The San Francisco Contemporary Music Players’ 43rd Season Provides a Greatly Expanded Offering of New Music for Bay Area Audiences
For the 2013-14 season, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players (SFCMP) is delighted to announce an expansive program roster exploring a wide variety of music of our time. Led by Artistic Director Steven Schick, SFCMP’s 43rd season, entitled Sounding the Public Space, will present nine ticketed events, among them six world premieres and commissions.
Audience and community members are exhorted to “Bring Your Own Ears” – and expect to encounter a wide spectrum of musical styles, from trance-inducing percussive mastery to the far reaches of electronic music, inter-media and voice.
In addition to three traditional concerts, a special San Francisco percussion recital by Schick, and the large-scale public event Crissy Broadcast, SFCMP will culminate the season with the four-day Sweet Thunder: SFCMP Festival of Electro-Acoustic Music which will convene legends and rising stars of electronic and taped music to San Francisco in April, 2014. This is one of the most ambitious programming seasons in recent history for SFCMP and represents a renewed commitment to connecting composers, musicians, and audience members around the excitement of the evolving new-music canon.
SFCMP’s 43rd season begins in October 2013 fall with two-days and three performances of Crissy Broadcast, a free, site-specific work by composer Lisa Bielawa. SFCMP has been selected as the lead ensemble for the project, which will unite 700 professional and amateur musicians at San Francisco’s iconic Crissy Field.
The next concerts are part of the ticketed concert series and will take place at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Schick comments: “Among the composers whose works will be represented on the coming season is a representation of old friends and new voices. There are long-time collaborators James Dillon and Brian Ferneyhough, whose music has given us fascinating intricacy and virtuosic spark, to Michael Gordon with whom I worked for ten years as a member of the Bang on a Can All-stars and who always delivers an emotional punch. We’ll also have a chance to meet Georg Friedrich Haas, newly arrived resident of New York, and Elena Langer, a young Russian-born British composer whose works have been performed widely in Europe including at the Royal Opera House in London, and at the Almeida Opera Festival.”
SFCMP will also soon announce details of a special recital by Steven Schick entitled Origins. To be held in San Francisco on Saturday, February 14, this special Valentine’s Evening event will cast a spotlight on seminal works of the percussive tradition performed by one of its leading exponents.
The culminating event of the season will be Sweet Thunder: SFCMP Festival of Electro-Acoustic Music, an event of regional and national significance for composers, musicians and audience. Sweet Thunder will present world premieres, improvisational pieces, installations, free events, and exceptional guest ensembles, creating a cultural common ground and contributing to the continuum of music from the mid-20th century to the immediacy of now.
The festival, co-directed by Steven Schick and composer Rand Steiger, is designed to juxtapose iconic works that mark important artistic and technological developments of the past fifty years with new and recent works by important emerging and established composers of contemporary classical music. It will take place over four days, with two concerts and other special events (including free events) each day, allowing concertgoers to settle in for as much of the experience as they wish. “’Sweet Thunder’ will surely draw attention to San Francisco as a cultural nexus for new music in this thematically strong, internationally important large-scale event. Listeners will have a chance to hear great historical works of electronic music alongside the very latest innovations,” said Schick.
Origins– Friday, February 14, 2014. SFCMP Artistic Director Steven Schick performs a rare San Francisco recital of works by Stockhausen, Feldman, Lachenmann, Vinko Globokar, James Tenney, and Xenakis. JCCSF, 8:00 pm. Special event: Tickets through JCCSF
Triptych - Tuesday, February 18. Features Aus.Weg, a 2010 work by Georg Freidrich Haas, Luciano Chessa’s 2013 work Set and Setting, for musicians and “youth delivering scents of lavender and jasmine,” and James Dillon’s large-scale 2012 work New York Triptych, for musicians, radio receiver and CD player. 8:00 pm YBCA Forum. SEASON SERIES CONCERT TWO
Project Anton – Monday, March 24: Project Anton. Anton Webern’s 1934 masterwork Concerto for Nine Instruments is juxtaposed with a world commission of an inter-media work by Polish composer Jaroslaw Kapuscinski, Pointing Twice, with Korean guest choreographer Young-Doo Jung. Also Brian Ferneyhough’s La Chute D’Icare, and In Memoriam Jon Higgins by Alvin Lucier. 8:00 pm YBCA, Forum. SEASON SERIES CONCERT THREE
Ongoing Free Installations - Katharina Rosenberger’s Viva Voce (2012), an interactive work for electronics and tablet; and an installation, “Classics of Fixed Media,” featuring classic works of tape and pre-composed computer music curated by Tom Erbe.
