The 2019 Birmingham New Music Festival is made possible in part by grants from the
Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Join us for the 2019 Birmingham New Music Festival! We have more events this year in more locations, and as always, all events are free! We hope to see you at this year’s events! See below for complete details.
MOSTLY IMPROV NIGHT
October 12, 2019 at 7PM
East Village Arts of Birmingham
7611 1st Ave N, Birmingham, AL 35206
The opening concert of the 2019 Birmingham New Music Festival –directed by Birmingham improv luminary LaDonna Smith — features several distinctive approaches to improvisation. Holland Hopson will premiere “Crow Chases Red-Tailed Hawk” for bullroarers and other aerophones with interactive computer processes. Geni Skendo will be performing thrice on contrabass flute: his own duo “Orange Prism” with keyboardist Michael Dubruiel, Brian Moon’s “Aeronaut” with fixed media, and a realization of Scott Bazar’s graphic score “Midnight Campus” which also features Holland Hopson on banjo and LaDonna Smith on viola. Two other premiere performances are Pensacola composer Michael Coleman’s “outside box #1” for deconstructed piano, and “Kulning Song” by Matthew Scott Phillips for violinist Hilarie Harp Rivas. LaDonna Smith will play “Streaming from another World” with collaborator Leland Scott Davis on jazz drums, frame drum, and tablas.
Co-sponsored by East Village Arts of Birmingham.
EDWARD FORSTMAN – DUX
Sunday, October 13, 2019 at 2:30PM
University of Alabama Moody Recital Hall
810 Second Avenue, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
Edward Forstman explores contemporary music as a solo pianist and collaborator. For this solo show in Tuscaloosa, Forstman is presenting solo piano music of the Birmingham Art Music Alliance, which has for almost 25 years provided a platform for the exploration of the musical avant garde in the Deep South. He is presenting their music alongside Zosha Di Castri’s “DUX,” a violent portrait of the political tensions during the 2016 election, as a reflection on the resistance of the arts to the wider culture and his most recent memories of living in Alabama in 2017. About the BAMA works: Monroe Golden’s “81” uses a series of nine partials (the last being the 81st) as material for 9 linked episodes of 9 bars each, fancifully relating back to the original series. “Starscapes” by Mark Lackey is a grandly neo-Romantic fantasy. Michael Coleman’s “Chaconne” is inspired by the style of incidental music, creating a glassy surface over a repeating harmonic progression. William Price’s “Petite Scherzo” combines virtuosity with humor in a twisted two-part invention. “Incongruity” by Monroe Golden augments the equal temperament of the piano with a fixed-media track in extended just intonation for a concertino together that percolates towards its conclusion. Holland Hopson’s “Slow Light from the Farthest Star” is a beautiful exploration of a chord progression via MaxMSP.
Co-sponsored by New College.
ADAM BOWLES, PIANO
Tuesday, October 15 at 7:30PM
University of Montevallo LeBaron Recital Hall
Maxine Couch Davis Hall, Highland St, Montevallo, AL 35115
Pianist Adam Bowles is a dedicated performer of newly composed art music who also remains an active and passionate interpreter of established solo piano, chamber music, and vocal repertoire. Dr. Bowles frequently performs throughout the country with the Luna Nova ensemble – of which he is a founding member. He holds degrees from Eastman School of Music (BM) and New England Conservatory (MM), and received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. During the 2019 Birmingham New Music Festival, Bowles will perform an entire program of music by Alabama composers at venues in Montevallo, Hanceville, and Anniston. This concert will include solo piano compositions This concert will include solo piano compositions “Life” by W. F. Smith Leithart, “Petite Scherzo” by William Price, “Gigue” by Aurelia Gooden, “Trio for Piano Alone” by Matthew Scott Phillips, “Changing Landscapes” by Ed Robertson, “Madam I’m Adam” by Monroe Golden, and “Prelude No. 3 in G-minor” by Kenneth A. Kuhn.
Co-sponsored by the University of Montevallo Music Department.
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 at 7:30PM
Samford University Brock Recital Hall
800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham, AL 35209
Cellist Craig Hultgren returns to Birmingham to perform solo works by two emeritus professors of composition, “Cello Sketches” by Alan Schmitz from the University of Northern Iowa and “Bare ruin’d choirs…” by James A. Jensen from Samford University. Two new solo piano works will be premiered by the composers: Samford professor Mark Lackey’s “Return” and Kenneth A. Kuhn’s “Movement in C-major.” Improvisational artist LaDonna Smith will play “Streaming from another World” with collaborator Leland Scott Davis on jazz drums, frame drum, and tablas. The LeBaron Trio (soprano Melanie Williams, clarinetist Lori Ardovino, and pianist Laurie Middaugh) will perform Joseph Landers’ “Accuse Me Not,” Ed Robertson’s “Seven Cinquains of Adelaide Crapsey,” and Ardovino’s “Letters Poetry by Anne Bradstreet (1612-1672).”
Co-sponsored by the Samford University Division of Music.
Thursday, October 17, 2019 at 7PM
UAB Mary Culp Hulsey Recital Hall
950 13th Street South, Birmingham, AL 35205
Opening the concert is Andrew Raffo Dewar’s “Spatial Study (2019)” for live electronics, which traces the motion of sound particles in 3D ambisonic space. Violinist Meg Ford will perform her own “Improvisation with Field Recordings.” Craig Hultgren will present two works for electric cello with fixed media, “unLearn” by local composer Brian C. Moon and “Lacrimosa MMXVIII” by University of Wisconsin-Madison emeritus professor Joseph Koykkars. Guitarist Jeremy Grall will play William Price’s “Crucible,” exploring the wide range, unique extended techniques, and non-traditional harmonic resources offered by the instrument. Joel Scott Davis’ “Triptych” is a multi-movement fixed-media piece with video by Drew Young. The concert closes with Geni Skendo’s “Burningham” with David Phy on trombone and Skendo on contrabass flute.
Co-sponsored by the UAB Department of Music.
ADAM BOWLES, PIANO
Monday, October 21, 2019 at 11AM
Wallace State Community College, Burrow Center Recital Hall
801 Main St NW, Hanceville, AL 35077
Pianist Adam Bowles will perform an abridged version of the entire program of music by Alabama composers presented completely in Montevallo and Anniston. This concert will include solo piano compositions “Life” by W. F. Smith Leithart, “Petite Scherzo” by William Price, “Gigue” by Aurelia Gooden, “Trio for Piano Alone” by Matthew Scott Phillips, “Changing Landscapes” by Ed Robertson, and “Prelude No. 3 in G-minor” by Kenneth A. Kuhn.
Co-sponsored by Wallace State Community College.
ADAM BOWLES, PIANO
Tuesday, October 22, 2019 at 7:30PM
Anniston First United Methodist Church
1400 Noble Street, Anniston, AL 36202
The 2019 festival closes with pianist Adam Bowles’ repeat performance of this program of music by Alabama composers. This concert will include solo piano compositions “Life” by W. F. Smith Leithart, “Petite Scherzo” by William Price, “Gigue” by Aurelia Gooden, “Trio for Piano Alone” by Matthew Scott Phillips, “Changing Landscapes” by Ed Robertson, “Madam I’m Adam” by Monroe Golden, and “Prelude No. 3 in G-minor” by Kenneth A. Kuhn.
Co-sponsored Jacksonville State University’s Foothills Piano Festival.