NRM Season 25: JD Parran Performs, March 11

JD Parran Multi-instrumentalist and Composer J.D. Parran's "Windows of Collaboration"

Friday, March 11, 2011 at 8 p.m.
46 Barrow Street
Tickets $15 ($10 for Students/Seniors)

Premiere by Music Director Menon Dwarka
Works by Anthony Davis, Douglas Anderson, James Jabbo Ware, and J.D. Parran

Greenwich House Music School (GHMS) presented acclaimed multi-woodwind performer and master improviser J.D. Parran on Friday, March 11 at 8 p.m., as part of the 25th anniversary season of North River Music. Parran displayed his outstanding skills as a performer, improviser and composer in “Windows of Collaboration” – a solo concert for clarinet and low clarinets, featuring works written for Parran by composers with whom he has long associations. The evening featured the world premiere of "Leave to Remain" (2010) by composer and Greenwich House Music School Director, Menon Dwarka; the solo version of "You Have a Right To Remain Silent" by Anthony Davis; “…vikings, unless…” by Douglas Anderson; and selections from Parran’s latest CD release, Window Spirits (2010), including compositions by James Jabbo Ware and Parran.

Founded by Frank Wigglesworth in 1985, GHMS’s North River Music is one of New York City’s first concert series devoted to new and experimental music. The concert will be followed by a reception.

The Program

This concert featured the world premiere of Leave to Remain by Menon Dwarka, for solo alto clarinet and electronics. This collaborative/improvisation bears the artistic fruit of Parran and Dwarka’s work at Harlem School of the Arts and Greenwich House Music School. Leave to Remain derives its name from a British legal term for a person who has not yet become a citizen. Menon Dwarka's post-colonial approach to composition, combining spectral and serial elements in order to create a sound world that is neither eastern nor western, is, as the title suggest, written from a perspective of someone in between states.

Anthony Davis’ You Have A Right to Remain Silent was originally composed as a clarinet concerto for J.D. Parran – Davis’ clarinetist of choice. The work premiered at the Miller Theater in 2007, and will be presented in a solo version for the Greenwich House concert.

Further works on this program include “…vikings, unless…” by Douglas Anderson; Emotions by Ware/Parran; Parenthetically by Anthony Davis; and Breeze Binder and Solo for Alto Clarinet by J.D. Parran.

About the Artists

J.D. Parran has mastered a wide variety of woodwind instruments, including alto clarinet, contrabass clarinet, and bass saxophone. He has recorded and performed with Muhal Richard Abrams, Anthony Braxton, Don Byron, Andrew Hill, Adam Rudolph, Wadada Leo Smith and James Jabbo Ware, among many others. His most recent recordings include Window Spirits Solo (Mutable) and Kokopilau (Freedonia), and his releases as a leader include J.D. Parran & Spirit Stage, and Omegathorp: Living City (Y'All). Parran has premiered a concerto by Anthony Davis at Miller Theatre and Spoleto USA; performed the music of Julius Hemphill with Marty Ehrlich and Ursula Oppens at Tanglewood and the Gardner Museum; and travels regularly with cabaret vocalist Rosemary George.

Menon Dwarka in addition to being the director of Greenhouse Music School, is also a composer and writer. The former music program director of the 92nd Street Y and Harlem School of the Arts, he has also been a staff composer at several New York City firms, creating music and sound design for television advertising. For Dwarka, a Canadian of South Asian heritage who was born in Georgetown, Guyana, music is a unique way to explore the various aspects of being between cultures, similar to the way many post-colonial writers approach their subject matter. His involvement with the commercial music industry has led Dwarka to integrate a greater use of computer-assisted composition into his most recent work. Menon Dwarka is also a regular contributor to Listen Magazine.

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