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MP3 Tess Remy-Schumacher, Kirsten Fedje Underwood, Hong Zhu, Zoe Sherinian, Magrill & John Clinton - Cello Music of Samuel Magrill, Volume II

a diverse album of original cello music including a double concerto for two cellos and string orchestra, a duo for cello and piano, two cello ensemble works-- a tango and Hebrew prayer-- and an South Indian inspired work for violin, cello and mridangam

9 MP3 Songs in this album (62:54) !
Related styles: Classical: Chamber Music, World: Indian Classical, Instrumental

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Program Notes for Cello Music of Samuel Magrill, Volume II

Double Concerto for Two Cellos and String Orchestra (2000-01)
I. Canonical Loops
II. Orchestral Solos
III. Ostinato Pizzicato

The Double Concerto was written especially for Tess Remy-Schumacher and Michelle Raynor, cellists and Frank Pam, the musical director of the Melbourne Musicians, an Australian Chamber Orchestra. Composed during December 2000 and January 2001, the work is modeled on a Baroque Double Concerto, but with a modern twist. All three movements employ canonical procedures and inversions. The musical material is based on two symmetrical structures: diminished seventh chords and chromatic scales. Different relationships between the two soloists and the orchestra are explored.

Movement I, Canonical Loops, is an homage to Bach, Vivaldi, Stravinsky and Steve Reich. There is tutti -solo alternation as expected in a baroque concerto. The opening tutti figure is the material of the entire movement and creates a frame at the beginning and ending of the movement. The cello soloists play a series of six “endless” canons, each of which ends at its beginning and then repeats. The orchestra responds with a three-voice canon in the middle and a four-voice canon at the end.

In movement II, Orchestral Solos, the orchestra and the soloists’ roles are reversed. The soloists play a canonic accompaniment while the orchestral sections enter with solos. In the middle of this ABA movement, the soloists disappear entirely.

Movement III, Ostinato Pizzicato, relegates the orchestra to a pizzicato accompaniment on a single note--C. In the middle of this ABA movement reminiscent of a Brahms Scherzo, the orchestra disappears while the cello soloists perform an extended canonic cadenza.

Remy 2002 (2001) for violoncello and piano

Remy 2002, for violoncello and piano, was written for my dog Remy and for Dr. Tess Remy-Schumacher, violoncellist, par excellence, for whom Remy was named. The work, a quasi-sonata, is based on two main ideas: Remy or RE-MI (as in do, RE, MI...) =D, E; and 2002, a cello fingering pattern that generates the following notes: on the C string--Eb, C, C, Eb; on the G string--Bb, G, G, Bb; on the D string--F, D, D, F; and on the A string--C, A, A, C. The work was supposed to last twenty minutes and two seconds (20:02), but it ended up being only about seventeen minutes in duration.

The Remy motive acts as an introduction and as interlude-transitions among the four main 2002 sections:

I. Allegro Marcato à la Gamelan Music, Schnittke and Brahms
II. Fugue à la Bach and Beethoven
III. Spanish Music à la Bizet and Saint-Saëns
IV. Gypsy Music/Hungarian Dance

There is a short coda of the 2002 motive in various states of augmentation. The composition, which includes extended cello techniques to depict dog-like sounds, was written with much raw wit and bite.

Tango Cellito (2002) for cello ensemble

My first experience writing a tango was in 2001, when Dr. Tess Remy-Schumacher asked me to write a tango for guitar and cello. I responded with a dance in 13-8 that was unlike any other tango I had ever known. After writing that work entitled Tango Guitello, I became more interested in studying the tango and discovered the work of Astor Piazzolla and his Tango Etudes for solo flute as well as his Grand Tango for cello and piano. When Dr. Remy-Schumacher asked for a tango for cello ensemble in 2002, I was better prepared. I knew the tango was an Argentinian blend of the habañera and the milonga, mixing the rhythmic percussive beat with a floating melodic line. This dichotomy of the earthy and the spiritual is what gives the tango its popularity, passion and intensity. Tango Cellito, a little cello tango, was the result, a more traditional 4-4 tango in ABACABA rondo form. The work was so successful that it has been performed by cello ensemble (with and without dancers), by chamber orchestra, by viola ensemble and by string quartet.

