Contempora: The Contemporary Classical Music Podcast
Summary: A monthly podcast, Contempora is aimed at composers, performers and enthusiasts of contemporary classical music. Each episode features the music of a different living composer and an interview with them about their music.
Ben Hjertmann is a composer and singer involved in a variety of genres. In his upcoming self-produced album, Angelswort, we hear his myriad musical interests in concurrence, as well as conflict. Ben explains the inspiration behind the album and talks us through several of the movements.
Composer and percussionist Nathan Davis joins us this time on Contempora. Nathan is a member of the renown International Contemporary Ensemble and the NY Times describes his work as "music that deals deftly and poetically with timbre and sonority." As a percussionist, Nathan has performed music from around the world and he sometimes incorporates these musical traditions into his writing. We explore a work that does just that, his thrilling duo, Kebyar Untai, for hammered dulcimer and amplified cello.
Dr. Larry Alan Smith, "a young composer of great gifts," according to the New York Times, joins us this time to discuss his recent song cycle of Emily Dickinson poems, "A Slash of Blue! A Sweep of Gray!" Learn about what draws him to Dickinson's poetry and his life-long work as an arts administrator.
Kenneth Frazelle studied composition at the Juilliard School during the peak of high modernism. So how did his music develop into what the New York Times describes as a cross between Kurt Weill and Franz Schubert? And where did it pick up the influence of Appalachian folk music? This episode of Contempora will explore these questions, and much more, supplemented by Frazelle's recent and stunningly beautiful "Songs in the Rear View Mirror."
Eliza Brown's music has been described by Symphony Magazine as "Haunting, delicate and introspective." Eliza speaks about her inspirations and the compositional process for her work "A Tune Refracted" for harp and wind ensemble. Excerpts from a performance of the work are featured and one of the musicians who gave this performance, oboist Kevin Scott, speaks about the experience.