Tuesday Night New Music: Johnson, Carroll, Wiese, Wei, Li, Clarke, & Ha

NEC: Jordan Hall | Directions

290 Huntington Ave.
Boston, MA
United States

Hear the newest works from the next generation of composers, performed by their peers.

Tuesday Night New Music was founded in the early 90s by Lee Hyla. It is a student-run, faculty-supervised concert series that offers the opportunity to hear music by the next generation of composers: current New England Conservatory composition students.

This year the series is directed by Brooks Clarke, under the supervision of composition chair Michael Gandolfi

This performance is open to in-person audiences, and can also be viewed below via livestream.

View livestream from Jordan Hall:

  1. Owen Johnson | Wool (2020)

    The name Wool comes from the sound of the horn itself. It can be soft, mellow, and subdued—yet at the same time abrasive. Exploring the mid-low range of the horn, Wool aims to create a melancholy, calling sound.                            
    – Owen Johnson

    • Sophie Steger, French horn
  2. Marie Carroll | Untitled (2021)

    • Delfina Cheb Terrab, voice
    • Griffiin Woodard, bass clarinet
    • Caleb Duval, double bass
    • Marie Carroll, koto
  3. Ian Wiese | Four Short Pieces for Piano (2021)

    Tremolos Rewrite
    Ascending and Descending

    Four Short Pieces for Piano is both an homage to and modeled after the 1961 Four Short Pieces by my studio teacher, John Heiss. I had the idea to follow his pieces after I had taken the time to orchestrate his 1961 and 2014 anthologies for wind quintet as a gift to him. The first movement, "Inversions," is based on inverting the same set of intervals that appear repeatedly (based on a very short improvisation that I did at the piano). It is also the shortest and most compact of the four, clocking in at only six measures. The second, "Tremolo Rewrite," as the title suggests, is a rewritten version of the tremolos concept that I had for the second movement; the first version of this piece was meandering and dull, so I cannibalized it and created this rewrite. The movement utilizes roughly the same pitch collection written as a vertical (the chords that tremolo) and a horizontal (the descending line that emerges from the chords). The third, "Ascending and Descending," mirrors the first piece in the manner of inverting the same intervals over each other, however, in this case, the intervals of a fourth and a fifth are mapped out between the white and black keys of the piano, staying mostly exclusively to one set of keys or the other. The last movement, "Chorale," imitates the chorale that forms the last of the Heiss 1961 pieces. 

    – Ian Wiese

    • Qi Liang, piano
  4. An-Ni Wei | The Moments (2021)

    When looking back at the past while breathing in the last minutes of life, what would be the best, the worst, or the most cherished moments for you?
            The story of the piece talks about a dying elder who looks back to his whole life, counting each part of his life. The pictures come to his mind, one after another when he lay on the hospital bed. What follows in sequences was the happiest moment when his Mom and Dad, who passed away long ago, took him to the playground. It was the very first moment that he met his wife. It was the first moment that took his newborn girl from the doctor, he knew that as a father, he had to take responsibility now. It was the moment that the doctor announced he got cancer, and there had been no more treatment to take. And finally, he has no strength to talk and even open his eyes.
            People say the last sense you lose before death is hearing. In a trance, he listened to the singing from his grandchild. That was a song that his Mom and Dad taught him when he was a little boy. At that moment, he realized that he had done all the things he should do in life and had no regrets.
            Lives, stories, and memories go on and on, and we are only a starlike dot, dotting on the timeline of history.

    – An-Ni Wei

    • Ching-Wen Chen, clarinet
    • Wentao Xiao, trumpet
    • Yu-Shin Liou, piano
  5. Yunqi Li | A firm heart (2021)

    A firm heart was composed during the summer. The main idea of this piece is to show my respect to guardians (people who help keep the world safe and healthy). When I composed, there are two main images in my mind. One is the "war" scene which indicates the guardians fighting with the dark. The other is the "love scene" which shows the hopes of the guardians. In this piece, I use the Chinese harmony and a Chinese folk song "太阳出来" (When the sun comes, the sky turns red) as the center to present my opinion. Meanwhile, I also treat the piano as Guzheng and Chinese percussions such as Gu and Bo to create the bells of the "war". The end of my piece indicates victory and happiness.                                                             
     – Yunqi Li

    • Grace Yu, piano
  6. Brooks Clarke | Psalm 135:17 (2021)

    “…they have ears, but they hear not; neither is there any breath in their mouths.”

    • Stuart Ryerse, piano
    • Lemuel Marc, trumpet
  7. Changjin Ha | Sin and Punishment: Vigilante (2021)

    A young, lonely soul screams. He now has all the power to protect his beloved ones, but none is left to protect.  An assassin, who agonizes between being a Christian and a human butcher, he finds himself in this young soul. As he lets out a painful cry, he prays:

     삶을 보시고젊은이가 깨달은 바가 있으시길.

     탓이오 탓이오  ….”

    My sinful journey of mortality, let it serve as enlightenment for the young man.

    Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxi…..

    • Subee Kim, flute
    • Soyeon Park, clarinet
    • Justin Park, trumpet
    • Wanjoong Kim, piano
    • Claire Byeol Kim and Bella Hyeonseo Jung, violin
    • Yuri Ahn and Eugene Kim, cello
    • Haram Choi, voice
    • Changjin Ha, conductor