Program Notes - Erika Boysen, Flute

Program Notes - Erika Boysen, Flute

“Music With Dance” Third Dissertation Recital Erika Boysen, Flute Jessica Post and Marcus White, Choreographic Collaborators Video Studio, Duderstadt...

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“Music With Dance”

Third Dissertation Recital Erika Boysen, Flute Jessica Post and Marcus White, Choreographic Collaborators Video Studio, Duderstadt Center April 3rd, 2015

Marin Marais, Les Foiles d’Espange Choreographer, Jessica Post in collaboration with the Dancers Dancers, Amy Cadwallader, Molly Paberzs and Maddy Rager Seventeenth-century virtuoso viol player, Marin Marais, composed and performed in the French royal court from 1679 until 1725. His position of “viol player in ordinary of the King’s Chamber Music” oversaw the rule of both King Louis the XIV and Louis XV at the height of French Baroque.1 As a pupil of Jean Baptiste Lully, director of the Opéra orchestra in Paris, Marias received excellent training and performance opportunities. Of his extensive compositional output, Marais’ five volumes of pieces for bass viol with basso continuo accompaniment, printed in 1686, 1701, 1711, 1717, and 1725, are his most significant.2 Les Foiles d’Espagne is a product from his second book, published in1701. This piece is a theme and variations with thirty-two couplets based upon the opening sixteen bars of harmonic progressions: i-V-i-VII-III-VII-i-V/i-V-i-VII-III-VII-i-V-i In each preface of his second through fifth books of works for viol, Marais suggests that his pieces could also be performed by other instruments and explicitly mentions organ, harpsichord, the oboe, violin, and transverse flute as good contenders.3 Of the thirty-two variations in Les Foiles d’Espagne, only eleven will be performed this 1

Erin E.K. Murphy, “The Transcription for Flute and Keyboard of Selections from ‘Suitte d'un Gout Etranger’ by Marin Marais” (DMA diss, The University of Wisconsin - Madison, 2013) 2. 2 3

Ibid., 4.

Marin Marais, Suite Aus Pièces De Violes, (2. Buch): Für Blockflöte Und Basso Continuo, ed. Ernst Kubitschek, (Wien: Doblinger, 2001).

evening. The accompanying movement for each variation was developed through the generation of descriptive words that spoke to the atmosphere and character of each variation: #1-Fluid, #2- walking, traveling, #3-intimate, emotional, introverted, #4pointed, vertical, muscular, #5- grounded, #6- virtuosic, flashy, extroverted, #7- slow, soft, #8- running, #9- jumps, #10- melancholic, pastorale, #11- ricochet Choreographer’s note: “The movement for Les Folies d’Espagne explores the theme and variations construct present in Marais’ music. The work starts with a movement phrase, or theme, and is performed with the Les Foiles theme. The movement phrase is then altered and expanded upon to represent (and occasionally contrast) the particular qualities found in each musical variation, while incorporating movement invention by the dancers.” -Jessica Post

Toru Takemitsu, Air Choreographer, Jessica Post Dancer, Jessica Post Video Artist, Eric Sheffield Born in 1930 in the Hongo district of Tokyo, Takemitsu spent his first eight years in China with his father, an avid shakuhachi flute player who also enjoyed listening to dixieland and jazz music. This interest in a musical dichotomy of styles shaped much of Takemitsu’s own compositional style that is considered to have bridged East and West. Takemitsu’s initial affinity towards, “western music” and later, “traditional Japanese music”, were points of great contention. At the age of eight, having moved back to Tokyo, Takemitsu recalls hearing traditional Japanese music all around, but it never held much appeal.4 Later, this type of music would be associated with dark memories, “...hearing traditional Japanese music always recalled the bitter memories of the war”.5 Primarily self-taught, Takemitsu decided to pursue composition at the early age of sixteen with little musical instruction. His first exposure to Western music was during his time in the military. He was so taken with these new sounds that were then banned in his own country that he took to modeling his compositional style off of the great Western 4

Peter Burt, The Music of Toru Takemitsu (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001) 22.


