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Dohee Lee performing OM18
Dohee Lee, of South Korea, performs at Other Minds Festival 18.

Other Minds 18 cast a wide net for international performers and composers. Artists and music from various islands figure prominently in the 2013’s festival: Greenland, the distant Faroe Islands (in the far North Atlantic Ocean), Manhattan, and volcanic Jeju Island (off Korea). The offerings included a remarkable array of musical woodwinds, from the soprano recorder of the world’s most widely-hailed Baroque recorder player, Michala Petri, to Anna Petrini’s rare Paetzold contrabass recorder. The ultra-long Indian bansuri, a remarkably tender low registered flute, was presented by the great Indian classical music master, G.S. Sachdev, accompanied by Swapan Chaudhuri on tabla.  The genre-busting Scandinavian folk music trio, Gáman (violin, recorder and accordion), rounded out the festival with music from the Faroe Islands, Greenland, Denmark, and Sweden.

Michala Petri began playing the recorder at the age of three and could be heard for the first time on Danish radio by the age of five. She made her debut as a concert soloist in 1969 at the Tivoli Concert Hall, Copenhagen. Since then, the Danish artist has toured all the continents, and has appeared in the most famous concert halls and festivals in the world. Her astonishing mastery of her instruments as well as the infectious musicality she communicates instantly to audiences have been devoted to works ranging from the Baroque to the contemporary. Many composers have written and dedicated works to Michala Petri. She has worked with artists such as Heinz Holliger, James Galway, Gidon Kremer, Pinchas Zukerman, Claudio Abbado, Christopher Hogwood, and Keith Jarrett. Over the years, Michala Petri has received a wealth of honors and awards including  the German “Echo” Disc Award, the Lonie Sonning Music Prize, the Wilhelm Hansen Music Prize, and the H.C. Lumbye Prize for her success in bringing classical music to a wide audience.

Anna Petrini, born in Stockholm Sweden, has established herself as a musician in both contemporary and early music. She received her Master’s degree at the Royal University College of Music in Stockholm and furthered her studies at the Conservatory van Amsterdam. Anna performs internationally as a soloist and chamber musician and has been invited to venues such as Warsaw Autumn, ISCM World New Music Days, Other Minds Festival, Musica Electronica Nova, Bath International Music Festival, Stockholm Early Music Festival, Nordic Music Days, Journée GRAME and Tokyo Opera City Recital Hall. Alongside numerous awards from the Swedish Arts Grants Committee and the Swedish Music Academy, she was a prize winner in the Van Wassenaer Competition for Early Music, Holland, with ensemble La Soave Melodia in 2004. With ensemble Trio Stravaganti she won the first prize in the Swedish competition “Young and Promising 2007.”

G.S. Sachdev began playing the bansuri when he was 14, and has created a rare form of instant communication with audiences through his music. Unlike many musicians, he has shied away from fusion, finding great pleasure and a sense of immense satisfaction with the rigors of infinite exploration within traditional pure classical Indian music. Beyond his worldwide live performances, Sachdev’s music is thoroughly enjoyed in yoga studios, meditation ashrams, massage rooms, spiritual centers, and homes everywhere imaginable. His music is considered an antidote to stress, fatigue, and cynicism. Sachdev’s frequent world tours and recordings have won him many laurels and made him an internationally renowned legend respected by musicians and audiences in all realms of world music today.

Born on Jeju Island, a volcanic island off the southern coast of Korea known for its strong shamanic tradition and matriarchal culture, performance artist Dohee Lee studied Korean dance, percussion, and voice at a master level. Her work integrates these traditional roots with contemporary and experimental performance forms, and layers stories, myths, politics, and spirituality into multidisciplinary performance pieces that combine music, movement, visuals, costumes, installation, and audience participation.

