Monday, June 15, 2009

Alvin Singleton: Imani Winds 'did a terrific job' Premiering 'Through It All'

[Alvin Singleton, third person from right, with Imani Winds]

AfriClassical recently enjoyed a wide-ranging interview with composer Alvin Singleton (b. 1940). The first part was posted June 12, 2009, “Orchestra of the League of Composers Debuts With 'adventurous music', Alvin Singleton Says”.
We also asked Alvin about the work he was commissioned to write for the pioneering wind quintet comprised of musicians of color, the Imani Winds. He replied: “It was premiered last February at Spivey Hall near Atlanta, and since then they've played it at least four or five times.” “They had a big project commissioning for their 10th Anniversary and I was the first, I think, to be commissioned.” “Oh, they did a terrific job.” “It's a piece called Through It All.” “And they said it was a fitting title because of what they went through to get where they are.” “They have really done a lot for that medium, because when they do concerts it's really interesting. They don't do just that standard wind literature, they arrange things and then they write things themselves.” “There is an educational component every time they do a concert at a university. They're there about three or four days in residence doing workshops and discussing literature, and they teach individually.”

“Their programs are fantastic because they announce pieces from the stage. Each one in turn speaks.” “I was at the premiere of course, but I happened to be in Brooklyn when they played it here at the New York Public Library, the Main Branch in Brooklyn. They have a new auditorium there, and I went to that concert.” “One of the players said 'The next piece is by someone who was born in Brooklyn.” “And then somebody else said 'He studied here as a student.' “And then somebody else said, 'And he's right here in the audience.' Somebody else said 'His name is Alvin Singleton.' The crowd was just a local crowd. They just loved that. I liked it too, I had no idea it was coming like that! I was thrilled!”
“Imani Winds successfully premiered Alvin Singleton's beautiful and captivating new work: THROUGH IT ALL, at Spivey Hall in Morrow, Georgia on February 8th, 2008. It was the first work to be premiered in the LCP!” “This commission was made possible through ASCAP and Spivey Hall at Clayton State University.” “IMANI WINDS’ Legacy Commissioning Project (LCP) commemorates the ensemble’s tenth anniversary through the commissioning of several established and emerging composers of color.”

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