Shalom (2003) for cello ensemble

Shalom for cello ensemble is a slow spiritual work, conceived as a prayer for peace and modeled on Samuel Barber''s Adagio for Strings. When Dr. Tess Remy-Schumacher asked me to write a work entitled Shalom, the Hebrew word for peace, for her cello ensemble, I immediately heard four "shaloms" as four ascending fourths. The work resolves this opening sonority and also "fills in" the fourths.

Shalom is the eleventh composition that I have written for Dr. Remy-Schumacher since her arrival at the University of Central Oklahoma in 1998. My two compositions, Song of Shalom (2001) and the Sacred Suite (2001), both for soprano and cello with Hebrew texts, may be considered as antecedents to this work. Although, there is no text, the rhythm of the word "shalom" permeates the piece and creates an underlying subtext.

East West Duo (2004)
I. Ragam: Revagupti Talam: Rupakam (in 3)
II. Ragam: Amritavarshini Talam: Eka Chapu (in 5)
III. Ragam: Madhyamavathi Talam: Misra Chapu (in 7)

The "East West Duo," written at the request of Sandhya Srinath, Carnatic violinist, and Tess Remy-Schumacher, western violoncellist, was composed in March 2004, while visiting Nathan Bala in Greenbelt, Maryland. The music blends the traditions of Carnatic Music of South India and Western Music. Each of the three movements uses an Indian scale (Ragam) and an Indian metric pattern (Talam); however, the work is also infused with western contrapuntal techniques such as canon and invertible counterpoint. The violin part was originally notated in Carnatic notation while the violoncello part was notated in western notation. The composition has traditionally been performed with an improvised percussion part played on a South Indian tuned drum called the mridangam.

I feel that the music of the twenty-first century is “a music of synthesis” and should bring people and cultures together. This work bridges two cultures, showing respect for each.


Cellist Tess Remy-Schumacher was born in Cologne, Germany, and has studied with Boris Pergamenshikov, Maria Kliegel, Siegfried Palm, Jacqueline du Pre, and William Pleeth. As a Fulbright scholar, she studied with Lynn Harrell in his Piatigorsky Class at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, where she was awarded her Master of Music. As “most outstanding graduate of the year for performance, academic excellence, and leadership,” she received her doctorate under the supervision of Eleonore Schönfeld.

Tess Remy-Schumacher has won first prizes in Germany’s Jugend musiziert, New York’s International Artist Competition, and Rome’s Carlo-Zecchi Competition. She has performed in Asia, Australia, Europe and the United States, including Wigmore Hall, London; Jubilee Hall, Singapore; Carnegie Hall, New York (1995, 2005); and Bradley Hall, Chicago. She has performed and taught at the Brisbane Biennial Festival, the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, the Contempofest (Australia), the Weathersfield Music Festival (USA), the Internationaler Klaviersommer (Germany), Phillips Andover Academy, and the Encore Music Festival (USA). In The New York Concert Review, Edith Eisler wrote of her 2005 Carnegie Hall recital, “Ms. Remy-Schumacher’s technique is disciplined… Her bow control and mastery of the fingerboard are complete; her intonation is excellent.”

Dr. Remy-Schumacher has recorded for WDR, NDR, and MDR (Germany), WNYC (New York), K-USC (Los Angeles), ABC National (Australia), MBS-FM (Melbourne, Australia), and Swiss and Italian television. CDs include her own transcriptions of Schumann''s Dichterliebe with Marcus Reissenweber and Christoph von Sicherer (HOME 98106); works by In Sun Cho for the Contemporary Music Society, Seoul; works of Villa-Lobos with guitarist Stefan Grasse (Xolo 1001); the Ibert Cello Concerto (recorded at Radio Hilversum) with solo cello works by Henze, Lutoslawski, Stahlke and Magrill (Xolo 1002); the Rachmaninov Sonata in with pianist Michael Staudt (Xolo 1004); cello works by Sam Magrill (Xolo 1006); and chamber works by Brahms and Magrill (Xolo 1008). She has just released the first volume of J.S. Bach Suites for Solo Cello (Xolo 1012) and Trios by Tchaikovsky and Beethoven with Judy Lee and Chris Cooley.

Following her appointment at James Cook University from 1992-98, she has been Professor of Cello and Chamber Music at the University of Central Oklahoma. For the academic year 2010/2011 she will be a Visiting Fellow at Harvard University. Tess Remy-Schumacher plays a violoncello by Goldfuss Regensburg 2005.

