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A RETROSPECTIVE CONCERT OF THE MUSIC OF RICHARD TEITELBAUM WILL BE PERFORMED ON WEDNESDAY, APRIL 24, AT BARD COLLEGE Featured artists include Teitelbaum, pianists Marilyn Crispell and Marc Peloquin, multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee, traditional Japanese s

Emily Darrow

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.-On Wednesday, April 24, there will be a retrospective concert of the music of Bard professor, composer, and performer Richard Teitelbaum. The program, presented by The Bard Center, is free and open to the public and will begin in Olin Hall at 8:00 p.m.

Teitelbaum is, according to the New York Times, "the most creative improvising synthesizer soloist in contemporary music." In addition to works featuring Teitelbaum in an improvisatory context, the program will include several lesser-known examples of his strictly notated compositions, offering samples of his work in a variety of genres and techniques spanning almost 40 years. The earliest is Intersections, a solo piece composed in 1963 that employs a 12-tone technique, to be performed by pianist Marc Peloquin. Ralph Samuelson will perform a contrasting piece, Hi Gaeshi Hachi Mi Fu, written for the meditative Japanese end-blown bamboo flute, the shakuhachi, a centuries-old instrument long associated with Zen Buddhism. Composed in 1974 in traditional Japanese shakuhachi notation, this is one of Teitelbaum's first compositions representing his ongoing interest in traditional non-Western music. It is also one of the earliest shakuhachi pieces written by any Western composer.

In a very different, though not totally unrelated vein, the program will continue with In Tune, a piece in which amplified biological signals of the human body, such as breath, heartbeats, and brain waves, are orchestrated live by the Moog synthesizer. This work from the mid-sixties is Teitelbaum's first electronic work to be performed live and one of the first pieces to use high-tech, meditational biofeedback techniques in a musical context. Teitelbaum says that he will "resuscitate the vintage modular Moog that was first used for this work in 1967." He will also perform Shrine (In Memoriam), a work from the mid-seventies that grew out of his encounter with the German terrorist group Baader-Meinhof. He sees this work as a meditation on violence that may resonate with the current political situation. Teitelbaum will be joined by two of the leading figures in improvised music today, pianist Marilyn Crispell and multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee.

The program will conclude with a performance of a new Teitelbaum work featuring the Middle Eastern plucked string instrument, the oud. This highly expressive lute-like instrument will be played by the noted virtuoso George Mgrdichian. Microtonal Arabic scales will be contrasted and integrated with Western sounds and Teitelbaum's interactive digital technology to create a new, cross-cultural composition.

For further information about the concert, call The Bard Center at 845-758-7425.

"Richard Teitelbaum is an enlightened explorer of the synthesizer and the first true musician of the instrument," according to Le Monde. A professor of music at Bard, he is a pioneer in electronic and computer music acknowledged for innovations in interactive computer systems and his ability to humanize the synthesizer. Teitelbaum has performed with Anthony Braxton, Nam June Paik, and Frederic Rzewski, among others, and his compositions have been performed internationally in Amsterdam, Bangkok, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Havana, Lisbon, London, Paris, Tokyo, and in the United States in Minneapolis, New York, San Francisco, and elsewhere. A founder, with Frederic Rzewski and Alvin Curran, of Musica Elettronica Viva in Rome in 1966, Teitelbaum has composed works in a variety of genres, including compositions for the Japanese shakuhachi master Katsuya Yokoyama, pianists Aki Takahashi and Ursula Oppens, a choral piece for 20 Japanese Buddhist monks, and multimedia works with Nam June Paik, Joan Jonas, and others. His most recent recording, Blends, includes two works written for Katsuya Yokoyama, with Teitelbaum performing on electronics; other recordings include Golem: An Interactive Opera; Live at Merkin Hall: Duets with Anthony Braxton; Concerto Grosso; Rune Some By You; and Cyberband. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Prix Arts Electronica from Austrian Radio and Television; commissions from the Venice Biennale, German Radio, National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, Meet the Composer /NEA Commissioning Program, and Rockefeller Foundation; and two Fulbright research grants to Italy and Japan.

"Hearing pianist Marilyn Crispell play solo piano is like monitoring an active volcano. She is one of the very few pianists who rise to the challenge of free jazz," wrote Jon Pareles in the New York Times. A member of the Barry Guy New Orchestra and a frequent guest of his London Jazz Composers Orchestra, Crispell has led many groups of her own. She has performed and recorded music with many of the great players on the American and European jazz scene, including Robert Cogan, Pozzi Escot, John Cage, Pauline Oliveros, Manfred Niehaus, and Anthony Davis (including four performances of his opera X with the New York City Opera). For over 10 years she was a member of the Anthony Braxton Quartet and the Reggie Workman Ensemble. She has received two fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts and a commission for a composition from the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust. She composed music for the film Soul Suitcase and is a featured performer in documentaries by jazz film-maker Burrill Crohn, as well as the French film Women in Jazz. In addition to performing, Crispell has given improvisational workshops and lecture/demonstrations at universities and art centers in the United States, Europe, Canada, and New Zealand.

Since his emergence on the creative jazz and new music scene in the late 1960s, Joe McPhee has been a deeply emotional composer, improviser, and multi-instrumentalist, as well as a thoughtful conceptualist and theoretician. McPhee first began playing the trumpet at age 8, and continued on that instrument throughout high school and then in the U.S. Army band while stationed in Germany, where he was introduced to jazz. In 1968 he began playing the saxophone and since then has investigated a wide range of instruments (including pocket trumpet, clarinet, valve trombone, and piano), with active involvement in both acoustic and electronic music. His most recent recording is Shadow & Light on Drimala Records, He has also recorded on the Cadence Jazz Records label, that he cofounded in 1968, and the hatART, Deep Listening, and Okka Disk labels, among others.

George Mgrdichian is "the world's unquestioned master of the oud," according to Robert Sherman of the New York Times. He is featured on over 100 recordings of traditional Middle Eastern and Spanish music and original compositions. He received a master's degree from The Juilliard School.

Pianist Marc Peloquin has received critical acclaim for his performances of both contemporary and traditional repertoire. He has been featured at many music festivals and has performed at Merkin Concert Hall and Weill Recital Hall in Manhattan, American Academy in Rome, and Chicago Cultural Center, among others. Peloquin recently performed and produced a program celebrating the 80th birthday of composer Jack Beeson. He will present a two-piano program this May with Roberto Hidalgo in Mexico City. Peloquin has performed the premieres of works by Jonathan Dawe, Kyle Gann, Charles Griffin, Eric Samuelson, David Shohl, and Nils Vigeland. A C.R.I. recording of Peloquin playing the piano works of Otto Luening was released in February 2001.

Ralph Samuelson was trained in the classical tradition of the Kinko school of shakuhachi under Goro Yamaguchi, Kodo Araki V, and Shudo Yamato, both in Japan and in the graduate world music program at Wesleyan University. He has performed the shakuhachi in numerous concerts of traditional and contemporary music in North America, Asia, and Europe, and is a frequent guest lecturer at universities and music schools. Samuelson has recorded on the Lyrichord, Music of the World, and CBS Masterworks labels. He teaches the shakuhachi in New York, where he is also the director of the Asian Cultural Council.

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This event was last updated on 04-08-2002