On 16, Nov 2018 | In News | By joel
It warms my heart to hear the young students at American University play the second movement, “Pure Happenchance,” from my piece Elastic Band on their recent concert. Dr. Noah Getz did a superb job conducting and teaching the movement. And clarinetist Sammy Lesnick was a terrific soloist. Bravo ladies & Gentlemen!
On 10, Nov 2018 | In News | By joel
ModernMedieval Trio of Voices will be performing my commissioned Hildegard piece All Things Are Set Ablaze tomorrow, November 11, 2018 on the Damron Concert Artist Series at the at the University of Tampa.
“The program features some of Hildegard of Bingen’s most ecstatic chants interwoven with new works by acclaimed composers Caroline Shaw, Caleb Burhans, Joel Phillip Friedman, Daniel Thomas Davis and Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek. An exciting tour de force for singers, composers and audience alike.”
Sykes Chapel and Center for Faith and Values, University of Tampa, 601 W North B St, Tampa, FL 33606. 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
On 08, Nov 2018 | In News | By joel
I’m thrilled to be at The Beatles’ THE WHITE ALBUM: An International Symposium for the next few days. Walt Everett, Allan Kozinn, Mark Lewisohn, Bruce Spizer, and a host of others giving talks, presentations, playing the new Giles Martin remix! A splendid time is guaranteed for all!
I’m happy to report that my solo string piece Johansen, commissioned for the 2018 Johansen International String Competition will receive its World Premiere by cellist Michel Balas this Sunday, October 7, 2018 at the Church of the Annunciation in Washington D.C. on the Roth Concert Series.
Performers include: Julian Rhee – first-prize violinist; Beatrice Chen – first-prize violist; Michał Balas – first-prize cellist; Krzysztof Michalski – first-prize cellist; Frank Conlon – collaborative pianist. Judges: Chee-Yun, Timothy Deighton, Peter Stumpf
3810 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W. Sunday, October 7th 2018
Washington, D.C. 20016.
For further information please call 202-441-7678.
I’m very pleased that the Acis album be•spoke has been submitted to the GRAMMYs for consideration. There is so much great work by Elena Ruehr, Julian Wachner, Alejandro Hernandez-Valdez, Marcus Thompson, the New Orchestra of Washington, Kevin Bourassa, and others on the CD.
On 10, May 2018 | In News | By joel
A terrific and well-deserved review in today’s Washington Post for ModernMedieval Trio Of Voices, and all of us living composers, including my latest piece All Things Are Set Ablaze!
“The largest, most ambitious work was Joel Phillip Friedman’s “All Things Are Set Ablaze,” during which the singers accompanied themselves on triangle, drum and tambourine, providing an earthy undergirding for more abstract elements in a diverse yet cohesive work of considerable power.”
The review HERE.
I’m pleased to announce TWO World Premieres with the National Chamber Ensemble! 1st my “fierce little viola piece” When The World Disintegrates Before Your Eyes debuts… as a violin piece thanks to virtuoso & NCE Artistic Director Leo Sushansky. Next will be the premiere of a new trio arrangement (clarinet, piano, and percussion) of the popular 2nd movement from my piece Elastic Band “Pure Happenchance,” created specially for Leo’s ensemble. “Pure Happenchance” will feature clarinet star Julian Milkis, the only student and protege of jazz great Benny Goodman, stellar local pianist Carlos Cesar Rodriguez, and Leland Nakamura, drums. The program also includes works by Claude Bolling and Sam Post.
What do you get if you mix 1 composer (Joel Phillip Friedman) with 1 stellar vocal trio (ModernMedieval Trio Of Voices) with 1 prescient mystic, visionary, and polymath (Hildegard von Bingen) in 1 storied museum (National Museum of Women In the Arts)? 1 very special program – The Living Word – featuring works by Hildegard herself, Caroline Shaw, Caleb Burhans, Daniel Thomas Davis, Jaqueline Horner-Kwiatek, and the world premiere of my All Things Are Set Ablaze! The program is repeated the following night, May 10th, at the Virginia Arts Festival. Here’s my description of the piece:
“I imagine a modern Hildegard von Bingen, rising up and returning to tell us “you have lost your way and face destruction, listen to me now…or face the consequences.” She warns, in her own words: “All Things Are Set Ablaze… From Me!” My invented Hildegard is a mixture of the real and prescient woman of many enormous talents and startling visions, Wagner’s Valkyriewarrior Brünnhilde, the future prophesying Oracle of Delphi, and perhaps even a badass Wonder Woman. Most of the words I set are Hildegard’s own, in English translations by Medieval Latin scholars Nathaniel Campbell and Barbara Newman. If Hildegard’s writings initially had…a slightly different context… they do speak with potent currency today. I have added some non-Hildegard text: short cautionary Latin fragments (e.g. “Monitum… Praedictum… Ignifer… Audi me” – “A warning… Foretelling…Fire-bearing… Listen to me!), as well as, fittingly, a single line from Wagner’s opera Die Walküre– the famous Valkyrie war cry (“Hojotoho! hojotoho! heiaha! Heiaha!”). If Hildegard were to return today I imagine she would identify with Brünnhilde and join her singing those spirited words! You will hear All Things Are Set Ablazestarting at its middle, slower section. The opening music returns at the end, so you will get to hear some of that. The work has been trimmed to be proportional with the rest of the program.”
On April 24th I returned to my old workplace Swarthmore College – where I was Visiting Associate Professor from 2002-2006 – to be a guest lecturer in my dear friend Dr. Barbara Milewski’s 20th Century Seminar. The talk “Revolution in April: The Beatles, April 6, 1966″ was a deep dive into the the landmark session that initiated the historic recording of Tomorrow Never Knows on the Revolver Album. We discussed:
- World music
- Spirituality, LSD & the Counterculture
- The European Avant-garde
I had a wonderful time doing my annual Beatles’ Intensive at Stanford’s Continuing Studies Program the weekend of April 7-8! Great seeing old friends, meeting new ones, and digging DEEP into tech and how it influenced their songwriting and recordings. What a blast! This was a totally new class WSP 74 Revolution: The Beatles’ Innovative Studio Years (1965–1967). A splendid time was guaranteed for all!