Author Topic: Henning's Headquarters  (Read 988463 times)

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Online Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8420 on: August 30, 2021, 09:53:07 AM »
Just a note that the pianist in the ensemble has acknowledged receipt of the score with a nice message. Here's hoping the soprano is fearless!
Well, if she's anything like this singer (and operatic character), all should go well.  :) ;)



PD

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8421 on: August 30, 2021, 01:26:12 PM »
Well, if she's anything like this singer (and operatic character), all should go well.  :) ;)



PD


Veramente!

I've now delivered the parts (just three: flute, clarinet & cello) the pianist will play from score, and the soprano will sing from score, of course.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline krummholz

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8422 on: August 31, 2021, 04:04:15 PM »
Veramente!

I've now delivered the parts (just three: flute, clarinet & cello) the pianist will play from score, and the soprano will sing from score, of course.

Great news, Karl!

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8423 on: August 31, 2021, 04:36:05 PM »
Thanks!
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Online Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8424 on: September 01, 2021, 02:06:45 AM »
So, any idea when and how you will be able to have a performance of your new work?  And, by the way, what are you calling it?

PD

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8425 on: September 01, 2021, 04:30:29 AM »
Oh! The Opus 172 is The Orpheus of Lowell, on texts of Jack Kerouac, for soprano, flute (doubling alto flute) clarinet (doubling bass clarinet) cello & piano, and it will be performed 7 Oct as part of the Lowell Celebrates Kerouac do.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Online Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8426 on: September 01, 2021, 06:17:24 AM »
Oh! The Opus 172 is The Orpheus of Lowell, on texts of Jack Kerouac, for soprano, flute (doubling alto flute) clarinet (doubling bass clarinet) cello & piano, and it will be performed 7 Oct as part of the Lowell Celebrates Kerouac do.
Cool!  8)

PD

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8427 on: September 04, 2021, 12:47:38 PM »
Just got a lovely message from the pianist: I really like your new piece, and I think it is a very effective setting of Kerouac's text.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Online Pohjolas Daughter

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8428 on: September 05, 2021, 03:45:53 AM »
Just got a lovely message from the pianist: I really like your new piece, and I think it is a very effective setting of Kerouac's text.
Excellent!  So happy for you!

PD

Offline krummholz

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8429 on: September 05, 2021, 04:50:39 AM »
Just got a lovely message from the pianist: I really like your new piece, and I think it is a very effective setting of Kerouac's text.

Awesome!!

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8430 on: September 05, 2021, 07:22:46 AM »
Huzzah!
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline aligreto

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8431 on: September 05, 2021, 09:21:07 AM »
Exciting  8)
It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and leave no doubt.

Offline Cato

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8432 on: October 01, 2021, 10:44:48 AM »
The Orpheus of Lowell should enthrall any audience!

Karl has sent me the opening of his latest work: I will say no more except that the beginning bars create a realm with an uncanny atmosphere!  Again, I am most enthusiastic about a work-in-progress of "HenningMusick"!
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8433 on: October 01, 2021, 10:46:20 AM »
Thanks! The Kerouac event is a week from last night!
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8434 on: October 02, 2021, 12:03:43 PM »
I'm mildly vexed over the Triad concert having been sucked into flux. The concerts were originally scheduled for 20/21 November (in line with our established cycle.) We have the fewest tenors ever, and after our first two rehearsals, it was felt that we should adjust the program to favor SAB voicing. Also, since this means a new slate of pieces, that we would push the concerts out to January (when also hopefully we may have a live audience—we were planning an online event for November) on one hand, our tenors agreed that we can still do my piece (When) with our present crew, but Peter Bloom, who was to play both alto flute for my piece and tenor sax for my friend Pam Marshall's piece, is not available for the January dates under consideration. I have asked about bumping further to February, but I've heard nothing yet. In a pinch, I guess I can just hope that the stars will align so that we can perform When in June ... but I'm mildly vexed.

