The Portland Chamber Music Festival (PCMF) celebrates its seventeenth season Thursday, August 12 to Saturday, August 21 with five concerts at the Abromson Center on USM’s Portland campus. The festival has chosen USM Assistant Professor of Music Dan Sonenberg as the featured contemporary composer for its opening night concert at 8 p.m., Thursday, August 12.
Sonenberg’s piece, Whistlesparks for Flute and Harp, will be performed by two performers from New York City— harpist Bridget Kibbey, who performs with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center; and flutist Elizabeth Mann, principal flutist of the Orchestra of St. Luke’s. The composer will be introducing his piece at the concert and will be working with the performers in the days preceding the performance. Other works on the evening’s program include Ravel’s Introduction and Allegro for Harp and Ensemble, and the Schumann Piano Quartet.
PCMF Executive Director and Artistic Co-Director Jennifer Elowitch explains, “We chose Whistlesparks because of its colorful instrumentation, great energy, and engaging style. We also wanted to make a connection with the USM School of Music because we recognize the high-level music making going on there. Though we often bring in performers from major ensembles around the country, we also value what’s going on locally.”
Dan Sonenberg adds, “My composition, Whistlesparks, began life as a composition for student performers, but ended up rather impossibly too difficult! It is my attempt to com...