Wednesday 1st February
8 Lower Leeson Street, Saint Kevin’s Dublin 2
The first day of Spring 2017 marks the Kaleidoscope series’ 100th show since its inception back in 2009 by violinist Cliodhna Ryan and cellist Kate Ellis. Extensive nationwide touring has added to the tally of performances that have been a monthly institution in Dublin musical life for the last seven and a half years. The current curators, Karen Dervan and Lioba Petrie, who have been at the helm since January 2014, have pulled out all the stops to create an even-more-jam-packed-than-usual gala programme.
The Rite of Spring
The Irish premiere of a wind quintet version of Igor Stravinsky’s seminal “The Rite of Spring” tops the evening’s bill and isn’t it the day for it! Leading wind ensemble Cassiopeia Winds present this work, one that needs little introduction. No Kaleidoscope gala is complete without a world premiere and for this illustrious occasion, German-born composer David Stalling proffers a new work for wind quintet and electronics, to be performed by Cassiopeia Winds. In a full centennial arc, Stalling’s music actually featured at the very first Kaleidoscope back in 2009.
West Side Story
A very different kind of wind quintet also features on the night- the Cornucopia Brass Quintet, who will perform the “West Side Story Suite” by Leonard Bernstein, in an arrangement by Jack Gale. Series aficionados may fondly remember a November 2012 night in the series’ first home, The Odessa Club, when they group performed this irresistibly loveable work.
Rachel Grimes: Book of Leaves
Completing the stellar line-up, The Dublin Guitar Quartet makes a much-anticipated Kaleidoscope debut. Transcribed excerpts from American composer Rachel Grimes’ 2009 solo piano album, “Book Of Leaves” is the quartet’s fayre for the evening. Described as a “neo-classicist” Grimes is most noted for her ground-breaking chamber music ensemble “Rachel’s” which had an enormous impact on the alternative music scene of the mid 1990s. BBC Music argues “without her and the group to which she lent her name, artists like Max Richter, Jóhann Jóhansson and even Sigur Ros would not have found such a wide and receptive audience”.
Mr Fischer’s Favourite Variations On the Celebrated Irish Air of Gramacree Moll
Baroque music from The Spackling Band, a quartet of flute, viola, viol and harpsichord, will cast us back to 18th century life in Dublin city with “Airs and Dances from Dublin Castle”. Music on the night will be from their recent CD release, of the same name, which presents music of the 18th rediscovered in various collections in The National Library by flautist Bill Dowdall, written for the vibrant cultural and court life of surrounding Dublin Castle.
Dublin Guitar Quartet
The Dublin Guitar Quartet are Ireland’s leading guitar ensemble. Their programmes are a very entertaining and palatable mix of music by the world’s leading composers, and music inspired by indigenous music from around the globe. The quartet are entirely unique in their field and have been impressing audiences with their original arrangements of modern masterpieces by popular composers such as Philip Glass, Arvo Part and Steve Reich.
In April 2010, Dublin Guitar Quartet performed the entire set of Philip Glass’ quartets at St. Ann’s church in Dublin. They had previously shared the stage with the legendary American composer at a concert in Dundalk where the quartet performed arrangements of two of Glass’ string quartets, Mishima and Company.
Their debut album, Deleted Pieces, was released in March 2005. The disc includes works by Henryk Gorecki, Kevin Volans, Leo Brouwer and the Redneck Manifesto. They are currently working on two new releases. The first is a Music Network/Arts Council funded recording of works by established and emerging Irish composers for classical guitar quartet. They have also recently completed mixing a recording of arrangements for electric guitar quartet by internationally established composers.
In March of 2004, RTÉ lyric fm broadcast their Mermaid Arts Centre concert over two installments of the ‘Horizons’ programme. This concert included a world premiere of Four Guitars by internationally acclaimed composer Kevin Volans. The composer became interested in the group on hearing their arrangement of a work he originally composed for New York’s Kronos Quartet and this inspired him to compose a radical new work for their repertoire.
The quartet have been successful in bringing new music to unlikely audiences, having played as guests of rock groups such as The Redneck Manifesto (Dublin) and Final Fantasy (Canada). They also gave the opening concert at the inaugural Guitar Festival of Ireland which included performances by John Williams and Louis Stewart. The quartet have performed in The National Concert Hall, Dublin City Hall and throughout the country.
The group was recently awarded €28,000 by the Arts Council of Ireland to facilitate commissions by international composers including New York’s Michael Gordon.
Cassiopeia Winds is an Irish chamber wind ensemble formed in 2010, whose performances are marked by vivacity, panache and a dedication to the exploration of fine sound-worlds. Though the ensemble has the capacity to expand or contract to suit its innovative programming, at its core is a quintet of players whose members are among the finest in the country, including players from the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, RTÉ Concert Orchestra and the Crash Ensemble.
The ensemble aims with each performance to run the full and varied gamut of the wind repertoire from 19th-century to contemporary works, including Danzi, Reicha, Barber, Hindemith, Poulenc, Francaix, Ibert, Nielsen, Ligeti and Arvo Part. Their concerts represent the startling originality and exoticism, and the inimitable palette of tone colours of the wind ensemble. They have a dedication to bringing the lesser-known works of this repertoire into the Irish and international concert halls and festivals.
The ensemble also has a great interest in contemporary music and in supporting the work of new Irish composers, and intend to commission new works for wind quintet for performance in Ireland and internationally. The Quintet gave the first performance of a new work by Sean O’Callaghan in 2014 and have commissioned a new work from John Buckley which received its premier at a Contemporary Music Centre Salon in October 2015 followed by five performances on tour around Ireland in the autumn/winter of 2015/16.
Cassiopeia Winds has a passion for collaborating with other artists, such as renowned pianist Finghin Collins. Recent concerts include a weekend of performances at the Galway Midwinter Festival where they collaborated with the ConTempo Quartet, and a weekend of concerts as part of the 2014 New Ross Piano Festival. In New Ross the players collaborated with three of the distinguished pianists at the Festival; Finghin Collins, Melvin Tan and Lise de la Salle. In 2015 the quintet was invited to take part in the Joan Trimble Centenary Celebration in Fermanagh and completed a very successful tour of Ireland supported by the Arts Council.
Cornucopia Brass is Ireland’s newest and most diverse brass group specialising in light jazz and entertainment music. The group is a fun-driven, soul- inspiring ensemble and is in high demand for both commercial and concert performances.
Ryan Quigley- Trumpet
Cormac O hAodain- French
Conor O Riordan- Tuba
David Stalling has been working as a composer, sound artist and musician in Ireland since the early 1990s. With a sensitivity to the sonic nature of both lived in and imagined worlds, David’s practice transcends the traditional definition of composing, utilising a variety of media: acoustic and electronic sound; field recordings and found objects; moving image and lighting. He also experiments and improvises with self built instruments and microphones, and has performed and collaborated with many artists and musicians in a diversity of contexts.