Music of Today: Bonnie Whiting, percussion; Cristina Valdés, keyboards 

Wednesday, May 1, 2019 - 7:30pm
$15 ($10 students/seniors)
Fractured (photo: Sergey Kuznetsov)

 School of Music faculty Bonnie Whiting, percussion, and Cristina Valdés, keyboards, perform works by faculty composers Joël-François Durand, Huck Hodge and more. 

Program

Joël-François Durand: La mesure des choses IV. La mesure du temps. (premiere)
       for solo percussion

Huck Hodge: Fracture (premiere)
       for percussion and piano

Sofia Gubaidulina: Rumore e Silenzio
       for percussion and harpsichord/celeste


Music of Today Series
The University of Washington School of Music and The Center for Digital Arts and Experimental Media (DXARTS) co-sponsor this series featuring groundbreaking new works and modern classics by faculty and guest composers. 

Artist Bios

Cristina Valdés, piano

Considered one of today’s foremost interpreters of contemporary music, Cristina Valdés is known for presenting innovative concerts with repertoire ranging from Bach to Xenakis.  She has performed across four continents and in venues such as Lincoln Center, Le Poisson Rouge, Miller Theatre, Jordan Hall, and the Kennedy Center.  Ms. Valdés has appeared both as a soloist and chamber musician at festivals worldwide including New Music in Miami, the Foro Internacional de Musica Nueva in Mexico City, Brisbane Arts Festival, the Festival of Contemporary Music in El Salvador, Havana Contemporary Music Festival, and the Singapore Arts Festival.

 An avid chamber musician and collaborator, Ms. Valdés has toured extensively with the Bang On a Can “All Stars”, and has performed with the Seattle Chamber Players, the Mabou Mines Theater Company, the Parsons Dance Company, and Antares.  She has also been a featured performer on both the Seattle Symphony’s Chamber Series and [UNTITLED] concerts.

 Cristina has appeared as concerto soloist with the Johns Hopkins Symphony Orchestra, the Binghamton Philharmonic, the Seattle Philharmonic, Philharmonia Northwest, the Eastman BroadBand, and the Stony Brook Symphony Orchestra.  Most recently, she performed the piano solo part of the Ives 4th Symphony with the Seattle Symphony.

 Cristina Valdés joined the faculty of the UW School of Music in Fall 2014 as an artist in residence in the keyboard program. 

Bonnie Whiting

Bonnie Whiting joined the School of Music faculty in Fall 2016 as Chair of Percussion Studies. She performs and commissions new experimental music for percussion. She seeks out projects involving non-traditional notation, interdisciplinary performance, improvisation, and the speaking percussionist.

Recent work includes a series of concerts at the John Cage Centennial Festival in Washington DC, and performance as a soloist in Tan Dun's Water Passion under the baton of the composer himself. In 2011, she joined red fish blue fish percussion group in premiering the staged version of George Crumb’s Winds of Destiny directed by Peter Sellars and featuring Dawn Upshaw for Ojai Festival. 

Whiting has collaborated with many of today's leading new music groups, including eighth blackbird (the “Tune-in” festival at the Park Avenue Armory), the International Contemporary Ensemble (American premiere of James Dillon’s Nine Rivers at Miller Theatre, as an on-stage percussionist for Andriessen’s epic music theatre work De Materie), Bang on a Can (Steve Reich’s Music for 18 Musicians for the LA Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella Series) and Ensemble Dal Niente (the Fromm Concerts at Harvard.) During the summer, she is a member of the Walden Players, enesmble in residence at the Walden School in Dublin, NH.

She performs regularly with percussionist Allen Otte; they have presented concerts at The Stone in New York, The New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival, throughout New Zealand, and at colleges and universities around the country. Her debut album, featuring an original solo-simultaneous realization of John Cage’s 45’ for a speaker and 27’10.554” for a percussionist, was released by Mode Records in 2017.

A dedicated arts educator, Bonnie spent three years with Tales & Scales, a quartet combining new music, dance, and theater for family audiences, giving over 400 performances in 25 states and appearing with the Dallas, Oregon, Indianapolis, Buffalo, and Louisville orchestras. She also helped to develop several experimental music programs in Southern California: The Children’s Universal Language Orchestra in Spring Valley as well as residencies at the Monarch School (for children affected by homelessness) and the inner-city Lincoln High School in San Diego.

She was a member of the Lucerne Festival Academy Orchestra in Switzerland under the direction of Pierre Boulez, and has performed throughout Europe as well as Canada and Panama. Bonnie has worked with composers Jerome Kitzke, Randall Woolf, John Luther Adams, Michael Pisaro, and Frederic Rzewski, and she champions the music of her peers. 

Bonnie attended Interlochen Arts Academy, Oberlin Conservatory (BM), University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (MM), and University of California San Diego (DMA.) She has served on the faculties of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the DePauw University School of Music, and as a lecturer at UC San Diego. She moves back to Seattle, WA to lead the percussion department at the University of Washington in the fall of 2016. 

Faculty composer Joël-François Durand. Photo: Steve Korn.

Composing, writing, teaching, inventing new ways of hearing – all are linked in the work of Joël-François Durand. As a composer, his career was launched in Europe with important prizes: a Third Prize at in the 1983 Stockhausen Competition for the piano piece “…d’asiles déchirés…,” the Kranichsteiner Preis from the Darmstadt Summer Courses for New Music in 1990. Commissions and performances from many of today’s most significant ensembles followed – Ensemble Intercontemporain, London Sinfonietta, Arditti Quartet, Jack Quartet, Quatuor Diotima, ASKO, Ensemble Recherche, musikFabrik, Talea Ensemble, Dal Niente Ensemble, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Philarmonique de Radio France, Deutsches Symphonie Orchester Berlin, Seattle Symphony Orchestra.

