Music of James Tenney
Jun
8
8:00 PM20:00

Music of James Tenney

One of the most influential American composers of the 20th century, James Tenney (1934-2006) combined the experimental spirit of Cage and company with a rigorous grounding in acoustics, perception, and information theory. This program explores Tenney’s music for string instruments, from his diagrammatic Postal Pieces (1965-71) to his last major work, the string quartet Arbor vitae (2006). The centerpiece is Tenney’s 1982 composition Glissade, a five-movement work for viola, cello, contrabass, and delay system that serves as a compendium of his major compositional interests and techniques.


Cellogram (1971)
Carolina Diazgranados, cello
 

Harmonium #5 (1978)
Myanna Harvey, violin
Emma Hey, viola
Carolina Diazgranados, cello


Koan (1971)
Anna Lim, violin


Glissade (1982)
I. Shimmer  
II. Array (a’rising)
III. Bessel functions of the first kind
IV. Trias Harmonica
V. Stochastic-canonic Variations

Veronica Jurkiewicz, viola
Tom Kraines, cello
Evan Runyon, bass
with tape-delay system


Beast (1971)
Evan Runyon, bass
 

Arbor vitae (2006)
Anna Lim, violin I
Myanna Harvey, violin II
Emma Hey, viola
Tom Kraines, cello

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Tom Johnson: Rational Melodies
Mar
17
8:00 PM20:00

Tom Johnson: Rational Melodies

The American composer Tom Johnson (b. 1939) has made a career of quite literally composing by numbers. Motivated by mathematical concepts such as self-similarity, transformations, and tiling patterns, Johnson's compositions are rigorously formalistic, but his use of repetition and familiar musical materials makes the underlying processes recognizable and (usually) enjoyable. The centerpiece of this concert is Johnson's 1982 work Rational Melodies, a set of 21 short pieces each consisting of a single melodic part generated by more or less complicated mathematical procedures, creating perceptual patterns that both challenge and enchant the ears. 

THE PROGRAM

Johnson: Counting Keys (1982-89)
David Hughes, piano

Johnson: Rational Melodies (1982)
Tessa Ellis, trumpet
Joe Dvorak, clarinet
RJ McGhee, trombone
David Middleton, bass guitar
Dominic Panunto, bassoon

Johnson: Block Design for Piano (2005)
David Hughes, piano
 

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Julius Eastman: Thruway plus Gerry Eastman
Jan
27
8:00 PM20:00

Julius Eastman: Thruway plus Gerry Eastman

An important landmark in the recovery of Julius Eastman's music, this concert features one of Eastman's earliest works—Thruway (for soprano, flute, clarinet, trombone, violin, cello, and large choir)—in its New York City debut performed by the Arcana New Music Ensemble. They will also be performing Eastman's piece Buddha. Opening the evening will be a special performance by Gerry Eastman, brother of Julius.

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The Holy Presence of Joan d'Arc
May
26
8:00 PM20:00

The Holy Presence of Joan d'Arc

For the final concert, Eastman's powerful work for 10 cellos The Holy Presence of Joan D'Arc and its introspective companion vocal piece Prelude to The Holy Presence of Joan d'Arc will be performed. Far ahead of their time, these pieces incorporate a much more atonal language into Eastman's minimalist aesthetic.  The concert will open with an encore performance of Eastman's "Thruway" and a solo work by NYC based musicians Jeremy Toussaint-Baptiste.  
 

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Macle, Thruway, Buddha plus Moor Mother
May
12
8:00 PM20:00

Macle, Thruway, Buddha plus Moor Mother

An important landmark in the recovery of Eastman's music, this concert features the modern premieres of two of Eastman's earliest works- Macle (for 4 voices) and Thruway (for soprano, flute, clarinet, trombone, violin, cello, large choir, and jazz trio - in their first performances since the 1970s.  Opening the concert will be his enigmatic late period open instrumentation composition Buddha here performed as a choral work.  Also joining the line up is Moor Mother performing a new spoken word piece dedicated to Julius Eastman.  

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Stay On It + Femenine
May
5
8:00 PM20:00

Stay On It + Femenine

The first concert features two of the works most widely performed during Eastman's life time - Stay on It and Femenine - both early examples of his minimalist-based works to show pop music influence.  Opening the evening will be a special performance by Gerry Eastman, brother of Julius.   

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WE THE PEOPLE
Feb
24
8:00 PM20:00

WE THE PEOPLE

Arcana joins forces with the Prometheus Chamber Ensemble to perform two politically charged works of modern music. Dutch composer Louis Andriessen's 1975 composition Workers Union is notated as a single part that can be played by any kind of instruments, melodic or percussive. 

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THE LADY WITH THE HAMMER  The Music of Galina Ustvolskaya
Feb
12
8:00 PM20:00

THE LADY WITH THE HAMMER The Music of Galina Ustvolskaya

The Russian composer Galina Ustvolskaya (1919-2006) created some of the most severe, brutalist classical music of the 20th century. Favoring stark textures and unusual combinations of instruments-- she never formally studied orchestration-- her music unfolds in ruthlessly throbbing rhythms, angular melodic shards, and resonant caverns of silence. 

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The Music of Moondog
Jun
17
8:00 PM20:00

The Music of Moondog

Arcana is pleased to present "The Music of Moondog", a survey of the idiosyncratic rounds and songs by composer Louis Thomas Hardin Jr (1916 - 1999). The eccentric street musician known as Moondog dressed in Viking garb and regularly performed on the sidewalks of New York's Sixth Avenue. This concert is the debut performance of the Arcana New Music Ensemble. 
 

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Begin Anywhere: Chapter 4
Jun
5
8:00 PM20:00

Begin Anywhere: Chapter 4

This is a series about starting a new music ensemble. In Philadelphia. In 2015. But it is also a series for anyone that's ever tried to make something with other people. It's about starting a non-profit, or an ensemble, or a business, or choosing not too. It's about being unstoppable in the face of soul-crushing paperwork, or just finding your own path.

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Begin Anywhere: Chapter 3
May
15
8:00 PM20:00

Begin Anywhere: Chapter 3

This is a series about starting a new music ensemble. In Philadelphia. In 2015. But it is also a series for anyone that's ever tried to make something with other people. It's about starting a non-profit, or an ensemble, or a business, or choosing not too. It's about being unstoppable in the face of soul-crushing paperwork, or just finding your own path.

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May
3
8:00 PM20:00

Begin Anywhere: Chapter 2

This is a series about starting a new music ensemble. In Philadelphia. In 2015. But it is also a series for anyone that's ever tried to make something with other people. It's about starting a non-profit, or an ensemble, or a business, or choosing not too. It's about being unstoppable in the face of soul-crushing paperwork, or just finding your own path. It's about asking the question "How are we going to do this?", answering "I don't know", and giving it a shot anyway. It's also a chance to hear some great music and words of wisdom.

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Begin Anywhere: Chapter 1
Apr
11
8:00 PM20:00

Begin Anywhere: Chapter 1

This is a series about starting a new music ensemble. In Philadelphia. In 2015. But it is also a series for anyone that's ever tried to make something with other people. It's about starting a non-profit, or an ensemble, or a business, or choosing not too. It's about being unstoppable in the face of soul-crushing paperwork, or just finding your own path.

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