Fulcrum Point New Music Project's Founder and Artistic Director Stephen Burns discusses the non-for-profit company…
FULCRUM POINT NEW MUSIC PROJECT CELEBRATES 15TH ANNIVERSARY IN 2013
Marking its 15th Anniversary this year, Chicago’s Fulcrum Point New Music Project has grown into a critically acclaimed ensemble performing adventurous contemporary classical music programs in a variety of Chicago area venues. In 2013, Fulcrum Point continues this tradition with a wide ranging season including a performance with 100-member orchestra of the John Corigliano film score, “Altered States,” accompanying the film screening, April 23, in honor of the composer’s 75th birthday year, along with presenting a free Concert for Peace in the Pritzker Pavillion at Millennium Park with special guest artists, sarod virtuoso Soumik Datta and the Chicago Children’s Choir, September 11.
“Our 15th season features the complete spectrum of new art music from emerging young composers, international jazz and contemporary artists, the best of film sound tracks, and electro-acoustic music with contemporary dance. Celebrating our partnerships with the City of Chicago, The Poetry Foundation, The Merit Music School, Thodos Dance Chicago and The Peace School, our 2013 season is brimming with collaborations, multi-media events, and educational programs,” said Stephen Burns, Founder & Artistic Director of Fulcrum Point New Music Project.
Expanding on its popular Movie Music programs, featuring live orchestration of film scene scores, Fulcrum Point is proud to present, with 100-member orchestra, the complete film score and screening of Ken Russell’s 1980 science fiction classic,“Altered States,” scored by modern master John Corigliano as part of a special citywide 75th birthday celebration for the composer. Corigliano, who was nominated for a Best Music, Original Score Academy Award™ for his work on “Altered States,” is expected to be in attendance for this special one-night-only event at the Harris Theatre for Music and Dance, 205 E. Randolph Street, Tuesday, April 23, at 7 pm. John Corigliano, who officially turns 75 on February 16, 2013, is one of America’s most widely acclaimed composers. Among his many distinctions are the Pulitzer Prize in Music, awarded in 2001 for his Symphony No. 2; the Academy Award for his score to the 1999 film “The Red Violin,” four Grammy™ awards (including three for Best Contemporary Composition) and the Grawemeyer Award for his Symphony No. 1. Among his notable works are seven Concerti, three Symphonies, and his 1991 opera The Ghosts of Versailles (commissioned by The Metropolitan Opera). The Fulcrum Point performance is the centerpiece of a citywide celebration of Corigliano’s work, which also includes programming by Chicago Chamber Musicians and PianoForte. This concert is presented in part thanks to the National Endowment for the Arts, the Elizabeth Cheney Foundation and Columbia College Chicago.
Fulcrum Point continues its annual Concert for Peace programming themed around international music written about and/or for peace, this year at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park, Wednesday, September 11 at 6:30 p.m. As part of an international exchange collaboration, the works on this program will showcase compositions by South Asian composers, including the World Premiere of “Shanti,” a commission by Indian-born, Chicago-based percussionist Kalyan Pathak for Fulcrum Point with special guests, young pop British sarod artist Soumik Datta and the Chicago Children’s Choir. Pathak’s work will conclude the program and invite the audience to participate utilizing dozens of tuned gongs positioned throughout the Pavilion. A sampling of work by acclaimed contemporary Indian composer Param Vir will also be on the program, providing a “sneak preview” of a Vir commission Fulcrum Point will debut in 2014, blending Indian and contemporary classical music. The composer will be in Chicago working with Datta and other Birmingham-based artists for ten days in September as part of a MacArthur Foundation International Connections grant, also incorporating public workshops.
The ‘Altered States’ film score presentation and Concert for Peace are but two of Fulcrum Point’s programs in 2013. Following, in chronological order, is the season to date, including the company’s important outreach activities:
- · Fulcrum Point Goes Ivy League: Princeton is the second annual concert in a three-year series celebrating music and poetry from artists with affiliations to Ivy League universities. The free concert takes place at the Poetry Foundation, 61 West Superior Street, Wednesday, February 27, at 7 p.m. and showcases the works of four composers and poets with ties to Princeton University: Steven Mackey, Paul Lansky, Andy Akiho, and Andrea Mazzariello, and poetry by Paul Muldoon, Susan Wheeler, Michael Dickman, and this year’s Pulitzer Prize™ winner, Tracy K. Smith.
