The City Sentinel, Staff Report
Oklahoma City, OK – Brightmusic Chamber Ensemble will celebrate the contribution of notable women composers, from Clara Schumann to contemporaries such as Libby Larsen, during its 2019-2020 season. This year the ensemble marks Brightmusic’s 17th as Oklahoma City’s premier classical chamber music presenter. The five-concert regular season will also include works by Brahms, Dvořák, Mozart, Haydn and Tchaikovsky. In June the ensemble will again present a four-concert summer chamber music festival.
The ensemble will be joined by two guest artists: pianist Stephen Buck in Concert 3 and French horn player Adam Unsworth in Concert 4. Buck is Visiting Professor of Music at the Conservatory of Music at the State University of New York, and Unsworth is Professor of Horn at the University of Michigan.
Concert 1 – “Melodic Masters” September 24, presents a lyrical evening with Germaine Tailleferre’s piano trio, Josef Suk’s Piano Quartet in A minor, and Johannes Brahms String Sextet No. 1.
Concert 2 – “From Café to Concert Hall” November 12, will include Clara Schumann’s masterpiece, her Piano Trio in G minor; Paul Schoenfield’s ever-popular Café Music, a trio for violin, cello and piano; and Antonín Dvořák’s Piano Trio No. 4, the “Dumky,” one of his best-loved works.
Concert 3 – “Rustic Gardens” January 21, features Libby Larsen’s Barn Dances, Carl Maria von Weber’s Clarinet Quintet, W. A. Mozart’s Quartet No. 1, and Arnold Schoenberg’s Chamber Symphony No. 1 (arr. by Anton Webern). Joining ensemble musicians will be guest pianist Stephen Buck.
Concert 4 – “The Virtuoso French Horn” March 3, will showcase the versatility and elegance of the French horn, ranging from works by Joseph Haydn and Mozart to contemporary Catherine Likhuta, with guest artist Adam Unsworth.
Concert 5 – “Musical Panorama” April 14, concludes the regular season with works by Pytor Ilyich Tchaikovsky, his popular Souvenir de Florence, Sir Malcolm Arnold’s Suite Bourgeoise for Flute, Oboe and Piano and Joan Tower’s Island Prelude for Oboe and String Quartet. Capping the evening will be “In Box” by Oklahoma City’s Edward Knight, an off-kilter look at the daily communications flooding the inbox.
In June the Brightmusic Chamber Ensemble will present Summer Festival IX at St. Paul’s Cathedral. Dates and programs will be announced in January.
Responding to a request for comment from The City Sentinel, Amy I-Lin Cheng, Brightmusic’s co-Artistic Director, reflected:
“Brightmusic chose to present five compositions by women composers in season 19-20, one composition for each of the 5 concerts, to highlight these women’s masterful contributions to the chamber music repertoire. These women are from diverse backgrounds, and are or were active musically in different periods of the history, however, they share some things in common: they all composed with passion and ingenuity, and in spite of limitations a woman may face in career as a composer, more so in previous centuries than the current century, these tenacious women found ways to make significant contributions in the field of music as performers, educators and composers. They left indelible marks in music history, and their compositions need to be heard more often.
“From Tailleferre’s virtuosic trio, to Clara Schumann’s beautiful writing, to Libby Larsen’s energetic music, to Catherine Likhuta’s personal story, to Joan Tower’s inspiration work, these compositions are voices of these women composers. We invite our audience to experience these exquisite compositions by these extraordinary women.”
In upcoming stories, we will develop further insights on the featured women composers for the 2019-2020 season of Brightmusic.
Season Membership Passes are available on our website or at the door for $100 for all regular season concerts and the four festival concerts. Single admission prices are $20 at the door. Children admitted free. Active-duty military and students are free with ID.
Brightmusic Chamber Ensemble, Oklahoma City’s own chamber ensemble, presents fine classical chamber music in the beautiful and acoustically-rich St. Paul’s Cathedral at NW 7th and N. Robinson near downtown Oklahoma City. Free parking is available just south of the cathedral. For more information about the ensemble and upcoming concerts, visit www.brightmusic.org.
Editor’s Note: Publisher Pat McGuigan, who serves on the Brightmusic Board of Directors, contributed to this report. The story first appeared in the August 2019 print edition of The City Sentinel newspaper. The City Sentinel print edition is available (still just 10 cents) early in every month at Barnes & Noble, 6100 North May Avenue, Oklahoma City, 73112.
The City Sentinel print edition is available (still just 10 cents) early in every month at Barnes & Noble, 6100 North May Avenue, Oklahoma City, 73112.