← View All Articles

Colour of Music Festival returns next weekend

Octet readies for NYC debut

The Colour of Music Festival will return to Mount Pleasant at I’On Village Chapel, Saturday, May 21, 2022, at 7:30 p.m. for a special performance showcasing leading Black classical artists.

German-born violinist Anyango Yarbo-Davenport will be featured as part of an evening of duos and quartets in I’On’s picturesque village community east of the Cooper. The evening will include a duo for violin and viola by John Halvorsen, Zoltán Kodály’s Duo for Violin and Cello Op. 7 and works by two black composers―Valerie Coleman’s Umoja for String Quartet and Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson’s String Quartet No. I “Calvary,"―to honor the many black communities surrounded by the Mount Pleasant and Awendaw communities. Since 2013, the Colour of Music Festival offers a musical kaleidoscope highlighting the impact and historical significance of Black classical composers and performers on American and world culture. The Colour of Music Festival began with performances at various venues throughout historic Charleston and has grown to debut at leading collegiate venues and performance halls across the U.S. This summer, it adds New York to its list of stops when the Colour of Music Festival Octet debuts at Carnegie Hall. “Dating back to 2014, the Colour of Music Festival was among several music entities that inaugurated the I’ON Village Concert Series. I am elated to produce what I hope will be many more events in partnership with the I’ON Trust whose mission is to bring the I’ON Village and surrounding communities together through music,” said Lee Pringle, Colour of Music Festival founder, artistic director, and community resident. I’On Chapel Mount Pleasant | Colour of Music Festival Quartet
  • Saturday, May 21, 2022, 7:30 p.m.
  • 352 North Shelmore Blvd, Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
  • Tickets: $35 adult; $25 senior; $15 student (general admission seating)
    • Online: www.colourofmusic.org
    • by phone 888.512.9835 Monday-Saturday 9 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday 9 a.m.-8 p.m. ET
PLEASE NOTE COVID-19 PATRON ADVISORY: Mask are recommended. If not in the possession of one, patrons will be issued KN95 mask to be worn throughout the performance. The Colour of Music Festival gratefully acknowledges the support of the National Endowment for the Arts.

About the Colour of Music Festival

Based in Charleston, South Carolina and organized in 2013, the Colour of Music Festival, Inc. presents a diverse classical repertoire of baroque, classical and 20th century music at the highest of musical standards to diverse audiences throughout the Lowcountry, regionally, and nationally. The festival has also presented performances in Washington; Atlanta; Houston; Nashville; Richmond; Pittsburgh; Sacramento, California; and Tulsa, Oklahoma. www.colourofmusic.org
Main image by PIRO4D from Pixabay

Submitted material

SEPF seeking applicants for Year 20

Pre-college pianists wanted for Arthur Fraser International Piano Competition

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Tuesday, March 15, 2022 Southeastern Piano Festival promo graphic

This summer, the Southeastern Piano Festival is celebrating 20 years of presenting the best of emerging and world-renowned piano talent to audiences in the Southeast and beyond from June 12-19.

As always, the week-long festival culminates with the Arthur Fraser International Piano Competition, where festival participants compete for over $10,000 in prizes and the opportunity to perform a complete concerto with the South Carolina Philharmonic. Applications are now open! Full guidelines and eligibility are available on the SEPF website. Festival highlights include masterclasses with guest artists, public performances for all participants, and daily lessons with Southeastern Piano Festival faculty. All participants receive full or partial scholarships to attend the festival. A number of events during the festival will take place on The Concert Truck, a mobile concert stage that was the conceived by Nicholas Luby and Susan Zhang. They took The Concert Truck "all over the country" this past year, and their endeavor has brought music to dozens of locations during the pandemic that otherwise would not have had access to live music.  They have given over 100 concerts in the past year and are on the roster of Opus 3 Artists.

