The University of Richmond’s Third Practice Electroacoustic Music Festival was a whole lot of fun! Many thanks go out to Benjamin Broening (founder and artistic director of 3P) and his staff. This was the festival’s 11th year and featured eighth blackbird (ensemble-in-residence), VERGE Ensemble (featured artists), and performers Elizabeth McNutt, Jason Price, Daivd Niethamer, Daniel Koppelman, Ruth Neville, and myself.
I was at Third Practice to perform Paul Leary’s Number Stations, which I commissioned and premiered in 2010, and to premiere Christopher Chandler’s latest work a thing of dream and mist. Both pieces consist of solo saxophone and playback. You can hear Number Stations in the media section. I plan to record a thing of dream and mist and can’t wait to upload it!
This year’s Third Practice consisted of 5 concerts spread over November 4th and 5th. Concert One featured young composers Joo Won Park, Lesley Hinger, Heather Stebbins, Matthew McCabe, David Malkiel, and Christopher Chandler. I particularly enjoyed Park’s Introvert (watch on Vimeo) and, of course, playing Chris’ music.
Concert Two featured eighth blackbird with several solo pieces. As they are known to do, 8bb was really great through. Here’s my favorite pieces: Anna Clines’ rapture uses clarinet with distortion and fixed media in a well-connected manner. Alvin Lucier’s Nothing is Real (Strawberry Fields) for piano, amplified teapot, and electronics manages to reimagine the famous Beatles tune in a singular way. Tristan Perich’s piccolo and 1-bit electronics piece, A/B/C/D, was retro-futuristic-ly awesome. Anna Clyne’s 1987 for quartet and fixed media was performed with impressive reserve. JacobTV’s The Body of Your Dreams for piano and fixed media critiques USA fitness culture with lots of humor.
To avoid excessive detail, I will just mention some of my favorites pieces from the second day of the festival. McGregor Boyle’s Midway Inlet is a very tasteful and peaceful piece for clarinet and electronics. David Little’s and the sky was still there (watch on Vimeo) was premiered in it’s cello version. Nathan Wolek shared his fixed media piece attack which is entirely composed of the start of music in his music library. Benjamin Broening’s gathering light for violin and electronics had an excellent performance by Lina Bahn. And finally, Lucky Leone and Butch Rovan performed their rather funny and entertaining piece Slim Jim Choker for speaker and interactive typewriter.
I had a great time attending the festival and send my thanks to Paul Leary and and Chris Chandler for inviting me to perform their pieces!
Above graphic designed by John Malinoski.