Themes of Life

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Composer Joel Love says that the saxophone is one of the best instruments to imitate the human voice. When it was time to write a concerto for saxophone, this imitative quality led him to create a work that has a significant lyrical element. It’s “Solace: A Lyric Concerto,” and it’s one of many works on tonight’s program that is inspired by aspects of life and existence.

It’s part of a series of pieces we’ll hear across this Arizona Encore program curated to represent all aspects of life with contemporary classical music. Hear music by Alyssa Morris, Dan Locklair, Thylia Yazzie, and others, along with performances by the ASU Symphony Orchestra, ASU Wind Ensemble, Phoenix Chorale, and more.

Beginning with the idea of creation taking place in space with Missy Mazzoli’s “Sinfonia (for Orbiting Spheres),” we explore the sounds that come to mind when we think of space. Mazzoli describes this piece as “music in the shape of a solar system, a collection of rococo loops that twist around each other within a larger orbit.”

We then move to explore different personalities that make up humanity as well as the emotions of life. Daniel Dade’s piece represents life at its fullest, focusing on human interaction in one of the busiest environments: New York City. This program ends with Thylia Yazzie’s “Farewell,” giving us the sounds of life as it comes to an end.

Featuring performances by ASU Symphony Orchestra; Jeffery Meyer, conductor; Katherine Needleman, oboe; Andrew Campbell, piano; University of Illinois Wind Symphony; Debra Richtmeyer, alto saxophone; Stephen Peterson, conductor; Phoenix Chorale; James Bass, conductor; Jeremy Peterman, pianist; ASU Wind Ensemble; Malcolm Jones, conductor; Catalyst Quartet

Mazzoli - Sinfonia (for Orbiting Spheres) - ASU Symphony Orchestra; Jeffery Meyer, conductor
Morris - Four Personalities based upon the Hartman Personality Test - Katherine Needleman, oboe; Andrew Campbell, piano
I. Yellow
II. White
III. Blue
IV. Red
Love - Solace - University of Illinois Wind Symphony; Debra Richtmeyer, alto saxophone; Stephen Peterson, conductor
I. Joy
III. Gratitude
IV. Hiding
Locklair - Changing Perceptions and EPITAPH - Phoenix Chorale; James Bass, conductor; Jeremy Peterman, pianist
I. What Do We Know About Life
III. Grief Poem
EPITAPH
Dade - New York from a Distance - ASU Wind Ensemble; Malcolm Jones, conductor
I. Brooklyn
II. Times Square
III. Manhattan
Yazzie - Farewell - Catalyst Quartet

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