With this Proximity concert, Ensemble Dal Niente is thrilled to give the first ever Chicago performance of music by South African composer Andile Khumalo.
Khumalo draws from an uncommonly broad range of styles, from the spectralist notions of harmony and orchestration to the American experiments with form, motive, and structure, to the neo-tonality of popular African contemporary classical composers. Within these varied approaches to composition, Khumalo finds his own original, clear and urgent voice.
The program, co-curated by Ensemble Dal Niente and Khumalo, includes two formative works: Shades of Words (2012) for narrator and ensemble, and Cry Out (2009) for viola, oboe, marimba, and piano. Of the former, George Lewis writes that:
“Neither melodrama nor tone-poem, the swirling musical setting provides shading and nuance to each vocal utterance, asking the listener to ‘reconcile two experiences of time,’ present and past.”
This extraordinarily compact composition performs with aplomb the bridging of the emporal gulf between words which can generate an entire network of associations in an instant, and music, which despite its reputation for immediacy, takes its time to construct its environment.”