Composers Eating Kettle Corn – Andrew Norman

Composers Eating Kettle Corn - Andrew Norman



we're here today with composer Andrew Norman and we have kettle corn and we're going to talk about music thanks for having us and ER yes that welcome to my backyard what is your relationship to kettle corn I have no relationship with kettle corn I think this might be my first time your first experience with I feel like it I mean I don't even really know what it is well it's popcorn with sugar essentially everything so California music is inspired by the idea of sharing music with friends mmm and for us it started in the sort of dorm room music sharing hanging out experience so I wanted to ask you what are some musical experiences that you've had outside of the traditional concert hall experience mmm I think actually that I couldn't answer that going all the way back to my days in high school when I played viola in a very bad string quartet and we didn't we didn't really perform at where we were just we were very good friends and we we read through all sorts of music and we played the occasional bad wedding gig and but most of the time we would just have like some greeting parties and that was like I feel like my first experience with like just making music with friends and non performance oriented way which is so as you know really fun yeah and you know there's something that can be very impersonal about writing music and then asking other people to play it especially like an orchestra world where I work a lot so to have that personal connection with people and to be just like hey we're making some music here that's really amazing and I try to capture some of that in my more professional music making to the extent that I can yeah great can you tell us a little about your piece is gonna be featured on our concert mmm Sabeena provide link now ya know Sabina is a piece that I've written like 17,000 times um and yeah it has like many different versions alrights piece I come back to you a lot and the first first version of it I wrote in 2006 which is not what like seven years ago um and it was a inspired by this experience I had in Raleigh we got to live in Rome for a year and I would take long walks and visit all the different churches there in Rome and there's one particular church that I absolutely fell in love with and it was called Santa Sabina it's a very old church very plain on the inside can usual immensity and the windows are are made of stone not glass so they're like thinly sliced translucent so much like that library of Yale Oh fine again yeah which has the same things very thinly sliced stone that light can actually go through what I loved about this is that at certain times a day morning early morning late afternoon the light shines through these thin stone windows and creates these amazing patterns on the walls and their patterns that are constantly changing and sort of the light grows and changes or a cloud passes over they disappear and there's always this slight very slow sense of morphing in the light and I love the fact it's like the decoration in this church it's not like baroque gilding or anything it's just light um and so I then one morning I was like okay I'm gonna I'm gonna go do this full-on so I went to this church in the dark before sunrise and then I watched the whole shebang from from darkness and then as the light emerged and then got to this golden intense yellow on these walls and then it was like sort of normal daylight and that was the experience that inspired this piece Sabina which um so a.m. I went home and I was experimenting with the material on my viola was often what I do to get myself going I'm very bad Fiola but um it's an instrument that has a very personal connection to and that's sort of how the idea of like exploring the rocking between open strings and and I think a lot about physical motions and I love this idea of starting these very very soft almost non-existent sounds and gradually start rocking between the strings until the rocking motion bit wilder and wilder and one other and sort of the way that the arm moves it's like a metaphor for me like patterns Anjali worked out a solo viola version of this piece and then I wrote a trio version of it for violin viola cello hybrid cello version of it because it's material that is very comes directly out of the way that string instruments are built and how the open strings work and so it's very easy to translate it to any stringed instrument I haven't tried for bass but ya know it's like a it's it's a it's a its material that I really like so that's my keys well we're looking forward to hearing it and thanks for talking to us all right here we go

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