Ibid., 22.

masters such as Debussy and Franck, and distanced himself from compositional tendencies of that sounded traditionally Japanese. Takemitsu’s compositional style fluctuated throughout his life to reflect a range of Western and Eastern influences. Takemitsu provided a window into a vastly different culture and conception of music by using western instruments to achieve Japanese concepts of sound, silence and pitch, Premiered in Japan on January 28th, 1996 by flutist, Hiroshi Koizumi, Air was written in honor of French flutist Aurele Nicolet on his seventieth birthday. Many elements of nature are infused into the musical language of Air. One such element is the Japanese concept of Ma or space/silence. This musical element can be seen and heard as perceptual silence or stillness with great intensity. Often you will hear this effect carrying as much purpose and intent as the notes that surround the silence. Another natural element present in the musical tapestry of Air is use of pitch variation. Often Takemitsu uses extended techniques such as flutter-tongue and quarter-tone trills to destabilize a fundamental pitch. Just as wind alters the position of leaves, soil, flowers the player’s exhalation of breath alters the pitch center created on the flute. Choreographer’s note: “The choreography for Air is inspired by the concept of “Ma”, or space and silence, and Takemitsu’s use of diminuendo to merge sound and silence. The work experiments with progressions between movement and stillness (silence) and open spaces within movement. The silence holds equal, if not more, intensity than the sound and movement. Other movement influences include the reflection of nature within Japanese art (including the emptiness or openness within Japanese gardens) and the interplay between physical restraint and bursts of energy.” -Jessica Post Video Artist’s note: “The visuals for Air were designed with the dancer in mind, aiming to incorporate the two elements into a single presentation. Simple line art was derived from a single iconic Japanese image of a force of nature, while subtle motion and patient development enhance rather than distract from the dancer’s movements.” -Eric Sheffield

Astor Piazzolla, Tango Etude No. 4 Choreographer, Jessica Post Dancer, Maddy Rager The Argentinian composer and virtuoso bandoneon performer, Astor Piazzolla is known for reinventing the Tango. Born in Buenos Aires in 1921 he emigrated with his family to New York where he spent the majority of his formative years. Upon moving back to Buenos Aires, Piazzolla divided his compositional efforts between arranging tangos for bands and studying classical music with the revered Argentine composer, Alberto Ginastera. Upon winning the Fabien Sevitzky competition he was awarded a scholarship in 1954 and given the opportunity to study with the iconic Nadia Boulanger in Paris at the Fontainebleau Conservatory. Boulanger encouraged Piazzolla to return to the tango and his instrument, the bandoneon, when she claimed, “Astor, your classical pieces are well written, but the true Piazzolla is here, never leave it behind.” 6 Piazzolla reinvented the tango to include elements of fugue, chromaticism, dissonance, jazz and expanded instrumentation. He brought the form from its origins in the bordellos to the concert halls of Europe and America. The Tango Etudes were originally written for flute or violin in 1987. The collection of six short etudes explores varying facets of the tango. Etude No. 4 displays the intimate and lyrical side of the tango with weighted glissandos, tentative dynamics and sensual melodies. Choreographer’s note: “The movement for Piazzolla’s Tango Etude is tango inspired by, but is not not meant to be a literal interpretation of an Argentine Tango. Instead, the movement investigates some structural and aural elements found in Piazzolla’s music, such as counterpoint, individuality, intricacy, grit and virtuosity. The concept of touch is also significant, representing the locked embrace of a couple dancing an Argentine Tango.“ -Jessica Post


Jorge Pessinis and Carlos Kuri, “Astor Piazzolla: Chronology of a Revolution” Francisco Luongo Trans.

Oliver Knussen, Masks for Solo Flute, Op.3 Choreographer, Jessica Post in collaboration with the Dancers Dancers, Amy Cadwallader and Molly Paberzs Pre-eminent English composer and conductor, Oliver Knussen, was introduced to an orchestral sound at a very early age. As the son of a double bassist in the London Symphony Orchestra, Knussen spent the majority of his childhood and adolescence backstage immersing himself in the textures and sounds of the orchestra.7 Though he is known for his larger orchestral works, his ability to find the same multitude of colors and sounds from one single instrument is a testament to his creativity and understanding of individual instruments. Renowned for his conducting as well as his composing, Knussen was named Music Director of the London Sinfonietta in 1998, chief guest conductor of the Residentie-Orkest and has guest conducted several leading orchestras in the United States. His close associations with the Aldeburgh Festival in 1983 to 1998 and the contemporary music activities at the Tanglewood Music Center from 1986-1993 have has established himself in the contemporary music scene.8 Composed in 1969, the same year as one of Knussen’s earliest orchestral pieces, Masks provides an interesting contrast to this composer’s favored compositional medium, the orchestra. Being completely at odds with the the multitude of textures and colors accessible to a composer when writing for the orchestra, this 8 minute long solo flute piece draws upon other techniques to explore a similar breadth within a “single-line medium”. Imploring the performer to use their body and facial expressions as a means for dramatic delivery, Knussen finds ways of visually complementing the musical fragments that are equally as dramatic as the visual directions in the score- “walking freely around the central stage area”, “Turn to face the audience; grimace while playing”, “Violent head jerk”.9 Throughout the nine sections of Masks, Knussen juxtaposes musical characters/ roles that are described in Knussen’s own words as being “histrionic” and “parodies” of one another. The choreography exploits these contrasting characters and roles with the Laurie A. Middaugh, “The Solo Piano Music of Oliver Knussen” (DMA diss, The University of Alabama, 2011). 7


