Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Rob Smith on Time Travel

Rob Smith




Musiqa's Artistic Board Member Rob Smith took some time to discuss Time Travel, Musiqa's season opener. Each concert of Musiqa's 2013-14 Season features new works that explore the concept of time. Each composer was carefully selected to fulfill Musiqa's goal of bringing the best of contemporary classical music to Houston audiences. Smith's new work, "Dance Music," is inspired by the pop and jazz music of the 1970s. 



"For this program [Time Travel] we are presenting two of our most important living composers - Louis Andriessen and John Corigliano; three younger composers who are attracting significant notice: Michael van der Aa, Missy Mazzoi and Bill Ryan; and myself," Smith said.


Louis Andiessen's "Hout (Wood) and Bill Ryan's "Blurred" are intended to alter our perception of time. "In "Hout," everyone performs the same melodic line in strict canons that are extremely close together, but are asked to play loosely together, thus creating a "blurred" sensation," Smith explained.

In Missy Mazzoli's "Magic With Everyday Objects," everyday musical elements that have been made familiar through their use in previous music are combined to find "beauty and rapture in the midst of chaos." Folk texts by William Butler Yeats and Padraic Colum are given a modern interpretation in John Corigliano's "Three Irish Folksongs."

Michael van der Aa's "And how are we today?" uses a text by Carol Ann Duffy, which views the world from the vantage point of someone who is manic and perceiving time at a different rate from the rest of us.

"Each of the works on this program either travels back in time to borrow ideas from other time periods, or directly effects the listener's perception of moving through time," Smith said.

Time Travel presents Musiqa's most unique concert experience, as it will be outdoors and follow the presentation of visual artist Jo Ann Fleischhauer's new multi-media art installation in the Market Square Clock Tower. Time Travel also features a number of works that are heavily influenced by popular styles, and includes some instruments that Musiqa doesn't often feature: electric guitar, double bass, trumpets and trombones.

Join us this Saturday, Sept. 28, to experience Musiqa's most innovative concert yet! We encourage you to bring blankets and chairs. 

What Time Is It? is organized by Blaffer Art Museum and Houston Arts Alliance.  Major support comes from the Houston Downtown Management District and the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance.  Community partners include Houston Parks and Recreation Department, the Moores School of Music at the University of Houston and the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University.  The exhibition is on view 24 hours-a-day (music component audible daily 7 a.m. to midnight) on the corner of Travis and Congress Streets at Market Square from September 28, 2013 through March 29, 2014.

Written by Mia M. Smith

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