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Burr, Anthony / Charles Curtis

Chamber Music: Alvin Lucier & Morton Feldman

Burr, Anthony / Charles Curtis: Chamber Music: Alvin Lucier & Morton Feldman (Important Records)

NY clarinetists Anthony Burr and Charles Curtis present curated compositions from Alvin Lucier and 3 from Morton Feldman, performed by a trans-Atlantic group of performers including Burr & Curtis, Michiko Ogawa (clarinet), Nicolee Kuester (horn), Turkish pianist Ozgur Aydin, and Robin Hayward (tuba); 2 of the Lucier pieces are presented for the first time.

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Liner notes are "Alvin Lucier on Morton Feldman" from a 2002 lecture at UC San Diego

UPC: 793447546827

Label: Important Records
Catalog ID: IMPREC 468CD
Squidco Product Code: 27373

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: USA
Packaging: Digipack
Recorded by Tom Erbe, Tim McNailey and Andrew Minsey.


Charles Curtis-cello

Anthony Burr-clarinet

Alvin Lucier-composer

Morton Feldman-composer

Robin Hayward-tuba

Nicolee Kuester-horn

Curt Miller-clarinet

Michiko Ogawa-clarinet

Ozgur Aydin-piano

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Artist Biographies:

"Cellist Charles Curtis is an internationally renowned performer and composer of a wide variety of music, with particular emphasis on the avant-garde. Curtis is most strongly associated with minimalism, modern classical, and so-called "downtown music."

A graduate of the prestigious Juilliard School, Curtis has since been involved with the music department at Princeton University and at the University of California, San Diego, where he has served as Professor of Contemporary Music Performance since the year 2000.

Curtis has studied under such masters as vocalist Pandit Pran Nath and composer La Monte Young and still regularly records and performs."

-Wikipedia (

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"As a clarinetist, Anthony Burr has enjoyed a distinguished career as an exponent of contemporary music. He has performed in this repertoire with many leading groups, including Elision, Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Sospeso, and the Chamber Music Sociey of Lincoln Center, often as soloist. Among the many composers with whom he has worked in the presentation of their solo works are: Alvin Lucier, Helmut Lachenmann, Brian Ferneyhough, and Magnus Lindberg. He has worked widely outside the classical arena too with artists including Jim O'Rourke, Laurie Anderson, John Zorn, Mark Feldman, Chris Speed, Jim Black, Ikue Mori, Tim Barnes, Alan Licht, Mark Dresser and many others. Ongoing collaborations include a duo with Icelandic bassist/composer Skuli Sverrisson, The Clarinets (a trio with Chris Speed and Oscar Noriega), a series of recordings with cellist Charles Curtis and a series of live film/music performances with experimental filmmaker Jennifer Reeves. As a composer he has specialized in the creation of epic scale mixed media pieces, most notably Biospheria: An Environmental Opera, created with artist Steve Ausbury in response to Biosphere 2. It was performed in San Diego in 2001, and sections were mounted in archive form as part of the cinematexas festival in 2003. Another project of this ilk was The Mizler Society, a burlesque on early modern music theory, J.S Bach and the Art of Fugue, which he created with John Rodgers and was presented by the Australian Art Orchestra at the Melbourne Museum in 2002. He has produced and/or engineered records for La Monte Young, Charles Curtis, Skuli Sverrisson, Ted Reichman among others, and has a doctorate from University of California, San Diego. Upcoming releases include a new Anthony Burr/Skuli Sverrisson double CD with guest vocalists Yungchen Lamo and Arto Lindsay."

-Garden Variety (

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"Alvin Lucier was born in 1931 in Nashua, New Hampshire. He was educated in Nashua public and parochial schools, the Portsmouth Abbey School, Yale, and Brandeis and spent two years in Rome on a Fulbright Scholarship. From 1962 to 1970 he taught at Brandeis, where he conducted the Brandeis University Chamber Chorus, which devoted much of its time to the performance of new music. In 1966, along with Robert Ashley, David Behrman and Gordon Mumma, he co-founded the Sonic Arts Union. From 1968 to 2011 he taught at Wesleyan University where he was John Spencer Camp Professor of Music.

