Ethnic Echoes: Music by composers from Germany, Greece, Israel, China on 2/9 at 8 PM

Klezmer clarinetist David Krakauer plays Ofer Ben Amots klezmer Concerto with the North/South Chamber Orchestra on Monday, February 9 at 8 PM in New York City.

North/South Consonance, Inc. will inaugurate its 29th consecutive Winter/Spring concert season with a program featuring premieres of recent works by three generations of composers who while hailing from different areas of the world now reside in the US. Their works are inspired by scenes from their native countries.

Performers will include three distinguished soloists including flutist Lisa Hansen; clarinetist David Krakauer; and harpist Susan Jolles. They will join conductor Max Lifchitz and the GRAMMY nominated The North/South Chamber Orchestra for an exciting and unique experience built around today’s sound mosaic.

The event will be held on Monday, February 9 at 8 PM in the auditorium of Christ & St. Stephen’s Church (120 West 69th St) in Manhattan. Admission is free — no tickets necessary.

The program will open with the New York premiere of Solaris for strings by Tudor Dominik Maican, the 20-year old composer residing in Bethesda, MD. Born in Germany but educated in this country, Maican has earned awards from among others, the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts, the ASCAP Foundation, and the 2008 Presidential Scholar program at Kennedy Center. He began studying music under the guidance of his mother Valerica Maican eventually studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in Germany, Arie van Beek in France and Olegna Fuschi at The Juilliard School. Christopher O’Reilly, host of the popular NPR show From The Top said: “Maican’s music has a wonderful sense of the lyric, harmonic and expressive range of possibility. I expect great things from him.” Solaris for string orchestra is in three contrasting but interrelated movements with many lyrical melodic lines and unusual harmonic choices.

The program will continue with the US premiere of Shun for flute and strings by Stephen Yip the Hong-Kong born composer now living in Houston, TX. Born in 1971, Yip began his studies in China before earning a doctorate in composition from Rice University. His works have been performed in Asia, Europe and the Americas. Inspired by the Ying-yang of Chinese philosophy, Shun is in two movements: Shun Feng and Shun Shui. Shun means smoothness and gentleness. It refers to the ancient Chinese art of promoting balance and harmony in our environment. Flutist Lisa Hansen will appear as soloist for the performance. A graduate of The Juilliard School, Ms. Hansen has performed and recorded with North/South Consonance since 1988. Her recording of Joaquin Rodrigo’s Concerto Pastoral for the EMI label has been broadcast by radio stations throughout the world.

The second half of the program will open with a performance of Landscape VI -- Rhapsody for Harp and Strings by Dinos Constantinides, the Greek born composer celebrating his 80th birthday this season. Active as violinist, conductor and composer, Constantinides (b.1929, Athens, Greece) studied at Indiana university and The Juilliard School and is now conductor of the Louisiana Sinfonietta and Boyd Professor of Music Composition at Louisiana State University. Tim Page, writing for the NY Times described Constantinides as a “composer whose music speaks simply, often combining Greek modes with an attractive quality of ritual mystery. “ Written in 2002, the composer states that the work “belongs to an ongoing series of compositions describing various images of my homeland as crystallized in my memory over time.” Harpist Susan Jolles will perform the solo part. One of the most distinguished American harpists, Ms. Jolles has performed and recorded music by some of the most important composers of our time including Luciano Berio and George Crumb. She has performed with, among others, the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, the American Composers Orchestra and is a founding member of the internationally acclaimed Jubal Trio.

The concert will close with the New York premiere of Klezmer Concerto for clarinet and chamber orchestra by the Israeli-born composer Ofer Ben Amots. A native of Haifa (b. 1955) , Ben Amots studied in Switzerland before earning a doctorate in composition from the University of Pennsylvania. His mentors included Alberto Ginastera and George Crumb. He teaches at Colorado College and also directs its annual New Music Symposium. His works have been performed throughout Europe, Israel and the US and are available worldwide on the NAXOS and other labels. Written for David Krakauer, the three movement Klezmer Concerto opens with a Doyna (a lament-like melancholic tune), a Wedding Waltz and a Halleluyah inspired by the 150th Psalm. Clarinetist David Krakauer is well-known for his mastery of myriad styles including classical chamber music, Eastern European Klezmer music and avant-garde improvisation. His best-selling classical and Klezmer recordings further define his brilliant tone, virtuosity and imagination. A graduate from the Fiorello La Guardia High School for the Performing Arts and The Juilliard School, Krakauer has been featured on articles in major magazines and in BBC documentaries.

The composers will be on hand to introduce their works and meet with the audience during intermission and after the concert. Soloists and composers participating in the event are available to the press for interviews and may be contacted through our office at

North/South Consonance’s 2008-09 season is made possible in part with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; grants from the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University and the Music Performance Fund from Local 802; as well as contributions by many generous individuals.

For further information about its activities, including upcoming concerts, recordings and the now open 2009-10 call for scores please visit http://www.northsouthmusic.org/

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