CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Sept. 8, 2000
Violinist Andrew Carlson returns to Iowa City for UI Center for New Music
concert Sept. 24
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Violinist Andrew Carlson, a remarkably versatile musician
who has been both concertmaster of the University of Iowa Symphony and a two-time
Georgia state fiddle champion, will return to Iowa City for a concert of contemporary
music with pianist Nelson Harper, at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 24 in Clapp Recital
Hall on the UI campus.
Their performance, which will be free and open to the public, is part of
a concert series for the 2000-2001 season presented on the UI campus by the
Center for New Music (CNM), a part of the new UI Division of Performing Arts.
Carlsons career is the story of a child prodigy who has been successful
in a variety of areas. He began learning fiddle tunes at age five from his
grandfather. Later he was enrolled in a Suzuki violin program, which introduced
him to classical music. As a young student in Georgia, he was not only the
two-time state fiddle champion, he also won the Georgia state level of the
Music Teachers National Association Wurlitzer collegiate artist competition
three years in a row.
After receiving a masters degree from the University of Georgia, Carlson
came to the UI to study classical violin with Leopold La Fosse. While a student
here, he taught Suzuki violin at the Preucil School and performed with folk/bluegrass
group Big Wooden Radio. As a studio musician and string arranger he has recorded
for Warner Bros., Atlantic, Elektra, Geffen, Polydor, and Capricorn recordings,
and is a regular with the band R.E.M. His book "Fiddling for Classical
Violinists" is scheduled to be released this fall by Mel Bay Publishers.
In addition to studio work, country fiddling and classical music, Carlson
has performed a great deal of contemporary music. He performed with the CNM
while he was at the UI and played with them on a tour to New York in 1998,
when he was described by a New York Times critic as "a demon fiddler."
Carlson is currently at Denison University in Granville, Ohio, where he
teaches violin and music history, and directs the orchestra.
The Sept. 24 concert will include two pieces written specifically for Carlsons
unusual combination of talents. "Finnegans Wake" by CNM director
David Gompper was written specifically for the 1998 CNM tour. It is based
on two Irish fiddle tunes, "The Green Groves of Erin" and "The
Flowers of Red Hill," which were made popular by the Bothy Band, and
more recently, the string trio of Edgar Meyer, Mark O'Connor and Yo-Yo Ma.
"My intention," Gompper wrote, "was to transform the music
as feet-stomping dance music through a labyrinth of rhythmic manipulations
into a series of playful excursions for both instruments."
The second work is "For Andy Carlson" by Richard Hervig, the former
head of composition and theory at the UI School of Music and the co-founder
of the CNM.
Other works on the concert will be "Wire Variations" by John Allemeier,
who received a doctorate in composition from the UI; "Five Aphorisms"
by Gardner Read; and "White Vision -- The Horizon Divides" by Lewis
Allemeier wrote of his composition, "The title Wire Variations
refers to formal aspects of the piece as well as the method of sound production
for each of the instruments. Wire is used as a synonym for the
strings of the violin and piano and variations refers to the variety
of ways in which each instrument initiates the vibration of the string."
Harper is known for his versatility as both soloist and chamber musician.
He has appeared in the Grand Teton Music Festival and for many years has been
heard in live broadcasts on radio station WFMT in Chicago. For 20 years he
has played in a duo with English violinist Michael Davis, and he has performed
with the Chicago Symphonys principal flutist Donald Peck, the New York
Philharmonic's principal flutist Jeanne Baxtresser, the Atlanta Symphonys
principal trumpeter James Thompson, and other instrumentalists and singers.
Harper made his London debut in December of 1989 at Wigmore Hall in a program
of 20th-century British duo sonatas with Davis. Harper is currently a member
of the piano faculty at Denison University and frequently gives master classes
and recitals at other institutions.
Hervig was born in Iowa in 1917 and raised in South Dakota, where he received
a bachelors degree in English. Following some high school teaching he
enrolled in the graduate program at the UI, studying composition under the
late Philip Greeley Clapp and receiving a doctorate in composition after World
War II. Except for three years at Long Beach State College and one semester
at Luther College, his teaching career was entirely at the UI. In 1990 he
retired from Iowa and accepted a position at the Juilliard School in New York,
retiring from there in 1999.
Gompper studied at the Royal College of Music in London and at the University
of Michigan, where he received a doctorate in composition. He also holds a
bachelors degree in piano performance from San Diego State University.
He is the president of the Society of Composers, Inc, a national membership
organization for composers in the U.S. He recently returned from a double
bass convention in Brazil, where he premiered two new songs for double bass,
mezzo-soprano, and he recently received a commission from Arizona State University
to write a work for bassoon, ensemble and electronic tape.
A flexible organization devoted to the presentation of the music of the
past 100 years, the CNM supports its own performing ensemble, including both
faculty and students of the School of Music, and presents concerts of recent
music by guests artists. The center was founded in 1966 with a seed grant
from the Rockefeller Foundation. Today, the CNM is supported by the UI Division
of Performing Arts.
Information on the UI Center for New Music, including complete program notes
for the Sept. 24 concert, is available on the World Wide Web at http://www.uiowa.edu/~cnm.
For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa
on the World Wide Web. To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <firstname.lastname@example.org>.