LUIS PINE: TIMES OF DAYChamber Music for Winds, Cello and Piano
DORIAN WIND QUINTET
KEREN SCHWEITZER flute / piccolo and JASON LIPPMANN cello
JONATHAN SZIN clarinet and JEFFREY LADEUR piano
World Premiere Recordings
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"the recording is delightful, playful, fecund with many beautiful, fleeting sounds and interludes, a departure from much of contemporary music that is troubled by anxiety, dissonance, angst, hatred, sadness and unfulfilled desires. With “Times of Day,” MSR has responded to one of its goals to bring recognition and appreciation to new composers, including Pine, by providing world premier recordings of this work. We can now hope to hear more from Pine."
Joel C. Thompson, Cherry Grove Music Review [September 2020]
"[In Solar Midnight] the music explores the clarinet’s lower range to good effect, and the mostly quiet blending of wind instrument with piano is nicely handled."
Mark J. Estren, InfoDad [October 2020]
PROGRAM NOTESABOUT TIMES OF DAY | Recording music is like painting a picture. A master painter rarely produces a work of quality, a work of precision and depth on the first attempt. The painter studies colors and shadows and revises the painting; the musician studies the score and rehearses the piece one more time. Both artists hope the right combination of elements finds its way to the canvas and the microphone, thus making the whole piece come alive in a way that resonates within the viewer, the listener.
This album’s recordings reveal performances that emerged and blossomed with an earthy beauty, an authenticity in the absolute spirit of the music. Times of Day was birthed and has its context in nature. It follows the light. From the breaking of day, to the brightness of high noon, to the last soft strands of the golden hour. To the blue-black skies of night where illumination and dreams pull us, to the gravity that pulls the tides over the shores like a blanket, to the moon that waxes and wanes and casts shadows through the trees.
When we walk in the park or in the forest in the daytime hours, we notice how light alters the atmosphere of the spaces we encounter. The light weaves patterns through leaves and paths, across tufts of moss and blades of grass. Those changes of light, in turn, spark a mystical awareness of what is somehow changeless in us: that inner knowing or experience that makes us feel as if we are infinite, having no beginning nor end. Light has a way of provoking wonder, perhaps because it corresponds to consciousness; we speak of the “lights coming on”. It brings a kind of comfort to see it. It warms. It illuminates. All its degrees of brightness and intensity capture in a moment a refined picture, even when framing mere specks of dust.
If we imagine the day as a metaphor for life on earth, we can see the emotional and psychological effects the sun impresses upon us as it moves across the sky. Its different angles influence different perspectives. This aspect of our connection, resonance and communion with the natural world is a through-line in Times of Day, even as day turns into night. The same can be said of the night as a metaphor for life, as the absence of light impresses itself upon us. It presents an opportunity to listen to the quiet – the silence even – and to visit the vast space where the presence of our inner light may become more evident.
The nighttime aspect of this album provides a contrast to being and travelling in the journey of the day. It is a synthesis of the purity of solar midnight, when it is most dark, and the floating quality that is rest and sleep. It is, as in nature, the immense ocean under the canopy of the ink-dark star-dusted sky; here, where we are still in the company of flora and fauna and lulled to sleep, we see visions and dream dreams. Even when our bodies sleep, that limitless space gives us the freedom to dream what went unprocessed in our waking hours. We experience an invitation to explore the parts of us that need grounding, that need to find or return to being. That same inner light – which daylight affirms and which darkness makes prominent – proves a trustworthy guide.
The idea for Times of Day to become a full album of my music started unawares. After I composed Evening for flute and cello, I wondered what the same instrumental combination would reveal for the contrasting idea of dawn. After Dawn was written, the thought came to write a wind quintet with five movements for five distinct times of the day. Before long, I realized there was almost enough material for an album. Solar Midnight, a nocturne for clarinet and piano, soon came into being and the program was complete. In the end, the concept turned out to be about natural light and our experience of time in nature. These times of day are like seasons in a 24-hour cycle, with each revealing something different and enlightening about ourselves. [Luis Pine]
LUIS PINE, born Luis Manuel Henriques Pinheiro, was born in Lisbon on 1 December, 1957, and attended the Lisbon Conservatory of Music. Before leaving Portugal at the age of 24, Pine engaged in a variety of musical experiences, ranging from contemporary to jazz to folk and pop, in both composition and improvisation. In the United States, Pine continued to cultivate his musical interests, no longer as a performer, but as a self-motivated student of composition. In Pine’s words: “Composing always came naturally, but it took me a long time to accept that this wasn’t common and that I needed to value it and work with it. I always kept close to heart an early compliment I received from my teacher for a harmonization I provided of a melody he dictated, as well as the admiration and encouragement of working peers I have received over the years. As a life-long learner, I continue to study master works and contemporary pieces that catch my attention, as well as my own work, as the fluidity of the creative process causes one to discover new approaches and new ideas. I love classical music because of its precision, organic transparency and well-founded alphabet. This alphabet, put in place during the Classical period with the advent of the twelve-tone equal temperament, enabled us to reach a standardized western musical language. When we consider the immense fabric of people, ideas and places that form the musical knowledge and experience compounded since ancient times, we cannot but value classical music’s rich heritage as a refined language for composers, instrumentalists – who bring the music to life – and society. As Downing Thomas in his Music and the Origins of Language so well concludes: ‘Both a sensible force [referencing the five senses] and a (virtual) representation, music activates the mechanism of inter-subjective community, which, at the origin of language, heralded the initial moments of society and culture. If I demonstrate that classical music written today can be as relevant as any other genre in its ability to explore and express both present day ideas, as well as timeless ones, through an infinite amount of stories, I have accomplished something of value.”
