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ENTERTAINMENT
September 16, 2001 | By Peter Dobrin INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
Many of the city's ensembles and presenters are holding back their flashiest programs until after the opening of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in December. But no halfway intrepid listener need go begging in the meantime. Especially the new-music fan. The Network for New Music, those smart and stalwart reporters from the composition front, premiere Richard Wernick's The Name of the Game with new-music guitarist David Starobin on Oct. 21 and 28. Another contemporary guitar work, this one by Christopher Rouse, gets a workout with Sharon Isbin and Orchestra 2001, Sept.
NEWS
May 29, 2011 | By David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic
Like a perfect storm, three big new-music events are simultaneously converging on Philadelphia, all but unbeknownst to one another. June's unofficial new-music festival has the Opera Company of Philadelphia giving the U.S. premiere of Hans Werner Henze 's Phaedra June 3-12 at the Kimmel Center, while the company's former chorus master, Donald Nally, unfurls his Month of Moderns Festival with the Crossing choir June 5, 18, and 26 at Presbyterian Church...
NEWS
June 3, 1992 | By Will Rose, SPECIAL TO THE INQUIRER
Joseph Franklin was tasting a local beer in a cafe near the old town square and talking about how the Philadelphia ensemble of which he is artistic director could be a catalyst for change. "We're reaching out," he says of Relache, whose musicians are devoted to new music. "American musicians - Americans in general - spend too much time looking at their navels. We've got to look outward, too. There's a changing world out there. " Here in the heart of Europe, where the future is being delivered daily, the Prague Spring Music Festival is one cultural piece of that transition.
BUSINESS
April 11, 2012 | Reid Kanaley
Discovering new music that's to your liking is simple and fun with the help of a few well-chosen applications for your smartphone. Shazam, by Shazam Entertainment Ltd., is a free app for Apple and Android that does one fine trick. Say you are out and about, and hear a song you like. Shazam will listen to a few seconds of music, identify the song, and link to all sorts of information about it. You can "tag" a song and share it on Facebook and Twitter, or send your find by e-mail to anyone or to your "Shazam friends.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 16, 1993 | By Peter Dobrin, FOR THE INQUIRER
Matthew Greenbaum, speaking to his audience Friday night, said he didn't intend "gradual eradication of the living performer. " Yet that was the general effect of his Fourth Book of Motions (1992). Played by saxophonist Marshall Taylor at the Network for New Music's concert at the Philadelphia Art Alliance on Rittenhouse Square, the piece pits sounds generated by a human being against those spewed forth by a tape. As Greenbaum pointed out, the technique is nothing new. Stemming from technology first used by Pierre Schaeffer nearly 50 years ago and further developed by dozens since then, the idea is to explore the similarities and differences between electronic and acoustic sound.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 15, 2011 | By JONATHAN TAKIFF, staff
In the post-Valentine's Day spirit, we're "speed dating" new album releases today. _ PJ Harvey, "Let England Shake" (Vagrant, A-): Polly Jean puts varied voices to missives about the downfall of Britain and aftershock of war. You scare me, girl. Gotta see you again. _ Cowboy Junkies, "Demons: The Nomad Series Volume 2" (Latent/Razor & Tie, B+): Margo and Michael Timmins ease access to the dark ruminations of the severely crippled (and now sadly departed) singer/songwriter Vic Chestnutt.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 4, 1993 | By Daniel Webster, INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
The Settlement Music School's Contemporary Players are a prime example of how music performance has changed over the centuries. By establishing a regular performance schedule, the ensemble and the sponsoring school are committing themselves to performance of new music in a sustained way. Two hundred years ago, every musician made a living playing new music. Had some formed a group to play music that had been popular a century earlier - by, say, Bach or Telemann - they would have been seen as strange, and in need of patronage from a similarly eccentric archduke.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 30, 1986 | By Ken Tucker, Inquirer Popular-Music Critic
"Trans-Sonic: A Festival of New Music" this weekend offers two nights of the experimental sounds that have come to be called "new music. " New music's pioneering use of synthesizers and other electronic hardware has yielded an intricate, abstract music whose sound ranges from the lush and densely layered to the spare and minimalistic. "Trans-Sonic" features both local and national figures prominent within the genre. Tonight, the Mikel Rouse Broken Consort makes its Philadelphia debut.
NEWS
February 4, 1989 | By Tom Moon, Inquirer Popular-Music Critic
Composer-arranger John Zorn, whose band Naked City launches the New Music at Annenberg Center series Monday, has a personality split between at least two conflicting approaches to music. For contemporary-classical ensembles such as the Kronos Quartet, Zorn creates pieces that incorporate "found" sounds, record-scratching and rock motifs. These somewhat formally composed pieces have won him praise for redefining the boundaries of "traditional" string-quartet music. For more improvisation-oriented groups, of which the five-piece Naked City is one stripped-down representative, he works in the moment by creating an environment in which snips of narrative, sparring guitars, blood-curdling screams and dramatic movie-score melodies rip and run over agitated, funk- influenced rhythms.