Lucier lectures and performs extensively in Asia, Europe and The United States. He has collaborated with John Ashbury (Theme) and Robert Wilson (Skin, Meat, Bone). His recent sound installation, 6 Resonant Points Along a Curved Wall, accompanied Sol DeWitt's enormous sculpture, Curved Wall, in Graz, Austria, and in the Zilkha Gallery, Wesleyan University in January 2005. Recent instrumental works include Coda Variations for 6-valve solo tuba; Twonings for cello and piano; Canon, commissioned by the Bang on a Can All-Stars, and Music with Missing Parts, a re-orchestration of Mozart's Requiem, premiered at the Mozarteum, Salzburg in December 2007. In October 2012 Two Circles, a chamber work, commissioned by The Venice Biennale, was premiered there by the Alter Ego Ensemble and in December 2013 a new work, December 12th, was performed by the Ensemble Pamplemousse at the Issue Project Room, Brooklyn and Firewood, performed in March 2014 by the Bang on a Can All Stars at Merkin Hall, New York. Lucier has recently completed two new chamber works: Orpheus Variations for solo cello and seven wind instruments and Hanover for violin, alto and tenor saxophones, piano, percussion and three banjos.

In 2013 Mr. Lucier was the guest composer at the Tectonics Festival in Glasgow, the Ultima Festival, Oslo and gave a portrait concert at the Louvre, Paris, with cellist Charles Curtis. Recent events in 2014 include three evenings of Lucier's works presented by the International Contemporary Ensemble, in Chicago; two concerts at Roulette, performed by the Callithumpian Consort, as well several concerts at The Tectonics Festival, Reykjavik, Iceland. In October 2014 Lucier was honored by a three-day festival of his works at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam.

Reflections/Reflexionen, a bi-lingual edition of Lucier's scores, interviews and writings was published by MusikTexte, Köln. In September 2012 the Wesleyan Press published Lucier's latest book, Music 109: Notes on Experimental Music. In 2013 New World Records released a recording of three of Lucier's orchestra works.

Alvin Lucier was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Society for Electro-Acoustic Music in the United States and received an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from the University of Plymouth, England. In November 2011 Wesleyan University celebrated Alvin Lucier's retirement with a three-day festival of his works."

-Wesleyan University (

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"Morton Feldman was born in New York in 1926 and died there in 1987. Just like Cage, a close friend, he was an American composer - an American artist - an American in the true sense of the word.

He identified himself by differentiating his views on composition from those of his colleagues in Europe. He was proud to be an American because he was convinced that it enabled him the freedom, unparalleled in Europe, to work unfettered by tradition. And, he was an American also in what may have been a slight inferiority complex in the face of cultural traditions in Europe, something he proudly rejected and secretly admired.

Like any true artist, Feldman was endowed with a sensitivity for impressions of a wide variety of sources, literature and painting in particular. His affinity to Samuel Beckett has enriched music literature by a unique music theatre piece, Neither, and two ensemble works. His friendship with abstract impressionist painters gave birth to a range of masterpieces, Rothko Chapel in particular. But even the knotting of oriental rugs gave Feldman musical ideas (The Turfan Fragments).

To the question as to why he preferred soft dynamic levels, he replied:

"- Because when it's loud, you can't hear the sound. You hear its attack. Then you don't hear the sound, only in its decay. And I think that's essentially what impressed Boulez . That he heard a sound, not an attack, emerging and disappearing without attack and decay, almost like an electronic medium.

Also, you have to remember that loud and soft is an aspect of differentiation. And my music is more like a kind of monologue that does not need exclamation point, colon, it does not need..."

Feldman also had an intriguing reply up his sleeve when it came to answering the question why he composed in the first place:

"You know that marvellous remark of Disraeli's? Unfortunately, he was not a good writer, but if he was a great writer, it would have been a wonderful remark. They asked him whydid he begin to write novels. He said because there was nothing to read. (laughs). I felt very much like that in terms of contemporary music. I was not really happy with it. It became like a Rohrschach test".

More than twenty years since his death, Morton Feldman's music is as alive as ever."

-Universal Edition (

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"The tuba player and composer Robin Hayward was born in Brighton, England in 1969. He studied classical music at the University of Manchester and tuba at the Royal Northern College of Music, where he graduated in 1991. In following years he was active in the improvised and experimental music scenes in Manchester and London. Since 1998 he has been based in Berlin.

He has introduced revolutionary playing techniques to brass instruments, initially through the discovery of the 'noise-valve' in 1996, and later through the development of the first fully microtonal tuba in 2009. In 2012 he invented the Hayward Tuning Vine, partly out of a desire to visualise the harmonic space implicit within the microtonal tuba. In 2005 he founded the ensemble Zinc & Copper to explore brass chamber music from an experimental music perspective.

