Imagine a piano duo playing the music of George Crumb, becoming fascinated by his melodies, and hearing in them melodies by other composers and other cultures. They play these melodies too, a flute hints plaintively at the connections, and the whole is accompanied gently by percussion.
The “Crumb Kaleidoscope” music production was conceptualized by German/US pianist Caroline Oltmanns and James Wilding, South African-born pianist and composer. They have extracted three motives from the music of George Crumb and used it to build a six-part concert programme featuring works that are on the one hand connected, but on the other hand could barely be more contrasting. The spectrum ranges from a Bach chorale to the music of Casablanca, from Crumb’s ethereal sounds to traditional Chinese music. The production was commissioned by the Bavarian Rundfunk Nürnberg, and broadcast in Germany in 2014. It is also included in the 2015 Woordfees programme in Stellenbosch.
Local audiences will have the rare opportunity to experience the multidimensionality of style, genre and instrumentation in this show when the “Crumb Kaleidoscope” is performed in the Conservatory Hall on Tuesday 17 March 2015 at 19:30. Pianists Caroline Oltmanns and James Wilding will be joined by Dieter Weberpals playing the dizi (a Chinese bamboo flute), and well-known South African percussionists, Frank Mallows and Magda de Vries, will command a battery of percussion instruments. In addition to the various composers that are featured, it should be a visually exciting performance as well.
Tickets at R90/R60 are available at the Conservatory in Thabo Mbeki Drive (tel. 018-299-1692), PUK Arts in the Heimat Building (F9) on the university campus (tel. 018-299-2844), Protea Bookshop on the Bult (tel. 018-297-1583), online at www.artema.co.za and www.facebook.com/NWU.Music, or 30 minutes before the concert at the box office.
• George Crumb — From Makrokosmos: “Ghost-Nocturne: for the Druids of Stonehenge”, “Morning Music”, “Twin Suns”, “Beta Cygni”, “Dream Images”, “The Advent”
• Herman Hupfeld — Play it Once, Sam, for Old Time’s Sake & As Time Goes By
• JS Bach — Jesu bleibet meine Freude
• Frédéric Chopin — Fantaisie-Impromptu, Op. 66
• Wang Luobin — Zai na yaoyuan de difang
• Gabriel Fauré — Berceuse, Op. 56 No. 1
• Friedrich Gulda — Übungsstück No. 9
• Johannes Brahms — Hungarian Dance in g-flat
• Erik Satie — Je Te Veux
• James Wilding — The Timelessness of Time, Passage, A Call from Afar, Bronze Dragons, The Space Between Love and Death, Moon Setting, and Play it Again, Sam