Wednesday, June 2, 2010

JiB in the Press

Only a few days into June in Buffalo 2010, the festival has already gained notable media attention. New York Times critic Allan Kozinn interviewed festival (and Center) director David Felder on the occasion of June in Buffalo's 25th anniversary. Felder had much to say about the vital process of training young composers, and the pivotal experience of hearing their work played by a world-class professional ensemble. He also offered some interesting observations on the dynamics of having one's music critiqued, whether by a master composer or one's peers.

The Buffalo News reviewed the opening concert of music by Steve Reich, performed by the exciting chamber orchestra known as Signal. Noted Geraud MacTaggart, "June in Buffalo is always interesting, and this year’s version of the venerable festival of modern classical music promises to be more of the same.

"Young composers get their works performed by world-class musicians and critiqued by master composers. For a solid week, all kinds of sounds come from the auditoriums and classrooms at the University at Buffalo’s Amherst campus, and people come from across the continent to sample them." Regarding the program, which consisted of Reich's classic Sextet (1984-85) and his recent, Pulitzer Prize-winning Double Sextet, MacTaggart observed, "While the composer’s musical pulse is one of the first things listeners discern in a Reich score, the way he plays with percussive colors, sliding them in and out of the beats, is one of his great contributions to the minimalist fabric of modern classical music."

In the well-read Sequenza21 website, composer/writer Rob Deemer observed, "That Signal, under the direction of Brad Lubman, could put together a stellar performance of Reich’s works did not come as a surprise – they have been methodically ticking off each of his major chamber works one by one since their inception in 2008. What was surprising, however, was the enthusiasm and unbridled joy with which they pulled the audience into the work; every single performer on both works seemed like they were having the time of their lives, and Lubman was practically dancing more than once during his conducting of the Double Sextet."

Above: David Felder. Photo by Irene Haupt.

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