Back Cove Contemporary Music Festival
The 10th annual Back Cove Contemporary Music Festival comes to downtown Portland May 18-20. Under the sponsorship of the Portland Conservatory of Music, this year’s four concerts will all take place at venues on Congress Street, within steps of one another: Mechanics Hall on Friday, May 18, at 7:30 pm; First Parish Church on Saturday, May 19, at 7:30 pm; SPACE on Sunday, May 20, at 2:00 pm; and the Bob Crewe Gallery of the Maine College of Art on Sunday, May 20, at 7:00 pm.
The festival presents an eclectic array of exciting new chamber music by two dozen composers from Maine and northern New England, all of whom will be present to introduce their pieces and interact with the audience.
The SPACE concert focuses on works of the genre-bending variety. Several composer-soloists will perform with electronic elements: clarinetist Beth Wiemann with vocoder, bassoonist Leslie Rosswith Max MSP software, and songwriter Jerusha Neely accompanying herself on cello with looping pedal. Neely will also perform in a piece for cello and electronics by Peter McLaughlin. Another soloist, bass player Josh Descherer, will incorporate homemade instruments and electronics into his composition. The versatile bass flutist Carl Dimow will push his instrument into unexpected territory. Philip Carlsen offers a new played-and-spoken string trio based on the poetry of Robert Bringhurst, and Mark Tipton’s multi-genre quartet Les Sorciers Perdus will combine music with poetry or dance in the collaborative, improvisatory spirit of the monthly “Gravity Sessions” series they have been hosting at The Apohadion Theater.
An Anxious Awareness of Danger – Beth Wiemann
Beth Wiemann, clarinet and electronics
No Sad Songs (for Elliott Schwartz) – Peter McLaughlin
Jerusha Neely, cello
Three Songs – Jerusha Neely
Cloud & Clear
Jerusha Neely, voice and cello
Double Bass and Debris – Joshua DeScherer
Joshua DeScherer, double bass
spacE x p a n s i o n – Mark Tipton
Mark Tipton, trumpet
Tyler Heydolph, bass
Beau Lisy, drums
Gil Helmick, poetry
Rush Brown, visual art
I N T E R M I S S I O N ~147 – Leslie Ross
Leslie Ross, bassoon and electronics
Three Interludes – Carl Dimow
What might have been, and what has been
Words move, music moves
Content at the last
Carl Dimow, flute and bass flute
from New World Suite No. 3 (text by Robert Bringhurst) – Philip Carlsen
Who is the Fluteplayer?
The Children of Zhuang Zi
Confront the Frozen Saskatchewan River
Tracey Jasas-Hardel, violin
Trevor Andrews, viola
Philip Carlsen, cello