by Jarrett Hoffman
8:00 brings two options: one in person and outdoors, the other over the web and airwaves. BW Opera continues its run of George Frideric Handel’s Alcina outdoors on the steps of the Boesel Musical Arts Center, while WCLV’s Ovations will feature CityMusic Cleveland in music by Jungyoon Wie, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, and Ellen Taffe Zwilich. Read our preview about the Wie and Coleridge-Taylor works, which were programmed together this past April.
Details about both events in our Concert Listings.
VIDEOS & PODCASTS:
To help welcome families back to Severance this season, The Cleveland Orchestra has prepared a digital family concert featuring the Factory Seconds Brass Trio (above, right), and hosted by Meaghan Heinrich. From the looks of it, there’s something for everyone, whether you’re drawn in by the performances, the music (Poulenc’s Sonata for Horn, Trumpet, and Trombone), the story (a tale of Parisian love “brought to life by the antics of a mischievous cat!”), the artwork by Kate Atherton (one example pictured above, left), or the opportunity to create your own art. Watch here.
And the ASO’s Unorchestrated podcast finishes up its series on the Akron Symphony Chorus with a discussion about There’s a Stirrin’ in the Water, written by Chuck Myricks Jr. and Jesse Ayers in 2016. Joining host Tom Moore are the two co-composers, as well as Chorus Director Chris Albanese. Musical excerpts, of course, are included along the way, both from a November 2016 performance and from May 2021. Listen here.
IN THE NEWS:
Ahead of his recent speech at the Conservative Party conference, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson walked onstage accompanied by the music of indie band Friendly Fires. The group had not given advance permission, and in any case they were not pleased with the association. But the matter isn’t always that simple. Writing for the BBC, Mark Savage investigates the rules around politicians’ choices of music, both in the U.S. and the U.K.
And the Teatro Comunale di Bologna has named Oksana Lyniv as its next music director, making her the first woman to assume that position for an Italian opera company. Read the article from Opera Wire here.
Previous Diary entries (here and here) have highlighted English-born violist and composer Rebecca Clarke, who died on this date in 1979 in New York City. Today we’ll shine a spotlight on another, lesser-known, and living Clarke, of no relation. That figure would be Australian musician Zana Clarke, born on October 13, 1965.
A composer, recorder player, and violinist, Zana Clarke has also taught Medieval improvisation and early instrumental music at the University of New England — an interest that intertwines with those other musical pursuits. Her compositions, mainly for the recorder, often bear Medieval influences, but combine them with contemporary techniques such as “vocalized recorder,” or singing while playing to create two individual melodic lines.
A great example is her Swamp — listen here, ignoring the shaky video, to enjoy a fascinating blend of the Medieval and the modern, as performed by Jo Arnott at the premiere in 2005.
Among other activities, Clarke is the founder of the youth recorder ensemble Batalla Famossa and the founding director of Orpheus Music. That organization commissions and publishes new works for the recorder by Australian composers, in addition to putting on a Young Composer Series to encourage composing for the recorder.
It’s too bad Batalla Famossa doesn’t have a presence on YouTube — the sight and sounds of a bunch of different-sized recorders can crack a smile on even the most stern listener — but you can hear clips of the ensemble’s album The great emu war here.