1-10 of 46 results  for:

Clear all

Article

Herbert Heyde

This article discusses trends in organizing the production of European instruments from the 15th century to the mid-19th.

During the 15th century European instrument making entered a new phase with the rise of polyphonic instrumental music. Previously, folk and minstrel instruments had been made mostly by the players themselves. The intricacies of polyphonic music and the social context in which sophisticated instruments such as clavichords, trombones, lutes, and viols were played demanded craft refinement and specialization. The professional traditions of organ building and bell founding provided precedents upon which the new branches of trade could build. While the production of folk instruments continued as it had previously, the new, commercial approach to instrument making gradually evolved into two major forms, which were first observable in the processes of both bell founding and organ building. These forms were small craft-workshops and entrepreneurial businesses. These two forms sometimes intersected; small workshops would sometimes grow and develop into entrepreneurial businesses....

Article

Ian Mikyska

(b Boskovice, 19 Jan 1984).Czech composer and performer (voice, accordion, and tap dance). She studied the accordion (2004–10) and composition (2007–8) at the Brno Conservatory, and composition at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts (with martin smolka and Peter Graham[1]). She also studied as an exchange student at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, the California Institute of the Arts (with michael pisaro), the Universität der Künste Berlin (with Marc Sabat), and Columbia University (with george e. lewis).

While she often works with elements outside of music, there is almost always an intense engagement with direct listening, often arrived at through intense focus on very limited material. Sources for her work include Morse code, maps of garments which she turns into scores (Shirt for Harp, Oboe, and Accordion; Jacket for Ensemble), field recordings which she notates descriptively and then asks musicians to interpret the notation (...

Article

Joanne Sheehy Hoover

revised by Megan E. Hill

Woodwind quintet formed in 1947. The ensemble made its New York debut in January 1954 and shortly thereafter began touring in the United States; tours followed under the auspices of the US State Department to Latin America (1956), Europe (1958), East Asia and the Pacific (1962), Central and South America (1969), and Russia (1972). It has given world premieres of works by such composers as Quincy Porter and Elliott Carter, and has also led the way in reviving lesser-known works by Franz Danzi and Anton Reicha, among others. The group has also commissioned and premiered more than 20 compositions, including Samuel Barber’s Summer Music, and quintets by William Bergsma, Alec Wilder, Gunther Schuller, Ezra Laderman, William Sydeman, Wallingford Riegger, Jon Deak, and Yehudi Wyner. Through many school concerts given 1953–5, it developed the format for the Young Audiences program. The quintet was in residence at the University of Wisconsin for 15 summers (...

Article

Robert Winter

revised by Bonnie E. Fleming

String quartet formed in 1972 and disbanded in 1985. Its members were Yoko Matsuda (b Tokyo, Japan, 25 May 1942), Miwako Watanabe (b Beijing, China, 15 July 1939), James Dunham (b Washington, DC, 27 Aug 1950), and Robert Martin (b Philadelphia, PA, 20 March 1940), who replaced Joel Krosnick in 1975. It was the quartet-in-residence at the California Institute of the Arts beginning in 1972. After winning the prestigious Naumburg Chamber Music Award in 1976, the quartet toured throughout the United States, Europe, and the Far East, giving performances that included premieres of William Thomas McKinley’s Fantasia concertante (New York, 1977), Gerhard Samuel’s String Quartet no.2, and Mel Powell’s Little Companion Pieces (New York, 1980, with Bethany Beardslee, soprano). It recorded for Nonesuch, Sheffield, and Delos as well as for Music & Arts. The quartet’s Sequoia Foundation contributed many commissions to the quartet literature, including works from Chihara (Concerto for String Quartet and Orchestra) and, in ...

Article

Tashi  

James Chute

Chamber music ensemble. Founded in 1972, the ensemble was built around the instrumentation for Olivier Messiaen’s Quatuor pour la fin du temps, the work with which Tashi made its much acclaimed debut in New York in 1973. The founding members were richard Stoltzman (clarinet), ida Kavafian (violin), fred Sherry (cello), and peter Serkin (piano). Other members have included violinist Theodore Arm, violist Ik-Hwan Bae, and Toby Appel. Since individual members established separate careers, the ensemble’s activities were initially limited to several annual concert tours (which have included the first classical performances at the Bottom Line, a nightclub in New York, 1976) and recording sessions. In the 1980s the group stopped performing live altogether until the centenary of Messiaen’s birth prompted them to stage a brief and highly successful tour in 2008. Tashi has offered spontaneous and imaginative interpretations of an unconventional mix of repertory; traditional works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Franz Schubert, and Ludwig van Beethoven as well as modern works by Igor Stravinsky, Messiaen, Toru Takemitsu, and Bill Douglas are represented in their recitals and on a number of recordings. Tashi is Tibetan for “good fortune.”...