Meredith Monk is a composer, singer, director/choreographer and creator of new opera, music-theater works, films, and installations. A pioneer in what is now called “extended vocal technique” and “interdisciplinary performance,” Monk creates works that thrive at the intersection of music and movement, image and object, light and sound, in an effort to discover and weave together new modes of perception. Among her many accolades, she was named “2012 Composer of the Year” by Musical America, one of NPR’s “50 Great Voices,” and received a “2011 Yoko Ono Lennon Courage Award for the Arts.”

From the Faroe Islands, Sunleif Rasmussen was born on Sandoy–“the sand island”–in 1961. In terms of his own priorities, the stress on the nationality is important if one wants to approach his music and style. At all events the Faroese aspect–the colonial history, the yearning for freedom, the language, the songs and the culture–fills most of the self-portrait that he put into writing in 2002 when he received the greatest recognition ever afforded a Faroese composer: the Nordic Council’s Music Prize for the symphony Oceanic Days; Rasmussen was its youngest composer. His youth on Sandoy with the omnipresent Atlantic, the dunes, the lyme-grass, and the gales seems to explain much of the highly sensual musical experience one can get out of Sunleif Rasmussen’s music.

One of the most promising of the young generation of Italian composers, Fausto Romitelli, born in Gorizia in 1963, died prematurely in 2004 after a long illness. He studied at IRCAM’s Cursus de Composition and, from 1993 to 1995, collaborated with the Représentations Musicales team in the capacity of “compositeur en recherche.” Romitelli’s experiments in sound synthesis and spectral analysis informed his compositions: Sabbia del Tempo (1991) for six performers, and Natura morta con fiamme (1991), for string quartet and electronics.

Paula Matthusen is a composer who writes both electroacoustic and acoustic music and realizes sound installations. In addition to writing for a a variety of different instruments, she also collaborates with choreographers and theater companies. She has written for diverse instrumentations, such as “run-on sentence of the pavement” for piano, ping-pong balls, and electronics, which Alex Ross of The New Yorker noted as being “entrancing.” Her work often considers discrepancies in musical space—real, imagined, and remembered.

Born in Detroit in 1970, Craig Taborn first came to international attention as a member of saxophonist James Carter’s ensembles. By the late 1990s he was playing regularly with Roscoe Mitchell and leading his own groups. In the 2000s he was heard often in Tim Berne’s bands and played with Dave Douglas, Gerald Cleaver and many others. One of the most sought after sidemen and sessioneers, valued for his quick-witted improvising capacity, there is growing awareness among the jazz listening public that he is one of the great pianists of the present moment. The rugged lyricism of Taborn’s first solo album for ECM, Avenging Angel, has been widely praised.

Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen was born on November 21, 1932 in Copenhagen, At the age of 26 he entered the Royal Danish Academy of Music completing his studies in 1958. His public compositional debut took place in 1955 with Variationer for cello (1954). In this and his other early compositions there is an obvious influence of neo-classicism and, more particularly, of Béla Bartók. He later became influenced by serialism, being particularly interested in the problems concerning time and rhythm.

Composer Malin Bång resides in Stockholm, Sweden. Her work includes music for instrumental ensembles, orchestra, staged music, electronic music, instrumental sound installations, and performance pieces. In Malin Bång’s compositions she develops the idea that the main component in music is movement and energy.

Aaron Gervais is a Canadian composer of new classical/avant-garde music, born in 1980 in Edmonton, Alberta. He received a Bachelor of Music with Honors from the University of Toronto, and a Master’s degree from the University of California at San Diego. He has also pursued studies at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in the Hague, Netherlands. Gervais’ teachers have included Chan Ka Nin (CA), Chinary Ung (US), Philippe Manoury (FR), and Martijn Padding (NL), and he has also participated in masterclasses with renowned composers from around the world. Prior to studying composition, Gervais studied jazz drumming and Cuban folkloric percussion, including a summer of private study in Havana in 2002.

