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August 2013

In Case You Missed It: Our Facebook Interview with Chamber Band

by Laura Wasson

Chamber Band

Last Thursday, I had the pleasure of chatting with Chris Littler and Ellen Winter from New York's own Chamber Band (along with some of their lovely fans) in advance of their midnight show at Spike Hill this week. After the break, check out an edited version of our live Facebook interview—complete with a few new questions I didn't have a chance to ask then.

Don't forget! We'll be doing more of these fun talks in the coming months, so be sure to check in with us here at FoM regularly—your favorite band could be joining us next.

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Ballet v6.0 Brings Fresh Collaboration to Joyce Theater

by Zoë Gorman

Balletcollective-epistasis-1552-2013

Photo credit: Lora Robertson

Making connections across artistic genres has proven to be one of the defining features of 21st-century music, and The Impulse Wants Company—a new ballet given life by a crew of budding artists—continued this trend, oozing collaborative excellence at every turn.

Performed last week at the Joyce Theater, the ballet fused the creative talents of composer Ellis Ludwig-Leone, the American Contemporary Music Ensemble, choreographer Troy Schumacher, poet Cynthia Zarin, and the BalletCollective, as part of the vBallet 6.0 Festival. In the program's first half the collaboration centered around bringing an original composition and choreography together to exude the imagery and emotional effect of Zarin’s poem, whereas the second half focused more on the collaboration of the musical performers, who wrote Epistasis (2012) by directly interacting with one another.

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Mostly Mozart: Festival Orchestra Performs Music of Mozart and Tchaikovsky

by Robert Leeper

MMF, Louis Langree

Photo credit: Richard Termine, The Wall Street Journal

A lot has been made of the "newness" of the Mostly Mozart Festival, most recently by yours truly. From FoM to The New York Times, people are spouting accolades for the new-and-improved Festival, and with good reason. Occasionally, however, it pays to step back and let the orchestra run through some works from the handful of composers with which it has traditionally been associated—like last night's concert of Mozart and Tchaikovsky at Avery Fisher Hall. 

The Festival Orchestra delivered an absolutely astounding performance of Mozart's Symphony No. 36, "Linz." The group produced a clean, robust sound, no doubt aided by Mozart's subtle use of horns and percussion. Longtime Music Director Louis Langrée's control over the orchestra was unwavering—able to switch directions on a dime in order to accommodate the abrupt dynamic changes, making the ensemble sound like a completely different group from that which played Brahms on Saturday.

During the Minuet Langrée abandoned his baton, using only his hands to paint the Hayden-esque country dance, emphasizing smooth lines and keeping a light airy feel around the music. Langrée's warm, excitable personality extended to every section of the orchestra, culminating in well-deserved applause—especially for the woodwind and horn sections, who stood at Langrée's beckoning, and received a particularly exuberant cheer from the crowd.

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