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  • WDCH
  • Dec. 4, 2007
  • "Composer's Choice" Concert Program Offers Three Works by Stucky and Pieces by James Matheson and Guest Composer/Soprano Susan Botti

    TUESDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2007, AT 8 PM

    Steven Stucky, Los Angeles Philharmonic Consulting Composer for New Music, celebrates his 20th season with the Philharmonic by leading the Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group in a "Composer's Choice" program featuring three west coast premieres, Tuesday, December 4, at 8 p.m., at Walt Disney Concert Hall. He is joined in the celebration by composer/soprano Susan Botti as guest soloist. On the program for the Green Umbrella series performance are Stucky's Boston Fancies, Dialoghi for solo cello and the West Coast premiere of his Piano Quartet; the West Coast premiere of James Matheson's Songs of Desire, Love and Loss; and the West Coast premiere of Botti's Jabberwocky.

    Stucky began his formal association with the Los Angeles Philharmonic as composer-in-residence and new music advisor. The 20th anniversary of his partnership with the Philharmonic is celebrated in three programs that include the world premieres of his orchestral work Radical Light and his arrangement of Stravinsky's Les Noces, as well as the December 4th Composer's Choice Green Umbrella program. Stucky's Piano Quartet, commissioned by Arizona Friends of Chamber Music, was given its world premiere in March 2005, in Arizona, by the Los Angeles Piano Quartet.

    Matheson's Songs of Desire, Love and Loss was commissioned by Carnegie Hall and premiered in October 2004 in New York City as part of Dawn Upshaw's Perspectives series. The piece is a setting of seven poems by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Alan Dugan that highlight Dugan's paradoxical aims of emotional directness and complexity. Matheson has rapidly emerged as one of the most distinctive, vital and creative musical voices of his generation, and his works have been programmed by such organizations as the Chicago, Seattle and Albany Symphony Orchestras, American Composers Orchestra, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Orchestra 2001 (Philadelphia), LA's Monday Evening Concerts Series and the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, as well as at music festivals including Aspen, Spoleto, Santa Fe, Eleazar de Carvalho, Token Creek, Norfolk, Bowling Green and Hartwick.

    Botti's Jabberwocky for voice and percussion was premiered in New York City in 1990. An exploration of Lewis Carroll's classic nonsense-verse poem, the piece is described by Botti as allowing "… the words themselves [to] invite new vocal sounds …" and further as coming "… more from improvisational theater than from a traditional setting of the text." As both a composer and a singer, Botti's eclectic background and experiences are reflected in her music. The New York Times has said of her, "... it is a rare pleasure these days to encounter a young composer grappling with real emotional and psychological issues in fresh and modern terms ..." Botti's awards include the Rome Prize and a Guggenheim Fellowship, and her commissions include works for the New York Philharmonic, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and the Cleveland Orchestra, for whom she was a Composer Fellow. For her Green Umbrella performance of Jabberwocky, Botti is accompanied by renowned Latin Jazz artist Roland Vazquez on percussion.

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic's groundbreaking Green Umbrella new music series, recently celebrated 20 years since its inception. The remainder of the 2007/08 season lineup includes three world premieres: Harold Meltzer's Piano Concerto for chamber ensemble and piano (March 25, 2008), a new work by Gabriela Lena Frank (March 25, 2008) and a new work by Thomas Adès and Tal Rosner (May 27, 2008).

    An Upbeat Live pre-concert event takes place in BP Hall at Walt Disney Concert Hall one hour prior to the concert and is free to all ticket holders. LA Philharmonic Vice President of Artistic Planning Chad Smith interviews Stucky for the event.

    Composer STEVEN STUCKY won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in Music for his Second Concerto for Orchestra, commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic and premiered at Walt Disney Concert Hall in March 2004. Also active as a conductor, writer, lecturer and teacher, Stucky has taught since 1980 at Cornell University, where he chaired the Music Department from 1992 to 1997, and now serves as Given Foundation Professor of Composition. He has been Visiting Professor of Composition at the Eastman School of Music and Ernest Bloch Professor at the University of California, Berkeley. A noted expert on Polish composer Witold Lutoslawski, he won an ASCAP Deems Taylor award for his book Lutoslawski and His Music. He began his relationship with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1988, when then-Music Director André Previn appointed him Composer-in-Residence. Under his current title of Consulting Composer for New Music, he is currently in his 20th season working with the orchestra - the longest such relationship of any American composer. He is also host of the New York Philharmonic's "Hear & Now" series, where this season he will present world premieres by Marc Neikrug and Tan Dun and a 40th-anniversary retrospective on Berio's classic Sinfonia. During the 2007/08 season, the Los Angeles Philharmonic celebrates Stucky's 20th season with the orchestra in several ways: by premiering his Radical Light on October 18 and 19 before taking the work on a European tour in November, presenting him as curator and conductor of a Green Umbrella concert in December and premiering his new version of Stravinsky's cantata Les Noces for symphony orchestra in May 2008. This season also will see residencies at the Moritzburg Festival (Dresden, Germany), the universities of Buffalo, Louisville, and Michigan and the Cleveland Institute of Music. Among the ensembles performing his work this season are the Da Camera of Houston, the China Youth Symphony, Sequitur, the Dallas Symphony, the San Francisco Symphony, the St. Louis Symphony, the Los Angeles Master Chorale and Chicago Chamber Musicians. Stucky is currently working on commissions for the Dallas Symphony, the New York Philharmonic and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. Several new recordings are due for release this season, including a Singapore Symphony disc on BIS Records featuring the major orchestral works Second Concerto for Orchestra, Pinturas

