A concert of new music: The NRO plays music mostly written in the past five years | SummitDaily.com

A concert of new music: The NRO plays music mostly written in the past five years

BRECKENRIDGE – The National Repertory Orchestra (NRO) performs a concert of new music Thursday, July 31, at Father Dyer United Methodist Church in Breckenridge.

The concert features music mostly written in the last five years, including Robert Singley’s “For Marie” and “Into October, Dancing,” Christopher Farley’s “Unheard Music” and George Crumb’s “The Voice of the Whale.”

Singley wrote his string quartet “For Marie” this June and July while living in Breckenridge.

“It displays the way these mountains make me feel, as compared to my Appalachians,” Singley said. “It is full of the sadness you feel when you are away from the people and places you love for a very long time. My music strives to be one thing, and that is realistic. That is all that is important to me in art and in life.”

The Duquesne University Contemporary Ensemble premiered Singley’s “Into October, Dancing” last fall. The piece begins with feelings of anger and despair, which change quickly to profound sadness.

Singley is originally from central Pennsylvania and studied composition with David Stock at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. He has written works for many types of ensembles, including two orchestra pieces. This summer, Singley is staying in Breckenridge while working for the NRO.

Farley’s “Unheard Music” is for piano, violin and cello. Farley’s trio explores his own concepts of form.

“The old forms of theme and variation, sonata, etc., are outdated and mean nothing in today’s society,” Farley said.

In effect, he builds his pieces on one idea per movement. His work repeats over and over with only slight changes in the material.

Originally from Curwensville, Pa., Farley studied at Lycoming College and at Duquesne with Stock.

The concert concludes with Crumb’s “The Voice of the Whale.” Written for piano, flute and cello, this piece is about the collision of places and time – and it is a measurement of time. It laments for the death of youth, aging, time passing and remembrance.

Robert Tuohy, assistant conductor for the NRO, conducts an ensemble of NRO musicians for this concert.

The free concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Donations of canned goods to benefit the Father Dyer food pantry are suggested. For information, call (970) 453-7684.

Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or by e-mail at knicoletti@summitdaily.com.

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