Festival Kick-Off/Reception. Thursday April 24. For patrons and subscribers, this special concert will feature Steve Reich’s Pendulum Music, for microphones, amplifiers, speakers, and performers along with a work by Bay Area composer Ed Campion, Corail (2013), for saxophone and interactive software. 6:00 pm, FMC. SPECIAL EVENT for Season Subscribers and Festival Sponsors
JACK Quartet – Thursday April 24. SFCMP’s Sweet Thunder Festival opens with a concert by special guests JACK Quartet. Works will include Turgut Ercetin’s, String Quartet No. 1, a new work by Kevin Ernste, the West Coast premiere of Natacha Diels’ Nightmare for JACK, and Jonathan Harvey’s, String Quartet No. 4. 7:30 pm, Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion. SEASON SERIES CONCERT FOUR
International Contemporary Ensemble – Friday April 25. ICE joins the Festival, performing works by Rand Steiger, Nathan Davis, Marcos Balter, and Anna Thorvaldsdottir. 7:30 pm, Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion. SEASON SERIES CONCERT FIVE
Morton Subotnick – Friday April 25. The pioneer of electronica, Morton Subotnick, will perform his seminal work From Silver Apples of the Moon to a Sky of Cloudless Sulphur Revisited in a special concert. 10:00 pm, Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion. SEASON SERIES CONCERT SIX
Crissy Broadcast –October 26-27 - SFCMP will be the lead professional ensemble for this event, which unites 700 professional and amateur musicians in a site-specific world premiere of a work by Lisa Bielawa at the iconic Crissy Field. Performances at 10:00 am and 4:00 pm on Sat., Oct. 26 and 12:00 pm on Sun., Oct. 27. Free public event
Timber - Thursday, November 14. Elena Langer’s Two Cat Songs (2010) for voice, piano, and cello and Michael Gordon’s 2010 work Timber – a percussive tour de force for six musicians playing amplified and processed lengths of lumber. 8:00 pm at the YBCA Lam Theater. SEASON SERIES CONCERT ONE
Subotnick After Party Friday April 25. With Morton Subotnick beginning at DJ booth, followed by local DJs, performances, and more excitement, this event will invite non-traditional concert audiences to experience the legacy today’s dance and club scene draws from fifty years of groundbreaking electronic music, from Subotnick onward. 11:00 pm, Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion. SPECIAL EVENT
Solos - Saturday April 26. Solo works by important composers of the electro-acoustic tradition, including Steve Reich’s 1982 work Vermont Counterpoint, performed by ICE’s Claire Chase; Ken Ueno’s Talus (2007) performed by guest violist Wendy Richman; a 2011 work for clarinet by Matt Ingalls entitled CrusT, performed by the composer; Javier Alvarez’s 2001 Shekere, for solo percussion, and Roger Reynolds’s 1985 composition Transfigured Wind for solo piano. 2:00 pm, Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion. SEASON SERIES CONCERT SEVEN
Smartphone Concert - Saturday, April 26. Participants can plug in their smart-phones and enjoy music while contemplating the vistas from the historic Fort Mason complex. 4:00-6:30 pm, free public event.
San Francisco Contemporary Music Players (and Friends) - Saturday April 26. SFCMP is joined by guest performers in a journey through the history of electro-acoustic music, with works by Edgard Varèse (Poème Electronique, 1958; and Déserts, from 1954), as well as Mario Davidovsky’s 1992 Synchronisms No.10 for solo guitar performed by David Tanenbaum; Kaija Saariaho’s 1986 work Io, partnered with a new commissioned work from composer Ashley Fure (Companion to Io), and a special performance by SFCMP Artistic Director Steven Schick with Bay Area favorite Pamela Z in a new work. 7:30 pm, Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion. SEASON SERIES CONCERT EIGHT
red fish blue fish/George Lewis/Jaime Oliver - Sunday April 27. Sweet Thunder ends with a concert that includes Karlheinz Stockhausen’s 1964 composition Mikrophonie I, to a new work by Jaime Oliver. Also on the program, Luigi Nono’s 1979 work Con Luigi Dallapiccola, and a new iteration of George Lewis’ 1987 work Voyager, featuring SFCMP’s Kyle Bruckmann and other SFCMP Improvisers. 2:00 pm, Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion. SEASON SERIES CONCERT NINE
(Repertoire subject to change)
In addition to this impressive events roster, SFCMP is working with community partners to deliver a variety of educational and outreach programs and events, including the ongoing Contemporary Insights: Music and Conversation series which unites composers, musicians, and audience in exploring the construction of a new music piece and performance. SFCMP will also present composer talks, salon-inspired events, and community education programs during the course of the season, with a view to bring more audiences to a familiarity and appreciation of the art form beyond the concert hall. More information will be provided as the season progresses at this website, through SFCMP’s e-newsletter, and Facebook and Twitter.
About The San Francisco Contemporary Music Players
Led by Artistic Director Steven Schick, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players occupies an important role in the regional and national cultural landscape. One of the most long-standing continually performing new music ensembles in the country, SFCMP performs innovative and exceptional music for multiple generations of arts and music enthusiasts. Through performances, collaborative projects, commissions, and educational outreach activities, SFCMP aims to give audience members and friends opportunities to discover musical repertoire that is new to them – and to use these experiences as ways to better understand, interac