Field Reports

Five Lessons American Musicians Can Learn From Guildhall’s Music Leadership Program

Each year, the Guildhall Leadership course accepts a handful of students from all over the world. The course asks them to improvise, compose, teach, and collaborate with each other and with London artists from many other disciplines. They generate new work, embark on research projects, and actively facilitate creative music-making in London communities that wouldn’t otherwise have the opportunity.

Mark Adamo’s The Gospel of Mary Magdalene

A work six years in development with a libretto written by the composer, The Gospel of Mary Magdalene is an earnestly personal and thoroughly researched re-examination of the role of the main women in Jesus’s life, as well as an attempt to understand Jesus and his disciple Peter as flawed human beings.

On the Road with Mischa Zupko

For two weeks in June, Chicago composer Mischa Zupko did something that composers don’t often have the opportunity to do: he toured with an orchestra. Camerata Chicago traveled to the Czech Republic, France, and Italy and gave five performances of Zupko’s new Chamber Symphony: Pilatus.

Austin Summer Festivals: Business as Unusual

The allure of Austin (like many places I suppose) is partly genuine and partly manufactured. Spending a few days at the New Media Art and Sound Summit and the REVEL Summer Solstice Festival might be all it takes to renew one’s faith in this live, weird town.

The Mush Race of Boston: The SICPP 2013 Iditarod

How do you prepare for a concert presentation of over eight nearly continuous hours of new music? If you’re a performer, and the event is the Iditarod at the Summer Institute for Contemporary Performance Practice, it involves nine intensive days of practice, rehearsal, workshopping, and bonding with other musicians.

Interdisciplinary Musicians: Reflecting on the 2013 nief-norf Summer Festival

What the nief-norf Summer Festival seeks to accomplish is a merger of the fields of performance, composition, and scholarship. In effect, nnSF pushes performers, composers, and researchers into the same room and locks the door. What may sound like a chaotic situation, however, is far from it; the effects are outstanding, invigorating, and inspiring.

Sticks and Strings: Houston’s Liminal Space

A few months after seeing the potential of the guitar/percussion duo during the Living Earth Show this past spring, I stopped in to hear Houston’s Liminal Space present a concert that included two commissioned premiers.