2019/20 Programs:

Inspired by her radio shows at Shanghai Media Group FM94.7, which is broadcast to over 2 million Chinese listeners, Jenny Q Chai draws a musical map for modern audiences, tracing the history of how contemporary music comes from distinguished predecessors, and how geographical regions and cultural aesthetics in music influence and react to each other. The program is a guided listening tour for those who have insatiable musical curiosity about the evolution of music.

GERMAN-AUSTRIAN MUSIC
SCHUMANN – THE INVENTOR OF CHARACTER PIECES:
Schumann, Chopin from Carnaval

THE TURN OF THE CENTURY IN FRANCE – FRENCH COMPOSERS’ REACTIONS TO GERMAN-AUSTRIAN MUSIC
Satie, Gymnopedie Mvt.1
Debussy, Prelude, La fille aux cheveux de lin
Debussy, Prelude, Feux d’artifice
Debussy, Etude, Pour les huit doigts

THE TURN OF THE CENTURY IN GERMANY AND AUSTRIA – THE 2ND VIENNESE SCHOOL
Schoenberg, Three Piano Pieces Op. 11, No. 3
Webern, Variations for piano, Op. 27 No. 2

CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN COMPOSERS’ RESPONSE
Andy Akiho, Response Pieces I Homage a Webern: Transparency

THE TURN OF THE CENTURY AMERICAN MUSIC – REACTION AGAINST EUROPEAN MUSIC, THE INTEGRATION OF OTHER GENRES OF MUSIC
Ives, Concord Sonata Mvt. 3, “Alcotts”
Ives, Song, Dream
Ives, Song, Memories

MID-20TH C. GERMANY – REACTION AGAINST ALL MUSIC BEFORE, ELECTRONIC MUSIC, SOUNDS FROM OTHER PLANETS
Stockhausen, Klavierstuck VIII

FRANCE: NEW SOUNDS AFTER DEBUSSY – RAVEL AND SATIE, MESSIAEN’S BIRDCALLS AND SCALE OF LIMITED TRANSPOSITION
Messiaen, Catalogue D’oiseaux: VIII. L’Alouette Calandrelle

HUNGARIAN COMPOSERS
Kurtag, Jatekok, Quiet Talk with the Devil
Kurtag, Jatekok, Les Adieux (in the manner of Janacek)
Ligeti, Etude No. 2, Cordes à vide

AMERICAN: REACTION AGAIN COMPLEX MUSIC AND 12-TONE TOTAL CONTROLISM – JOHN CAGE, MUSIC OF CHANCE, SILENCE AND PREPARED PIANOS
John Cage, The Wonderful Widow of Eighteen Springs (singing-speaking piano)

CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN COMPOSERS’ RESPONSE AND CONTINUATION
Andy Akiho, Synesthesia Suite Karekurenai (Crimson) (prepared piano)
Annie Gosfield, Brooklyn, Oct.5, 1941
Richard Sussman, Spirit Guide (jazz and electronics, written for Jenny Q Chai)

SHOSTAKOVICH: Prelude and Fugue No.7 in A Major

KURTAG: Selections from Játékok

LIGETI: Etudes, Nos. 2, 5, and 1

MATTHEW AUCOIN: Etudes, Nos. 3 and 1

RYAN FRANCIS: Etudes, Nos. 4 and 3

CAGE: A Flower

CAGE: The Wonderful Widow of Eighteen Springs

IVES: 114 Songs, Dreams

IVES: 114 Songs, Memories

JAROSLAW KAPUSCINSKI: Juicy

ANDY AKIHO: Into the Woods

 

This program reflects the current political instability in our world, and the unsettledness and anxiety in people’s hearts. We wish for peace, love, and unity, yet are faced with greed, madness, and insatiable ambition. It is a program with complex emotions—nostalgia, hope, anxiety—to be interpreted individually by each audience member. I believe that where darkness resides, there is also light.

