Two more great events to look forward toward this weekend from WPA Performance Grant winners!!
The Saratoga Orchestra of Whidbey Island, under the direction of Anna Edwards, will perform American composer Margaret Brouwer’s Sizzle. The piece was originally commissioned by The Women’s Philharmonic as part of The Fanfares Project and was premiered in 2000. Read more about the piece on Brouwer’s website, and find out more about the performances this weekend (on October 29 and 30th) here. Get a taste of what’s in store with this recording of the work by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic:
On Friday, October 28 the Urban Playground Chamber Orchestra, based in New York City, is presenting a concert titled “This, Too, Must be Heard: 20/21st Century Female Composers”. The concert will include works by Ethel Smyth, Dobrinka Tabakova, and Doreen Carwithen – a fantastic mix of historic and contemporary works! Find out more information about the concert here, and get excited for the coming concert by becoming familiar with Doreen Carwithen’s Concerto for Piano and Strings (1948) which will be heard on Friday:
Alex Ross wrote about the 2015 Ojai Music Festival, which took place earlier in June, in the July 6 edition of The New Yorker. Featured composers at this year’s festival included Anna Thorvaldsdottir. The International Contemporary Ensemble performed “In the Light of Air.” Read more here.
Orchestra Iowa has hired a new concertmaster. Award winning violinist Dawn Gingrich will begin her tenure in the 2015-2016 season. Read more here.
Tom Service of The Guardian discusses the history and continued relevance of the role of Violetta in Verdi’s La Traviata. Read about the ways in which the role, and the misogyny that Violetta experiences, continues to speak to today’s audiences.
The Blue Streak Ensemble, which was founded by composer Margaret Brouwer, has two upcoming concerts featuring the work of Brouwer and Chen Yi among other contemporary composers. Learn more at the Blue Streak Ensemble website.
What did we miss? Let us know in the comments below.
Women’s Philharmonic Advocacy was delighted to award the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Arild Remmereit with the first ever AMY Award for Excellence in Orchestral Programming.
We have kept up with the RPO over the 2011-2012 season. During his first season with the ensemble, Remmereit set a wonderful precedent by programming eight works by historic and contemporary women. Liane Curtis, the WPA founder and president, made the trip to Rochester on Thursday to present the award, this beautiful sculpture designed by Rita Blitt.
You can read the RPO’s press release on the award here.
And do be sure to stop by Arild Remmereit’s Facebook page for photos of the maestro with Liane as well as with composer Margaret Brouwer, who was commissioned by the RPO. Her new work, Caution Ahead—Guard Rail Out was premiered on Thursday on a program that also included Sofia Gubaidulina’s Two Paths: A Dedication to Mary and Martha.
Congratulations to the RPO and Arild Remmereit! We look forward to more good work to come next season!
The annual Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, held in Santa Cruz, California, has a history of highlighting music by women. This is due in part to the festival focusing on living composers – however, I suspect that it is in part a happy consequence of the programming of music director and conductor Marin Alsop.
Here is a video where she describes the process of programming the Cabrillo Festival:
For the 2011 season, Cabrillo will have fifteen composers in residence – including six women.
I recently wrote about the news from the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra that they are making a concerted effort to include and recognize the contributions of women musicians in their 2011-2012 concert season. Just days after the BSO news was announced, I learned that the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra is making similar strides in their programming. The press release can be found here.
It is notable that this is the inaugural season for the RPO’s new Music Director, Arild Remmereit. Christopher Seaman, Remmereit’s predecessor, was not known to embrace works by women in his programming – according to the League of American Orchestra reports the Rochester Philharmonic has only performed three works by women in the last ten years – (Higdon’s Blue Cathedral; Larsen’s Notes Slipped Under the Door, and Tower’s Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman). This season, however, the RPO will perform eight works:
In my eyes, Remmereit has created a fantastic season including a more diverse representation of women’s work through history and nationalities than likely has ever been seen in a professional orchestra’s programming. We can only hope that the effort and thought that was part of the artistic choices for the 2011-2012 season will carry through future seasons, and that Remmereit and the RPO will continue to perform diverse programming. If this is how Remmereit is approaching his first season in Rochester, I am anxious to see what future concerts will hold!