Monday, April 14, 2008

The scene

I'm late to get on the Hilary Hahn bandwagon, not for reasons that have anything to do with Ms. Hahn herself, but more with the fact that I listen to very little classical music on a regular basis. After spending a few days with Nick on tour in February, he encouraged me (by example, not with words) to listen to more (Bach, particularly), and I've picked up a few recordings, most notably one of Bach concerti. (The D Minor is my favorite; the saddest of all keys...) I've also enjoyed her writing on her website, candid and insightful and funny.

So I was thrilled to read a couple of things today that indicate she has "indie classical" tendencies! Steve Smith's review of her concert with Josh Ritter at The Other Met sounded like programming perfection: Erlkoenig paired with a modern folk song called "Oak Tree King." Fabulous. And then Feast of Music reported on Hahn's post-show show at DROM, a Lower East Side bar. How much fun would THAT have been? I'm definitely going to check out the next "classical" show at DROM, if only because it involves toy pianos.

In related news, I was devastated to miss the MATA festival a couple of weeks ago. It was wonderful to hear reports of successful (understatement) premieres and performances by friends and colleagues, people who I respect and admire. As I was hearing a run-down of one night's program, I felt like I was hearing about a party that my friends threw without me! I was equally so excited for the success of the Festival and of their music, and heart-broken not to be there celebrating with them. I love being part of this "scene," even cursorily as I seem to be right now. I am honored to call these musicians my friends, and to dream about future collaborations. For more on that, check out the New Amsterdam Records site and see how the community is growing. Join up, even! All are welcome.

I guess now would be the perfect time to remind those of you in the NYC area that the revised version of Hillula will premiere on April 29th as part of the Princeton Composers Ensemble, 8pm in Taplin Auditorium on the Princeton campus. Excited doesn't begin to express how we feel about this...


pemat23 said...

Thanks for the shout-out, ACB! And, if you want to read more about MATA (with pics), you can read my post here:

DJA said...

I'm definitely going to check out the next "classical" show at DROM, if only because it involves toy pianos.

And not because it involves a performance of my first-ever piece of "legitimate" music? (Performed by actual classical musicians! On a bill with actual classical composers!) You wound me, madam.

ACB said...

DJA, how did I miss that?!?!?! Are you on the docket for the 27th? I'm so there.

DJA said...


I am indeed at Drom on April 27th. But for once, I will be able to sit back in the audience and not have to conduct, which, seriously, you have no idea how much I am looking forward to.

The program is a reprise of this Music Off The Walls program to be presented at the Brooklyn Museum earlier in the day -- works by Fred Rzewski, Julia Wolfe, Randy Woolf, and, uh, me. Ulp.

The piece is called "Body Double" and it's for string quartet and tapan (a crazy Bulgarian drum). It's meant to accompany the Murakami show at the Brooklyn Museum.

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