Archive for November 7th, 2012

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Amsterdam’s Musical Artists

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Calefax Reed Quintet will perform for Civic Music on Saturday, November 17th, 7:30 pm, in the Ralph Holter Auditorium at Green Bay West High. Established 25 years ago, Calefax is in great demand worldwide, not the least because of their unique instrumentation. Featuring oboe, clarinet, saxophone, bass clarinet and bassoon, the five musicians arrange, re-compose and interpret music from eight centuries to suit their unique constellation. From early music to classical and jazz to world premières, in the hands of Calefax it all sounds fresh and new. The Amsterdam-based ensemble has won a number of prestigious prizes, and can be heard frequently throughout Europe as well as in Russia, China, India, Turkey, Japan and the USA. The Times (UK) has called them “five extremely gifted Dutch gents who almost made the reed quintet seem the best musical format on the planet.”

Read the complete bio, program and program notes.

Tickets can be purchased on our website or by calling the Civic Music office, 338-1801

Calefax, Nov. 17 – Program Notes

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Season Listing | Program | Program Notes | Biography | Video

Johann Sebastian Bach Suite from Goldberg Variations, BWV 988

The story goes that the Goldberg Variations were written for Johann Gottlieb Goldberg, the young private harpsichordist of the Dresdener Count Herman von Kayserlinck to sooth his sleepless nights. However this is generally considered to be heresy, due to the fact that the music is very virtuosic and Goldberg could not have been older than fourteen at the time of writing.

In the arrangement for reed quintet a specific detail of the piece becomes clear; Bach wrote it for an instrument with two manuals, on which the crossing of the hands (thus of the voices) was much easier than on a regular keyboard instrument. These crossing of voices are more apparent in Calefax’s arrangement because of the differences in tonal colour of the various reed instruments.

Edvard Grieg (1843 – 1907) – Aus Holberg’s Zeit

Edvard Grieg wrote his piano suite “From Holberg’s time” for the bicentenary of the Danish/Norwegian playwright Ludvig Holberg (1684-1754). The piece follows the design of a French baroque dance suite, but then in romantic fashion. Grieg’s later version, for string orchestra, became immensely popular. In the arrangement for reed quintet, Raaf Hekkema happily uses both sources; the sonority of the string orchestra is similar to that of the reed quintet, whereas here and there the transparency of the original is being preferred.

Libro de glosas is based on the Trattado de glosas from Diego Ortiz (1510-ca1570).  The “inter-textuality” between different materials and musical techniques and process of the XVIst century music was my principal interest when I wrote this piece for the wonderful sound and quality of the Calefax ensemble. The piece consists of four Recercadas (I-IV) and a Batalla (V).

The parts I, II und V were performed in Den Bosch at December, 16th 2007. The wohle ciclus was premiered in September 6th 2008 in Utrecht (Old Music Festival). The piece is dedicated to Calefax. The intertextual relationships are as follows:

Recercada I is based on the first chords of the chanson “Doulce memoire“ von Pierre Sandrin. It is also used by Diego Ortiz in his Trattado de glosas.

Recercada II is based on the Incipit of the Madrigal “O felici occhi miei“ of Jacques Arcadelt. It is also used in Trattado de glosas.

Recercada III ist based on the ostinato “Passamezzo antico”. It is also used in Trattado de glosas.

Recercada IV is based on the tenor “La Spagna”. It is also present in Tratado de glosas.

Batalla (V) is a free composition in the form of a “battaglia” and is based on some ostinati of spanish origin as well as on an anonymous thema (XVIst century). There are also some bars of a batalla from Joseph Ximénez (XVIIIrd century).

La spagna – or, in full, “Il re de Spagna”- is a melody which was profusely improvised upon during the 15th century.  In the “basse danse”, instruments – usually the shawm – swarmed in a bristling improvisation around a slower melody. Only a few anonymous composers, however, recorded this style. Here the clarinet plays “La Spagna”; the use of the cor anglais adds to the ensemble’s dark sound color.
text by Alban Wesly

Calefax, Nov. 17 – Program

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Season Listing | Program | Program Notes | Biography | Video

Calefax Reed Quintet
Saturday, November 17, 2012 – 7:30 p.m.

