I was thinking about that beautiful city where I grew up, and all that it means to me. I was concerned for my sister and family who still lived in Prague. I decided then to write a piece for Prague and what the city has stood for throughout history…
Three main ideas bind the composition together. The first and most important is an old Hussite war song from the 15th century, 'Ye Warriors of God and His Law,' a symbol of resistance and hope for hundreds of years, whenever fate lay heavy on the Czech nation. It has been utilized by many Czech composers, including Smetana in Ma Vlast (My Country). The beginning of this religious song is announced very softly in the first movement by timpani and concludes in a strong unison Chorale. The song is never used in its entirety.
The second idea is the sound of bells throughout; Prague, named also the City of Hundreds of Towers, has used its magnificently sounding church bells as calls of distress as well as of victory. The last idea is a motif of three chords first appearing very softly under the piccolo solo at the beginning of the piece, in flutes, clarinets, and horns. Later it appears at extremely strong dynamic levels, for example in the middle of the Aria movement…
Much symbolism also appears: in addition to the distress calls in the first movement (Fanfares), the unbroken hope of the Hussite song, sound of bells, or the tragedy (Aria), there is also a bird call at the beginning (piccolo solo), symbol of the liberty which the city of Prague has seen only for moments during its thousand years of existence."
- Karel Husa
Karel Husa’s Music for Prague 1968 was commissioned by the Ithaca College Concert Band and composed during the summer and fall of 1968 for the capital city of Czechoslovakia. The work was premiered by the commissioning ensemble in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 31, 1969, with Kenneth Snapp conducting, in a concert for the Music Educators National Conference.
Pianist Nadine Shank made her concert debut at age 15 with the World Youth Orchestra of Interlochen as winner of their prestigious concerto competition. She was an award winner in the MTNA, Mason and Hamlin, and National Federation of Music Clubs competitions. Ms. Shank earned degrees at the Oberlin Conservatory, receiving the Rudolph Serkin Piano Award and the Pi Kappa Lambda Piano Prize, and at Indiana University (Bloomington) where she performed with the University Philharmonic as winner of their Concerto Competition. Her teachers have included Menahem Pressler, Karen Shaw, Sanford Margolis and John Wustman.
Nadine Shank has performed at such prestigious venues as the Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.; Jordan Hall and the Tsang Performance Center, Boston, Weill Recital Hall, Merkin Hall, and the 92nd Street Y, New York City; the Cleveland Orchestra's Blossom Chamber Festival; and the Monadnock Festival, New Hampshire. She has appeared in Festivals in Germany, England, Holland and the Virgin Islands. In a duo with violinist Charles Treger for over 10 years, she has performed extensively and has toured in the United States and Poland playing the cycle of Sonatas for Violin and Piano by Beethoven. She has performed in concert with the Lark String Quartet and soloed in Gershwin's Rhapsody in Bluewith the West Point Academy Military Band on their Summer Music Series.
Ms. Shank's performances have been recorded on the CRI, Gaspari, MRS, New World, Spectrum, Albany, and YAL (Nadine Shank Performs Sonata No. 2 by Yusef Lateef) labels. For Centaur, she recorded American-Jewish Art Songs and I Have Taken an Oath To Remember: Art Songs of the Holocaust with soprano Paulina Stark and on the Open Loop label, Shank and saxophonist Lynn Klock recorded three CDs. She has recorded numerous "Play-Along" CDs of saxophone and clarinet literature for Open Loop.
Ms. Shank is the Principal Orchestral Pianist with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra (Massachusetts), and is Professor of Music in Piano and Director of the Piano and Collaborative Piano Programs at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
-wind ensemble musicians-
Emily Kaplan, Connor Hay, Alex Martin, Isabella Bulnes, Madison Aitken, flutes/piccolo Abigail Haines, Erin Hussey Esther Lee, oboes/English horn Debbie Chen, Edward Senn, Clair Cangialosi, bassoons, contrabassoon Elizabeth Orchulek, Lauren Kinane, Sarah Harney, Charlotte Ouellette, Emma Adler, Emily Thomas, Alexander Wang, Rongbing Shen, clarinets Kyle Takach, bass clarinet Lily Kaufman, Nick Suosso, Brandon Nowakowski, Julia Maloof, Javier Torres, saxophones Katherine Clement, Diana McLaughlin, Connor Thurston, Briana Maunus, horn Daniela Garcia, Ryan O’Conell, Nathan French, Shane Coughlin, Matthew Naeger, Thomas Reynolds, Parlee Hayden, Matthew Sypek, trumpets Nicole Maragus, Brian Martin, Sabrina Azinheira, trombone Austin D’Agostino, bass trombone Benjamin Hartman, Gianni Davilli, euphonium Tyler Woodbury, Nick Lawrence, Matthew DeNegre, tuba Brenno Lima, piano Jack Corcoran, bass Andrew Armstrong, Casey Choi, Thomas Wilson, Alejandro Alvarino, Jared Bloch, Dominic Mrakovcich, Jon Schmidt, Ryan Sander, percussion
Faculty members in the UMass Department of Music and Dance
Robert Marvin, Department Chair
Julie Hayes, Dean of the College of Humanities and Fine Arts