Christian B. Carey

Composer, writer, performer

Del Sol Quartet

Congratulations to my friend Ken Ueno, whose work Peradam features prominently on Del Sol Quartet’s new Sono Luminus release Scrapyard Exotica. The Blu-ray/CD recording also features music by Mason Bates for quartet and electronics and a piece by Mohammed Fairouz.

Tonight at the NY Phil

The second of two World Premiere performances of Marc Neikrug’s Canta-Concerto with Sasha Cooke. Alan Gilbert has more in the video below.

Da Capo Performs Double Centennial Concert

Photo Credit: Janette Beckmann Caption: Members of the Da Capo Chamber Players (Left to Right:) Curtis Macomber, violin, Patricia Spencer, flute, Jay Campbell, cello, Meighan Stoops, clarinet, Blair McMillen, piano
Photo Credit: Janette Beckmann
Members of the Da Capo Chamber Players
(Left to Right:) Curtis Macomber, violin, Patricia Spencer, flute, Jay Campbell, cello, Meighan Stoops, clarinet, Blair McMillen, piano

On Thursday October 1st, the Da Capo Chamber Players commemorate the hundredth anniversaries of two recently deceased American modernists: Milton Babbitt and George Perle. They will perform Babbitt’s When Shall We Meet Again and two works by Perle: Sonata a Quattro and Nightsong. David Fulmer, a Babbitt student, contributes the world premiere of Cadenza, a piece built out of his violin concerto’s hyper-virtuosic solo part. Rounding out the program are Jason Eckardt’s After Serra and Fred Lerdahl’s Times 3. 

Though it is more modest in scope than other centennial tributes one can hear this season – particularly Juilliard’s Focus Festival, devoted entirely to Babbitt – the Da Capo event features several players who collaborated closely with Babbitt and Perle. Indeed, both of the Perle works were written for the ensemble. It promises to be an intimate evening filled with finely honed performances.

Thursday, October 1st at 8 PM
Merkin Concert Hall,
129 West 67th Street, NYC, NY

Chick Corea and Béla Fleck’s live, double album, Two, was released Sept 11, 2015. Last night, I thoroughly enjoyed their performance at McCarter Theatre in Princeton.

Julia Holter: “Sea Calls Me Home”

Julia Holter’s Have You In My Wilderness out September 25 via Domino.

Telekinesis: “Sleep In”

Telekinesis’s latest LP, Ad Infinitum, is out now on Merge.

Andrew Rudin’s String Sonatas

Andrew Rudin

Three String Sonatas

Centaur CD CRC 3266


Composer Andrew Rudin worked on his three string sonatas in stages, premiering initial versions and then substantially revising them. He has also orchestrated two of the three into concertos (the violin and viola sonatas). The consummate craftsmanship is evident. These are pieces where every note counts and there is an evident emotional quality behind every gesture.


Although the connection to Debussy is seldom overt, Rudin cites his cello sonata as a touchstone. The four movements are structured so that each one gains a minute of runtime, moving from a lithe two minute “Proclamation” to a lyrical five minute long “Consolation.” The balance and pacing of the piece’s design is supported by the clarity and strong ensemble interplay of the performance by cellist Samuel Magill and pianist Beth Levin.


Written in memory of George Rochberg (the piece includes a quote from Rochberg’s Second Symphony), Rudin’s Viola Sonata has enjoyed a staunch advocate in Brett Deubner. Indeed, according to Rudin the violist made many valuable suggestions during the work’s genesis. Deubner also gave the premiere of the viola concerto based upon the work with Orchestra 2001. Joined here by the talented pianist Marcantonio Barone, the violist brings out the many demeanors and techniques present in the sonata – from lithe pizzicatos to angular melodic gestures – with nuance of dynamic shape and enviable accuracy.


Rudin’s Violin Sonata is cast in a single movement, marked “Amabile.” Within it is an imaginative formal design in which materials return recast with different demeanors. Thus, as Rudin describes it, “they are often heard in a manner that inverts their original emotional quality, so that what was wistful becomes angry, what was playful becomes nostalgic, etc.” The piece is given an extraordinarily detailed and passionate performance here by violinist Miranda Cuckson and pianist Steven Beck. If one is seeking music that balances technical rigor with strong emotional impact, they need look no further than Rudin’s sonatas.



Arvo Pärt – Musica Selecta

2454|55 X

Arvo Pärt

Musica Selecta

A Sequence by Manfred Eicher

ECM New Series 2454/55 2xCD

For over thirty years, producer Manfred Eicher has been one of the greatest champions of Estonian composer Arvo Pärt. Indeed, the very first ECM New Series release was Pärt’s Tabula Rasa. It seems only fitting that Eicher and ECM would celebrate the composer’s eightieth birthday in handsome fashion. With Musica Selecta, a double-CD retrospective, they certainly have done so.

Called “A Sequence” by Manfred Eicher, it includes seminal early pieces such as Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten and Für Alina as well as more recent ones such as Alleluia-Tropus and Da Pacem Domine. Performers often associated with Pärt’s work – conductors Dennis Russell Davies and Tõnu Kaljuste and groups the Hilliard Ensemble, the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, and the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra – are represented. It goes without saying that, with such an embarrassment of riches from which to choose, the performances are all exemplary: some iconic. While this serves as an excellent starter kit for those previously unacquainted with Pärt’s music, even those who have some of the New Music CDs would still benefit from hearing Eicher’s sequencing. It is thoughtful and musical: compositional in scope and sympathy. Recommended.

Moving Sounds 2015

GF Haas
This Friday, the Austrian Cultural Forum New York presents a concert highlighting spectralist composers. The culmination of this year’s Moving Sounds Festival, it features the U.S. premiere of Georg Friedrich Haas’ Introduction und Transsonation, Giacinto Scelsi’s violin concerto Anahit, and pieces by Tristan Murail. Hanna Hurwitz is the violin soloist. Michel Galante leads the Argento Ensemble in these performances.
acf turntables
Moving Sounds 2015
Friday September 18 at 7 PM
Bohemian National Hall, Czech Center New York 321 East 73rd Street, NY, NY
Free Event (reservations here)

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