Article

Lars Helgert

Chamber ensemble consisting of four guitarists. The group was formed in 1980 by four students at the University of Southern California: Anisa Angarola, John Dearman, William Kanengiser, and Scott Tennant. Andrew York replaced Angarola in 1990, and Matthew Greif joined the group after York left in 2006 (both York and Greif also studied at USC). Their self-titled debut recording was released on vinyl in 1983; it included pieces by Praetorius, Bach, Stravinsky, Debussy, and Falla. More than a dozen recordings have appeared since, including Dances from Renaissance to Nutcracker (1992), For Thy Pleasure (an all-Baroque album, 1996), Air and Ground (2000), the Grammy-nominated LAGQ Latin (2002), the Grammy-winning Guitar Heroes (2004), LAGQ Brazil (2007), and Interchange (2010). The group is known for its diverse selection of repertoire; it is thus sometimes labeled a classical/pop Crossover ensemble (their Grammy award was in this category). Their repertoire is comprised of works by composers who have written for the guitar, such as Rodrigo and Bogdanovic; transcriptions for guitar quartet of works by Bizet, Copland, Rossini, and Telemann; and arrangements of pieces by rock musicians such as Sting and Steve Howe. Notable individual selections include their treatment of Pachelbel’s Canon in D in a variety of musical styles, Quartet for Guitar no.5 “Labyrinth on a Theme of Led Zeppelin” by contemporary composer Ian Krouse, and ...

Article

Nancy Yunwha Rao

Instrumental ensemble founded in 1984 by Susan Cheng in New York’s Chinatown. It features Chinese instruments including erhu, yangqin, zheng, pipa, daruan, sanxian, sheng, and dizi. Its members have included Wu man , Tang Liang Xing, and Min Xiao Fen, among others. Performing at museums, schools, and other venues, it has specialized in silk and bamboo music of southern China but has also performed contemporary music. Its concerts from 1990 to 2002 included excerpts or full-staged performances of Cantonese opera. At its height the ensemble performed 100 concerts a year; in the early 2010s it was averaging 50–60.

Music from China has commissioned and performed many new works. By 2011 it had premiered 132 new works by 81 composers, including the winners of its annual international composition competition. In 1987 Chen yi and Zhou long joined Music from China as music directors and composed many significant works for the group. From ...

Article

Megan E. Hill

[Seisho ]

(b O’ahu, Territory of Hawai’i, Feb 12, 1912; d Honolulu, HI, March 19, 2011). American sanshin player. Born in Hawai’i to Japanese immigrant parents, he was taken by his mother to her native Okinawa to be raised by his grandparents. There at the age of nine he began playing the Okinawan sanshin. The sanshin is a three-stringed instrument with a skin-covered soundbox, which predates the similar Japanese shamisen. He was given a sanshin by his uncle—also an accomplished player of the instrument—when he returned to Hawai’i in 1925 and began formal instruction in 1933, taking lessons from a number of sanshin grand masters and visiting Okinawa whenever possible. For the next six decades Nakasone performed sanshin at gatherings for the Okinawan community in Hawai’i, playing for festivals and various celebrations. He also taught sanshin in college classes and gave private lessons, led the Okinawan classical music ensemble Seifu Kai, and became the first non-Japanese citizen to receive a teaching certificate from the nationally recognized Nomura Music Academy in Okinawa. Nakasone was on the ethnomusicology faculty at the University of Hawaii, Manoa, from ...

Article

Eric Lynn Harris

Brass quintet established in 1954. Its first performance was in October of that year at the Carnegie Recital Hall (later Weill Recital Hall). Its founding members were Robert Nagel (trumpet), John Glasel (trumpet), Fred Schmidt (horn), Erwin Price (trombone), and Harvey Phillips (tuba). Initially formed to play children’s concerts in cooperation with Young Audiences, Inc., the ensemble soon became recognized as one of the finest brass quintets in the United States and would eventually enjoy residencies at the Hartt School, the Yale School of Music, and the Manhattan School of Music. Performing music from all style periods, the group premiered numerous works including Malcolm Arnold’s Quintet for Brass op.73 and Gunther Schuller’s Brass Quintet. Recordings of Eugene Bozza’s Sonatine and Alvin Etler’s Quintet for Brass Instruments became listener favorites and received critical acclaim. The group saw many personnel changes during the late 1950s and early 1960s. By 1967 membership had stabilized and would remain the same for the next 17 years, with Robert Nagel (trumpet), Allan Dean (trumpet), Paul Ingraham (horn), John Swallow (trombone), and Thompson Hanks (tuba). The quintet collectively retired in ...

Article

Matthew Mugmon

(b San Diego, CA, Oct 11, 1954). American writer. He studied with Leonard Altman at the Tanglewood Music Center and charles Jones at Mannes College before attending Columbia University (BA 1979). Page wrote on culture and music for the New York Times (1982–7). He then served as chief classical music critic for Newsday (1987–95) and the Washington Post (1995–9, 2000–8), where he won a Pulitzer Prize (1997). He has subsequently taught music and journalism at the University of Southern California.

Page has shown a particular interest in 20th-century music and a special attraction to minimalism. But his music writing—some of which appears in the collections Music from the Road (New York, 1992) and Tim Page on Music (Portland, OR, 2002)—displays an expansive knowledge of classical and popular repertories, and he has blurred perceived boundaries between these categories. Page also hosted the radio program ...