Group 1

DEBUSSY: Douze études, No. 3, Pour les quartes

No. 6, Pour les huit doigts

Préludes Book II, No. 11, Les tierces alternées

No.12, Feux d’artifice

Group 2

FREDERIC DURIEUX: Pour tous ceux qui tombent—Hommage à RAVEL

RAVEL: Oiseux tristes

MESSIAEN: Cantéyodjayâ

Group 3

JAROSLAW KAUSCINSKI: Intimate Streams or TBA

Side Effects

 

Just as painters and visual artists employ the vast range of colors in the chromatic spectrum, composers and performers use the endless sonic spectrum to create and evoke musical worlds. As a pianist and an amateur painter, I have discovered a personal form of synesthesia—a melding of senses—in regard to how I experience music. This all-French program presents repertoire that truly lives at the intersection of color and sound, exploring this meeting of the senses. While practicing and preparing each piece of music, I seek to translate my mental imagery into the real world, both through my musical performance and on the canvas.

In order to fully realize this program, I completed a four-month residency at Cité des Arts in Paris, where I worked simultaneously on the musical performance and the paintings of each score. In the 2019–2020 season I will be able to tour with the results of this process, offering a simultaneous performance of music and display of my visual art, united for the audience, just as they are in my own personal experience

Fittingly, the repertoire of this program pays homage to the most important French composers of the Impressionistic era (the period of musical innovation that is perhaps most strongly tied to a corresponding visual artistic movement).

Scott Wollschleger, Blue Inscription
Claude Debussy, Pour les quartes (12 Études pour le piano, III)
Claude Debussy, Pour les huit doigts (12 Études pour le piano, VI)
Andy Akiho, Karakurenai (Crimson) for prepared piano
György Ligeti, Cordes à Vide (Études pour piano, premier livre, II)
György Ligeti, Désórdre (Études pour piano, premier livre, I)
György Kurtág, Bells for Margit Mándy (Játékok, Book V)
György Kurtág, Les Adieux in Janáceks Manier (Játékok, Book VI)
György Kurtág, Shadow-Play: Hommage à Somlyó György (Játékok, Book III)
György Kurtág, Quiet Talk with the Devil (Játékok, Book III)
Olivier Messiaen, Cantéyodjayâ

(S)yn(e)sth(e)te is an album and concert program which explores the relation between sound and color, the streams of colors from blue to orange. Synesthesia in music has been associated with composers throughout the history of music. Interestingly, many composers and musicians have specific associations with certain pitches and keys – E major, C minor, D major, etc – that can be drastically different from one another, or surprisingly similar. My synesthesia came on gradually, starting with certain notes and colors, but leading to connections with more impressionistic-like watercolors, that is, more of light and shadow, and the blended tones of colors. One thing is certain: synesthesia is an extremely personal experience to synesthetes.

In this program, I explore the different synesthetic experiences from a range of composers. For me, it is a stream of colors and moods, with the direction from blue to orange. Wollschleger’s Blue Inscription, Debussy’s slow Étude of fourths and Ligeti’s Second Étude are for me the blossoming of flowers as seen through the lens of time-lapse photography. The swift brushes of Debussy’s eight-finger Étude, the strong colors of Ligeti’s vehement Disordre and the spatial, sometimes-floral-sometimes-dark pieces by Kurtág remind me of Chiaroscuro. Akiho’s Crimsonand Messiaen’s orange-infused music brings a kind of euphoria. For me, each composer has a highly individual synesthesia with each piece, introducing a different kind of association between sound and color. My wish is that the listener to explore this music, and discover their own personal synesthesia.

Are you a (s)yn(e)sth(e)te? Can you see?

Visit the (S)yn(e)sth(e)te Amazon page to learn more about the album.

Jenny Q Chai is pleased to offer the following concerti:

Aaron Copland (1900-1990)
Piano Concerto  

Marco Stroppa (b. 1959)
Upon a Blade of Grass (1996)

Matthew Aucoin (b. 1990)
Piano Concerto (2016 – general availability fall 2018)

Philippe Manoury (b. 1952)
Zones de turbulences (2013, with pianist Adam Kośmieja)

Peter Eötvös (b. 1944)
CAP-KO (Concerto for Acoustical Piano, Keyboard and Orchestra) (2005)

Esa-Pekka Salonen (b. 1958)
Piano Concerto (2007)

Beethoven (1770-1827)
Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15
Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37

Mendelssohn (1809-1847)
Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor (Op. 25)

For more information, please contact:

Nina Moe, Managing Representative, ARIEL ARTISTS
917-496-1414
nina@arielartists.com
www.arielartists.com