THE GRAND CANYON PROJECTMusic for Solo Cello
Yu-Hui Chang, Marti Epstein, Howard Frazin, Laura Kaminsky, John Kennedy, Jeffrey Mumford, David Rakowski, Jan Swafford, Andy Vores, Dalit Hadass Warshaw
RHONDA RIDER, cello
World Premiere Recordings
“In 2010, when Triple Helix Piano Trio cellist Rhonda Rider was named artist-in-residence at Grand Canyon National Park, she commissioned a thoughtful selection of ten American composers to respond to 'some aspect' of the canyon with music for solo cello. Her audacious request sparked the creation of a surprising compositional variety... Rider learned the ten pieces while snowed in at the canyon’s visitor center as nearby 'cowboy crooners' were playing in the lounge, which may account for the sense of easy Southwestern elegance in her own playing.”
Laurence Vittes, Strings Magazine [August 2014]
“The music is interesting and the sound crystal clear.”
Maria Nockin, Issue 37:5 Fanfare [May/June 2014]
“ [ * * * * ] The Grand Canyon Project is…impressive and listenable… each piece works well… The recording of Ms. Rider is quite good. Nice ambience, yet no loss of focus on the cello. The soloist is centered with a very lush reverberation in the stereo mix… This is an ‘off the beaten path’ CD, but it is a rewarding listen. We hear the music of ten composers who weren’t known to me, and the sublime cello of Rhonda Rider. The Grand Canyon Project was a project worth doing, and a CD worth listening to.”
Mel Martin, Audiophile Audition [February 2014]
In 2010-11, I had the honor to be named Artist-in-Residence at Grand Canyon National Park. For my residency I asked ten celebrated composers to write pieces inspired by some aspect of Grand Canyon. The result was a group of fantastically imaginative and explorative new works for solo cello. I am indebted to these wonderful composers for the time and talent they have given to this project.
My visits to the Park were a wonderful adventure. In February 2011, I sat in the living room of a cozy apartment above the Verkamp Visitor Center looking out on a snowstorm that had started earlier than predicted. The canyon was completely hidden by horizontally blowing bursts of snow. The only sounds were the howling wind and a recording of the cowboy crooners (rollin’, rollin’, rollin’) playing in the visitor center.
I spent most of each day practicing and studying the ten pieces written for this residency, with practice breaks exploring the Canyon. Its vastness seemed unreal from up on the South Rim. The stars were as bright as you might imagine and when the wind isn’t blowing it can be disconcertingly quiet. How remarkable to be on the edge of such an expanse and yet have very little sound…the universal and personal in one. [Rhonda Rider, August 2013]
A founding member of the Naumburg Award-winning Lydian Quartet, with whom she played for more than twenty years, RHONDA RIDER is currently cellist of Triple Helix Piano Trio. Her chamber music and solo recordings have been nominated for Grammy Awards and cited as Critic’s Choice in both The New York Times and The Boston Globe. She has performed throughout the United States, Europe and Asia, at such venues as The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, Library of Congress and Wigmore Hall, and has been guest artist with the Boston Chamber Music Society and St. Paul Chamber Orchestra Chamber Music Series. Rider performs and teaches at Music From Salem, Green Mountain and ARIA, and is the cello coach for the Asian Youth Orchestra in Hong Kong. She is also the Chair of Chamber Music and on the cello faculty at The Boston Conservatory and Boston University.
Rio del Tizon (2011)
The Silence at Yuma Point (2011)
Even the Stones Breathe (2011)
The Great Unconformity (2010)
so near, so far (2011)
DALIT HADASS WARSHAW
My Grandmother’s Ashes (and a Balloon) (2011)
a focus further within (2011)
Near and Far (2011)