Julian Anderson, “Knussen, Oliver” Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press, accessed March 14, 2015, article/grove/music/15217. 9

Oliver Knussen, Masks for Solo Flute with Glass Chimes Ad Lib. Op.3. (London: Faber Music, 1990).

use of two separate dancers who embody the affective projections of the volatile music. The music can be seen and heard in one of two different characters. The first character that begins the piece is meditative and lyrical, characterized by single pitches that increase and decrease in volume and silence that separate these slow moving pitches. Similarly, the movement that portrays this character is fluid and introspective. In contrast, the second character is caustic and disjunct. The accompanying movement to this contrasting character is aggressive and spastic. These contrasting characters frequently interrupt one another creating chasms in the musical line. Choreographer’s note: “In Masks, Knussen provides movement directions in his score, which become a map for choreography. His score is labeled in nine sections, with specific instructions for each. For example, his directions include: “movement should be simple”, “parody of section one (parody of simple movement)”, “splitting of musical characters”, and “like section one”. Following Knussen’s blueprint, I use set and improvised material to explore both simple movements and parody, and the dancers embody the “splitting of musical characters” in various ways. The dancers’ movements supplement the dramatic movements and facial expressions of the flutist.” -Jessica Post

Jacob Ter Veldhuis, Lipstick for flute, alto flute and boombox Video Artist, Eric Sheffield Dutch composer, Jacob Ter Veldhuis (Jacob TV) has made a unique niche for himself in the world of classical music. Named, “A rock musician in a classical disguise”, Jacob TV unites the gamut of musical and political influences to create a voice that stands apart.10 His ability to bridge the differences between classical, romantic, rock n’ roll, jazz, blues, and minimalist traditions combined with raw samples from political speeches, commercials, documentaries, talk shows and interviews have established him as one of the most performed current European composers. Starting his career in 1980 after graduating from the Conservatory of Groningen he was first known for his larger orchestral works, Symphony No. 1 and Symphony No. 2, chamber works, Insonnia for 10

Paul Janssen, “JacobTV- A Portrait” Hilary Staples, trans.

mezzo-soprano, accordion, bass clarinet, percussion, Drei Stille Lieder for baritone and ensemble and Diverso il Tempo. It wasn’t until the mid 90’s that he started experimenting with the combining of styles and genres with pre-recorded material. Lipstick for amplified flute, alto flute and tape was written in 1998 for Dutch flutist, Eleonore Pameijer. Like most of Jacob TV’s “boombox works”, the notated, live music is accompanied by an electronic soundtrack based on speech melody. The accompanying tape for Lipstick uses, “desperate conversations about human relationships of pre-recorded American talk shows” as its primary material.11 Throughout the tape you will hear an interview of Billie Holiday reciting the text of her favorite song, Don’t Explain. Phrases such as, “Skip that lipstick” , “I know you cheat” and “what love endures” are interspersed with a different voice representing a relationship therapist counseling the desperate talk show guests, “You are jumping all of those hoops”. These snippets of pre-recorded material are layered and manipulated to create a rhythmical tapestry of sounds that weave in and around the solo flute. Lipstick will be a accompanied by projections created by video artist, Eric Sheffield. Highlighting the influence of American talk shows apparent in the accompanying tape, the video uses clips taken from the famous Ed Sullivan Show that aired from the 1950’s -1970’s. A dancing monkey jumping through hoops, blindfolded contestants and various interviews are some samples that provide a visual complement to the beginning and ending sections of Lipstick. The middle lyrical section will highlight images of Billie Holiday. Eric writes, “Like many of Jacob TV’s other pieces for instrument and boombox, Lipstick utilizes heavily edited, stylized, and repetitive found audio samples of speech to derive musical gesture and create rhythmic drive - it seemed that the video should be treated the same way.”

Greg Patillo, Three Beats for beatbox flute Choreographer, Marcus White in collaboration with the Dancers Dancers (in order of appearance), Jimi Loc Nguyen, Anthony Alterio and Beynji Marsh Classically trained flutist, Greg Patillo, expanded the sonic capabilities of the flute in 2006 when he combined traditional flute techniques with beatboxing, a vocal method that generates percussive sounds. Having received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music where he studied primarily with Principal flutist of the Cleveland Orchestra, Joshua Smith, Patillo grew up preparing for a


Jacob Ter Veldhuis, Lipstick for flute/alto flute and boombox. (Amsterdam: Donemus, 2000).

