- What they say about Angel
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What they say about Angel
Invigorating… Gil-Ordóñez led a vital renditionAlex RossThe New Yorker (April 2017)
(…) one of the country’s most innovative music groups – the Post-Classical Ensemble (…)Philip KennicottThe Washington Post (February 2015)
Charismatic PCE Music Director Angel Gil-Ordóñez led a taut, unforgettable reading.Brett CampbellMusical America (March 2011)
Even when I do find time to listen to the radio these days, I rarely encounter a program that gives me the same sense of excitement and discovery that I felt as a child. But a few weeks ago I did, while listening to an Internet show called PostClassical, which features concert performances by the Post-Classical Ensemble, an innovative group of musicians now in residence at Washington’s National Cathedral. Led by the historian and writer Joseph Horowitz and the conductor Angel Gil-Ordoñez, the ensemble puts on concerts that are far from typical and often experimental, with the aim of contextualizing a composer or a piece of music with verse, theater, film, or dance. Every two months, Horowitz and Gil-Ordoñez join radio host Bill McGlaughlin (the former host of the aforementioned Saint Paul Sunday Morning) in the studio, to discuss their concerts in depth.
One of D.C.’s most unconventional and adventurous musical ensembles is set to transform the iconic Washington National Cathedral into a cutting-edge venue for the city’s vibrant music scene. PostClassical Ensemble, named the new ensemble-in-residence at the cathedral, is bringing an exciting, innovative inaugural season of music to Washingtonians. Expect unusual, utterly surprising performances from this self-described “experimental orchestral laboratory” that will shake up your view of both classical music and the cathedral itself.
A partir de este otoño, el PostClassical Ensemble se ha convertido en Ensemble-Residence en la Catedral Nacional de Washington y será allí donde, el día 7 de diciembre, el día que los norteamericanos recuerdan el bombardeo de Pearl Harbor, se lleve a cabo un nuevo concierto que yuxtapone las ideas que, sobre la Segunda Guerra Mundial, expusieron en sus obras Dmitri Shostakovich, Arnold Schoenberg y Hanns Eisler.
The PostClassical Ensemble announced Friday that after 14 itinerant seasons, it has found a stable home — at Washington National Cathedral. Starting next season, it will become the cathedral’s newest ensemble-in-residence. This means that the ensemble, which calls itself “an experimental orchestral laboratory” and has performed in venues from the Indonesian Embassy to the Library of Congress, will present three of next season’s concerts at the cathedral, two of them in collaboration with the cathedral’s chorus. It will continue to perform in other locations around Washington as well.
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A cathedral is a house of worship, but it’s also traditionally a place of community. That’s a message Washington National Cathedral has been emphasizing, and it’s a message that was underlined on Thursday night when the PostClassical Ensemble gave its first concert as an official resident group of the cathedral, and the cathedral’s choir, dressed in street clothes and marching up the aisle carrying their own chairs, sent not hymns but songs of proletariat revolution into the echoing spaces of the nave.
PostClassical Ensemble (PCE), an experimental music laboratory led by conductor Angel Gil-Ordoñez, is partnering with Washington National Cathedral. And together, the two are reconceiving the classical experience.
The piece de resistance, of course, was the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E Minor, Op. 64, with Meyers and the Festival Orchestra, conducted by Angel Gil-Ordóñez. The Festival Orchestra, of students and faculty, just continues to get better. In this performance it was indistinguishable from a professional ensemble that has played together for years. There was a reversal of the usual balance problems, with the conductor having to turn down the volume to avoid drowning out the soloist.
The project devised by the Spanish orchestra conductor Angel Gil-Ordóñez after Washington and Havana reopened their diplomatic relations was fulfilled this spring. “It seemed to me a magnificent opportunity to bring together young people from both countries to get to know each other better and to overcome stereotypes.” Inspired by the Israeli-Palestinian orchestra founded by Daniel Barenboim, he opted to bring together the interpreters of his Georgetown University Orchestra, students of diverse music disciplines, and musicians from the Lyceum Mozartiano of Havana.