Jason Rapp

SCAC Fellow to world premiere two-piano concerto on Feb. 28

black and white piano keyboard

The world premiere of Meira Warshauer’s complete Ocean Calling trilogy of works for two pianos will be presented live and streamed on Monday, Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m. at Freeman Recital Hall of the University of South Carolina School of Music (813 Assembly St., Columbia).

Performers will be UofSC faculty member Phillip Bush and guest artist Elizabeth Loparits, presenting Ocean Calling I: Waves and Currents, Ocean Calling II: From the Depths and Ocean Calling III: The Giant Blue. In an artist statement, Warshauer said,

“Nature has long been an inspiration for composers, and indeed for all artists. What’s different now, and my drive for composing the symphony Living Breathing Earth, Ocean Calling, Ahavah (Love) and other related works, is that we can no longer take this living planet for granted.”

“This series of compositions for two pianos is dedicated to the ocean. Called our ‘life-support’ system, the ocean covers 72% of the planet’s surface and provides half the oxygen we breathe and many other resources, while regulating our climate with currents traversing thousands of miles. As I learn of large-scale contaminations, over-fishing, acidification, death of coral reefs and rising temperatures linked to the urgent climate crisis, I fear we take the ocean’s gifts for granted, unaware that our survival is linked to the ocean’s health. I hope the Ocean Calling series will help us to renew our connection with this vital life source and its vast, mysterious realms, and that we will hear the call from the sea that we are part of one indivisible whole.”

Warshauer is a two-time SCAC Fellow in music composition, receiving awards in 1994 and 2006.

Jason Rapp

Greenville Symphony streams education concert

Pssst. Looking for something to do?

The Greenville Symphony recently made its 2021 education concert available to all online. Support by the SCAC and Metropolitan Arts Council made it all possible! “Due to the pandemic, public school students were not able to attend our annual education concerts in person this year,” Music Director and Conductor Edvard Tchivzhel said. “Thanks to the generosity of the Metropolitan Arts Council and the South Carolina Arts Commission we were able to bring the concert experience to them. We couldn’t have done it without our dedicated musicians and education sponsors.”

Jason Rapp

S.C. Philharmonic’s Nakahara receives honor

Stephen G. Morrison Visionary Award goes to conductor

[caption id="attachment_47491" align="aligncenter" width="949"]Nakahara, wearing a neon yellow Columbia Fireflies jersey, conducts the orchestra at the Fireflies' ballpark at dusk. Nakahara and South Carolina Philharmonic musicians perform to a sold-out concert at the Columbia Fireflies' Segra Park July 3, 2021. Provided photo.[/caption]

One Columbia for Arts and Culture announced Morihiko Nakahara, music director and conductor of the South Carolina Philharmonic, as the recipient of the 2021 Stephen G. Morrison Visionary Award.

The Stephen G. Morrison Visionary Award is an annual recognition of a Columbian who reflects many of the values and qualities of those generously given by One Columbia’s former leader in support of the growth and vitality of his City of Columbia. Morrison, who passed away in 2013, co-chaired the One Columbia Arts and Culture Board of Directors for three years.. A native of Kagoshima, Japan, Nakahara holds degrees from Andrews University and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Known for his charismatic presence on and off the podium, innovative and audience-friendly programming skills, and thoughtful interpretations of both standard and contemporary repertoire, Nakahara was featured in the League of American Orchestra’s prestigious Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview in March 2005. Equally at home in a wide variety of musical styles and concert formats, Nakahara has collaborated with Chris Botti, Béla Fleck & the Flecktones, Edgar Meyer, Brandi Carlile, Pink Martini and Sergio Mendes to name a few. The 2021-2022 season marks Morihiko Nakahara’s 14th season as Music Director of the South Carolina Philharmonic, and he also serves as Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and recently concluded a 17 year tenure as the Resident Conductor with the Spokane Symphony Orchestra. “I am incredibly honored and humbled to receive this award, on behalf of the entire team of musicians, administrative staff, board members, tech crew, and our loyal audience members near and far,” said Morihiko Nakahara. “The Covid-19 pandemic taught us to be patient and nimble, but the level of trust that our orchestra's stakeholders and constituents have for each other and the passion with which they embody their roles have allowed us to be bold and ambitious during this time. This honor is especially meaningful for me on a personal level, because in the few years I knew and interacted with Steve Morrison, I was always inspired and energized by his tireless advocacy for the arts in Columbia and for equal access to arts education and enrichment in every community. Steve's vision is our mission, and I am blessed to continue working in Columbia's vibrant arts community for all people.” The recipient of the Steve Morrison Visionary Award honors the best combination of vision and leadership, applied to arts and history and the entire cultural foundation of the City, and the value they bring to Columbia. “Over the 14 years that Morihiko Nakahara has shared his pioneering vision as music director and conductor for the South Carolina Philharmonic, he has served as an ambassador for culture and music, as well as advocate for the growth of our city’s fine arts and humanities environment,” said Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin. “Morihiko truly embodies the traits recognized by The Stephen G. Morrison Visionary Award, through his commitment to furthering the artistic vitality of Columbia.” An event is being organized to present Mr. Nakahara with the award and is expected to be held in mid-January 2022.