Better news is that the Tuesday lunchtime concerts at King's Chapel have resumed, and the Henning Ensemble is booked for 19 April.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8435 on: October 04, 2021, 01:04:06 PM »
Sometime over the summer, I decided that the Symphony № 3 would be in Louis’s memory, and that it would be for strings only. Perhaps as late as September, I felt it should be a single movement, and run perhaps 20 minutes. The idea of writing the piece was certainly lying there in the back of my mind, but I was just a little surprised at myself when I actually set to composing. On 26 Sep the piece was not quite two minutes long. With today’s work, it runs to six minutes. I’m content to just putter at it at irregular intervals. My non-stony resolution upon completing the third symphony is not even to think about a fourth until one of the first three will have been performed. But we shall see.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Cato

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8436 on: October 05, 2021, 05:28:41 AM »
Sometime over the summer, I decided that the Symphony № 3 would be in Louis’s memory, and that it would be for strings only. Perhaps as late as September, I felt it should be a single movement, and run perhaps 20 minutes. The idea of writing the piece was certainly lying there in the back of my mind, but I was just a little surprised at myself when I actually set to composing. On 26 Sep the piece was not quite two minutes long. With today’s work, it runs to six minutes. I’m content to just putter at it at irregular intervals. My non-stony resolution upon completing the third symphony is not even to think about a fourth until one of the first three will have been performed. But we shall see.


I am happy that the resolution is "non-stony."   :D

Karl, can you place your Viola Sonata with the score here again?

I came across something in the archives here which needs the score!   ;)

"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8437 on: October 05, 2021, 06:13:37 AM »
The Op. 102 on Soundcloud.

First mvt attached
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8438 on: October 05, 2021, 06:14:20 AM »
2nd & 3rd mvts
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Cato

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Re: Henning's Headquarters
« Reply #8439 on: October 05, 2021, 06:53:05 AM »

https://soundcloud.com/karlhenning-1/sets/sonata-for-viola-piano-2010

I was shocked that over ten years have gone by!  Here is my analysis of the score, which I recently came across during the unpacking of the archives:



"In the first movement, you hear the shadow of Alban Berg in the Viola: a mysterious yearning arises from a kind of struggling non-tonal tonality.  Note that even in the first bar, in the 5:4 figure of 16ths, one hears a kind of tonality in the broken D# (= Eb) Bb (= A#) Eb (= D#) chord, and then again in bar 2, note the broken up D major scale in the 5:4 figure, nearly emphasized by the accent mark on the D after the 16th rest.  Bar 3 has the little march figure which again has an aroma of traditional tonality (F minor, starting with the C-F figure at the end of bar 2), and tells us that maybe the Viola has been wanting to be in F minor from the start, but cannot decide.  The seeming chaos in the piano, with its B/A# and D/C# in the bass, and similarly wide-spaced dissonances in the treble, would apparently not be involved, but listen carefully to the odd E major in the piano in bars 3 and 4, which the Viola picks up in its partially contrary figure at the beginning of bar 4.

The chord at the end of bar 4, with its open fifths in the piano and the Viola’s minor second G#/A stubbornly refusing to accept the engagement ring from either suitor, will become very important motivically, as it is paralleled in bars 28-31, and in bars 203-205, repeated nearly verbatim in bar 41, and paralleled again in the conclusion. The minor second in the Viola can of course be heard as a variation on the major 7ths in the piano’s bass at the beginning.  This idea is reinforced in bar 7 in the piano, where the bass ascends from Bb to Bb to G#, while the treble and the Viola hold an A.

Lest ye think that the little minor second is just a moment’s hesitation, let me send you to bar 14, where for a moment both instruments play G#, but then the piano plays F#2/G# on the last beat, and to the Meno mosso section at bar 45, where things are seemingly in accord, with a unison on B in both instruments, but immediately we get a disagreement (Bb in the piano/A# in the Viola), followed by a C/Db and then in bar 46 we hear that G#/A, resolved into a unison to be sure, but then note the minor seconds in bars 49 and 50 (nicely played in the performance).  This is one of the more comically poignant, or poignantly comic parts of the work.

