Lis is one of the newer members of the Oregon Symphony, but a long-time musical force in the Portland area. Find out more about this wonderful violinist in a profile by artslandia for the Oregon Symphony’s November playbill.
This Friday, November 9th at 7:00pm and 8:30pm at The Old Church Concert Hall, 45th Parallel Universe presents the first of its C² concerts – two concerts, one evening, featuring two new ensembles that are part of the Universe: the Arcturus Quintet and the Gemini Project percussion ensemble. The idea is two one-hour concerts, separated by a ‘happy half-hour’ – complete with catered snacks and a no-host bar, where audience members and musicians can mingle as the set up for the second concert takes place. You can go to just one concert – take your pick – or both, with each one ticketed separately. It enables two concert experiences in the time that one longer concert might take, and adds greater variety to each concert’s offerings.
The first concert belongs to the Arcturus Quintet – an ensemble configuration of flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, and French horn – which isn’t that familiar to most audiences. It’s a shame, as the repertoire for the ensemble is fantastic, and it’s a way to hear instruments that are most often associated with the symphony orchestra on their own. I always find watching wind players doing their thing fascinating just from a technical standpoint, and the unique timbres of their instruments combine in delightful, and often surprising ways. The all-American program features music by Jennifer Higdon (whose work gives the concert its name), Samuel Barber, and Irving Fine.
Here’s an introduction to what you can expect from clarinetist James Shields:
The second concert belongs to the percussion ensemble The Gemini Project, founded by Sergio Carreno and Jonathan Greeney. Their program consists of works by Andy Akiho (who’s had quite a few performances in Portland the last couple seasons – and rightly so!), Peter Klatzhow (whose work gives the concert its name), Steve Reich, and more.
Here are both Serge and Jon to give their introduction to the program:
I’ve decided to start a regular column on Mondays that deals just with the viola. The viola is, of course, my chosen instrument (although I think that’s not quite correct–I think it chose me), and there are a lot of cool and not so well-known things about it that you should know about. This first item is a rarity – a newly discovered piece of Shostakovich. In this case, it’s an Impromptu for viola and piano dating from 1931. It’s stunningly played here by the great Paul Neubauer and pianist Wu Han. Paul plays a gorgeous Brothers Amati viola in this video from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.