Praised by the New York Times as “consistantly invigorating,” the New York based Ensemble Moto Perpetuo has taken on the mission of matching culture makers in Europe and America to stage unique collaborations between avant-garde composers and cutting edge soloists.
German soprano and new music specialist Frauke Aulbert will collaborate with the ensemble for a concert at the German Consulate in New York on June 19th. This concert marks Ms. Aulbert’s US debut and will feature four US premieres—two by eminent young German composers Sarah Nemtsov and Hanna Eimermacher as well as works by Pierluigi Billone and EMP Artistic Director Amir Shpilman.
About the Artists and the Music:
Shpilman’s work has been described in German media as “a shock wave for new music.” Founder and Artistic Director of Ensemble Moto Perpetuo, Shpilman recently won first prize at the 2013 Heidelberg Spring Festival Young Composers Academy for his large ensemble work “Hedef.”
Shpilman composed “Darkness” for a 2012 commission of the Frankfurt Alte Oper’s festival, Impulse Romantik. The project called for setting a poem from the Romantic era into a composition written in a modern musical language. Shpilman chose “Darkness,” a poem written by Lord Byron in 1816, a nightmarish fantasy of the decay of humanity resulting from the absence of light—and based on the real-life eruption of Mount Tambora that disturbed weather across Europe and North America. Shpilman’s work emphasizes the fantastic and animalistic qualities of the story teller. The music features lush and complex textures and virtuosic solo lines that bring the singer to an extreme expression of the poem’s characters and their terrifying reality.
Praised as “Hamburg’s queen of the avant garde,” Ms. Aulbert has developed highly specialized vocal techniques that include mastery of overtone and undertone singing, multiphonics and timbre-alteration among others. These techniques, developed through years of training as a lyrical singer as well as a vocal sound researcher, combined with her passion for improvisation, has put her in high demand in the European new music scene. A frequent collaborator with such composers as Georges Aperghis, Vinko Globokar, Hans-Joachim Hespos, Simon Stockhausen, Geoffroy Drouin and Alexander Schubert, Aulbert was awarded the first prize by the Stockhausen Foundation for her interpretation of Stockhausen’s Indianerlieder.
Based in Berlin, a former student of Pierluigi Billone, Mark Andre, and Beat Furrer, Hanna Eimermacher is a recent recipient of the prestigious Composition Fellowship at Villa Massimo Rome. Her “Hommage an den Klimperkasten” for eight instruments will enjoy its US premiere under the baton of EMP Artistic Director Amir Shpilman. Influenced by a sculpture of Alberto Giacometti, the work explores the impact of quiet dynamic ranges on the perception of space. The piece uses the fragile qualities of the quietest range of tones, which requires highly sensitive and virtuosic command of the instruments. The piano fixes the axis of the piece, leading the other instruments in relationships of contrast and fusion with the details of their sonorities.
Nemtsov’s music was first brought to an American stage by EMP last April. Her 2012 work, “Poker, Roulette” for percussion solo will receive its US premiere at the German Consulate in New York. The solo will be performed by EMP member and innovative percussionist Ellery Trafford. The open form of the piece is based on 52 compositional “playing cards” involving a variety of instruments and found objects and will be performed simultaneously by several players surrounding the audience while Trafford leads the work as soloist from center stage.
Recently awarded the 2012 German Music Author’s Prize (“Deutscher Musikautorenpreis” GEMA) and winner of the 2013 Busoni Composition Prize, Sara Nemtsov has studied with Nigel Osborne, Johannes Schöllhorn, and Walter Zimmermann.
World-renowned composer Pierluigi Billone has received many international awards including the Kompositionspreis der Stadt Stuttgart (Stuttgart 1993), the Busoni-Kompositionspreis (Academy of Arts Berlin 1996) the Wiener Internationaler Kompositionspreis (Vienna 2004), the Ernst-Krenek-Preis (Vienna 2006), and the Kompositionspreis der Ernst-von-Siemens-Musikstiftung (Munich 2010).
A student of Salvatore Sciarrino and Helmut Lachenmann, Billone’s music is known for its meticulous dedication to the development of unique solo techniques in close work with world-renowned performers. In this concert, EMP musicians will offer the US premier of Quattro Alberi, which continues in the tradition of individualized lines of works with voice, bassoon, accordion, and percussion. The four instruments imitate each other’s sonic worlds, creating a musical setting for a poem by Emily Dickinson, which is set off by partitioned syllables and unconventional vocal techniques.
Supported by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.
Location and time:
The German Consulate General
871 United Nations Plaza,
New York, NY 10017
Thursday, June 19th, 2014 at 6:00 p.m.
Admission US$ 5.00.
Tickets available only online via Eventbrite.
Out of courtesy to the artists and fellow concert-goers, please arrive 15 minutes prior to start time. Doors close promptly.