Next month will begin with the final concert in the 2014–2015 season of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble (LCCE), entitled Left Coast Goes to the Museum. This title should be taken literally, since most of the program will be based on a visit to Gallery 16 of the de Young Museum, which houses two contrasting sculptures. One is Cornelia Parker’s Anti-Mass, made from the charred remains of church with a predominantly African-American congregation, which had been destroyed by an arson attack. On the other side of the gallery is the wall hanging Hovor II, made out of the metal tops of discarded liquor bottles, hammered flat and woven together with copper wire by West African artist El Anatsui.
This gallery has been a favorite of LCCE Artistic Director Anna Presler on her visits to the de Young. She decided that both of these pieces could serve as inspirations for new musical compositions, somewhat in the spirit of how the works of Viktor Hartmann had inspired Modest Mussorgsky to compose his Pictures at an Exhibition suite. She shared her thoughts with LCCE violist Kurt Rohde, who teaches composition at the University of California at Davis. He, in turn, arranged for six emerging composers to visit this gallery and compose “responses” to the “call” of these pieces. The composers responding to Anti-Mass are Jean Ahn, Emily Koh, and Jonathan Bailey Holland. The other three, Nick Benavides, Mei-Fang Lin, and Ryan Suleiman, have written their responses to Hovor II.
All six of the resulting compositions will be performed at next month’s LCCE concert. In addition, to honor the spirit behind this program, Eric Zivian will play selections from the original piano version of Pictures at an Exhibition. The program will also feature the winner of the 2014 Left Coast Composition Contest. This is a song cycle entitled Krieg Ohne Schlacht (war without battle). Scored for tenor and cello, the songs depict the inner thoughts of a young man mourning the death of his father.
The San Francisco performance of this program will take place on Monday, June 1, beginning at 8 p.m. The venue will be the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, located at 50 Oak Street, a short walk from the Muni Van Ness station. Tickets will be sold at the door for $30 general admission with $15 admission for patrons under age 35. Brown Paper Tickets has an event page for the online purchase of single tickets. For further information call 415-617-5223 (LCCE).