Guest Blogger Matt Marble: Sounding Nature’s Signs

Posted on March 22, 2017 1:28 pm by Evan Lewis
Tags | 2016-17 Season

Kepler’s harmonies from his Harmonices Mundi (1619)

Kepler’s harmonies from his Harmonices Mundi (1619)

From the stars of the cosmos to the wildflowers of Earth, for centuries composers have found new musical signs and sounds inspired by the forms of nature. Ancient Greek mathematician, Pythagoras, saw the ratios of planetary orbits as directly related to musical harmony, a.k.a. the “harmony of the spheres.” His beliefs still define contemporary Western music. Centuries after… Learn More » »

Guest Blogger Mark Powell: A Passion for Pärt

Posted on February 6, 2017 9:36 am by Evan Lewis
Tags | 2016-17 Season

Arvo Pärt and Mark Powell, Walt Disney Concert Hall, May 2016

Arvo Pärt and Mark Powell, Walt Disney Concert Hall, May 2016

Videmus nunc per speculum in ænigmate: tunc autem facie ad faciem. Nunc cognosco ex parte: tunc autem cognoscam sicut et cognitus sum.  I Cor. XIII.xii

I was in college in 1988. At some point that year I made one of my reasonably frequent visits to the Tower Records near the Space Needle in Seattle.  In the Classical Room (remember those!?) there was some amazing music… Learn More » »


Posted on January 18, 2017 10:16 am by Ron Blessinger
Tags | 2016-17 Season

via Mental Floss

What a week this is shaping up to be. I suppose we should have known last year when we were planning this season that a January 20th concert might have greater significant political coincidence with the inauguration than we’d imagined. Frankly, we never could imagine being at this place in our politics, with such deep division in our country.

So here we are, in full concert prep mode as we look forward to presenting to you… Learn More » »

Musical Influences: Guest Playlist from Daniel Wohl

Posted on January 10, 2017 3:40 pm by Evan Lewis
Tags | 2016-17 Season

daniel wohl

It’s always interesting to hear what works influenced a piece of art, to see what small ideas or feelings stuck in the composer or artist’s brain, tumbled around in there, and came out as something new.  For our Holographic concert coming up on the 20th, composer Daniel Wohl has put together a playlist of works that inspire him and will get you in the right mindset for Holographic (and he’ll keep updating it every few days, so… Learn More » »

Ron on “Different Trains”

Posted on September 26, 2016 9:56 am by Evan Lewis
Tags | 2016-17 Season

Different Trains

Fifteen years ago, we brought Steve Reich to Portland for a concert of his music. The program was ambitious, and included Music for 18 Musicians, Proverb, and Different Trains. Frankly, we were out of our minds to attempt such a big program, and to bring Steve here for it was sheer lunacy. Yet we pulled it off, performing that epic program like champs.

Working with Steve on his music was a truly life changing experience. Little things… Learn More » »

“The World’s Greatest Living Composer”?

Posted on September 8, 2016 9:17 am by Evan Lewis
Tags | 2016-17 Season

What makes a composer “great”?  What is that certain something that makes listeners and critics sit up a little straighter and think “yeah, this composer is onto something.”  Often, unfortunately, this acclaim happens after they have died.  The arts love a good unappreciated and unnoticed in life and died a pauper but now we are smart and know that artist was great narrative.  Schubert, Van Gogh, Poe?  All anointed as… Learn More » »

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