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Classical Notes

Classical Notes: April 19, 2007 Archive

New music wins this weekend in St. Paul

Posted at 3:40 PM on April 19, 2007 by Don Lee

For ten years the Minnesota Orchestra has held a Composers Institute to workshop and give some audience exposure to new pieces of music. The St. Paul Chamber Orchestra is getting into the act this weekend with its first Emerging Composers Competition.

From the 49 scores submitted, a panel led by SPCO Composer-in-Residence Fred Lerdahl has chosen four finalists. They'll name a winner after Saturday night's concert.

Reporter Karl Gehrke is at work on a piece about the competition. One of the finalists, Dorothy Chang of Vancouver, BC, told him she's been looking forward to the event as a way to meet other composers, make new connections and present her music to a new audience. Her piece is called Chamber Variations.

"It's a very exciting time to be a composer," she says. "There's been an explosion of styles, genres and concepts and I think it continues to grow. The variety of things being written today is pretty amazing."

Saturday's concert is at 8:00 p.m. in the SPCO Center in downtown St. Paul. Karl's story will air tomorrow evening on All Things Considered.

Teenagers Tackle Mozart

Posted at 6:03 PM on April 19, 2007 by Rex Levang

Very interesting story by Justin Davidson of Newsday, about a New York high school where the kids are putting on . . "The Magic Flute."

Curious twist to this one: Who would be crazy enough to cast a 17-year-old girl in the role of Pamina in "The Magic Flute"?

Mozart, that's who.