As a solo violinist, Hong Zhu frequently performs in solo recitals and with symphony orchestras around the world. He has played as the soloist in several orchestras including the Marquette Symphony Orchestra in Michigan, Chihuahua Symphony Orchestra in Mexico, Thailand National Symphony Orchestra, Oklahoma Community Orchestra, UCO Symphony Orchestra, and the Oklahoma Youth Symphony.
Hong Zhu received his Bachelor’s degree from the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music and received his Master’s and Doctoral Degrees from Michigan State University. He was awarded the Menuhin Prize at the International String Quartet Competition in England as a member of the China Youth String Quartet, and with that group he toured many countries giving chamber music recitals, including a concert broadcast live from the Sydney Opera House.
He is now a professor of violin and chamber music and the head of the String Division at the University of Central Oklahoma, as well as the director of the UCO Chamber Music Camp. He plays and travels with the UCO Faculty String Quartet and Edmond Chamber Players. Prior to joining the University of Central Oklahoma faculty, Dr. Zhu taught at the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music, Murray State University in Kentucky, University of Michigan-Flint, and Flint Institute of Music.
He has served as a key member in many orchestras such as concertmaster with the Colorado Music Festival Orchestra, Midland Symphony Orchestra, and Michigan State University Orchestra; guest concertmaster with the Owensboro Symphony Orchestra in Indiana; principal second violin with the Academy of the West Symphony Orchestra in California; and assistant concertmaster with the China Youth Symphony with which he toured all over Europe.

Kirsten Fedje Underwood began cello studies in San Juan, Puerto Rico, with Pablo Casals’ protégé Adolpho Odnoposoff, and holds the B.M. from Willamette University and Mus. M. from Boston University in cello performance. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Oklahoma. She has performed as a member of the Nashua and Asheville Symphonies, the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, and with the Cullowhee and Quartz Mountain Music Festivals. A founding member of the St. Andrew’s Trio, her chamber music experiences have included the Melisande Piano Trio, the Demetrious Chamber Players and the Cullowhee Chamber Players. Ms. Underwood is currently a faculty member at Cameron University, is Principal Cello of the Lawton Philharmonic, and performs regularly with the Wichita Falls Symphony.

Zoe Sherinian is an Associate Professor and Chair of Ethnomusicology at the University of Oklahoma. Her research focus has been Christian indigenization and the production of liberation theology in India through Tamil folk music with secondary emphases in gender studies and world percussion. Her publications include articles in the journals Ethnomusicology (Summer 2007), Worlds of Music (2005), Women and Music (2005), and the on-line journal Religion Compass (2009). She also has articles in the anthologies Popular Christianity in India: Riting Between the Lines, edited by Selva J. Raj and Corinne Dempsey and Performing Pasts: Reinventing the Arts in South India, edited by Indira Viswanathan Peterson and Davesh Soneji. Sherinian''s book manuscript entitled Songs of Dalit Transformation: Tamil Folk Music as Liberation Theology is under contract with Indiana University Press. In it she argues that Dalits (former untouchables) have been able to use Tamil folk music to create an indigenized Christian liberation theology that can respond in liturgical performance to their needs for transformative social change.

Her latest project draws on her background as a percussionist. In 2008-09 Sherinian spent nine months in India as a Fulbright Senior Research Fellow conducting ethnography on the changing status of the parai drum of the Dalits (untouchables) of Tamil Nadu, India. Living in a village for four months, she learned how to perform the parai (and to dance with it) and she shot over fifty hours of professional videotape to produce an ethnographic documentary on parai drummers, which is presently in post-production. She has extensively studied the mridangam, the classical drum of South Indian Karnatak (Carnatic) music, and performs on the jazz drumset. She has also performed with the Balinese Gamelan, Sekar Jaya, and several university based steel drum and African drumming ensembles. In 2009, Sherinian began the first parai(Indian folk) drumming ensemble in the U.S. at the University of Oklahoma. She holds a MA and PhD in ethnomusicology from Wesleyan University and a BA in sociology/anthropology and percussion performance from Oberlin College.

John Clinton is the Dean of the College of Fine Arts and Design at the University of Central Oklahoma. He is also the conductor of the Oklahoma Youth Orchestra (OYO), a position he has held since 1992. He completed a Ph.D. in Music Education with emphases in orchestral conducting, string pedagogy and sociology from the University of North Texas.

