New music ensemble Present Music’s “Northern Lights | Southern Nights” concert on April 6 features the music of northern and southern regions of the globe, spanning from a composition written for Norway’s national instrument featuring an Irish fiddle player to a threemovement work and performance led by an engaging Brazilian singer/pianist/composer.
“Northern Lights | Southern Nights” brings to Milwaukee noted new music composer Dan Trueman, Irish fiddler Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh, who plays a 10-string fiddle and is traveling from Ireland for the performance, and Clarice Assad, a Grammy-nominated Brazilian composer, vocalist and multiinstrumentalist. The concert is sponsored by Two Sisters.
The performance takes place at 7:30 p.m. at the Milwaukee Art Museum in Windhover Hall. These are the three sections of the program, which all include the Present Music ensemble:
• Dan Trueman will present a world premiere of “Midden Find,” a tune-cycle he composed in collaboration with Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh, who will also perform. It was written for the Hardanger d’Amore, a version of Norway’s national instrument with resonating strings and intricate traditional designs, including a dragon’s-head scroll. Trueman, the chair of Princeton University’s music department, will then join soloist Ó Raghallaigh on fiddle for a short set of their duo repertoire.
• Clarice Assad will feature her astonishing vocalizations and unique electro-acoustic skills in her
“Retro Pop,” a three-movement work she composed with the sections inspired singly by John Lennon, Michel Legrand and Herbie Hancock. This world-premiere of the piece by Assad, who earned a Latin Grammy nomination for best contemporary composition, was commissioned for Present Music by the Laskin Family Foundation in honor of Arthur and Nancy Laskin.
• The balance of the program will feature the Present Music ensemble exploring contemporary works by Scandinavian composers. The ensemble will perform “Quattro Stazioni” by Norwegian composer Kjell Habbestad, “Flight from the City” by Icelandic composer Johann Johannsson and “Spelpuma,” by Emilia Amper, one of the folk stars of the Swedish national instrument, the Nyckelharpa.
“It’s rare that an event will feature two world premieres, much less three different world-renowned solo performers, but then again, there is nothing usual about our program on April 6,” Present Music CoArtist Director Eric Segnitz said. “We’ll showcase the commonalities and differences between the Nordic countries and Brazil and guarantee an evening of both contemplation and high spirits. A rollicking good time!”
In-person and livestream tickets can be purchased at https://www.presentmusic.org/events/. In-person ticketholders receive free access to the Milwaukee Art Museum (MAM) galleries the day of the performance. The performance is in partnership with MAM’s “Scandinavian Design and the United States, 1890–1980” exhibition, which runs March 24 – July 23.
For more information contact: Emily Boone, firstname.lastname@example.org