Review: New Music Ensemble opens season on a strong note
The 2009 season of the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble began strongly Friday night with two works of completely contrasting nature.
Robert Paterson's Sextet opened the concert with vibrant sonorities and rhythms, compelling music that showcased the musicians' expertise.
On the other hand, while "Table Setting" by David Bithel could be considered a percussion piece, music was secondary to theater. The two characters, played by conductor Kevin Noe and percussionist David Skidmore, engaged in a contest of will and one-upmanship using small pieces of wood. It reached a climax when Skidmore played on an elaborate construction that included tiny antique cymbals and metal rods. The players were serious; the audience laughed repeatedly.
"Critical Point" by Carnegie Mellon University professor Roger Dannenberg was the most versatile of his musical computer programs that I've heard, even generating genuine contrapuntal textures with cello soloist Norbert Lewandowski.
The best part of the Triple Concerto by Alejando Vinao was the recorded music, but, oddly, the parts for the three soloists were busy without being interesting.
"L'oeil ecoute" (The Eye Listens) by Pierre Jalbert was fitting as the conclusion because it gave the audience much to think about. Like every other piece of Jalbert I've heard, "L'oeil ecoute" is a pleasure to hear because the strong profile of its materials is handled with lucidity and rhythmic vitality.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Rossi: Penguins’ best bet is on Martin
- Young defensemen make case for future with Penguins
- Elites, media & character
- Spirit Airlines lifts fortunes of Arnold Palmer Regional Airport
- From injuries to front office, Penguins’ season didn’t lack drama
- Crews battling 5-alarm fire at North Union industrial building
- Rossi: Crosby, Malkin didn’t sign on for this
- Pitt AD Barnes has enjoyed varied career in college sports
- Biertempfel: Observations from a day at the ballpark
- Sawchik: Young Cubs could threaten for foreseeable future
- Penguins president: General manager, coach won’t be fired