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January Salon previews

Amy Denio

“I participate in Immersion Composition Society, a spontaneous society started in California I believe; now there are 'cells' all over the world.

Usually once a month, our group of composers choose a common day on which to compose as much as possible individually during the course of one day with the objective of composing 20 pieces. The objective is to generate ideas, not to attain perfection. We then meet at the end of the day, and share the results. It's extremely interesting and inspiring!

I'll present two of my 'instant' songs, and talk about the compositional ideas and processes I've developed while participating in this crazy monthly series.”

Keith Eisenbrey

“The Tambourine Q[x]tet is not much more than it's title suggests: an idea that arose during a conversation about something else, followed in a synaptic instant by the realization that we could put it together quite easily. I will be joined by my fellows of Banned Rehearsal, an improvisation workshop/open-sound-laboratory/ensemble that has been working together since June of 1984: Karen Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Aaron Keyt, and Neal Kosály-Meyer.”

Patrick O'Keefe

“I've been composing for only a few years—since retiring from a non-musical tech field. My style is still in flux, but is primarily tonal/modal, often using Eastern European folk modes (e.g, the Hungarian minor mode, double harmonic mode, etc.), and occasionally using Balkan dance rhythms.

My Five Bagatelles for Piano, the first 3 of which are being presented at the Salon, are not typical of my compositions. They are mostly tonal but avoid traditional tonal harmonies. Instead, they use techniques like planing augmented triads (in #1), quartal chords (in #2), etc. #3 reverses this and uses traditional harmonies but has an ambiguous tonal center. #4 & #5, (not yet ready for presentation) use non-standard harmonies.”

Ivan Arteaga


The sea like a vast silvered mirror
reflects the sky like a sheet of zinc;
distant flocks of birds make stains
on the burnished pale grey background.

The sun, like a round, opaque window
with an invalid's steps climbs to the zenith;
the sea wind relaxes in the shade
using its black trumpet as a pillow.

The waves that move their leaden bellies
seem to moan beneath the pier.
Sitting on a cable, smoking his pipe,
is a sailor thinking of the beaches
of a vague, distant, misty land.

This sea-dog is old. The fiery beams
of Brazilian sun have tanned his face;
the wild typhoons of the China sea
have seen him drinking his bottle of gin.

The iodine and saltpetre foam
long has known his ruddy nose,
his curly hair, athletic biceps,
his canvas cap, his blouse of drill.

Surrounded by tobacco smoke
the old man sees the far off misty land
for which one hot and golden evening
his brig set out with all sails set ...

The siesta of the tropics. The sea-dog sleeps.
Now the shades of grey enfold him.
It is as if an enormous soft charcoal
rubbed out the lines of the horizon's arc.

The siesta of the tropics. The old cicada
tries out his senile, raucous guitar
and the cricket strikes up a monotonous solo
on the single string of his violin.

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