career as an orchestral musician.12 Though he came close to winning an orchestral position on many occasions, his career ended up being far more unconventional. After moving back to the west coast after the completion of graduate school, Patillo honed his skills as a beatboxer while working at a grocery store, restocking inventory.13 He combined the flute with beatboxing as a way of increasing his marketability as a flutist. By 2006, Patillo uploaded a video to youtube featuring his flute beatboxing to the theme song of “Super Mario Brothers Theme Song”.14 The video went “Viral”. Since 2006 he has lived in Brooklyn, New York where he can be seen and heard on concert hall stages in addition to the streets and subway stations throughout New York. Three Beats for beatbox flute was commissioned by the National Flute Association for the 2011 Convention High School Competition. Written in three movements, Patillo’s wish was, “to provide a path for performers of traditional flute repertoire to absorb and implement a wide variety of beatbox sounds and use these techniques in a piece that was accessible to modern audiences with limited classical experience.” 15 Notated with three different lines indicating pitches for the flute, beatboxing rhythms and, at times, vocal pitches, Patillo explores the limits of techniques used to produce sound on the flute. The choreographer for this work, Marcus White, developed movement for each individual movement or “beat” through improvisational structures riffing off of the musical nuances. In Marcus’ own words, “Each dancer is a visual artist and the music is their muse. Jimi Loc Nguyen, Anthony Alterio and Beynji Marsh each inscribe the space with their paint brush (i.e. their bodies). “ This style of dance, a combination of street styles with contemporary aesthetics, is reflective of the popular hip-hop nature of beatboxing. *Collaborative partnerships with both choreographers were developed as a component of the curriculum for Dance 446/586 - Accompanying Movement, directed by Professor Christian Matijas-Mecca.


Ronda Benson Ford, “Three beats for beatbox flute: a chat with Greg Pattillo: at the 2011 convention in Charlotte, Ronda Benson Ford spoke with beatbox flutist Greg Patillo, whom the NFA had commissioned to write a work for the 2012 competition, about his piece and his process” (Flutist Quarterly 38.1 2012): 34+. 13

Greg Patillo, Masterclass at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Spring 2008.


Ronda Benson Ford, “Three beats for beatbox flute: a chat with Greg Pattillo: at the 2011 convention in Charlotte, Ronda Benson Ford spoke with beatbox flutist Greg Patillo, whom the NFA had commissioned to write a work for the 2012 competition, about his piece and his process” (Flutist Quarterly 38.1 2012): 34+. 15

Bibliography Anderson, Julian. "Knussen, Oliver." Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press, accessed March 14, 2015,http:// music/ 15217. Burt, Peter. The Music of Toru Takemitsu. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001. Eisen, Cliff. "Piazzolla, Astor." Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press, accessed March 14, 2015,http:// music/ 45192. Ford, Ronda Benson. "Three beats for beatbox flute: a chat with Greg Pattillo: at the 2011 convention in Charlotte, Ronda Benson Ford spoke with beatbox flutist Greg Patillo, whom the NFA had commissioned to write a work for the 2012 competition, about his piece and his process." Flutist Quarterly 38.1 (2012): 34+. Gorce, Jérôme de La and Sylvette Milliot. "Marais, Marin." Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online.Oxford University Press, accessed February 7, 2015,http:// music/ 17702. Janssen, Paul. “JacobTV- A Portrait.” Translated by Hilary Staples. Music Center The Netherlands. Knussen, Oliver. Masks for Solo Flute with Glass Chimes Ad Lib. Op.3. London: Faber Music, 1990. Murphy, Erin E.K.. “The Transcription for Flute and Keyboard of Selections from ‘Suitte d'un Gout Etranger’ by Marin Marais.” DMA diss., The University of Wisconsin Madison, 2013. ProQuest (AAT 3588526). Pessinis, Jorge and Carlos Kuri. “Astor Piazzolla: Chronology of a Revolution.” Translated by Francisco Luongo, 2002. biography-english.html Marais, Marin. Suite Aus Pièces De Violes, (2. Buch): Für Blockflöte Und Basso Continuo. Edited by Ernst Kubitschek,. Wien: Doblinger, 2001. Middaugh, Laurie A.. “The Solo Piano Music of Oliver Knussen.” DMA diss., The University of Alabama, 2011. ProQuest, (AAT 3461093). Narazaki, Yoko, and Masakata Kanazawa. "Takemitsu, Tōru." In Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press, accessed March 2, 2015,http:// article/ grove/music/27403. Randall, David K. “A Flute with a Beat, and you Might Dance to it.” New York Times, (2007, May 22)

Robinson, E. A. ‘"Voice", "Itinerant", and "Air": A performance and analytical guide to the solo flute works of Toru Takemitsu.’ DMA diss., Ball State University, 2011. ProQuest (AAT 3454280). Ter Veldhuis, Jacob. Lipstick for flute/alto flute and boombox. Amsterdam: Donemus, 2000.