KEREN SCHWEITZER has performed with Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble, and has toured throughout the United States, Canada, South America, Japan and China. Schweitzer has appeared on numerous occasions with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and has performed chamber music concerts with many of its members. She was the winner of the 2011 Byron Hester Flute Competition, the 2010 National Flute Association Convention Performer’s Competition and the 1997 Flute Talk Competition. While a student, she won the concerto competitions at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and the Manhattan School of Music. Schweitzer has performed at the Tanglewood, Spoleto, Caramoor, Bowdoin Music Festivals and with the Verbier Festival Orchestra.
JASON LIPPMANN joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic during the 2004-2005 season after five years of performing as a member of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. Lippmann has also performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Opera, New World Symphony, American Ballet Theatre Orchestra, and Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. In addition to his orchestral playing, he has actively performed as a chamber and solo musician, most recently on the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Chamber Music Society and Green Umbrella series. In the music festival setting, Lippmann has performed at Tanglewood, Aspen, Bard Festival and Bellingham.
JONATHAN SZIN is a highly active chamber musician in the San Francisco Bay Area. Born in Hungary, Szin is currently the clarinetist and managing director of the San Francisco-based Nomad Session wind octet, and is also the clarinetist with the Keyed Kontraptions ensemble. An advocate of promoting and representing chamber ensembles in the San Francisco Bay Area, Szin is also an affiliate of InterMusic San Francisco. He performs regularly with orchestras in the Bay Area, including the Santa Cruz Symphony, Symphony Napa Valley and Merced Symphony. A sought after educator, Szin has given instruction in clarinet at San Jose State University and Stanford University, and maintains a robust private studio in San Francisco.
JEFFREY LaDEUR is known for a delicate touch and expressivity, giving performances described as probing and deeply felt. Highly sought after for his rare blend of insight, spontaneity and approachable, communicative stage presence, LaDeur has captured the attention of audiences and critics alike. He is highly active as a performer, having appeared at the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, San Francisco Jazz Center, Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society, and numerous other notable venues. LaDeur founded the New Piano Collective and the San Francisco International Piano Festival, now in its third year, for which he serves as artistic director. He also maintains a repertoire of more than 40 concertos.
The DORIAN WIND QUINTET, consisting of Gretchen Pusch (flute /piccolo), Gerrard Reuter (oboe), Benjamin Fingland (clarinet), Karl Kramer-Johansen (horn) and Adrian Morejon (bassoon) is recognized by critics, audiences and colleagues alike for polished and passionate performances. The group is internationally recognized as one of chamber music’s pre-eminent and longest continuously-active ensembles. The Quintet has traveled around the world, performing in 48 of the 50 United States and in Canada, touring Europe 18 times, and playing throughout the Middle East, India, Africa and Asia. The Dorian Quintet made history in 1981 as the first wind quintet to appear at Carnegie Hall. Since its inception at Tanglewood in 1961, the ensemble has collaborated with many of the most transcendent and legendary artists in the world of classical music, including Jean Casadesus, Phyllis Curtin, Lukas Foss, Claude Frank, Lorin Hollander, Ruth Laredo, Minoru Nojima, Jean-Pierre Rampal and James Tocco, and with the Apple Hill String Quartet and American Brass Quintet. The Dorian has appeared at numerous festivals, including the Stravinsky Festival at Lincoln Center, Caramoor International Music Festival, North Carolina New Music Initiative, San Luis Obispo Festival and New American Music Festival in Sacramento, and internationally at Great Britain’s Newbury Spring Festival, Ontario’s Stratford Festival, International Festival in Warsaw and the Chamber Music Festival of Aguascalientes in Mexico. The Quintet has served as the resident ensemble for the Mannes College of Music, Brooklyn College, Hunter College and the State University of New York. The group has been in residence at Dartington Hall and Newbury in England, the Tanglewood Music Festival, and for more than 10 years at the Festival Institute at Round Top, Texas. [www.dorianwindquintet.org ]
PROGRAMLUIS PINE (b. 1957)
TIMES OF DAY for Wind Quintet
I. Daybreak (Adagio)
II. Morning (Allegro)
III. Noon (Vivace)
IV. Afternoon (Andante)
V. Nighttime (Larghetto)
DAWN for Flute / Piccolo and Cello
Largo, Sia la Luce
EVENING for Flute / Piccolo and Cello
Adagio di Sera
SOLAR MIDNIGHT for Clarinet and Piano