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Air From Other Planets

Left Coast Chamber Ensemble

Left Coast Chamber Ensemble Air From Other Planets

Left Coast Chamber Ensemble presents Air From Other Planets, a concert featuring Schoenberg’s exquisite Second String Quartet, Mozart’s C Major String Quartet, K. 465, and the premieres of new works by Jamie Leigh Sampson and John Schott.

Schoenberg’s Second String Quartet from 1908 broke new ground in a variety of ways. The most striking innovation is the addition of a soprano for the last two movements. The texts are Stefan George’s poems “Litany,” about a faltering faith, and “Rapture,” about transcendence, which begins “I feel air from another planet.” Left Coast’s acclaimed soprano Nikki Einfeld joins the Ensemble’s String Quartet for this performance.

To explore how Schoenberg was influenced by one of his favorite composers, LCCE pairs his piece with Mozart’s C major String Quartet, K. 465. Completed in 1785, it was nicknamed “Dissonance” on account of its unusual introduction and its divergence from the then standard rules of harmony.

Complementing these master works, LCCE presents two newly commissioned pieces from contemporary composers. The first is written by Berkeley composer and jazz guitarist John Schott. Also, heavily influenced by Mozart, Schott’s new work Movement for Viola and Guitar (Eye Contact) will be performed by longtime Left Coast Chamber Ensemble members Michael Goldberg and Phyllis Kamrin. Husband and wife, Goldberg and Kamrin have also performed together for many years as the Alma Duo.

"My new piece was inspired by my long friendship with guitarist Michael Goldberg,” explains Schott. “I met Michael over twenty years ago when he was doing a series of radio interviews with guitarists. I quickly became aware of his masterful playing and deep musicianship. I also came to know Phyllis Kamrin, and have admired her playing. My composition for Michael and Phyllis dives deep into the sound world of Schoenberg, Berg, and Webern. To me the piece seems at once like a ‘period piece’ and a very personal statement.”

The second premiere work, Waving Goodbye, comes from New York composer, bassoonist, and author Jamie Leigh Sampson. Set to the text of a poem by Elizabeth Spires, Sampson found the writing “substantial enough for a 10 minute piece and full of vibrant imagery that provided interesting things to work with musically.” Composed for guitar, voice, and string quartet, this is a big piece, which again features the vocal talent of Nikki Einfled, along with Left Coast’s String Quartet and Michael Goldberg’s guitar.

There will be a pre-concert talk at 7:05pm at both venues with Mark Theodoropoulos, former host of KUSF's show Classics Without Walls. Theodoropoulos will discuss Schoenberg's Second String Quartet. Visit www.leftcoastensemble.org for details.

Additional Dates:
Sat November 2, 2019 7:30pm
The Hillside Club

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Program

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

String Quartet in C Major, K. 465 “The Dissonance Quartet”

Arnold Schoenberg

String Quartet #2

John Schott

Movement for Viola and Guitar (Eye Contact) - World Premiere ohn Schott – Movement for Viola and Guitar (Eye Contact) for guitar and viola WORLD PREMIERE John Schott – Movement for Viola and Guitar (Eye Contact) for guitar and viola WORLD PREMIERE J

Jamie Leigh Sampson

Waving Goodbye for guitar, voice, and string quartet - World Premiere