OLIVER BOEKHOORN, oboe
IVAR BERIX, clarinet
RAAF HEKKEMA, saxophone
JELTE ALTHUIS, bass clarinet
ALBAN WESLY, bassoon

Program

Aus Holberg’s Zeit Edvard Grieg (1843 – 1907) -arr. Raaf Hekkema

Präludium
Sarabande
Gavotte
Air
Rigaudon

Pavane pour un infante défunte, Maurice Ravel (1875-1937) -arr. Jelte Althuis

La Spagna Anonymus -arr. Raaf Hekkema

Libro de glosas (2007), José Maria Sánchez-Verdú (1968)

– intermission –

Goldberg Variations J.S. Bach (1685-1750) -arr. Raaf Hekkema

Aria
Variatio 1
Variatio 2
Variatio 3, Canone all’Unisuono
Variatio 4
Variatio 5
Variatio 6, Canone alla Seconda
Variatio 7, al tempo di Giga
Variatio 8
Variatio 9, Canone alla Terza
Variatio 10, Fughetta
Variatio 11
Variatio 12, Canone alla Quarta
Variatio 13
Variatio 14
Variatio 15, Canone alla Quinta, Andante
Variatio 16, Ouverture
Variatio 17
Variatio 18, Canone alla Sesta
Variatio 19
Variatio 20
Variatio 21, Canone alla Settima
Variatio 22, Alla breve
Variatio 23
Variatio 24, Canone all’Ottava
Variatio 25, Adagio
Variatio 26
Variatio 27, Canone alla Nona
Variatio 28
Variatio 29
Variatio 30, Quodlibet
Aria

Calefax Biography

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Season Listing | Program | Program Notes | Biography | Video

Calefax Reed Quintet

Calefax Reed Quintet

OLIVER BOEKHOORN, oboe
IVAR BERIX, clarinet
RAAF HEKKEMA, saxophone
JELTE ALTHUIS, bass clarinet
ALBAN WESLY, bassoon

Calefax Reed Quintet, established twenty-five years ago, is now in great demand worldwide, not least because of their unique instrumentation. The five musicians arrange, recompose and interpret music from eight centuries to suit their unique constellation. From early music to classical and jazz to world premières, in the hands of Calefax it all sounds fresh and new. The Amsterdam-based ensemble has won a number of prestigious prizes, and can be heard frequently throughout Europe as well as in Russia, China, India, Turkey, Japan and the USA. The Times (UK) has called them “five extremely gifted Dutch gents who almost made the reed quintet seem the best musical format on the planet.”

The current Calefax season includes tours in the United States, Japan and South-Africa and several performances including London’s Wigmore Hall, Germany’s Wittener Tage für Neue Musik, Belgium’s Bach Academy Brugge, and Antwerp’s De Singel, among others. Past season highlights include Music & Image, a program in which the five Calefax musicians are accompanied on stage by movable projection screens for which accompanying video material has been specially developed; a collaboration with the New York based composer Nico Muhly and Dutch rising star soprano Lenneke Ruiten, with concerts in Netherland’s Concertgebouw, in Belgium, and in England’s Wigmore Hall; the ‘Scherpdenkers’ series with Rob Riemen, director of the highly respected Nexus Institut, at Concertgebouw and Muziekgebouw Frits Philips, Eindhoven; the Far East Revisited project with jazz trio Jungle Boldie at Amsterdam’s Muziekgebouw, and Leidse’s Jazz Week; and a concert in the Donderdagavondserie Muziekgebouw, Amsterdam, with world premières of works by Carola Bauckholt, Klas Torstensson and Yannis Kyriakides.

Calefax has released sixteen recordings for the renowned German label MDG, as well as for their own label, Rioja Records, each garnering rave reviews from the international press. Two recent recordings featured CalefaXL (Calefax Extra Large), for which Calefax was expanded to twelve reed players.
The Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant wrote “CalefaXL juggles with notes, and keeps these in the air in a grand manner.” And Lonneke Regter applauded, “as CalefaXL, the twelve reed players shone … with new compositions and inventive arrangements.”

Calefax Reed Quintet has enjoyed collaborations with pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, trombonist Christian Lindberg, mezzo-soprano Cora Burggraaf, Jungle Boldie (formerly the Tony Overwater Trio), trumpet player Marco Blaauw, percussionist Arnold Marinissen, Zapp String Quartet, clarinetist Kinan Azmeh, violinist Claude Chalhoub, jazz singers Denise Jannah and Astrid Seriese, and choreographer Sanne van der Put.

In 2004 Calefax started publishing (for online sale) its most successful arrangements in the Calefax Edition. As a result, several reed quintets have been formed all over the world. Through master classes and workshops the Calefax musicians pass on their specific ways of working and musical experiences to new generations. For musicians as well as composers, for audiences and press alike, Calefax continues to be an inspiring chamber music laboratory.