    de Tamayo and Spirit Voices (a percussion concerto featuring Evelyn Glennie). Stucky was born in 1949, in Kansas, attended Baylor and Cornell universities and studied principally with Karel Husa. He makes his home in Ithaca, New York.

    As both a composer and a singer, SUSAN BOTTI's eclectic background and experiences are reflected in her music. Whether in an orchestral or chamber setting, theatrical influences play a vital part in her musical expression. Botti was awarded a 2005 Guggenheim Fellowship and the 2005 Frederic A. Juilliard/Walter Damrosch Rome Prize in Music Composition. During the 2005/06 season she was in residence at the American Academy in Rome. Recent compositions include: Tagore Madrigals, Stelle, 2 Gregerson Songs and Make-Falcon (a work in progress for chamber choir and percussion ensemble). Currently in progress is a three-part commission from violinist Carolyn Huebl and the Blakemore Trio - works for violin and piano, piano trio, and piano trio plus soprano (Botti) - which will premiere in the 2008/09 season at Vanderbilt University and at Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall. Botti was the third Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow with the Cleveland Orchestra. In 2003/04, the orchestra premiered her work, Impetuosity (conducted by Roberto Abbado), and a new work, Translucence, was commissioned by the orchestra and premiered in the 2004/05 season, conducted by Music Director Franz Welser-Möst. This work was commissioned by a consortium of universities led by the University of Michigan and conductor Michael Haithcock, who led the premiere with Botti as soloist. Her EchoTempo was commissioned and premiered by Kurt Masur and the New York Philharmonic (with Botti and Christopher Lamb as soloists). The European premiere of EchoTempo (with the same soloists under Gunther Herbig) occurred soon after in the Musik im 21 Jahrhundert festival in Saarbrücken, Germany. She performed this work in April 2005 with HK Gruber and the NPS Radio Orchestra in Utrecht, Holland with percussionist Peter Prommel. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Botti received her Bachelor of Music degree from the Berklee School in Boston, and her Master's in Music Composition from the Manhattan School of Music. She is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including the Goddard Lieberson Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and grants from Meet The Composer, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Aaron Copland Fund, the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, the NY Foundation for the Arts, the Greenwall Foundation, the Jerome Foundation, ASCAP and the Foundation for Contemporary Performance Arts. A member of the composition faculty at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor from 2000-2006, she currently serves on the composition faculty at the Manhattan School of Music in NYC and is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Music Center.

    Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, under Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen, presents the finest in orchestral and chamber music, recitals, new music, jazz, world music and holiday concerts at two of the most remarkable places anywhere to experience music - Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. In addition to a 30-week winter subscription season at Walt Disney Concert Hall, the LA Phil presents a 12-week summer festival at the legendary Hollywood Bowl, summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and home of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. In fulfilling its commitment to the community, the Association's involvement with Los Angeles extends to educational programs, community concerts and children's programming, ever seeking to provide inspiration and delight to the broadest possible audience.


    TUESDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2007, AT 8 PM
    111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles


    STEVEN STUCKY, conductor
    SUSAN BOTTI, soprano

    STUCKY Piano Quartet (West Coast premiere)
    STUCKY Dialoghi
    MATHESON Songs of Desire, Love and Loss (West Coast premiere)
    BOTTI Jabberwocky (West Coast premiere)
    STUCKY Boston Fancies

    An Upbeat Live pre-concert event takes place one hour prior to the concert in BP Hall at Walt Disney Concert Hall, and is free to all ticket holders. Los Angeles Philharmonic Vice President of Artistic Planning Chad Smith interviews Philharmonic Consulting Composer for New Music Steven Stucky for the event.

    Tickets ($22-47) are on sale now online at, at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office, or via credit card phone order at 323.850.2000. A limited number of $10 rush tickets for seniors and full-time students may be available at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office two hours prior to the performance. Valid identification is required; one ticket per person; cash only. Groups of 10 or more may be eligible for special discounts for selected concerts and seating areas. For all information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Adam Crane, 213.972.3422,; Lisa White, 213.972.3408,; Photos: 213.972.3034