The WSCL Blog

News and information about WSCL's Classical Music Programming

Friday, August 16, 2013

Just Opened - August 16, Keep Your Eye On....

Today we feature rising performers who are names to know and to keep your eye on.  Some well established, some mature performers who are breaking through and a duo of youngsters who are teaching us all a thing or two about how to market classical music in new ways.

Arianna Warsaw-Fan, violin
Meta Weiss, cello
ISBN# 0 53479 21712 7
official site for DuoW
These exceptionally talented Julliard grads are part of the forefront of the movement to new platforms for selling classical music.  Their video of the Halvorsen/Handel Passacaglia went viral, and they have used kickstarter to fund their projects.  If you heard my interview with Beata Moon, we talked about this new trend, and this is definitely something that older artists can take advantage of to boost their visibility and viability in new markets.  Fortunately, these young women are not just flashy PR minded kids, they have the musical goods to deliver, as made evident by both their performances and selections on their premier CD.

Sonata & Partitas
Chris Thile, mandolin
ISBN# 0 75597 95864 5
ChrisThile's facebook page
Chris Thile is one of the premier cross-over artists who have come from blues and rock genres successfully into the world of classical music.  It helps that he has had musical buddies like cellist Yo Yo Ma and bassist Edgar Meyer (who produced this CD).  Their "boys club" has explored almost every corner of music making together, and here Thile breaks out in solo works of Bach transcribed for mandolin.   Bach himself transcribed his works for multiple instruments, so it doesn't break any tradition or rule to expand the language to mandolin.   This territory has all ready been mined by many great classical guitarists, so we can jump the conceptual hurdle easily and simply focus on his magnificent musicianship, his mandolin mastery, and enjoy his interpretations of these timeless works.  [Not for purists, perhaps... but very little is being put out these days that does appeal to purists.  It is much easiser for performers to get labels to sign on to new works and non-traditional transcriptions.*]

NEW HORIZONS [*case in point]
Christopher Wilson, trumpet
Lauren Schack Clark, piano
Craig Collison, marimba (on one work)
ISBN# 8 02114 30182 6
My Delight of the Week!  New works for trumpet and piano by composers Kevin McKee, Lauren Bernofsky, James Stephenson, David Sampson, and - a modern composer who just seems to have a knack of creating tuneful works - two works by Sy Brandon. One or two of these works are fairly challenging for the average listener (the combination of the trumpet's volume with anti-tonal works is a far reach for most listeners), but most of the new works here take advantage of the trumpet's solo voice for tuneful, and even emotionally touching works.

Zina Schiff, violin
Avlana Eisenberg, cond.
MAV Symphony Orchestra
learn the fascinating history of the MAV Orchestra
Zina Schiff's official website
Described by the New York Times as "luscious high voltage...vintage Heifetz," Schiff has been performing internationally since winning her Jr. & Sr. auditions (from the Curtis Institute) to solo with the Philadelphia Orchestra.  Her recordings have been met with high praise within the industry.  Here she presents Violin Concertos of Sibelius and Barber, and a premeir orchestral recording of Paul Ben-Haim's "Songs Without Words."

Join us next week, for more new releases, Just Opened.
Kara Dahl Russell

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