After appearing last summer with the 'Brahms V. Radiohead', I was asked by the Colorado Music Festival to music direct this summer's three-concert 'Mash-Up' series. What a fantastic opportunity to program and present a trio of innovative and exciting programs. Here is the lineup:
Program #1: World Premiere of 'Beethoven V. Coldplay' (July 1)
CMF has commissioned this next 'mash-up' program of mine. I am calling it an 'Eroica oratorio-fantasy using the themes of Coldplay'. It is the Beethoven 3rd symphony converted into a second choral symphony, with adapted themes of Coldplay suspended atop the orchestra throughout. Nine Coldplay songs are used in all, and the majority of the Eroica is played. The 'mashing up' has reached completely new heights with this work, as Beethoven and Coldplay generally coexist the entire time. I've also composed a new 'Intermezzo' to be played in between the third and fourth movement, which marries the Coldplay song 'Sparks'. Needless to say, this is my biggest work to date, and I eagerly anticipate the premiere. I am very grateful to CMF for making it possible.
The following playlist contains the individual selections that are used in the work.
Program #2: My Brightest Diamond, Aoife O'Donovan and Olga Bell (July 15)
I am quite proud that we were able to get all three of these incredible artists, given how in-demand they are. Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond), Aoife O'Donovan and Olga Bell have much in common- their conservatory training, their divergence from the 'traditional' path and development of their own voice, list of all-star collaborations (Yo-Yo Ma, Bon Iver, Sufjan Stevens, Dirty Projectors, etc), and emergence as some of the most significant artists in the indie/classical/whatever-you-want-to-call-it world. But yet their music is so wonderfully varied- and that is what I am most excited for. They will each present sets with the CMF orchestra then come together for pieces together as a finale.
Program #3: San Fermin
If you've heard these guys, well, then you know. Ellis Ludwig-Leone, the mastermind, composer and keyboardist of San Fermin, is a graduate of the Yale school of composition, and served as Nico Muhly's assistant for a time before creating this project. He holed himself up in a cabin for eight weeks and scored the entire 55-minute work- which flows continuously form beginning to end- calling for singers, rock instruments, and a classical chamber ensemble. One could call that an orchestra of sorts.... On this concert, the sweeping and captivating sound of the eight-person San Fermin will be augmented by the CMF orchestra, in arrangements Ellis has done himself. This promises to be an epic finale to the season. Just a few days after, San Fermin will appear at the Lollapalooza festival in Chicago, IL, and prior to being with us they are opening up for St. Vincent. What a thrill it will be to play with these guys in the midst of their emergence!