Robin Hayward has toured extensively both solo and in collaboration, and been featured in such festivals as Maerzmusik, Fri Resonans, Donaueschingen, TRANSIT festival, Ghent Festival of Flanders, Ostrava New Music Days, Sound Symposium, Kieler Tage für Neue Musik and Wien Modern. Collaborations include such musicians as Charles Curtis and Roberto Fabbriciani, along with composers such as Christian Wolff, Alvin Lucier and Eliane Radigue. His approach to the tuba has been documented in the solo releases Valve Division, States of Rushing, Nouveau Saxhorn Nouveau Basse and Rubble Master, along with numerous collaborative releases, such as with the microtonal tuba trio Microtub and the tuba and double bass duo Reidemeister Move. He has lectured at such institutions as Stuttgart Musikhochschule, the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, UDK Berlin, Dartmouth College and Wesleyan University. He has also worked regularly with such orchestras as the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin and the Konzerthausorchester Berlin, and from 2002 to 2012 was a member of the new music ensemble KNM Berlin.

In 2012 the International Tuba and Euphonium Association (ITEA) presented him with the Clifford Bevan Award for Excellence in Research for his 2011 article on the history and development of the microtonal tuba. In 2016 he received the ITEA's Jim and Jamie Self Creative Award for his work with the microtonal tuba and Hayward Tuning Vine."

-Robin Hayward Website (

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Nicolee Kuester: "New York-based horn player Nicolee Kuester divides her time between experimental music and works from the Western musical canon. Nicolee is currently the horn fellow for Ensemble Connect, a two-year chamber music and community advocacy program of Carnegie Hall and the Juilliard School. Before moving to New York from the west coast, she was principal horn of the La Jolla Symphony, where she appeared as a concerto soloist, principal horn of the Orquesta de Baja California, and also performed with the San Diego Symphony and San Diego Opera. In 2011, Nicolee appeared with the Ensemble Intercontemporain in a concert tour of Boulez's Pli Selon Pli conducted by the composer. Her own work as a collaborative experimental musician and performance artist has been featured at festivals in Norway, Switzerland, and on both coasts of the United States. As an avid chamber musician, Nicolee has spent summers at the Marlboro Music Festival and the Lucerne Festival Academy and performed throughout San Diego with Palimpsest, San Diego New Music, Renga, and other ensembles. She holds undergraduate degrees in Music Performance and Creative Writing from Oberlin Conservatory, and is completing her DMA in Contemporary Horn Performance at UC San Diego."

-Nicolee Kuester Website (

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Curt Miller: "I'm a Boston based clarinetist and sound artist specializing in the performance of contemporary chamber music and the creation of new performance and installation works with a current focus on the role of recording technology on musical transcription and translation. As a clarinetist it has been my privilege to work internationally as soloist and ensemble member with ensembles such as Nashville's Intersection Contemporary Music Ensemble, Monday Evening Concerts in Los Angeles, the Harvard Fromm Players series and the Lucerne Festival Academy under Pierre Boulez as well as extensive work with my own chamber ensembles: ensemble et cetera and the Dunscombe/Miller Duo, hailed by the Boston Globe as "demonstrating impeccable technique and copious imagination." I have premiered dozens of new compositions and worked in depth with composers such as Pierluigi Billone, Chaya Czernowin, Helmut Lachenmann and Rebecca Saunders in addition to championing the work of many young composers through commissions and premieres.

In addition to my work as a clarinetist I have actively pursued a side interest in live computer music and sound installation with a focus on the role of the computer in transcription and examining a myriad of repertoire through its transcriptive lens. I have often worked as a collaborator with visual artist Nichole Speciale on installations which reference and extend drawing and painting through sound and video. In this capacity I currently work for digital media Professor Amy Alexander as a staff researcher helping develop her Percussive Image Gestural System--a digital instrument for improvising live visuals with improvising musicians. In addition to assisting with software development I improvise using my own system combining clarinet improvisation with live processing of recorded source material.

I received my BM in clarinet performance as a student of Richard Hawkins at Oberlin Conservatory and an MA and DMA in contemporary music performance at the University of California San Diego under Anthony Burr. In addition to my performing schedule I teach clarinet privately and as a faculty member at the Villa Musica Community Music School. For more information about my teaching practice visit"

-Curt Miller Website (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Michiko Ogawa is a musician specializing in using clarinet and sho, born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. She performs not only classical repertoire but also contemporary and experimental musics, including free improvisation.