Jason Rapp

Commemorate Sept. 11 attacks today with SCAC Fellow

Composer Meira Warshauer's work commemorating the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorism attacks airs at 11 a.m. today on South Carolina Public Radio.

Warshauer is a 1994 and 2006 composition fellow for the South Carolina Arts Commission. She wrote In Memoriam (September 11, 2001) in response to the horrific day. The four-minute work airs on the "Sonatas & Soundscapes" show. From her website:

I wrote these sketches during the days of watching the horror of the attacks of September 11: the collapse of the World Trade Center, the attack on the Pentagon, the plane crash in Pennsylvania.

I didn’t have a piece in mind, or consciously set out to write one. But the sketches seemed to belong together, afterwards, and to fit the solo cello. It is my way of holding each other in our loss.

Find your local S.C. Public Radio affiliate or stream here.
Image by David Mark from Pixabay

Jason Rapp

Turn on tha radio, nah… really, turn it on

#SCartists gets national airtime July 22


Movements 2, 3 and 4 from Meira Warshauer's Symphony No. 1: Living Breathing Earth will be the last piece on the 2nd hour of the Wednesday, July 22 edition of Minnesota Public Radio/American Public Media's Performance Today program.

Living Breathing Earth album coverThe second hour of "PT" is broadcast from 10-11 a.m. on South Carolina Public Radio news and music stations. It will be re-broadcast on their weekend edition, and available on the show's website for 30 days. The performance will be the Feb. 3, 2007 world premiere by The Western Piedmont Symphony; John Gordon Ross, conductor, at First Baptist Church in Hickory, North Carolina. The movements Tahuayo River at Night, Wings in Flight and Living, Breathing Earth will be aired. Warshauer writes, "The title Living, Breathing Earth came to me in contemplating the image of the rainforests as lungs of the earth. I felt our planet, alive with all variety of creatures and plants living in symbiosis with each other, breathing in and out, and the planet as a whole, pulsing with breath. I also contemplated the earth rotating through space, a spinning orb of blue and green, at just the right distance from the sun to support life, and our protective blanket of air, the atmosphere of the earth, providing the medium for our breath. Since the 2007 premiere, Climate Change has markedly worsened, with the balance of Earth’s “breath” more untenable. In this symphony, I honor the planet which sustains us, with the prayer that we will change our course of destruction and choose life." Read her complete notes here. The piece was recorded for Navona Records by Petr Vronsky conducting The Moravian Philharmonic for the release Living Breathing Earth (NV5842). Warshauer received music composition fellowships from the South Carolina Arts Commission in 1994 and 2006. Read more about the Columbia-based composer on her website.

