JPL Program Calendar
Linda A. Cionitti, clarinet
Maila Gutierrez Springfield, piano
Valdosta State University Faculty Artist
Elliot Del Borgo (1938-2013)
Victor Babin (1908-1972)
Hillandale Waltzes [Hear it on Youtube]
Thème – Valse elegante – Valse passionée
Valse sombre –Valse volante – Valse triste
Valse de bonne humeur –Valse brillante et joyeuse
Carlos Guastavino (1912-2000)
Tonada y Cueca [Hear it on Youtube]
Louis Cahuzac (1880-1960)
Cantilène [Hear it on Youtube]
Maurice Saylor (b. 1957)
Romanza (from Comic Symphony)
Paul Hindemith (1895-1963)
Sonata for Clarinet and Piano
II. Lebhaft [Hear it on Youtube]
IV. Kleines Rondo, gemächlich [Hear it on Youtube]
James M. David (b. 1978)
Historias y Danzas [Hear a demo on Soundcloud]
II. En forma de Habañera
IV. En Forma de Tango (y Mambo)
PROGRAM NOTES [CLICK HERE for Program Notes (pdf)]
Including music for the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid, American composer Elliot Del Borgo (1938-2013) published over 600 compositions, which he described as reflecting "the aesthetics of 20th-century musical ideals through its eclectic nature and vigorous harmonic and rhythmic style." He taught instrumental music in the Philadelphia public schools and was professor of music at the Crane School of Music, and also was known internationally as a conductor.
In 1961, Russian-born Victor Babin (1908-1972) became Director of the Cleveland Institute of Music, but he first gained international fame performing with wife Vitya Vronsky as the husband half of Vronsky & Babin, which Newsweek called "the most brilliant two-piano team of our generation." Presenting variations on a theme by Johann Nepomuk Hummel (1778-1837), Babin’s
Hillandale Waltzes were written in 1947 for Anne Archbold, an arts patron in Washington, D.C.,
whose estate was called “Hillandale.”
With music described as "lushly romantic," Argentine composer Carlos Guastavino (1912-2000)
was able to earn a living solely from the royalties and performance rights for his music. Among his
600+ works, Guastavino is best-known for his songs, some of which have been performed by
international luminaries including Teresa Berganza, José Carreras and Kiri Te Kanawa; his
complete works for piano, as well as samples of his guitar and chamber works also have been
recorded. Composed in 1965, Guastavino's Tonada y Cueca ("Love Song and Cueca Dance") retains a favored place in the clarinetists' repertoire, amply demonstrated by the many performances available on Youtube!
Louis Cahuzac (1880-1960) was one of few 20th-century clarinetists who performed primarily as a
soloist rather than as orchestral/ensemble player, and career highlights included making the firstever
recording of Carl Nielsen's Clarinet Concerto, and (at age 76) recording Paul Hindemith's
Clarinet Concerto with the composer conducting. As one might expect, Cahuzac wrote mostly for
his own instrument. According to the notes for his complete works recording, Cahuzac’s birthregion
of Southern France provided his inspiration, reflected in his Cantilène by its “radiant
Mediterranean light," while its "echo-type effects suggest open, mountainous spaces."
Based in Washington, D.C., Maurice Saylor (b. 1957) describes his work as "tuneful and quirky scores" that "blur the boundaries of style and genre." The Romanza is a movement from his Comic Symphony for clarinet and piano, based on tunes from an abandoned 1991 musical on Moliere's Le Malade Imaginaire (The Imaginary Invalid). First recast as a symphonic work, for the final duo version Saylor elaborated and expanded the tunes to take advantage of the solo talents of clarinetist Ben Redwine. Retaining "symphony" in the title for the 2012 publication, Saylor explains that "it's the nature of the music that makes it a symphony and not the scoring."
Along with Stravinsky, Bartók and Schoenberg, German composer, violist, teacher, and music theorist Paul Hindemith (1895-1963) is often cited by musicologists as a central figure in music of the first half of the 20th Century. Although performances of his music have become relatively rare, his Clarinet Sonata (1939) provides an ever-popular exception. A staple on recitals and recordings, it easily qualifies as one of Hindemith's "greatest hits."
James M. David (b. 1978) is associate professor of composition and music theory at Colorado State University. He has won multiple awards for his music, which has been performed throughout North America, Europe and Asia, and recorded for the Naxos, Albany, Summit, Luminescence and MSR Classics labels. David describes his 4-movement Historias y Danzas (2014) as "incorporating elements of Afro-Latin dance music, along with contemporary techniques and virtuosity." He adds that "En forma de Habeñera is based on the beautiful vocalise by Ravel and features a particularly melismatic clarinet part against an uncharacteristically wavering ostinato," while "En Forma de Tango (y Mambo) was meant to be an unfiltered homage to the great tradition of tango, but my love of mambo rhythms could not be entirely suppressed!"