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Weekend MusicWatch: Remembering the Innovators

By Brett Campbell
May 22, 2014
Third Angle New Music string quartet plays works by emerging composers Friday.

Third Angle New Music string quartet plays works by emerging composers Friday.

The music calendar is a bit sparse on this weekend when we solemnly take the time remember that we haven’t been out of town lately. Several of this weekend’s concerts celebrate musical innovators old (Schoenberg, Sun Ra) and new (the young composers at Third Angle New Music, the young vocalists at SheSings). Seriously, while on vacation or attending concerts, do take a moment to remember the Americans who gave their lives in service to our country.

Third Angle New Music, Friday, Alberta Rose Theatre, Portland. Read my Willamette Week preview of the new music ensemble’s important annual R&D investment in musical innovation.

Portland Jazz Composers Ensemble, Friday, TaborSpace, Portland. Read my Willamette Week preview of the valuable organization’s tribute to one of jazz’s most offbeat yet likable innovators, Sun Ra, which features some of the city’s most forward looking jazzers, young and not so much.

SheSings Women’s A Cappella Festival, Friday and Saturday, The Shedd, Eugene. A female singer needs instrumental accompaniment like a fish needs a bicycle. Read my Eugene Weekly preview of this second annual gathering of the young stars of the emerging women’s a cappella music movement.

Hamilton Cheifetz and Janet Guggenheim, Sunday, The Old Church, Portland. Two-thirds of one of Oregon’s finest chamber ensembles, the Florestan Trio, play a trio of 20th century Russian classics for cello and piano by Prokofiev, Shostakovich and Rachmaninoff.

Portland Viol Consort performs Friday.

Portland Viol Consort performs Friday.

Portland Viol Consort, Friday, Grace Memorial Church, Portland. Eschewing the more commonly played English masters, the string quartet plays Renaissance and Baroque tunes from continental Europe, composed for their ancient instruments.

Pollyanna Hancock-Moody, Ken Selden, members of the Oregon Symphony, St. Anne’s Chapel at Marylhurst University, Portland. The Portland State University prof and conductor joins the Marylhurst prof and singer and a first-rate chamber orchestra in Arnold Schoenberg’s classic 1910 song cycle, Pierrot Lunaire, a still-eerie setting of poems by Albert Giraud that chronicle a clown’s descent into madness, plus music by Marylhurst student composers.

Cappella Romana, Saturday, Pioneer Place Mall (top floor), and Sunday, Lincoln City Cultural Center. The vocal ensemble returns from its Los Angeles concerts to sing Russian and Greek Orthodox chants and choral music by Rachmaninoff, 20th century British composer John Tavener, and more, the day after a short, free recital as part of Oregon Public Broadcasting’s Oregon Art Beat exhibition in Portland. Here’s a video of the group singing a tribute to founder Alexander Lingas’s teacher, who died recently.

Arwen Myers, Adam LaMotte, Janet Coleman, Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Portland. Three of the city’s most appealing classical musicians convene for performances of music for piano, violin and/or voice by Aaron Copland (the first movement of his sublime Violin Sonata), Ralph Vaughan Williams (his ever-popular The Lark Ascending), and one of the 20th century’s classic song cycles, American composer Samuel Barber’s lovely Hermit Songs.

Dmitri Matheny Group, Saturday, Camellia Lounge, Portland. The fluent Bay Area-based jazz flugelhornist, (an Art Farmer protege who’s also one-time musical partner of Portland pianist Darrell Grant) brings his warm tone, engaging originals, and songbook standards.

Hillsboro Symphony Orchestra, Friday, Century High School Auditorium, Hillsboro. The orchestra closes its season with Mussorgsky’s Night on Bald Mountain, Strauss’s The Bat and music by Rimsky Korsakov, Saint-Saens, and more.

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