Formerly the conductor of the Norman (Oklahoma) High School Symphony Orchestra, he has conducted the OYO on several international tours including performances in Australia, Austria, Czech Republic, England, France, Germany, Italy, Monaco, New Zealand, Scotland, Switzerland and the Zoltán Kodály Memorial Festival in Budapest, Hungary. He has conducted state and regional orchestras in Arizona, Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, and Washington. Dr. Clinton has presented papers and in-service workshops at the Music Educators National Conference, American String Teachers Association National Conference, Texas Music Educators'' Association, the University of Oklahoma "Symposium ''95: The Sociology of Music Education”, The Midwest International Band & Orchestra Clinic, as well as presentations in Kentucky, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas and Vancouver, British Columbia on a variety of arts related topics.

Dr. Clinton has received numerous professional honors, including the Oklahoma Educators Hall of Fame, Oklahoma Music Educators Hall of Fame, University of Oklahoma School of Music Distinguished Alumni Fellow, Oklahoma String Teacher of the Year, Governor’s Arts Award for Arts and Education, National Federation of State High School Associations Outstanding Music Educator, Oklahoma Music Educators Association Administrator of the Year and the Distinguished Service Award from the Art Therapy Association of Oklahoma.

Samuel Magrill is a Professor of Music and Composer-in-Residence at the University of Central Oklahoma where he has taught music theory and composition since 1988. Previously, he taught at the University of Wyoming and California State University, Long Beach. He obtained his Bachelor of Music in Composition from Oberlin Conservatory and his Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in Composition from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. His composition teachers have included Ramiro Cortes, Joseph Wood, Randolph Coleman, Ben Johnston, Edwin London, Herbert Brün, and Kenneth Gaburo.

Magrill has written over one hundred compositions for a variety of instruments, from solo piano and chamber music to choir, wind ensemble and symphony orchestra. His works have been performed throughout the United States and abroad and at many regional and national conferences. He has received numerous awards and commissions, including ones from the National Endowment for the Arts, the American Music Center, the Mid-America Arts Alliance, the Illinois Arts Council, ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers), the Oklahoma Music Teachers’ Association, the American Composers'' Forum’s Continental Harmony Program and faculty research grants and merit credit awards from the University of Central Oklahoma. In the fall of 1997, Magrill was chosen as the Hauptman Fellow for the UCO College of Liberal Arts. In the spring of 2000, he was inducted into SAI as an Arts Associate and won the AAUP-UCO Distinguished Creativity Award.

A member of Society of Composers, Inc. since 1984, Dr. Magrill has been Region VI Co-Chair from 1994-2000 and 2004-2007. He hosted a regional conference in 1993 and the national conference in 2004. Other memberships include the American Music Center, ASCAP, Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Kappa Lambda.

Dr. Magrill has been an active member of College Music Society since 1983 and the University of Central Oklahoma Representative since 1995. He hosted a regional conference in 1999 and served as President of the South Central Chapter from 1999-2003. In 2009, he began a three-year term as board member in composition for the national organization.

In May of 1995, he performed his compositions at the Alternativa and Art Reality Festivals in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia, and lectured at the Theremin Center, a computer music studio at the Moscow Conservatory. In the summer of 2001, he traveled to Australia, where his Cello Rag Rag and his Double Concerto were premiered. His four one-act operas--The Gorgon''s Head, Paradise of Children and the gremlins who stole it, Showdown on Two Street and Circe''s Palace --written from 1997-2000, were all produced at UCO. In 2007, the Vivace Flute Quartet performed his Tango Flauto in Chile and Costa Rica. His CDs include a two-disc set of electro-acoustic music entitled "The Electric Collection," his four operas and collections of music for cello and other instruments.

Dr. Magrill is also an active pianist and accompanist, performing in faculty and student recitals at the University of Central Oklahoma and other schools in the region. Since 2007, he has worked closely with choral director Dr. Karl Nelson and has accompanied the UCO choral ensembles. He studied piano with Harlow Mills, Robert Turner, Dadi Mehta, John Perry, Ian Hobson and Dean Sanders and chamber music with Alice and Eleonore Schoenfeld.

