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Shifting Ground @ 7
Shifting Ground @ 7

Mon, May 06

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Sand City

Shifting Ground @ 7

The young international sensation and award winning violin virtuoso Alexi Kenney presents a profoundly moving program deeply rooted in his passion for the music of J. S. Bach. “he made it seem . . . as if this were the only possible way to play the music” — THE NEW YORK TIMES

Time & Location

May 06, 2024, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM

Sand City, 440 Ortiz Ave, Sand City, CA 93955, USA

About the Event

Violinist Alexi Kenney is forging a career that defies categorization, following his interests, intuition, and heart. He is equally at home creating experimental programs and commissioning new works, soloing with major orchestras around the world, and collaborating with some of the most celebrated musicians of our time. Alexi is the recipient of an Avery Fisher Career Grant and a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award. 

Alexi's project Shifting ground willbe presented in the upcoming months at the Baryshnikov Arts Center and the Ojai Festival. Witnessing Alexi Kenney and his creative programming in SandBox is too good to be true. Here is a derscription of what we can look forward to in Alexi's own words:

"I must have been about 10 years old when I first heard J.S. Bach’s Chaconne, introduced to me by my then-teacher Jenny Rudin. I remember being first overwhelmed by its magnitude, its complexity, its difficulty, then enchanted by its mysterious power to hold me enraptured and transported for a full 13 minutes. Over the years, the Chaconne has come to occupy maybe the biggest and most important place of any piece of music in my life: it provides a meditative landscape for me to think through creative thoughts, it continues to be the piece I turn to to get myself back into playing shape after taking breaks away from the violin, and, several years ago, it was the only way that seemed to make sense to process the death of the same teacher who had taught it to me when I was young. Through my lifetime of loving the Chaconne came the idea that inspired Shifting Ground: Bach is connected to everything. Beyond his music's most important capacity to speak straight to the soul, Bach's influence ripples through time and transcends genre. The structures, harmonies, and counterpoint he mastered are present in just about every genre of music we listen to today, and certainly have lived in the consciousness of almost all classical composers and performers who came after him. Shifting Ground is a program whose titular word "ground" bears homage to Bach's era, the Baroque, in which a bass line (also called a ground bass) is repeated with embellishments and variations on top of it. This is the form that the Chaconne takes over the span of its 13 minutes: a constant cycling and recycling of the same bass line, on top of which Bach constructs a whole life. This program is also an excavation of music's roots, and an observation of their manifestation and development through time. It opens with Rafiq Bhatia's Descent, where the solo violin dangerously careens down the entire length of its register until it hits rock bottom. Kaija Saariaho, Paul Wiancko, and Salina Fisher all intentionally used Bach as a jumping off point for their works on this program. Nicola Matteis was Bach's contemporary, yet I feel as though his spiritual and almost ambient music could easily be written today. Angélica Negrón’s raucous and beautiful nightmare “The Violinist” is a narrated short story that provides a moment of respite and humor in the program, while Mario Davidovsky explodes Bach's world into outer space, creating chamber music between violin and synthesizer. In the final piece before the Chaconne, Matthew Burtner's Elegy ruminates on the impermanence and fragility of our natural surroundings, placing the violin over a field recording of Muir Glacier as it slowly melts due to climate change. And finally the Chaconne, a sort of extension of all that we have heard, and a final meditation on humanity itself."

Program:

RAFIQ BHATIA Descent (2021) [1.5 min]

J.S. BACH Allemande from Partita in D minor, BWV 1004 (1720) [4 min]

PAUL WIANCKO Allemande from X Suite for Solo Violin (2019) [3 min]

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ANGÉLICA NEGRÓN The Violinist for violin and electronics, story by Ana Fabrega (2023) [8.5 min]

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J.S. BACH Grave from Sonata in A minor, BWV 1003 (1720) [3.5 min]

NICOLA MATTEIS Alla Fantasia (c. 1700) [3.5 min]

KAIJA SAARIAHO Nocturne for solo violin (1994) [4.5 min]

SALINA FISHER Hikari for solo violin (2023) [6.5 min]

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MARIO DAVIDOVSKY Synchronisms No. 9 for violin and tape (1988) [9 min]

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MATTHEW BURTNER Elegy (Muir Glacier 1889-2009) for violin and glacier sonification (2017/2020) [4.5 min]

J.S. BACH Chaconne from Partita in D minor, BWV 1005 (1720) [12.5 min]

Tickets

  • Alexi Kenney - Shifting Ground

    From $25.00 to $40.00
    • $40.00
      +$1.00 service fee
    • $25.00
      +$0.63 service fee

Total

$0.00

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