The University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music will host the new-music sextet eighth blackbird for a four-day residency and free concert this month, as part of the school’s 125th-anniversary celebration. Eighth blackbird’s residency at Thornton, based in Los Angeles, will begin on October 13; admission to the free October 16 concert at USC’s Alfred Newman Recital Hall will be on a first-come, first-served basis. The program, highlighting humor in music, will feature Missy Mazzoli’s Still Life with Avalanche (2008), Pierre Boulez’s Derive 1 (1984), Donald Crockett’s Whistling in the Dark (1999), Marc Mellits’s Spam (1995), George Perle’s Critical Moments 2 (2001), Thomas Adès’s Catch (1991), and Stephen Hartke’s Meanwhile (2007). The concert will be preceded by a talk among Donald Crockett, Steven Hartke, and members of eighth blackbird. During the 2009-10 season, eighth blackbird is also in residence at Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music, where it will perform Steve Reich’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Double Sextet; in June the ensemble will perform the world premiere of Jennifer Higdon’s new concerto for sextet and orchestra, with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. 

Posted October 7, 2009