January 15, 2013, 08:19 am posted by Maria Choban

Valentine's Day wouldn't be complete without cardiac arresting chamber music, now would it? Leave it to MC Hammered Klavier to toy with our hearts on Saturday, February 16th at 8pm at the Community Music Center in SE Portland.

Ufaratsta, an ecstatic klezmer dance for flute and piano starts the concert, an homage to Valentine's Day by the American composer Paul Schoenfield, whose love of dance and jazz and clearly of everything wild is channeled by Dawn Weiss, who plays it like a woman madly in love . . . . . . emphasis on Crazy!

Maria Choban follows with the feminine perspective on seduction, playing the first movement of Paul Dukas' ravishing Sonata, praised to the high priestesses by Debussy.

The male perspective on seduction chases the female with Miguel del Aguila's Seduction Dance performed by The Mousai: Janet Bebb on flute, Ann van Bever on oboe and Maria Choban on piano. It's caveman stuff -- lots of clubs and coercion and stomping and riotous rhythms and meters.

Somehow the two perspectives are mutually attracted to each other and a wedding ensues via Maurice Ravel's Five Greek Songs sung by Kenneth Beare with holy reverence or drunkenly as the Greeks and Ravel dictate within this matrimonial ceremony.

Will this union end in tears? Not if Kevin H. Gray's Mebasi has anything to say about it. This is a playful, Gabon-inspired rhythmic number for flute, oboe and prepared piano, and The Mousai close the evening playing havoc. . . . . er, HOUSE, with it!

The concert is one hour long with NO intermission and it's absolutely FREE! This concert is rated V -- appropriate for Classical Music Virgins, and is sponsored by -- the gangster of classical music.

Artist Bios in Alphabetical Order:

Miguel del Aguila - An internationally recognized compositional voice and talent, Miguel del Aguila creates fresh, spontaneous music often colored by Latin and World Music idioms, and with a healthy respect for the classical tradition and form. What results is a captivating interplay of classical balance and romantic excess.
Read more about Miguel del Aguila

Kenneth Beare has sung leading tenor roles in opera houses and concert venues throughout much of Europe. He is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music and the Hochschule fur Musik Koln. As an advocate for modern music, he created the title role in the world premiere of El Bon Senyor Karnak by Carl Mansker in Spain, and took part in the world premier of Life with an Idiot by Alfred Schnittke in Amsterdam. Here in the Portland area he has collaborated with Maria Choban presenting Schubert's Winterreise in a variety of venues, and performed a variety of works on Cascadia Composers concerts.
Hear more Ken on Ken's Aria page

Flutist Janet Bebb has a master's degree in landscape architecture, works as Principal Regional Planner for Metro Parks and Greenspaces, and has studied flute in Boston, Honolulu and Florence Italy. Janet grew up playing classical music and has also studied south Indian flute in India, saz and kaval in Turkey, and recorders in Italy. For the past 15 years she has been a dedicated chamber music player and has performed in the Portland area. She is a founding member of the Mousai Ensemble.
Read more about Janet and The Mousai on The Mousai Performers page

Ann van Bever plays oboe, oboe d'amore and English horn in the Bach Cantata Choir Orchestra, the Portland Columbia Symphony, and the Double Reed Divas, and is a founding member of The Mousai. She holds bachelor's and master's degrees in music from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX, and a law degree from Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI. After practicing law in Florida, Texas, California and Oregon for 17 years, she returned to music as a full-time vocation in 2000. Last February she performed the Bach Concerto for Violin and Oboe with the Oregon East Symphony in Pendleton where she also plays principal oboe. She founded and administers the Celebration Works concert series at First Presbyterian Church, teaches private oboe students and freelances all over Oregon and southwest Washington.
Read more about Ann's series, Celebration Works

Maria Choban has produced and released four CDs on her recording label, Alitisa. Her mission through Alitisa is to promote the music of contemporary Greek and American composers, mirroring her own background as a full blooded Greek born and raised in America. Choban has performed and lectured in the US and in Europe, living in Greece for two years researching Greek classical music. She is one of the founders of the South West Music School in Beaverton, Oregon as well as a founding member of The Mousai. She maintains her own teaching studio, is an active performer and rabble rouser, writing probably the most controversial classical music blog online here at Alitisa

Paul Dukas was a French composer, critic, scholar and teacher. A studious man, of retiring personality, he was intensely self-critical, and he abandoned and destroyed many of his compositions. His best known work is the orchestral piece The Sorcerer's Apprentice (L'apprenti sorcier), the fame of which has eclipsed that of his other surviving works.
Read the entire Wikipedia entry on Paul Dukas

Kevin H. Gray is a composer and painter who has lived in Memphis since 1972. He studied composition with John Baur, and cites Messiaen, Xenakis, Carter, Nancarrow, Boulez, and Fukushima as particularly important compositional influences. His long career as a collaborative pianist has likely led to the fact of chamber music dominating his compositional output. In recent years, he has concentrated primarily on the production of music for wind instruments and keyboards.
Read more about Kevin Gray

Maurice Ravel was a French composer who, along with Claude Debussy is one of the most prominent figures associated with Impressionist music. According to SACEM, Ravel's estate had earned more royalties than that of any other French composer (until, that is, January 1, 2008 when, according to the governing copyright laws of most countries around the world, Ravel's works fell into the public domain). SACEM, Societe des auteurs, compositeurs et editeurs de musique, is the French equivalent of ASCAP, BMI or SESAC: Organizations that license and collect fees for performances of compositions not in the public domain.
Read the entire Wikipedia article about Maurice Ravel

Paul Schoenfield is a composer known for combining popular, folk, and classical music forms. Schoenfield was formerly an active concert pianist, as a soloist and with groups including Music from Marlboro. He gave the premiere of his piano concerto Four Parables with the Toledo Symphony in 1983. Critic Raymond Tuttle characterized Four Parables as "wild silliness in the face of existential dread." Schoenfield's song cycle Camp Songs was commissioned by Seattle's Music of Remembrance. It was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2003. The song cycle Ghetto Songs, commissioned by MOR, was recorded in 2009 by Naxos. In 2010 Schoenfield's Sonata for violin and piano was premiered at Lincoln Center with Cho-Liang Lin, violin, and Jon Kimura Parker, piano.
Read the entire Wikipedia article about Paul Schoenfield

Dawn Weiss - Principal Flutist for the Oregon Symphony Orchestra for 25 years, Dawn Weiss continues to perform chamber recitals, channeling her warmth and love of music and connecting with audiences. She teaches private lessons for all levels. When teaching, Weiss strives to transmit her deep love of music as an art form and a universal language. Assisting a student achieve artistry is one of her passions. Enjoying time with her daughter, nesting and turning her house into a home, dancing, and walking her doggy are others.
Read more about Dawn at her web site

Latest Albums:

Back In The Building

Greek Rapture

Gifts from three kings

American Piano Duets

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