His interest in World Music led him to collaborate with M.V. Narasimhachari. Together they produced two volumes of The Music of India: An Introduction (1996-2003). Dr. Magrill also collaborated with the Jayamangala School of Music and Dance to transcribe Carnatic music into western music notation. The result was a Music Score Book for "Music Transcends--An International Conference on Music" which took place May 8, 2004 in Greenbelt, Maryland. His work with Indian music came to fruition when he presented his East West Duo for violin, cello and mridangam in a concert of his music in Chennai, India on January 1, 2005.

Recording engineer Hermann Heinrich, born in 1965 in Regensburg, Germany, is internationally known for his recordings of instrumental, vocal, orchestral, and choral music. He holds degrees in Cello Performance (with Sigmund von Hausegger) and Education from the Musikhochschule Munich, and performs frequently in concerts as cellist and bassist.

Acknowledgements: Thank you to the UCO Jazz Lab, Brian Gorrell, Lee Rucker, Bryan Mitschell, Sun Hee Kil, the College of Fine Arts and Design (CFAD) Dean’s Office, Dr. Keith White, the UCO School of Music, the Office of Student Services, the UCO Development Office, Lori Alspaugh, Ines Burnham, Karl Nelson, and St. Mary’s Episcopal Church. This CD is dedicated to the memory of Eleonore Schoenfeld, an amazing cellist and pedagogue who taught me just about everything I know about the cello.

Cover Painting by Chelsea Banks
Graphic Design by Claudia Noble, Spectrum Media Group, Norman, Oklahoma

This recording was made possible through a grant from the UCO Office of Research and Grants with additional assistance from the UCO Center for Arts Education.

Tracks 1-4 and 7-9 recorded, edited and mastered by Hermann Heinrich.
Tracks 5-6 recorded by Bryan Mitschell, edited and mastered by Hermann Heinrich.

Microphones used for tracks 5-6: 2 Royer R-121 ribbon microphones, 2 Audio Technica C-414 condenser microphones, and 1 Audio Technica 4050.

For tracks 1-4 and 7-9:
Main microphones: DPA 4041 SP (matched pair)
additional microphones: Neumann TLM 150 and Rode NT5
digital interface: Mackie Onyx 1200 (modified preamps and power section)
power cleaner designed and handmade by Audio Endt, Stuttgart

Cello Music of Samuel Magrill, Volume II

Double Concerto for Two Cellos and String Orchestra (2000-01)
1. I. Canonical Loops
2. II. Orchestral Solos
3. III. Ostinato Pizzicato

Tess Remy-Schumacher and Kirsten Underwood, cello soloists
Chin Wa Mong, Ashlley Northam, Laura Cunningham, Hannah Seo, violin I
Rachel Clark, Lucy Bates, Sarah Mc Kiddy, Sarah Youn, violin II
Curtis Hansen, Kristen Zimmerman, Michael Jones, viola
Lisa Storm, Shinyoung Kim, cello
Larry Moore, string bass
John Clinton, conductor

Recorded 5/23/10 at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, Edmond, Oklahoma

4. Remy 2002 (2001) for violoncello and piano
Tess Remy-Schumacher, cello and Samuel Magrill, piano

Recorded 5/25/10 at the UCO Jazz Lab, Edmond, Oklahoma

5. Tango Cellito (2002) for cello ensemble
University of Central Oklahoma Cello Ensemble, Tess Remy-Schumacher, director
Kristen Dixon, Julie Keeton, Kara Middleton, Katie Bowles, Brian Cook and
Bogdan Asanovic, cellos

Recorded 4/17/10 at the UCO Jazz Lab, Edmond, Oklahoma

6. Shalom (2003) for cello ensemble

University of Central Oklahoma Cello Ensemble, Tess Remy-Schumacher, director
Kristen Dixon, Julie Keeton, Kara Middleton, Katie Bowles, Brian Cook and
Bogdan Asanovic, cellos

Recorded 4/17/10 at the UCO Jazz Lab, Edmond, Oklahoma

East West Duo (2004) for violin, cello and mridangam
7. I. Ragam: Revagupti Talam: Rupakam (in 3)
8. II. Ragam: Amritavarshini Talam: Eka Chapu (in 5)
9. III. Ragam: Madhyamavathi Talam: Misra Chapu (in 7)

Hong Zhu, violin, Tess Remy-Schumacher, cello, Zoe Sherinian, mridangam

Recorded 5/27/10 at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, Edmond, Oklahoma

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