Contact: Helen Dalrymple (202) 707-1940
Concert Line (202) 707-5502

September 18, 1996

Library of Congress Presents Chamber Music, Dance, and Jazz in the 1996-97 Season

The Library of Congress begins its 71st concert season on Oct. 10, returning to the Terrace Theater of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for a 10-event series offering superb chamber music, jazz, and dance.

Six new works commissioned by the Library of Congress will be premiered. The composers are Muhal Richard Abrams, William Bolcom, Julia Wolfe, Max Raimi, and Sir Roland Hanna, who is collaborating with choreographer Danny Buraczeski in the creation of a new jazz work for JAZZDANCE BY DANNY BURACZESKI. The Minneapolis-based company will give the world premiere performance at the Kennedy Center on May 7, 1997.

The Library has joined forces with two distinguished presenting institutions for this unusual double commission, forming a partnership with Pennsylvania State University and the Watson B. Duncan Theatre, Palm Beach (Fla.) Community College.

All Library of Congress concerts are free and open to the public, but tickets are required. Ticket distribution will begin at 6 p.m. in the lobby of the Terrace Theater, 90 minutes before the concert begins. Seating will be on a first-come, first-served basis, with two general-admission tickets per patron. For information about the series, please call the Concert Line, (202) 707-5502.

The Muhal Richard Abrams Orchestra kicks off the season, followed by the Juilliard String Quartet; harpsichordist Christophe Rousset; harpist Cheryl Ann Fulton; the Beaux Arts Trio with clarinettist Richard Stoltzman; the Bang On A Can AllStars with the String Trio of New York; Capriccio Stravagante with harpsichordist and director Skip Semp? and mezzo-soprano Guillemette Laurens; the Festetics Quartet, with fortepianist Maria Rose; the American Chamber Players; and concluding with JAZZDANCE BY DANNY BURACZESKI.

The full schedule for the 1996-1997 series of concerts is below.

Thursday, Oct. 10, at 7:30 p.m. Composer-pianist Muhal Richard Abrams brings his 20-member jazz orchestra for a debut appearance at the Terrace Theater. An experimentalist known for stretching the boundaries of jazz improvisation and for his mastery of big band arranging, Abrams was the co-founder of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) and an important influence for a number of African American avant-garde musicians, including Anthony Braxton, Henry Threadgill, Lester Bowie, and George Lewis. The New York Times calls Muhal Richard Abrams "one of the most encompassing composers now working"; he has spent a lifetime breaking down stylistic barriers in jazz, writing "jazz for the past, present, and the future," with compositions that frequently span the territory between jazz and new music. His recent compositions include works commissioned or performed by the Kronos Quartet, Ursula Oppens, the Brooklyn Philharmonic, the Detroit Symphony, Tania L?on, and Newband. Violinist Regina Carter and pianist Anthony Davis will premiere Mr. Abrams's Duet for Violin and Piano, commissioned by the Library's McKim Fund.

Wednesday, Oct. 16, and Thursday, Oct. 17, at 7:30 p.m. Celebrating its 50th anniversary -- and 35 years as quartet-in-residence at the Library of Congress -- the Juilliard String Quartet performs a pair of concerts featuring Mozart's Quartet in D major, K. 499; Schoenberg's Quartet No. 1 in D Major and Mendelssohn's Variations and Scherzo, Op. 81.

Tuesday, Dec. 3, at 7:30 p.m. One of the most sought-after interpreters of his generation, French harpsichordist Christophe Rousset performs works by Forqueray, Froberger, Louis Couperin, and Rameau. His recording of Rameau's Pi?ces de clavecin won both the 1992 Gramophone Award for Best Baroque Non-Vocal Release and Belgium's Cecilia Prize. As a conductor, Mr. Rousset is also admired internationally for his work with Les Talens Lyriques, which he created in 1991; the ensemble's repertoire ranges from motets to operas and French cantatas.

Wednesday, Dec. 4, at 8 p.m. The Library of Congress collaborates with the Dance Program of American University in presenting a concert showcasing the choreography of internationally acclaimed modern dance pioneer Lester Horton. Known for dramatic and technically innovative works, Horton was a mentor for Alvin Ailey, Carmen de Lavallade, and Bella Lewitsky. The Dec. 4 concert at American University's Experimental Theatre will feature Horton's The Beloved, Dedication to Jos? Clemente Orozco, and A Touch of Kle?, reconstructed by Horton company member Don Martin. Composer Kenneth Klauss speaks at a post-concert symposium about the process of creative collaboration between choreographer and composer. Reservations for this performance are required, and seating is limited. For both reservations and information call (202) 885-2787.