The Piu mosso section at bar 59 shows a variation on the 5:4 motif from the opening melody.  The motif is now legalized with a time signature of its own (5/16), but does return in the piano for a moment in bar 64.  Of interest rhythmically and motivically are bars 66-72: the music struggles upward through major and minor seconds for a while.  In bar 69 the 5:4 figure in the piano sets the stage for an erratic ascent from B to C, with a minor ninth crescendo in bar 72.

The delicious Slow (but with life) part (bars 83-108) shows variations on the previous motifs (bar 86 develops the 5:4 figure, and the double open fifths in bar 87),  and I like how the wide leaps in the piano presage the sudden drop in the Viola in bars 97-98.  Octaves abound, but not for long, as the music fragments to a kind of pointillism in bars 109-132.  The open-fifths-vs.-minor-second debate is heard in the piano in bar 122, just to make sure you are paying attention, and that 5:4 figure now appears as a 5:6 in the base.

And then my favorite part: the completely schizoid Piu mosso ancora! (Bars 133-176) The section continues to play with items already established, e.g. hear the bass part of the piano continue the minor/major 2nd/7th/9th patterns, while the treble plays around with the motifs introduced back in bar 95ff. and 106-107.  Listen to how they contrast with the melodic line in the Viola, with trills (136-137), emphatically accented 16ths, the 5:4 and new 6:4 figures, while the piano obediently avoids such rhythmically complexities, allowing only some syncopations.  And I must remark upon how well the premiere performance handled this section!

In bars 177 the music develops the earlier Piu mosso (bars 59-82) and drives toward a climax where a variation of the opening is proclaimed beginning at bar 201.  During this drive, note again the presence of those minor/major 2nd/7th/9th patterns: bars 189 and 194-195 are especially impressive here, the latter two bars show a minor second expanding to a third and then a fourth, leading to the open fifths in the treble in the next two bars.

As mentioned earlier, those Beethovenian chords from bar 4 return in bars 203-205.  We then hear a brilliant, condensed, and varied recapitulation of the most important parts of the entire movement (e.g. listen to the piano in bars 212-214 and in the bass only to 218 and compare it to bars 95-102, while above one hears a near apotheosis of the 5:4 figure interspersed with continual variations on it: check out e.g. bar 219 where the Viola plays an eighth-note triplet with a duplet, as well as the bass part in the piano in bars 220-221.  Bar 221 is particularly fascinating with the way motivic and rhythmic elements coalesce in the piano, before our Beethovenian chords put an end to this serious yet playful and highly expressive movement! 

Suspension Bridge: Karl has pointed out two of the building blocks of this bridge movement.  The first is a scale (see e.g. bar 85 in the piano) spanning two octaves, allowing both dissonance and a pentatonic warmth.  The second block is a “periodic rhythmic pattern which needs 73 measures of 3/2 to play out.”  The listener certainly does not need to recognize either of these, but the composer sets such limits for himself as guideposts toward continual inspiration.

Ever since hearing the opening to Mahler’s Tenth Symphony (on the violas!), and the long chant-like phrases in the Tenth of Shostakovich, I am a sucker for long, lonely, unaccompanied themes!  So you can predict that the unadorned 20-bar Viola theme at the start of Suspension Bridge, the Second Movement of the Viola Sonata, is something which would appeal to me.  The theme almost has a hymn-like character, and is in G with only a few, but very delicious, chromatic wanderings (e.g. the Ab-Abb in bar 5, carrying forward the minor-second motif from the previous movement). 