NEWS
February 26, 2002 | By Peter Burwasser FOR THE INQUIRER
It should not be surprising that four composers born in China and now working in America would utilize techniques of both Eastern and Western musical cultures. What is not so usual, but was apparent in Sunday's Network for New Music concert, is that all have created music of uncommon drama, introspection and spirituality. With the composers in attendance at the Settlement Music School in Queen Village, the concert began and ended with music of great momentum and coloristic variety.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
July 5, 2015 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
In the new-Latin alternative-music continuum, Mexican actress/singer Ximena Sariñana is a regal figure, both pop and esoteric, a vocalist and composer whose strange, elegant, and occasionally raucous songs sound like St. Vincent singing John Barry's themes for 1960s James Bond flicks along the shores of Brazil. The tropical sway, the grandeur of epic, arching chords, the angular riffing of fuzztone guitars and synths - magnificent. That's the vibe Sariñana and her opening act, Dominican singer-songwriter Alex Ferreira (whose band backed Sariñana)
ENTERTAINMENT
June 20, 2015 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
When Facing Front , a retrospective of work by the team of Jonathan Burrows and Matteo Fargion, opens Friday at Neighborhood House, audiences might not be sure what they're seeing. Is it movement theater? Dance/music performance art? Something else, louche yet formal? Fargion, a composer, often uses no music while moving throughout a piece. Burrows, a choreographer, hums and sings while not moving much at all. "We're at the tentative start of a new project," Burrows says, "and I'm painfully reminded how difficult and un-useful it is to try and delineate what you do. Because as soon as you think you know what it is, it becomes only a poor representation of yourself.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 22, 2015 | By David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic
Philadelphia composer Michael Hersch usually leaves you gasping - cognitively speaking - to keep up. Not that he wants to leave anybody behind. He provides explanations as detailed as any GPS for the long distances his pieces travel. But in his new song cycle, a breath upwards, Hersch stopped me in my tracks as he explored a narrower-than-usual range of sound, harmony and gesture, requiring a more minute exploration of the tension between music and texts from Dante's Inferno and related ones by Ezra Pound.
NEWS
April 18, 2015 | By Sarah Smith, Inquirer Staff Writer
The entrance to what's promised to be Philadelphia's hottest music club come fall is a gravel lot under an I-95 overpass. Now, it's just an abandoned metal factory in Fishtown - windows long blown out, covered in graffiti. But by fall, developers promise, it will be home to the Fillmore, a 2,500-seat music hall that promoter Live Nation aims to fill with big-name talent, as well as the Foundry, a more intimate venue with room for 450 aimed at local bands and up-and-coming talent, and a lounge.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 28, 2015 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Kuf Knotz is the Philadelphia hip-hop universe's peaceable guy, a righteous dude whose lyrics are loving, whose rhythms are supple, and whose every move is all about the bass and the brotherhood. Considering how tense things are in America, Knotz is a model citizen of bliss, an art form in and of himself, as heard on albums such as Boombox Logic and his brand-new A Positive Light . "A musical outlet helps me stay propitious by letting me express - put my feelings and energy into - new music," says Knotz, a Bryn Mawr native who moved to Philadelphia nine years ago. "I also don't watch the news much, instead focusing on my direct interactions with people.
NEWS
March 25, 2015 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
Harvey D. Wedeen, 87, of Center City, chairman of the keyboard department at Temple University's Boyer College of Music and Dance for nearly five decades and a force behind starting many of the school's degree programs, died Friday, March 13, at home. Mr. Wedeen became a faculty member at Temple in 1964, and was director of the well-regarded Temple University Music Institute at Ambler from 1971 to 1975 and the music festival's artistic director in 1974 and 1975. He helped establish the school's doctoral program in performance; the master's program in accompanying and chamber music; master's programs in piano performance and pedagogy; the Center City Temple Prep; and a program to bring free music lessons to local children.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 3, 2015 | By David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic
Any artistic cutting edge can come with the sensation of falling off a cliff. The listener is bewildered for a bit, until someone (often the composer) shows how the most forbidding concoctions have precedents in the past. Rarely, though, has the road map to such precedents been established with the concrete as it was in a talk before Bhob Rainey's Axon Ladder Friday at Vox Populi. Was this an advanced calculus class? At the same time such well-known composers as Stephen Hartke and Louis Karchin unveiled their response to the visual stimuli at the Barnes Foundation in a Network for New Music concert, Rainey was at the gallery wrestling with music based on mathematical abstractions of squid neurons so big they were studied in the pre-high-tech era. Some skepticism is warranted - attention-grabbing concepts don't necessarily unleash worthy music.
NEWS
February 27, 2015 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
Four contemporary classical composers walk into an art museum. No punch line. But after walking in, this quartet of composers eventually walked away having penned four new compositions, which Network for New Music will premiere Friday at the Barnes Foundation - amid the art and spaces that inspired them. The obvious historical precedent is Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition , a vivid series of musical evocations connected by a recurring promenade. Each of Network's new pieces assumes a different form, chamber-music instrumentation, and philosophy about using the eye to tease out a translation for the ear. "Music is the most incorporeal art, and, while we all accept that it is very much like a language, it is a non-representational one," said Stephen Hartke, who produced The Blue Studio , inspired by the cobalt walls in Matisse's Studio with Goldfish , which are the same shade as his own workroom in Los Angeles.
NEWS
February 15, 2015 | the Inquirer Staff
Drake pulls a Beyoncé Drake is the latest music star to spring a surprise album on his fans in the middle of the night. Just before midnight on Thursday, all Beyoncé -style, he dropped the excellently titled If You're Reading This It's Too Late . It was rumored that the Canadian rapper, last heard from with Nothing Was the Same in 2013, had new music on the way, but not a full-fledged 17-song album, which If You're Reading...
ENTERTAINMENT
February 12, 2015 | By David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic
The East-meets-West nexus in classical music still comes with so much creative leeway and remains so uncodified that a program titled "New Music From Asia" means that the only possible preconceived notion is the complete lack of one. In fact, the best-known composer in Orchestra 2001's Sunday program in Swarthmore delivered the most unexpected sounds. In Distance by Tan Dun sounded nothing like the composer's recent concert works (not to mention his Oscar-winning film music) - thanks to a particularly strong Chinese accent.
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