Some people have called it an opera, some have called it a sound sculpture, some have called it musical theater, some have called it theatrical music. Whatever one chooses to label it, The Gurs Zyklus is most certainly a work by Trimpin and one that continues his exploration of sound and how sound itself tells a story.
Part of the exploration of the Seattle Chamber Players’ American Chamber Dance series aims to revive “rarely performed ballets conceived for chamber ensemble and dancers by maverick American composers.” Charles Tomlinson Griffes was certainly a maverick and his beautiful ballet is rarely performed–very rarely.
One of the marvelous things about the Seattle arts community is its literary heart. Few environments can boast of lit-driven ensembles like Book-It Reparatory Theater and the Bushwick Book Club Seattle. Beginning in 2010, Bushwick members have taken great risk in drawing musical inspiration from written works deeply entrenched in the popular consciousness, if not the personal mythology, of its audience.
In improvisation, duos are a sort of conversation. Big bands are something like a game of follow the leader. In a sense, improvising trios are a combination of both. They retain much of the conversational intimacy of a duo through a kind of shared leadership of conversation that rarely if ever occurs in the classic quintet format, or even in the quartet. Many things can happen in trios that would be virtually impossible in another format.
Among Elena Dubinets’ many brilliant ideas is her vision of a showcase of new music from around the world, where audiences could meet and discuss the music with the actual composers themselves. That brilliant idea that has become the Icebreaker series, which has moved from Russia through the Baltic, across land to the Caucasus and America and now, this year, to the Mediterranean.