Wednesday, February 25 || 7:30 PM
CARTA Miami Beach Urban Studios
Charles Curtis Solo Recital
Cellist Charles Curtis performs works by Alvin Lucier, Alison Knowles, and Eliane Radigue. Coordinated in collaboration with the Subtropics Festival.
Glacier | Alvin Lucier
Occam V | Éliane Radigue
Rice and Beans for Charles Curtis | Alison Knowles
Slices for Cello and Pre-Recorded Orchestra | Alvin Lucier
Called by ArtForum “one of the great cellists” as well as “spellbinding and minimal,” Charles Curtis has woven a unique career through the worlds of classical performance and musical experimentation. A student of Harvey Shapiro and Leonard Rose at Juilliard and the recipient of the Piatigorsky Prize, upon graduation Curtis was appointed to the faculty of Princeton University. Subsequently he was Principal Cellist of the NDR Symphony Orchestra in Hamburg, where he appeared as soloist with conductors such as Herbert Blomstedt,, GYnter Wand, John Eliot Gardiner and Christoph Eschenbach. Curtis has been guest soloist with the San Francisco Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, National Symphony, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Janacek Philharmonic, Orquestra de la Maggio Musicale Florence, and orchestras in Brazil and Chile, among many others.
For more than twenty years Curtis has been closely associated with the legendary avant garde composer La Monte Young. As soloist and as director of Young’s Theatre of Eternal Music String Ensemble, Curtis has participated in more performances and premieres of Young’s music than any other musician. He is one of the few instrumentalists to have perfected Young’s highly complex just intonation tunings, and is one of only a handful of musicians to have appeared in duo formations with Young. The La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela four-hour-long solo composition, “Just Charles and Cello in the Romantic Chord,” for solo cello, pre-recorded cello drones and light projection, the only solo composition composed by Young for a performer other than himself, received performances in Berlin, Paris, Lyon, Dijon, Bologna, in the New York Dream House, and in the monastery village of Polling in Bavaria. Curtis has studied the Kirana style of Indian classical music both with La Monte Young and in master classes with the late North Indian master vocalist Pandit Pran Nath since 1989, and has been a regular member of the Just Alap Raga Ensemble, led by La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela, since 2003.
In the last few years Curtis has developed a unique repertoire of major works created expressly for the distinctive qualities of his cello-playing. The great American experimental composer Alvin Lucier has composed numerous works for Curtis, including pieces for cello and sine waves, cello and piano, and cello with large orchestra. French composer ƒliane Radigue created her very first work for a purely acoustic instrument for Curtis, the hour-long solo “Naldjorlak I,” which Curtis has performed scores of times throughout the world; more recently “Naldjorlak III” and “Occam 5” have been developed collaboratively with Curtis. Artist and performer Alison Knowles created a unique graphic score for Curtis which has been realized in galleries and alternative settings. These, along with the monumental works of La Monte Young and rarely-heard pieces by Terry Jennings, Richard Maxfield and Morton Feldman, have been championed by Curtis through regular performances and recordings. In 2005 Curtis presented “Waking States,” a series of seven concerts in fifteen days at various New York venues of music by Young and Zazeela, Lucier, Radigue, Jennings and Feldman. Solo concerts in the last few years have taken him to Christchurch Spitalfields London, the Auditorium of the Louvre in Paris, the Hebbel-Theater in Berlin, the Kampnagelfabrik in Hamburg, Issue Project Room in New York, the RedCat at Disney Hall in Los Angeles, and to festivals, museums and alternative spaces in Norway, Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria, Latvia, Estonia, the Czech Republic, Spain, Italy, Slovenia, Switzerland and Canada. Each summer Curtis performs and teaches in the La Monte Young – Marian Zazeela permanent installation at Kunst im Regenbogenstadl, Polling, Bavaria.
Comp Forum 2/25 @ 3:00 PM MBUS