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The result of this recording is simply magnificent. Tim Fain and Michael Borinskin are soloists of great class, and Angel Gil-Ordóñez does an extraordinary job at the helm of his PostClassical Ensemble of Washington.
The performances are irreproachable, which make this recording the best introduction ever registered to the work of Harrison.
Three intriguingly special works, extremely well served by the performers. The recording is altogether first class and one superb homage to Lou Harrison for his 100th birthday.
Tim Fain plays the work skillfully, and Angel Gil-Ordóñez leads it with his usual flair and sure understanding of music that does not necessarily lend itself to ready comprehension… Gil-Ordóñez brings both knowledge and a sure hand in sound shaping to the performance.
People respect you if you know what you are asking them to do. Then you have to be able to convey what you want. All simply. Through gestures and communication that goes beyond language. I think the orchestra is the most extraordinary achievement of humanity. Can you imagine something more sophisticated than that? One hundred people without verbal communication playing together for one hour? That goes beyond everything. Beyond thinking. To me [it] is the most incredible achievement. People making music together. It’s a miracle.
In March, 12 Georgetown University music students went to Cuba to work with musicians at Lyceum Mozartiano de La Habana. This Saturday, the Cuban musicians will return the favor, performing a free concert at Gaston Hall with their DC counterparts. Washingtonian spoke with Georgetown music director and professor Angel Gil-Ordóñez about the program.
One of Naxos’ April highlights is an all-Lou Harrison CD from the Washington, D.C.-based PostClassical Ensemble; the highlight of the CD is a recording of Harrison’s Concerto for Violin and 5 Percussionists.
This two-part podcast entitled Schubert ‘Uncorked’ — a subversive reconsideration of a famous composer includes two broadcast premieres: Schubert’s Arpeggione Concerto and Schubert songs with bass trombone, along with the slow movement from Bruckner’s String Quintet and two movements from Daniel Schnyder’s Bass Trombone Concerto. With David Taylor (bass trombone), William Sharp (baritone) and PCE conducted by Angel Gil-Ordóñez.
Hear music by the PostClassical Ensemble and Angel Gil-Ordóñez’s remarkable story on this week’s episode, along with opening tracks by the Sultans of String and the wonderful Lila Downs, a prior musical collaborator with the Ensemble. Antidote is broadcast live every Tuesday at 9 am on WERA 96.7FM, and streams live on www.wera.fm, Sundays at 4 pm.
PostClassical Ensemble (PCE) celebrates the music of the “most under-rated 20th-Century American composer,” Bernard Herrmann. Author, music historian and co-founder of PCE Joseph Horowitz co-hosts this bi-monthly program with PCE Director Angel Gil-Ordóñez and Exploring Music Host Bill McGlaughlin. This week’s broadcast includes performances by PostClassical Ensemble of Herrmann’s Clarinet Quintet, Sinfonietta, and Psycho Narrative, as well as music from his radio play Whitman and his Cantata Moby Dick.
PostClassical Ensemble celebrates Lou Harrison with a new Naxos recording that is stellar. Harrison was born 100 years ago and it is delightful to have some fresh releases and performances. Tim Fain is the main featured soloist, in Harrison’s Violin Concerto and Grand Duo. Pianist Michael Boriskin (of Copland House) collaborates brilliantly in the gamelan-esque 1988 work with Fain. WBAA’s John Clare spoke with the leader of PostClassical Ensemble, Angel Gil-Ordóñez about the new disc.
My professional work as a conductor has been always accompanied with a dedication to young musicians. In this video I present some thoughts about the importance of music education for the youngest, for the underprivileged, and for those whose future professional life won’t be related to artistic activities.
A group of Cuban musicians is set to join students from Georgetown University for a first-of-its-kind orchestra performance. News4’s David Culver reports how the concert is meant to bridge the longheld divide between two nations. Music for US-Cuban Relations is an International Cultural Exchange Project created by Angel Gil-Ordóñez between the students and faculty of Georgetown University and members of Lyceum Mozartiano de La Habana, which consists of travel between the two countries and joint musical presentations in Havana, Cuba. The first edition of the program took place in March of 2017 and in Washington, D.C. in April of 2017.