April 15, 2012 — Coral Gables, FL — Musicians from The Cleveland Orchestra premiered a new chamber work entitled Of Flurries and Clarion composed by Peter Learn, a doctoral candidate at the University of Miami Frost School of Music, on March 23 and 24, 2012 during The Cleveland Orchestra Miami’s Prelude Concert Series at the Knight Concert Hall at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County. James Feddeck, assistant conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra, conducted the world premiere performance. Cleveland Orchestra musicians Marisela Sager (flute), Robert Woolfrey (clarinet), Katherine Bormann (violin), Bryan Dumm (cello), Jacob Nissly (percussion) and Joela Jones (piano) performed the work.
Learn introduced the work from the Knight Concert Hall stage on both evenings. He attended two rehearsals the week prior and described the experience as “a fantastic learning experience in and of itself.” After hearing the work premiered, he commented, “It was a fantastic experience to work with such talented musicians and an honor to have my piece selected for performance by such a prestigious ensemble. I was just in awe of how close to my intentions the execution of the performance was.”
Program notes for Of Flurries and Clarion describe the work as “an exploration of two ensemble textures, namely flurries and clarion, and the various ways in which they can be presented, juxtaposed, and made to interact. A third element, one of contrapuntal meditation, is used to provide a backdrop from which these two textures emerge and dissolve into. The presence of aleatoric, gestural figures allow the flurries at some points to all but disintegrate into chaos, while the rhythmically restrained chorale textures utilize the extended ranges of the instruments to achieve the high, clear, and loud tones of a clarion call.”
Peter Learn is originally from Rochester, New York. He began composing in his late teens, first focusing on electronic music, and then branching out into concert music. He earned a B.M. in composition and theory from Ohio’s Heidelberg College, where he was awarded the “Ars Nova” prize for student composition. He subsequently earned an M.M. in composition at Ithaca College in New York. Recent performances of his music include his string quartet, A Final, Unexpected Glance, at the 2011 Festival Miami Emerging Young Composers Concert. His piano trio Spectre Plein de Redites was performed by the USF President’s Trio at the College Music Society Southern Chapter’s 33rd Regional Conference. He is currently studying composition with Dennis Kam, chair of the Department of Composition and Theory at the University of Miami Frost School of Music. Learn recently finished a work for Piano, Saxophone, and Violin, called Grip, which will be premiered later this month.
About the Cleveland Orchestra Miami and the University of Miami Frost School of Music
Since the inception of The Cleveland Orchestra’s annual residency in Miami in 2007, the Orchestra has worked with the University of Miami Frost School of Music as a community partner, presenting a wide range of collaborative educational activities including master classes, coachings, and composition workshops.
In January 2012, Sean Shepherd, The Cleveland Orchestra’s Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow, presented a composition workshop for Frost composition students, joined by members of The Cleveland Orchestra and assistant conductor James Feddeck. The students were instructed to compose a chamber piece for six musicians with the same instrumentation used by Sean Shepherd for his chamber work Lumens, scored for violin, cello, flute, clarinet, piano, and percussion. Four students compositions were performed and critiqued at the workshop, and a selection process followed to feature one work, Peter Learn’s Of Flurries and Clarion as part of the Prelude Concerts presented before the Orchestra concerts on March 23 and 24.
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