- · Afro-Beats! Family Concert, a festive and interactive performance designed for the whole family, will be presented in a special encore engagement at the Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th Street, Saturday, March 23, at 2 p.m. As with its popular 2012 debut concert, Fulcrum Point will explore the rich rhythms, sounds and images of West Africa in this 75-minute multimedia performance, featuring works by Fela Kuti, Thelonious Monk, Pacquito d’Rivera, Steve Reich, and traditional music from Mandingo and African-American cultures. Children of all ages will be invited to participate in drumming circles, traditional African dances, and soulful songs in what is certain to be a spirited program! This concert is part of the Logan Center Family Series.
- · A Music & Dance retrospective celebrating the multi-year collaboration with Thodos Dance Chicago,Saturday, Oct. 5, at 7 p.m. This event will feature a selection of encore presentations of works by Melissa Thodos Dance in collaboration with Fulcrum Point, including the World Premiere of choreography to Steve Reich’s Nagoya Marimbas.
- · Plus, throughout the year, Fulcrum Point Discoveries presents new music by young and emerging American composers in a free public setting at the Merit Music School. This series gives underserved American composers the opportunity to hear their music interpreted by Chicago’s best musicians and to explore their work in dialogue with a community of performers, listeners, and other composers. Fulcrum Point Discoveries programs are scheduled for May 18, June 24, July 22, August 12, and Dec. 16.
Ticket prices for each program vary by venue; a new Fulcrum Point Subscribers’ Discount pass offers a pair of general admission tickets to any three ticketed events for only $100. Subscriptions are available only on the Fulcrum Point website, www.fulcrumpoint.org. To purchase single tickets or for more information on all 2013 concert programs, please visit www.fulcrumpoint.org or call (312) 726-3846.
About Fulcrum Point
Since its formation by trumpet virtuoso and conductor Stephen Burns in 1998 under the auspices of Performing Arts Chicago, the mission of Fulcrum Point New Music Project has been to champion new classical music and highlight contemporary composers who are inspired and influenced by popular culture, including literature, film, dance, folk, rock, jazz, blues, Latin and world music. Through multi-disciplinary concert performances and educational programs, the 25-member Fulcrum Point ensemble seeks to encourage audiences to make cross-cultural connections between new music, art, technology and literature, gaining greater insight into today’s diverse world. Burns, himself, has been acclaimed on four continents for his widely varied performances encompassing recitals, orchestral appearances, chamber ensemble engagements, and innovative multi-media presentations involving video, dance theatre and sculpture. For more information on Fulcrum Point and its programs visit www.fulcrumpoint.org.
Since 2007, Fulcrum Point New Music Project has proudly offered “Sound Tracks” and “Sound Tracks PLUS,” in-school educational outreach programs serving students of the Chicago Public Schools that have little or no music education. “Sound Tracks” is designed to introduce 4th and 5th graders to global cultures through world music and new music, geography, arts and architecture. Each school receives six workshops composed of lectures, video presentations and live performances. Not just a music appreciation program, “Sound Tracks” also provides ideas and tools for the teachers to enhance their schools’ existing social studies programs. “Sound Tracks PLUS” is an advanced, 100% participatory program for the 5th and 6th graders learning to make music using drums, keyboard percussion, traditional dance and song. The workshops culminate with a performance by the students with Fulcrum Point musicians.
Fulcrum Point New Music Project’s year round programs are supported in part by: The National Endowment for the Arts, MacArthur Foundation International Connections Fund, The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, Columbia College Chicago, The Polk Brothers Foundation, The Irving Harris Foundation, The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, The Zuckerman Family Foundation, The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, Inc., Elizabeth Cheney Foundation, the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Heitman, LLC., The Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, JNL Graphic Design, The Anne & Burton B. Kaplan Fund of The Mayer & Morris Kaplan Family Foundation, a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events, The Neisser Family Fund, The Daniel and Genevieve Ratner Foundation, The STEP Foundation, Farney R. Wurlitzer Foundation and The Saints. For more information please visit www.fulcrumpoint.org.