Guest composer Mark Kilstofte will appear Thursday, Jan. 12 at the Darling House as part of a new series of NMW house concerts.
The night before the New Music Works stages its concert, Mandolicious, this Friday at Cabrillo College, a limited-space audience will gather at The Darling House Bed and Breakfast on West Cliff Drive for an evening of “dialog and music” with guest composer Mark Kilstofte. (The Darling House has packaged the event with an overnight stay, but available seats will be sold singly by advance confirmation at 831.588.6489; cost is $15.) For the Cabrillo performance, Kilstofte’s Ballistic Etude 3.1 will run riot across six members of the NMW Ensemble. The seven-minute piece, in the form of a “hunting” ritornello, paints a now-frantic, now-darkly-insinuating film noir image while its hero attempts to rescue his girl from evil clutches. Kilstofte, now teaching at a liberal arts college in South Carolina, wrote the piece in 2008 and subtitled it Spasmosis.
Nigerian-American composer Akindele “Akiva” Olanrewaju Bankole, now a Santa Cruz resident, will hear the premiere of three sections from his Yoruba Life Cycle Dances, ritual rites of passage drawn on the ancient oral-tradition melodies and rhythms of the large—30 to 50 million—ethnic tribe spread across Nigeria, Benin and Togo. (An accomplished singer, Bankole will also perform Schubert’s popular Ständchen with pianist Michael McGushin, just ahead of three Arnold Schoenberg song arrangements for instruments.)
Featured guest artist will be celebrated mandolinist Mike Marshall, who solos in his own Concerto in G for mandolin(s) and orchestra dating from 2007. Easy on the ear, the work’s first movement contrasts lyrical melodies with Baroque-style counterpoint. The middle of its three movements makes use of the mandocello—the cello register member of the mandolin family—that has remained largely in the shadows since the early 20th century when mandolin orchestras enjoyed popularity. The ensemble slowly but surely asserts itself here, coming to a climactic finish. The work’s overall American character comes into full focus with a fiddle tune that dominates the finale. Marshall’s mandolin compositions are generally scaled to chamber ensembles and, notwithstanding the larger forces used here, retain their intimate rather than virtuosic character. However, this finale will arouse toe-tapping, while Marshall’s improvisations are guaranteed to put smiles on all faces present.
A fan of the mandolin, Schoenberg wrote parts for it in his song arrangements for winds and strings—also including guitar. The program will also include Schoenberg’s own Six Little Piano Pieces of 1911.
Friday, 8pm, Cabrillo College Music Recital Hall
Tickets $23 gen/ $17 senior/ $12 student