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Canceled: Fairytale Pieces

Left Coast Chamber Ensemble

Left Coast Chamber Ensemble Canceled: Fairytale Pieces

Left Coast Chamber Ensemble presents Fairytale Pieces, a concert of works in which music illuminates folklore and storytelling. The program includes Schumann’s Fairytale Pieces for viola and piano, along with Chris Castro’s musical renditions of myths about Coyote and Old Man Farmer, and the premiere of Carl Schimmel’s Ladle Rat Rotten Hut - a topsy turvy Little Red Ridding Hood for the 21st Century.

Schumann’s Fairytale Pieces Opus 113, written in 1851, consists of four character pieces featuring the viola and piano. Schumann gives few clues to what creatures and events are depicted in each movement, leaving the details to the performers and the audience. Guest pianist Allegra Chapman, known for her dedication to connecting with audiences, will be joined by Left Coast’s violist Phyllis Kamrin, to perform and interpret this delightful piece.

Schumann’s classic piece is paired with Chris Castro’s musical renditions of myths about Coyote and Old Man Farmer, Coyote Goes to the Sky and Birds of Fortune. These pieces are brought to life with music and spoken word featuring guest storyteller Susan Strauss. “They are two of my favorite stories, one serious and one full of Coyote’s clever timeless humor,” said Strauss. “They are deep stories about listening. Stories that are helpful at any time, but especially now.” Both were commissioned by Left Coast Chamber Ensemble and premiered in March 2019 while the ensemble-in-residence at the Doug Adam’s Gallery at the Graduate Theological Union’s Center for Arts and Religion (CARe).

The concert culminates with the world premiere of Ladle Rat Rotten Hut, a new work by Carl Schimmel. Praised by The New York Times as “vivid and dramatic,” the music of Carl Schimmel is dense with literary and musical references, often humorous, and combines intensity of expression with a structural rigor. Commissioned with a generous grant from the Fromm Foundation, this whirlwind of a piece updates the Little Red Riding Hood myth for the 21st Century, featuring Left Coast’s soprano Nikki Einfeld as narrator. “In Ladle Rat Rotten Hut, I use the wordplay of Howard L. Chace's amusing text to explore the intersection of different realms of meaning,” explains Schimmel, “-- it's ridiculous and scary, a darkly comedic tale about innocence and violence, and also maybe about eating and being eaten.”

“We first met Carl Schimmel because his string quartet, Dempsey and Firpo, was the winner of our 2005 Composition Contest,” explained Anna Presler, LCCE’s Artistic Director. “We have enjoyed working together often since then. As we get ready to judge the 2020 round of competition entries, it is fun to look back at the work of some of our previous winners. It was exciting to learn that Carl won a Fromm commission to write this new piece for us for Left Coast’s 2019/2020 season. His playful fascination with words and language, as well as a quirky and charming way of expressing humor in music is the perfect fit for this enchanting storytelling concert.”

Additional Dates:
Sun March 8, 2020 7:30pm
Berkeley Hillside Club

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Fairytale Pieces Opus 113

Chris Castro

Coyote Goes to the Sky and Birds of Fortune

Carl Schimmel

Ladle Rat Rotten Hut - world premiere


Allegra Chapman

guest pianist

Susan Strauss

guest storyteller

Nikki Eifeld


Loren Mach