Festival Program

CONCERT 1

Thursday, February 28, 2013
Kanbar Hall, Jewish Community Center, San Francisco, CA

Gáman (Denmark): Bolette Roed, recorder; Andreas Borregaard, accordion; Rune Tonsgaard Sørensen, violin
Brestiskvædi, Traditional from the Faroe Islands
Accvire (2008) by Sunlief Rasmussen, U.S. premiere
Ormurin Langi, Traditional from the Faroe Islands
Regin Smidur, Traditional from the Faroe Islands
Two Polonesses, Traditional from Denmark

Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen
Together or Not (2013), World premiere
Two drum songs, Traditional from Greenland
Stenselepolskan, Traditional from Sweden

G.S. Sachdev (India/USA)
Raga Shyam Kalyan
Raga Bahar
G.S. Sachdev, bansuri and Swapan Chaudhuri, tabla

 

CONCERT 2

Friday, March 1, 2013
Kanbar Hall, Jewish Community Center, San Francisco, CA

Dohee Lee (South Korea/USA)
ARA (2013), World premiere
Dohee Lee, eye harp (custom made instrument) and voice; Adria Otte, electronic processing

Anna Petrini (Sweden)
three works for Paetzold contrabass bass recorder and electronics:
Split Rudder (2011) by Malin Bång, U.S. premiere
Seascape (1994) by Fausto Romitelli
Sinew0od (2008) by Mattias Petersson, U.S. premiere

Craig Taborn (USA)
Avenging Angel Solos for piano (2011- )

 

CONCERT 3

Saturday, March 2, 2013
Kanbar Hall, Jewish Community Center, San Francisco, CA

Aaron Gervais (Canada/USA)
Work Around the World (2012), World premiere
Amy X Neuburg, voice and live looping electronics; William Winant Percussion Group

Sunleif Rasmussen
Vogelstimmung (2011), U.S. premiere
Michala Petri, recorder

Paula Matthusen
sparrows in supermarkets (2011)
Michala Petri, recorder

Paula Matthusen (USA)
…and, believing in… (2004)
for solo performer and electronic processing
Michala Petri, recorder

Mattias Petersson (Sweden)
Ström (2006), U.S. premiere
multi-channel electronics with video by Fredrik Olofsson

Pamela Z (USA)
Improvisation with Paula Matthusen
Scared Song by Meredith Monk (1986, arr. Pamela Z)

Booklet for OM18

Click here to download a PDF copy of the Other Minds Festival 18 program.

Concert Media: Video

Dohee Lee
Ara (2013)

World premiere of Ara, a piece by Dohee Lee of South Korea. Performance recorded live on Friday, March 1, 2013, at the San Francisco Jewish Community Center, as part of Other Minds Festival 18. Dohee Lee, voice and eye harp (custom made instrument by Colin Ernst); Adria Otte, electronic processing.

Mattias Petersson
Ström

The U.S. premiere of Ström, a piece by Mattias Petersson, performed on Saturday, March 2, 2013, at the San Francisco Jewish Community Center, during Other Minds Festival 18. Multichannel electronics by Mattias Petersson, with video by Fredrik Olofsson.

Paula Matthusen
…and, believing in…

Performance by Paula Matthusen, entitled “…and, believing in…”, recorded live, Saturday, March 2, 2013 at the San Francisco Jewish Community Center, part of Other Minds Festival 18.

Concert Media: Audio

Raga Shyam Kalyan
G.S. Sachdev

Live recording of Raga Shyam Kalyan, a composition by GS Sachdev. Recorded Thursday, February 28, 2013, during Other Minds Festival 18, at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco.

Accvire
Sunlief Rasmussen

Live recording of the U.S. Premiere of Accvire, a composition by Sunlief Rasmussen. Recorded Thursday, February 28, 2013, during Other Minds Festival 18, at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco.

Unknown Title
Gáman

Live recording of a composition by Gáman, a non-traditional Celtic folk trio. Recorded Thursday, February 28, 2013, during Other Minds Festival 18, at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco.

Full Concert Audio

Photos – Djerassi Retreat

Photos by John Fago

Photos – Panels and Performances

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