The San Francisco Contemporary Music Players (SFCMP) will conclude their season at the end of this month with the fifth of Steven Schick’s Zones of Intensity. This is the zone “in which discussing a plan leads to some confusion.” Less confusing, however, is the fact that the program for this Zone will offer a heavy emphasis on Bay Area composers. Most important is that the program will conclude with the world premiere of Berkeley composer Edmund Campion’s “Small Wonder,” written under an SFCMP commission. This has been composed for a chamber ensemble consisting of two clarinets, two violins, two percussionists, and bass, along with both amplification and electronics.
Past work of three other Bay Area composers will also be presented:
- The oldest of these will be Lou Harrison’s “Serenade,” scored for guitar (David Tanenbaum) and percussion (William Winant) and composed in 1978; this performance will reprise the New Albion recording that Tanenbaum and Winant made in 1993.
- The program will begin with “Culture no. 1,” written by San Francisco-based composer Aaron Gervais in 2006. The performance will feature Karen Gottlieb on harp and Karen Rosenak doubling on both piano and laptop. The laptop is necessary because the score is based on recycled samples from Gervais’ past projects.
- Also from 2006 is the “Pre-composition,” a tape music piece by Stanford composer Mark Applebaum, deployed through eight channels of surround-sound.
Of the other two composers on the program, Brett Dean is an Australian native, who became a member of the viola section of the Berlin Philharmonic. He composed a viola solo entitled “Intimate Decisions” in 1997. It will be performed by Nanci Severance (who, through a fortuitous parallel, happens to be in the viola section of the San Francisco Symphony).
Finally, “The Bright and Hollow Sky” is a 2004 piece by New York composer Nathan Davis, scored for flute, clarinet, trumpet, guitar, and percussion.
A preview of Campion’s new composition will be the subject of the Contemporary Insights event taking place the afternoon before the concert itself. Schick will conduct what will probably be the “final dress” of “Small Wonder.” Campion will also be on hand and, along with Schick, he will offer his thoughts on the music and entertain questions from the audience.
The final concert of the SFCMP season will be held in Herbst Theatre (401 Van Ness Avenue at the northwest corner of McAllister Street) on Monday, April 30. The performance begins at 8 PM with a pre-concert talk at 7:15 PM in which Schick will converse with Campion, Gervais, Davis, and Applebaum. The Contemporary Insights event will be on Sunday, April 29, taking place at 4:30 PM in the ODC Dance Commons (351 Shotwell Street at 17th Street in the Mission) and is planned to last one hour.
Single tickets for concerts are $30, $25 for seniors, and $10 for students. General admission to the Contemporary Insights event is $10 with a $5 rate for both students and seniors. Concert tickets are available through the event page on City Box Office or by telephone at 415-392-4400. Further information may be obtained from SFCMP at 415-278-9566. Contemporary Insights tickets are available at the door, and no one will be turned away for lack of funds.