She has appeared at the Tokyo Experimental Festival (2013), Darmstadt summer music festival (2014, 2016), Supersense Festival of Ecstatic Music (Melbourne, Australia 2015), the Monday Evening Concert series (Los Angeles, 2016), WasteLAnd (Los Angels, 2016), Inland (Melbourne, 2015, 2016), BIFEM (Bendigo, Australia 2016, 2017) , Maerzmusik 2018 (Berlin), and performed with the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra (2009). She has worked with composers including Toshi Ichiyanagi, Helmut Lachenmann, Richard Barrett, Hunjoo Jung , Cat Lamb and Chikako Morishita, and with performers including Charles Curtis, Anthony Burr, Erik Carlson, Greg Stuart, Taku Sugimoto, Vicki Ray, Erika Duke-Kirkpatrick, Shalini Vijayan among others.

She also has been collaborating with Samuel Dunscombe, Taku Sugimoto, James Rushford, Carolyn Chen and Manuel Lima. also with some visual artists, Angela Jennings, Lindsay Bloom and Brianna Rigg.

Currently, Michiko is a doctoral candidate (DMA) at the University of California (San Diego), under Prof. Anthony Burr with dissertation focusing on Teiji Ito and his music. She was awarded her bachelors degree at Toho Gakuen University, under prof. Yoshiaki Suzuki, and a masters degree at the Hochschule für Musik in Freiburg, under Prof.Jorg Widmann. Michiko was awarded second place in the Carl-Seemann Preis (2007), and performed as a representative of the Hochschule für Musik Freiburg at the 55th German Music University Competition in the same year. She worked as an associate-in for teaching clarinet at the University of California (San Diego)."

-Weebly (

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"Özgür Aydin

Turkish - American pianist Özgür Aydin made his major concerto debut in 1997 in a performance of Brahms' Piano Concerto No.1 with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. In the same year, he won the renowned ARD International Music Competition in Munich and the Nippon Music Award in Tokyo - recognition that has since served as the basis for an active and diverse international performing career. He is also a laureate of the Cleveland International Piano Competition.

Mr. Aydin has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras in Germany and Turkey, as well as with the BBC Concert Orchestra London, the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela, Slovak State Philharmonic and Canada's Calgary Philharmonic. Frequently invited to summer music festivals, he has appeared at Salzburg, Schleswig-Holstein, Rheingau, Ravinia and Edinburgh. He is a guest at many prestigious venues including New York's Carnegie Hall, London's Wigmore Hall, Munich's Herkulessaal and Tokyo's Suntory Hall.

Mr. Aydin has made recordings of solo piano works by Beethoven, Schumann, Chopin, Liszt and Rachmaninov for the European labels Videal and Yapi Kredi. His performances of the complete cycles of Beethoven's 32 piano sonatas and 5 concertos as well as Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier have been highly praised by the critics.

He is also a dedicated chamber musician, he enjoys recurrent collaborations with violinists Midori and Kolja Blacher, cellist Clemens Hagen, violist Naoko Shimizu and members of the Berlin Philharmonic. A new recording with Midori consisting of works by Bloch, Janacek and Shostakovic was released in fall 2013 on Onyx Classiscs.

Born in Colorado, USA to Turkish parents, Mr. Aydin began his music studies with Prof. Kartal at the Ankara Conservatory in Turkey. He subsequently studied with Peter Katin at the Royal College of Music in London and with Prof. Kammerling at the Hanover Music Academy. He has also received valuable instruction from artists such as Tatiana Nikolaeva, Andras Schiff.

Mr. Aydin lives in Berlin."

-Ozgur Aydin Website (

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track listing:

1. August Moon 15:18

2. Two Instruments 7:27

3. Trio for Clarinet, Cello and Tuba 12:29

4. Three Clarinets, Cello and Piano 11:05

5. Step, Slide and Sustain 14:27

6. Durations 2 7:23
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Anthony Burr and Charles Curtis present this collection of curated compositions from Alvin Lucier and Morton Feldman. Two Lucier pieces, August Moon and Trio For Clarinet, Cello & Tuba are presented here for the first time. Liner notes are excerpted from a lecture on Morton Feldman given by Alvin Lucier.

"For Feldman, dynamics serve an acoustical function. When he mitigates a piano attack he reduces that spike of noise that's at the onset of every piano sound leaving only the sinusoidal pure after-sound. It's as if he invented electronic music with the piano."- Alvin Lucier from liner notes.

Lucier manages to hear a layer of acoustical physics in Feldman's music that perhaps no one else would hear. He's hearing something in Feldman that is actually coming from his own musical world; in a way, hearing his own music in Feldman's, and drawing inspiration from that."-Important Records

Liner notes are "Alvin Lucier on Morton Feldman" from a 2002 lecture at UC San Diego
Related Categories of Interest:

Compositional Forms
Trio Recordings
Duo Recordings
Ambient & Minimal Music
New in Compositional Music

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Important Records.

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