Doors at 6PM
Advance $29 | At the Door $34
In 2003 Steve Reich wrote Cello Counterpoint for eight cellos, meant to be performed by a soloist playing along with seven pre-recorded cellos. This innovation of expanding a solo into a large ensemble through pre-recorded additional layers offers an elegant way to augment the sonic palette of a solo performer while maintaing the simplicity and personality of a single player. In this concert Ashley Bathgate is premiering her own recording of this Cello octet as well as new works for the same instrumentation by Kettle Corn New Music composers Emily Cooley and Alex Weiser - new works written to be paired with the iconic Reich work in concert, and for an upcoming studio album. Cooley and Weiser represent the latest generation of composers, influenced by Reich's work, bringing to it a broader harmonic, gestural, and dramatic vocabulary, keeping his ideas and legacy alive while building on and past it.
Cello Counterpoint (2003) is scored for eight cellos and can be played by a soloist with the other parts pre-recorded or by a Cello Octet. It is in three movements, fast, slow fast. The first and last movements are both based on a similar four chord cycle that moves ambiguously back and forth between c minor and Eb major. This harmonic cycle is treated extremely freely however, particularly in the third movement. As a matter of fact, what strikes me most about these movements is that they are generally the freest in structure of any I have ever written. The second, slow movement, is a canon in Eb minor involving, near the end of the movement, seven separate voices. Cello Counterpoint is one of the most difficult pieces I have ever written, calling for extremely tight, fast moving rhythmic relationships not commonly found in the cello literature. The piece is a little more than 11 minutes in duration and was co-commissioned by the Koussevitzky Foundation in the Library of Congress, the Royal Conservatory in The Hague and Leiden University, for cellist Maya Beiser. © Steve Reich