Women Triumph on a Stormy Night at the Barge

21/09/2017

Here and Now Festival: Soloists, Bargemusic, New York City. 2.9.2017. (DS)

Performers: Jennifer Choi (violin), Yoko Reikano Kimura (shamisen), Nancy Allen Lundy (soprano), Ursula Oppens (piano), Kathleen Supove (piano) & Dalit Warshaw (piano)

Laura Kaminsky Fantasy for solo piano
Yoko Sato – The Road for solo shamisen
Paula Matthusen AEG III for piano
Augusta Read ThomasToft Serenade for violin
Dalit Warshaw – Selections from But Not Forgotten
Milica Paranosic – Meeting Jessica for piano and electronics
Missy MazzoliA Thousand Tongues

Over Labor Day weekend, the Here and Now Festival at Brooklyn’s Bargemusic was rocked by more than just the rainstorm winds that beat against the wooden-vessel-turned-intimate-music-hall. All offerings came from women composers, who equally populate contemporary repertoire, and rightly deserve celebration in a dedicated concert.

The same must be said for the performers, all women. Ursula Oppens, who opened the evening with Fantasy for solo piano by Laura Kaminsky, is a leader in contemporary and 20th-century works. The opportunity to hear her perform can be likened to watching someone organize the colors of a Rubik’s cube. She takes a new piece and matches its needs, focusing so subtly that the threads of meaning start emerging with clarity. Dynamics are carefully placed. Tempos are neither overrun nor haltingly dragged. Not only is Oppens an expert at interpretation, but when she plays, it often sounds like the item in question must have been written for her.

The evening continued with a variety of instruments – traditional violin, prepared piano with electronics, and even Japanese shamisen. While all the pieces stood out, the final composition, A Thousand Tongues by Missy Mazzoli, showed that contemporary music still embraces the ideals of beauty. For violin and piano with electronics, Mazzoli marries the influences of minimalism, lyrical song, and sampling into a fresh blend of sound that derives its own original take on both the modern and the past. At one point, even the barge seemed to rock in time to the heartbeat in the bass line, oblivious to the rain outside, and surrendering to a well-crafted art.

Daniele Sahr

For another review of this concert, click here.

Print Friendly

Comments

Leave a Reply

Recent Reviews

Facebook-button-1

Season Previews

__________________________________
  • NEW! Opera and More in Buenos Aires in 2018 __________________________________
  • NEW! Gloucester Choral Society’s Hubert Parry’s Centenary Celebrations in May 2018 __________________________________
  • NEW! Ex Cathedra at St John’s Smith Square’s 2017 Christmas Festival __________________________________
  • NEW! Spend a Penny for Grange Park Opera’s Lavatorium Rotundum __________________________________
  • NEW! Spitalfields Music Festival 2017 in December __________________________________
  • NEW! Bampton Classical Opera in 2018 __________________________________
  • NEW! The 2018 Lucerne Summer Festival __________________________________
  • NEW! World Premiere of The Nutcracker and I, by Alexandra Dariescu in December at Milton Court __________________________________
  • NEW! Leeds Lieder’s Forthcoming Schubert Song Series in Leeds and Sheffield __________________________________
  • UPDATED! English National Ballet’s 2017 – 2018 Season __________________________________
  • NEW! Contemporary Music from Manchester’s Psappha in 2017-18 __________________________________
  • NEW! I Musicanti’s ‘Alexandra and the Russians’ at St Johns Smith Square, 2017-18 __________________________________
  • NEW! Anna Netrebko and Yusif Eyvazov’s Return to London in May 2018 __________________________________
  • NEW! St John’s Smith Square announces its 2017/18 Season __________________________________
  • NEW! The Pierre Boulez Saal’s 2017/18 Season in Berlin __________________________________
  • UPDATED! The Glyndebourne Opera Cup and Glyndebourne in 2018 __________________________________
  • NEW! The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra’s 2017/18 Season __________________________________
  • Subscribe to Review Summary Newsletter

    Reviews by Reviewer

    News and Featured Articles

    __________________________________
  • R.I.P. IN MEMORIAM – DMITRI HVOROSTOVSKY (1962-2017) __________________________________
  • NEW! Ann Murray’s Masterclass at the V&A Part of Opera: Passion, Power and Politics __________________________________
  • NEW! Carly Paoli is ‘Singing My Dreams’ at the Cadogan Hall in February 2018 __________________________________
  • NEW! A Composer Speaks Up for the Environment: An Interview with Margaret Brouwer __________________________________
  • NEW! Twelve Years of Celebrating Malcolm Arnold in Northampton __________________________________
  • NEW! What is the Critic’s Job? A Review of A. O. Scott’s Recent Book __________________________________
  • NEW! English Music Festival in Yorkshire Lifts the Lid Off an English Treasury __________________________________
  • NEW! A FULLY STAGED PILGRIM’S PROGRESS IN ORLEANS, MA __________________________________
  • NEW! JIŘÍ BĔLOHLÁVEK (1946-2017) AND THE CZECH CONDUCTING LEGACY __________________________________
  • NEW! JUSTIN DOYLE DISCUSSES MONTEVERDI WITH MARK BERRY __________________________________
  • NEW! Katie Lowe Wins the 2017 Elizabeth Connell Prize __________________________________
  • NEW! ITINÉRAIRE BAROQUE 2017: TON KOOPMAN TALKS TO COLIN CLARKE __________________________________
  • NEW! The Royal Opera House in Mumbai is Restored to its Former Glory __________________________________
  • NEW! iSING! – International Young Artists Festival in Suzhou, China __________________________________
  • Archives by Week

    Archives by Month

    Search S&H