Jason Rapp

S.C. Phil to party like it’s 2009

Saturday concert to feature pair of 2009 SCAC fellows


A pair of 2009 South Carolina Arts Commission music fellows will have prominent roles in the South Carolina Philharmonic's next concert this Saturday night in Columbia. The orchestra is continuing its year-long celebration of 250 years of Beethoven with his first piano concerto. Out front on the Steinway will be Phillip Bush: music professor at the University of South Carolina, frequent presenter at the Southeastern Piano Festival, well-traveled and highly regarded concert pianist, recording artist and—oh by the way—the S.C. Arts Commission's 2009 music performance fellowship recipient. The Peabody alum has taken the stage across the U.S. and Japan, where he performed some 25 concerts over a 10-year period. His repertoire includes works from the 16th century to the 21st, as he is a devoted advocate for contemporary music. And that is where John Fitz Rogers comes in. He also received an S.C. Arts Commission fellowship in 2009, his for music composition. To start the concert, the orchestra will reprise his The Passing Sun, a work commissioned by the Phil to celebrate its 50th season in 2014/2015. It is an orchestral piece, but Fitz Rogers has composed for works featuring bassoon, guitar, piano, saxophone, and vocal soloists (with orchestras, including chamber ensembles). He holds degrees from Cornell, Yale, and Oberlin and is currently professor of composition at the UofSC, where he founded and, for a time, directed the widely acclaimed Southern Exposure New Music Series. His works have been recorded and released by multiple labels. The concert is Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at the Koger Center for the Arts (1051 Greene St., Columbia). $16-$50. Click here to learn more.
Learn more about South Carolina Arts Commission fellowship recipients here.  

Jason Rapp

Rock Hill Symphony expands hometown as ‘cultural asset’

A new story from WFAE 90.7 FM gave a great look yesterday at the role "South Carolina's newest orchestra" is playing in expanding the cultural offerings of Rock Hill (which boasts one of the charter South Carolina Cultural Districts).  According to the story: "as the city carves a more distinct identity – i.e., as something other than a suburb of Charlotte – the push to expand Rock Hill’s musical culture scene is a major component." The orchestra started in 2018 after its founders realized Rock Hill was the largest South Carolina city without an orchestra. The story goes on to detail the orchestra's quick growth to a larger concert space and its hopes for a home of its own. Click here to read more on the station's website.

Warshauer symphony receives honors

Meira Warshauer's Symphony No. 1: Living Breathing Earth was awarded 3rd place in the 2018/2019 American Prize Competition's orchestra music division. [caption id="attachment_40667" align="alignright" width="250"]Composer Meira Warshauer holding musical score Composer Meira Warshauer[/caption] The work consists of four movements, Call of the Cicadas, Tahuayo River at Night, Wings in Flight and Living, Breathing Earth. Read more about the award here. The composer writes, “The title Living, Breathing Earth came to me in contemplating the image of the rainforests as lungs of the earth. I felt our planet, alive with all variety of creatures and plants living in symbiosis with each other, breathing in and out, and the planet as a whole, pulsing with breath. I also contemplated the earth rotating through space, a spinning orb of blue and green, at just the right distance from the sun to support life, and our protective blanket of air, the atmosphere of the earth, providing the medium for our breath.” She added, “I am grateful for time spent as a Hambidge Fellow at The Hambidge Center, Rabun Gap, Georgia, from fall 2005 to spring 2006, where I began and continued this composition.” The work was also supported by unrestricted funds from the South Carolina Arts Commission’s 2006 Fellowship in Music Composition. It was commissioned by Western Piedmont (NC) Symphony, South Carolina Philharmonic, and Dayton (OH) Philharmonic Orchestra, and premiered by each orchestra in spring 2007. It’s published by Keiser Southern Music and was released on the Navona CD label (NV5842). Hear Warshauer’s recent interview about the symphony with South Carolina Public Radio’s Bradley Fuller here and a profile by Aileen LeBlanc for PRI’s “Living on Earth” here.

Submitted material