The Edge of Silence
Vocal Chamber Music of Győrgy Kurtág
A concert devoted to the vocal chamber music of the Hungarian master composer, György Kurtág, including Hét Dal (Seven songs for voice and cimbalom) S.K. Remembrance Noise (voice and violin), Erinnerung an einen Winterabend ( voice, violin, cimbalom), Attila Jozsef Fragments (solo voice) and Scenes from a Novel (voice, violin, cimbalom and double bass .
When asked about the impetus behind the program, Narucki said "György Kurtág's music has been one of the touchstones of my life as a musician. I was introduced to the composer's music at the beginning of my professional career, performing the West Coast premiere of Messages of the R.V. Troussova at the 1986 Ojai Festival. I began a journey into a musical landscape that is overwhelmingly rich and varied. Kurtág illuminates the texts he sets; his music is a synthesis of vocal expression and musical materials in which every gesture contributes to the whole. It is music that is emotionally powerful, intensely personal and hauntingly beautiful - and it has fascinated me for over thirty years. Some of the pieces on the program have been an integral part of my life as a singer; they are works that I've presented many times; in the case of some others, I return and remember. The scores are full of messages - observations, ideas, questions - a map of the composer's profoundly fertile imagination, in which I have tried to find my bearings, again and again. "
The soprano is joined by guest artists Curtis Macomber (violin), Nicholas Tolle (cimbalom) and Kathryn Schulmeister (double bass). For tickets and information
The playing of violinist Curtis Macomber was praised recently by the New York Times for its “thrilling virtuosity” and by Strad Magazine for its “panache”. He enjoys a varied and distinguished career as soloist, chamber musician, and teacher, and he has for several decades been recognized as one of this country’s foremost interpreters and proponents of new music. Mr. Macomber’s extensive discography includes the complete Brahms and Grieg Sonatas as well as hundreds of critically praised recordings of contemporary solo and chamber works. As a member of the New World String Quartet from 1982-93, he performed in virtually all the important concert series in this country, as well as touring abroad. He is the violinist of Da Capo, a founding member of the Apollo Trio and the newest member of both the Manhattan String Quartet and the Walden Chamber Players.. Mr. Macomber is presently a member of the chamber music faculty of the Juilliard School, where he earned B.M., M.M., and D.M.A. degrees as a student of Joseph Fuchs. He is also on the violin faculties of the Manhattan and Mannes Schools of Music, and has taught at the Tanglewood, Taos and Yellow Barn Music Festivals.
Nicholas Tolle is one of North America's premiere cimbalom artists. In 2017 he appeared as a soloist with Steven Schick and musicians from UCSD performing Pierre Boulez' Repons and will also present the complete solo and small ensemble cimbalom works of György Kurtág at Tufts University. In August he will made his ninth visit to the Lucerne Festival to perform the works of Kurtág and Heinz Holliger. He has recently performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Symphony Chamber Players, the New York Philharmonic, and the International Contemporary Ensemble. In 2012 he was a soloist with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal performing Pierre Boulez’ Repons, which he also performed with the composer conducting at the Lucerne Festival in 2009. He has appeared as a soloist with Collage New Music and Orchestra 2001 performing Steve Mackey’s 5 Animated Shorts, and with numerous orchestras performing Kodály’s Háry János Suite. Based in Boston, MA, locally he can be seen regularly with such groups as the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Callithumpian Consort, and Sound Icon. He is also a frequent collaborator with Ensemble Signal. He is the founder and artistic director of the Ludovico Ensemble, and is the sole proprietor of Boston Percussion Rentals, New England's largest percussion rental company.
Kathryn Schulmeister is a double bassist with a wide range of musical and interdisciplinary interests. In March of 2017, Kathryn performed a 6-city tour of Switzerland and Luxembourg with the Lucerne Festival Young Artists, performing an experimental theater work incorporating dance and various styles of classical and contemporary music. With a passion for collaborating with composers to create new repertoire for the double bass, Kathryn’s performance has been described as “…turning an ostensibly ungainly instrument into a writhing white-hot crucible.” (5against4) Kathryn is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Contemporary Music Performance from the University of California, San Diego. She received her Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston and completed her Master of Music degree at the McGill University in Montréal, receiving numerous scholarships and awards during her studies including the Austrian Society Scholarship, the Clara Lichtenstein Fellowship, the Graduate Excellence Award, and National Public Radio's ‘From the Top’ Scholarship.
The critically acclaimed chamber opera travels to the ENT Center at University of Colorado at Colorado Springs for the fourteenth performance of the opera. Since its San Diego premiere in 2013, Cuatro Corridos has been performed in Mexico City, at the 2015 FIL International Book Fair in Guadalajara, at the Casa de la Cultura in Tijuana, at Zipper Hall in Los Angeles, at the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, at University of New Mexico and at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. The cd recording of Cuatro Corridos, released on Bridge in 2016, was a Critic's Choice of Opera News and was nominated for a 2017 Latin Grammy. For tickets and information
Longtime collaborators, soprano Susan Narucki and pianist Donald Berman present an evening of works for voice and piano that combine intensity of expression and overarching lyricism.
The concert's first half juxtaposes two works by György Kurtág: Three Old Inscriptions and Requiem For the Beloved with selections from Robert Schumann's Kerner Lieder, op. 35 . Alexander Zemlinsky's Op 13, a set of six songs to poems by Maurice Maeterlinck and works by American composer James Primosch complete the program. Narucki and Berman have collaborated on a number of critically acclaimed recordings, including Song Cycles of Aaron Jay Kernis (Koch), Music From the American Academy in Rome (Bridge) and The Light That is Felt: Songs by Charles Ives (New World), for which they earned the Classical Recording Foundation's Samuel Sanders Award for Distinguished Collaboration.
Susan Narucki joins a distinguished group of musicians in a series of events celebrating the life and art of Grawmeyer award-winning composer Chinary Ung. The featured work on the program, at the Conrad Prebys Music Center at the UC San Diego campus is a performance of Spiral XII, for vocal soloists and chamber orchestra. The performance will be led by American conductor Gil Rose and recorded for Bridge Records.
Susan Narucki joins the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus conducted by Steven Schick for a performance of Poulenc's masterpiece. Works by Tina Tallon and Thomas Ades complete the program. For information and tickets.
" The Poulenc “Gloria” is a masterpiece, and Schick, orchestra and chorus elevated the concert to a higher level in its outstanding execution. Patrick Walders made an auspicious debut as LJS&C’s new chorus director in this performance, and the chorus’s superb diction, rhythmic crispness and integrated sound — what the French call “suave” — augur a bright future under his leadership...
Soprano soloist Susan Narucki brought beauty of tone and emotional intensity to this celebration of God’s love and mercy, and the orchestra was, in a word, superb.
Dazzled, almost overwhelmed, audience members were humming Poulenc’s melodies as they left, carrying their jackets in their hands on a spring evening in December. "
- Marcus Overton
Led by conductor Steven Schick as part of the "It's About Time" Festival at San Diego Symphony/ Copley Symphony Hall, kallisti singers sopranos Kirsten Wiest, Susan Narucki and Hillary Jean Young join members of UCSD' percussion ensemble redfishbluefish for a rare performance of Reich's iconic work.
Banff Residency, Louisville Symphony and