Why were we silent for nine months as we awaited sums of money that, to us, make or break our ability to pay the rent? For me, the story of the Beethoven Festival is a story of vulnerability: my own individual vulnerability, that of my colleagues, and that of our entire musical community.
Sam Scranton’s Detritivore is an evening-length ensemble work that is both theatrical and restrained, simultaneously epic and intimate, and was so absorbing that I could not write about it without participating in the reverberations of the piece itself.
Matt Pakulski, the founder of new Chicago record label FPE, discusses his wide-ranging tastes, his approach to the curation and creation of musical objects, and the label’s first release—an album from Nicole Mitchell’s Black Earth Ensemble.
For her most recent commissioning project, composer and pianist Joann Cho invited a large group of composers to write a solo piano piece for her and asked them to write their piece “for children.”
We musicians know that silence is as precious as sound itself. But we also, like most human beings, fear the idea of a long silence. Is it safe—is it even possible—to pause our perpetual inner soundtrack and be truly alone with our chaotic thoughts, our chaotic selves?
The Affordable Care Act made maternity coverage more accessible for freelance musicians. But is contemporary music—its career arcs, social scenes, traditions, and infrastructure—ready for a baby boom?
Valentine’s Day is here, and for contemporary music enthusiasts, it can be hard to compile the proper playlist. From openhearted to kinky, we’ve got some pretty wide-ranging ideas of what romance is. Without further ado, here’s your 2014 playlist of avant-garde baby-makin’ music.
Chicago-based cellist Chris Wild’s onstage presence is intense and contemplative, so it comes as no surprise that Abhanden presents six works which, in radically different ways, explore intimate and interior worlds.
What was your biggest musical challenge of 2013? What was your favorite record, or favorite thing to listen to, this year? What are you most looking forward to in 2014? Seven Chicago musicians share the best of the year that was and prepare for the challenges ahead.
Chicago-based composer Carolyn O’Brien’s path to becoming a composer wasn’t a typical one. She taught in public schools for ten years before she took her first composition lesson at 32, disappointed with the contemporary music repertoire for public school students and imagining she might create music for that medium. She’s now is a doctoral candidate at Northwestern University