Durand is Professor of Composition at the School of Music, University of Washington, as well as Associate Director. He was awarded the Donald E. Petersen Endowed Professorship in 2003-06.

Durand’s works are singular and powerful, combining rigorous and innovative structures with a prominent lyrical impulse.

Durand’s music and personality received critical attention in the 2005 book Joël-François Durand in the Mirror Land (University of Washington Press and Perspectives of New Music) edited by his University of Washington School of Music colleague Jonathan Bernard, which features in addition to analyses by Bernard and several of the School’s students, an innovative self-interview authored by Durand himself.

Current projects for Durand include a work for large orchestra based on some of Debussy’s piano Préludes, commissioned by the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, to be premiered April 18-20, 2019.

Commercial recordings of his music are available on the Auvidis-Naïve, Mode Records, Wergo, Albany Records and Soundset Recordings labels.

In 2010, Durand embarked on a new path: he designed and started commercial production of a new tonearm for record players. The Talea, as it was called, took the audio world by storm and was soon followed by two further models, the Telos and the Kairos, also aimed at the most refined audio reproduction systems. For his work at his company Durand Tonearms LLC, he was made a University of Washington Entrepreneurial Fellow in 2010. 

As a guest composer and lecturer, Durand has contributed to the “Centre de la Voix” in Royaumont, France where he was co-director of the composition course in September 1993, the “Civica Scuola di Musica” in Milan, Italy (1995), the Royal Academy for Music in London, UK (1997), the Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik in Darmstadt (1984, 1990, 1992, 1994), the “VIII. Internationaler Meisterkurs für Komposition des Brandenburgischen Colloquiums für Neue Musik”, Rheinsberg (1998), Washington State University, Pullman, WA (2004), and Stanford University (2006), among others. In the Fall 1994 he was Visiting Assistant Professor in Composition at the University of California at San Diego.

Durand is listed in the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians.

Faculty Composer Huck Hodge
Huck Hodge writes music that explores the liminality of perceptual illusion and the threshold between design and intuition. A composer of “harmonically fresh work", "full of both sparkle and thunder” (New York Times), his music has been praised for its “immediate impact” (Chicago Tribune), its "clever, attractive, streamlined" qualities (NRC Handelsblad, Amsterdam), and its ability to "conjure up worlds of musical magic” with “power and charisma" (Gramophone Magazine, London). There is a dramatic interplay of color, light, and darkness in his music, which emerges from an uncanny blending of pure and dissonant harmonies, widely spaced orchestrations and vast, diffuse timbres. 
 
Hodge is the recipient of many of the highest distinctions in the field of contemporary music. In 2018, he was honored with the Charles Ives Living, the largest music award conferred by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His other major awards include the Rome Prize, the Gaudeamus Prize, a Guggenheim Fellowship, commissions from the Koussevitzky Foundation in the Library of Congress, the Fromm Foundation at Harvard University, the American Composers Forum (JFund), the Barlow Endowment, Music at the Anthology (MATA), Muziek Centrum Nederland, Musik der Jahrhunderte, and the National Theater and Concert Hall of Taiwan, in addition to multiple grants and awards from ASCAP, the Bogliasco Foundation, Copland House, the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst, New Music USA, the Siemens Musikstiftung, and the Yaddo Corporation.
 
His music has been performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and at numerous major festivals — the New York Philharmonic Biennial, Berliner FestspieleGaudeamus Muziekweek, Shanghai New Music Week (上海当代音乐周), ISCM World Music Days, and many others in over twenty countries on five continents. Other performances include those by members of the Berlin Philharmonic and Ensemble Modern, the ASKO|Schönberg Ensemble, the Seattle Symphony, and the Orchestra of the League of Composers. His chamber music has been premiered, performed and recorded by a long list of soloists and ensembles such as the Daedalus, JACK, Mivos, and Pacifica string quartets, the Aleph, Argento, Dal Niente, Divertimento, Insomnio, SurPlus, and Talea ensembles, and his colleagues David Gordon, Donna Shin, Cristina Valdés, Cuong Vu, and Bonnie Whiting. Hodge has been featured in numerous international radio and television broadcasts (among them, Radio Netherlands, WNYC, WQXR, Taiwan Broadcasting System, Australian Broadcasting Corporation). His published music is distributed by Alexander Street Press and Babel Scores (Paris). Recordings of his music appear on the New World and Albany record labels.
 
Before joining the University of Washington, Hodge taught compositon at Columbia University in New York City, where he earned his M.A. and D.M.A. studying with Fred Lerdahl, George Lewis, and Tristan Murail. Prior to this, he studied composition, theory, and computer music at the University of Oregon and the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Stuttgart, Germany, where his teachers included Robert Kyr, Marco Stroppa, and Georg Wötzer. He has been an invited lecturer on music and aesthetics at a variety of institutions including the University of Chicago, Columbia University, Eastman School of Music, Manhattan School of Music, and the Universität der Künste in Berlin, and he served for three years as the director of the Merriman Young Composers Workshop at the Seattle Symphony. He is currently associate professor and chair of the composition program in the school of music.