Thursday, Dec. 5, at 7:30 p.m. La Harpe de M?lodie presents an evening of music for historical harps from the 12th to the 18th centuries -- 12th century Anglo-Norman lais (songs) to Welsh airs from the 19th century. Harpist Cheryl Ann Fulton, described by the San Francisco Examiner as "a genuine virtuosa of her instrument," appears with Susan Rode Morris, soprano; Peter Maund, percussion; and Roy Whelden, rebec (an ancient, bowed instrument). A hit at the 1996 Berkeley Early Music Festival, Ms. Fulton performs on authentic period instruments -- medieval, Iberian double, Italian triple, and Welsh triple harps.

Tuesday, Dec. 10, at 7 p.m. "Horton in Hollywood," a film evening featuring clips of Lester Horton's work for the big screen and excerpts of his concert choreography, will be presented in the Library of Congress Pickford Theater, third floor of the Madison Building. For information call (202) 707-5502.

Wednesday, Dec. 11, at 7:30 p.m. The Beaux Arts Trio and clarinettist Richard Stoltzman give the world premiere performance of William Bolcom's Second Piano Quartet, commissioned by the Library's Isenbergh Clarinet Fund. Their program also includes Haydn's Trio in C major, H. XV, No. 27, and the Brahms Trio in B major, Op. 8.

Thursday, March 13, at 7:30 p.m. The Bang on a Can Allstars make their Washington area debut, joining forces with the String Trio of New York for an unbeatable double bill. Part of the American avant-garde, the Allstars were a creation of the very successful Bang on a Can new music festival, presented annually in New York. The artists offer a thought-provoking lineup of works by Hermeto Pascoal, James Emery, Michael Gordon, Louis Andriessen, David Lang, Frederic Rzewski, and Bobby Previte. Violinist Regina Carter and pianist Lisa Moore premiere a new work by Julia Wolfe, commissioned by the Library's McKim Fund.

Wednesday, March 26, at 7:30 p.m. Hungary's Festetics Quartet, a period-instrument string quartet praised by France's Le Monde de Musique for its "drive, muscular sound and fantastic ?lan," appears with fortepianist Maria Rose. Their program includes Mozart's Piano Concerto in A major, K. 414, "a quattro," Haydn's Quartet in D major, Op.64, No. 5, and Schubert's Quartet in A minor, Op. 29, D. 804.

Wednesday, April 2, at 7:30 p.m. Led by American harpsichordist Skip Semp?, the critically admired Parisian Baroque ensemble Capriccio Stravagante performs a concert titled "Canal Grande: Music of Venice" with sensational French mezzo-soprano Guillemette Laurens. Music by Monteverdi (including his Lamento d'Arianna), Marini, Rosenm?ller, and Legrenzi. A New York Times review of the group's compact disc recording, Monteverdi e il suo tempo, comments, "Skip Semp? leads the instrumental group from the harpsichord with fiery elegance and a sure sense of line."

Thursday, April 3, at 7:30 p.m. Founded by Performance Today commentator Miles Hoffman in 1985, the American Chamber Players have earned a reputation for stellar music-making. The New York Times notes, "The American Chamber Players do excellent work--imaginative programs of substance performed with just those same qualities." Well known to Washington audiences, the group premieres a new work for clarinet and string trio by Max Raimi, commissioned by the Library's Carolyn Royall Just Fund. The composer will be present to talk about the trio and about his arrangement of Mozart's Variations on Ah! Vousdirai-je, Maman, K. 265. Other works will be announced at a later date.

Thursday, May 7, at 7:30 p.m. JAZZDANCE BY DANNY BURACZESKI brings the season to a sparkling finish with the world premiere of the Library's double commission, a jazz work choreographed by Danny Buraczeski, set to music by master pianist and composer Sir Roland Hanna (Quest, for Piano and Violin). Dance critic Anna Kisselgoff calls the JAZZDANCE troupe "an exuberantly gifted company...extraordinary and energetic";"scintillating...the most outstanding aspect is Buraczeski's commanding musical sense," writes Marilyn Tucker in the San Francisco Chronicle. The project marks the first dance commission for the Library of Congress since the groundbreaking 1944 collaboration of Martha Graham and Aaron Copland that produced the American classic Appalachian Spring. The Library's partnership with the two presenting institutions, Pennsylvania State University and the Duncan Theatre of Palm Beach Community College, will support the development of the new work and its continued performance in the 1997-98 season.

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PR 96-114
ISSN 0731-3527

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