UC Davis alumnus Luciano Chessa (PhD 2004) recently conducted the Mannes Orchestra of the New School in a never-before-heard edition of a symphony written by a modern master composer Julius Eastman. Eastman died in 1990 in relative obscurity as he had spent his remaining years in intermittent periods of homelessness, with many of his belongings—including his scores—lost.
The University Chorus under the direction of Caleb Lewis is currently in rehearsal for “Una Navidad Latina/A Latin Christmas,” featuring Spanish and Latin American Christmas music from the church and the village. Photographer Justin Han attended a recent rehearsal and captured the Chorus developing the concert’s program. All photos by Justin Han, copyright UC Davis.
The Department of Music swings on certain evenings when the Jazz Bands of UC Davis rehearse for their upcoming Nov. 29 concert. Under the direction of Jacám Manricks, the Bands have been working on music by Aretha Franklin, Latin Jazz, Jazz Funk Fusion and a premiere a new suite by Manricks. Photographer Justin Han stopped by the Ann E. Pitzer Center for a rehearsal to capture the musicians working on the concert.
The Department of Music has become a hub for contemporary and new music. During its residency the music collective Ensemble Dal Niente performed the premiere of Erin Gee’s “Mouthpiece 32″ on Nov. 3. Photographer Justin Han stopped by the Ann E. Pitzer Center for a rehearsal the afternoon of the premiere to capture the musicians working on the new piece.
After a ten-year hiatus, the UC Davis Chamber Singers are being re-established this fall under the direction of Caleb Lewis, lecturer and director of choirs. The singers are currently in rehearsal for their first performance scheduled for Nov. 28 at 5 p.m. Photographer Justin Han stopped by a recent rehearsal to capture Lewis working with the singers.
UC Davis alum, Kristin Kirk, an undergraduate music composition major who graduated with Honors in 2017, is featured in an ad for the university’s Office of Educational Opportunity and Enrichment Services’ #FirstGenUCDavis campaign. The program spotlights students and alumni who are the first in their families to graduate from college.
A work by UC Davis music department chair and professor Laurie San Martin with words by Lucy Corin, professor of English, will have its world premiere Nov. 18. “Witches” will be performed by the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble and the vocal ensemble Volti Nov. 18 in Berkeley and Nov. 19 in San Francisco.
Keys to Transposition teaches a step-by-step, strategic approach built on key and starting from scales, arpeggios and common patterns. It has several “failsafes” to prevent students from going wrong, and each unit includes excerpts from the orchestral, solo and chamber repertoire, starting with passages with no accidentals and few leaps and gradually adding difficulty. Each standard key also includes at least one duet excerpt.
Experiencing Latin American Music draws on human experience as a point of departure for musical understanding. Students explore broad topics—identity, the body, religion, and more—and relate these to Latin American musics while refining their understanding of musical concepts and cultural-historical contexts.
Musicians representing UC Davis faculty, staff and students are participating in a summer chamber music program called CalCap which is being held at California State University, Sacramento. Pete Nowlen, director of UC Davis Concert Bands, is the director of CalCap which runs July 22 to August 3 in two one-week sessions
Among the musicians participating in the workshops are student Oscar Santamaria, bassoonist, who performs with the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra and Concert Band, and staff member Marjorie Phillips from environmental toxicology who is a flutist.
The Department of Music, UC Davis, announces lecturer Caleb Lewis to direct both the University Chorus and the Chamber Singers beginning fall quarter, 2018. Originally from Rome, Georgia, Lewis moved to Berkeley in 2017, where he worked as a church musician, music teacher, and performer. While in Berkeley, he also worked as assistant conductor of the San Francisco Bach Choir and sang as a regular baritone soloist and chorister with San Francisco Choral Artists.
“It will be an extraordinary journey!” said the ensemble’s director Matilda Hofman. “I believe the ‘St. John Passion’ has not been performed at UC Davis in decades, and the students are all so excited to be part of this great work of art. It is an exciting collaboration between the Early Music Ensemble, the UC Davis Baroque Ensemble as well as members of the Davis High School Baroque Ensemble.”
The UC Davis Green Big Band will perform a jazz rendition of the operetta song “Softly as in a Morning Sunrise” by Sigmund Romberg and Oscar Hammerstein II from the 1928 operetta “The New Moon” in a modern arrangement by Manricks. Also on the list are “Jazz Police” by Gordon Goodwin, written around 2003, and “Groove Merchant” by Jerome Richardson, written in the late 1960s and arranged by Thad Jones.
Pianist Richard Glazier, an expert in the music of George Gerswhin (and his era) who has performed Rhapsody in Blue nationally and internationally, will appear with the Concert Bands of UC Davis on Friday, June 1, for a performance of a band-and-piano version of Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” at 7 p.m. in the Mondavi Center, under the direction of faculty member Pete Nowlen.
Rimsky-Korsakov is widely considered to have been a master of orchestration, and “Scheherezade” contains what many regard to be the most striking and vivid musical depiction of a storm at sea in all of the orchestral repertoire.
This year’s “Arts and Humanities Graduate Exhibition at UC Davis” showcases the work and research of graduate students across seven disciplines — art studio, design, art history, music, theatre, creative writing and French — at the Manetti Shrem Museum.
Music’s Sam Clark-McHale, Jonathan Favero, Ryan Suleiman and Sarah Wald will be featured in this interdisciplinary show.