The piano offers an ascent from a “G” abyss in bar 20, with notes often rising in 6ths (e.g. bars 20-33) until the end of the section, where some leaps of a 7th occur.  The 6ths can be heard as inversions of the 3rds in the Viola theme (e.g. from the half-note in bar 32 to 38), providing thematic-harmonic unity in a section where the long, Adagio-Largo line needs stabilizing.  The section ends with an open fifth D-A to which A an octave lower and then a deep B octave are added.  We then hear our 5:4 friend (in assorted guises) from the First Movement, while the piano revisits (again beneath various masks) the 7th and 9th chords (e.g. bars 50-54).  The piano’s music recalls bars 83-94 from the First Movement.  Of interest are the insistent duplets and triplets in the Viola, which link the music rhythmically to similar insistent figures found throughout the First Movement (bars 42-43, 56, 72, and the final bar). 

Of course, these figures are also presaging similar things in the last movement, which makes one wonder if the first two movements are not elaborately inventive variations on elements from the Tango in Boston.  As befits a middle movement named Suspension Bridge the music connects itself most impressively to both of the outer movements. 
 
To return: the piano attempts to raise the bridge with the help of the 5:4 figure going up eccentric scales, but things fall apart by bar 64, where the piano reminds us that the minor-second motif has not disappeared!  And speaking of insistent figures, there is a nearly constant F/E 7th in the bass between bars 64 and 78, while our friends (the major and minor seconds in 66-67 and 75-76, the 5:4 figure) frolic back and forth, ending with the return of a variation in Eb minor of the Viola’s opening statement.

Then in bar 80, starting on G in the bass (the key of the Viola’s opening), the piano starts charging upward, while the Viola also rises up a D major-minor scale played in octaves.  The section leads to a Maestoso with a series of (mostly) hexachords in the piano, wherein one picks up open and diminished fifths, 7ths, and 9ths, (e.g. bar 95 C/G/B/A#/C#/G#). These point backward (e.g. bars 83-94 in Fair Warning) and forward (e.g. bars 105-113 in the Finale).

Bars 101-120 present an enigmatic dialogue with the Viola speaking "pizzicatoly" and the piano playing 5 8th notes against 4 (cf. the 5:4 motif), with an emphasis on our motivic intervals of 2nds, 5ths, 7ths, and 9ths.  And a cadenza for the Viola – starting on G – parallels both the heaven-storming of the piano in bars 80-92 and the preceding dialogue: note how the louder triplets form one voice contrasting with a second voice of soft 16ths. 

Punctuated by the piano (fortissimo) with a hexachord (Db/Ab/C in the bass, Eb/F/Cb in the treble), the cadenza continues now with large chords on the Viola, harkening back to the piano’s Maestoso section: check bar 142-143, where the minor second (C#/D) “resolves” into a F#/C/E 7th chord.  The chords also presage a similar section in the Finale (e.g. bars 105-114 in the Tango in Boston), which even occasionally uses the same chordal sequences (cf. the two chords at the beginning of bar 147 with bars 105-106 in the Tango in Boston.  A repeated chord (D/B/F#/E) ends the cadenza, and brings us to another dialogue between the two instruments, even more antiphonal than before, with an exotic array of rhythmic figures repeating the same notes, as if a Martian Morse code were being transmitted.  In fact, however, one tastes here some of the “tango-ish” aspects of the last movement. 

From this exotic soundscape we plunge downward on the piano – starting on (a high) G – while the 5:4 motif is heard in the Viola, and is soon echoed in the piano.  After the ff climax, the Viola plays a Largo version of the opening Adagio, again in a kind of key of G, with which the piano quietly and sweetly (dolce) disagrees in the final bar with a D#/C# 7th in the bass, which we easily understand, since a 7th has been heard in the bass before (on F/E in bars 64-78).  We have gone full circle, but discover that circle is actually a Möbius strip, so that we are no longer back at the beginning but somewhere else...maybe we are in Boston and ready to tango! 

Scott Joplin via Schoenberg?   8)   

 
« Last Edit: October 05, 2021, 06:54:43 AM by Cato »
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)