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MP3 Meerenai Shim - Sometimes the City is Silent

New and old compositions for flute, cello, and piano.

16 MP3 Songs in this album (54:59) !
Related styles: Classical: Chamber Music, Classical: Contemporary, Type: Instrumental

People who are interested in Emmanuel Pahud Ian Clarke Robert Dick should consider this download.

Meerenai Shim''s new CD, Sometimes the City is Silent, include familiar works by CPE Bach, Carl Reinecke, and Bela Bartok as well as adventurous works by Ian Clarke and Janice Misurell-Mitchell. Noah Luna''s Entrometido and Meerenai''s own arrangement of Bartok''s Romanian Folk Dances for flute and cello were recorded in collaboration with cellist Rachel Turner Houk. Pianist Lori Lack is featured in the Reinecke Undine Sonata as well as the seldom performed Sérénade aux étoiles by Cécile Chaminade.


In 1786, Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (Johann Sebastian Bach’s most famous son) wrote his “Hamburger” Sonata for flute and basso continuo in Hamburg, Germany. This recording is a modern adaptation of the composition, as it is performed on the modern Boehm system flute and piano. (Theobald Boehm, the inventor of the Boehm-system flute was born 6 years after CPE Bach died.)

In 2010, I commissioned Noah Luna to write a duo for flute and cello. A few months later, I was delighted to receive Entrometido:
‘The duo genre has always carried with it an inescapable subtext: a dialogue or scene in which each instrumentalist represents a single character. When I began to sketch out the concept for this work, that subtext was definitely on my mind, along with some notable duos that exemplify the genre: pieces about cats and mice, romances, quarrels, etc. As I continued to roll this idea around in my head, I began to think about the scenes in my life that were intimate conversations between two people. Now, coming from a large Mexican family, a conversation between two people never lasts long: you are always interrupted by each member in your family at least once, and at least three times by your mother. This seems particularly common, and particularly troublesome during young courtships.
This work represents the courtship of two young lovers who have no choice but to tiptoe about, keeping their trysts secret, lest the young man’s mother interrupt and tell the story about the time he accidentally went to school wearing his sister’s pants (which is a completely hypothetical scenario…) In any case, the two lovers are constantly playing this game of sneak, meet, get caught, sneak, meet, etc. But, there comes a time when the need for sneaking about is not necessary any more and the two lovers are free to come and go as they please. However, the two come to the realization that half the fun was working on their stealthy maneuvers and trying to keep their activities unknown to their nosey families. And, even more importantly, they have their nosey families to thank for the feelings they fostered for each other in secret. The two, I’m sure, still play their own game of cat and mouse from time to time, just to remind them of where their love initially came from, as well as remind them of what it was like to be young, in love, and constantly interrupted.
The title of this work, “Entrometido” translates approximately to “Meddlesome.”’
- Noah Luna

Although Cécile Chaminade’s most popular work today is the Concertino for flute and piano/orchestra, her piano compositions and songs were quite popular and she was a well-known pianist during her lifetime. Sérénade aux étoiles (Op. 142) was written in 1911 and dedicated to Adolphe Hennebains, flute professor at the Paris Conservatory.

“Sometimes the City is Silent for solo flute was commissioned by the National Flute Association for the 2003 High School Soloist Competition. This piece is based on a series of poetic and musical sketches I made in the fall of 2000 while I was teaching at New York University and living in Greenwich Village on the twenty-fifth floor of a hi-rise. When looking at the view at night I would sometimes try to read the outlines of lights (on bridges and in windows) and shapes on rooftops (water towers and cast iron ornament) as a kind of graphic notation; I would improvise flute lines based on these images. On nights when the windows were open I could hear the sounds of the traffic and people on Houston Street below; I sometimes improvised on these sounds, recorded them and also wrote short poems about them. On rare occasions there were times, usually for only a few moments, when the city was silent. This piece is about all of the above; it is dedicated to the spirit of the people of New York City.”
- Janice Misurell-Mitchell

This arrangement of Bartók’s Romanian Folk Dances is based on the piano composition written in 1912 (Sz. 56) and the orchestral version written in 1917 (Sz.68). Bartók based this work on Romanian fiddle tunes: [track 6] Joc cu bata (Stick Game or Dance with Stick), [track 7] Braul (Sash Dance), [track 8] Pe loc (Stomping Dance), [track 9] Buciumeana (Dance from Bucium, also known as “horn song” or “horn dance”),
[track 10] Poarga Romaneasca (Romanian Polka), [track 11] Maruntel (Fast Dance).

Carl Reinecke wrote the “Undine” Sonata for piano and flute in 1882. It is loosely based on the then popular novel Undine by Friedrich de la Motte Fouque. The story about a water nymph, who can only obtain a soul if she marries a human being isn’t depicted literally in Reinecke’s composition but some of the music obviously reflect the story. Listen for the waves and ripples in the water, especially in the first movement. There are four movements in this piece: Allegro [track 12], Intermezzo [track 13], Andante tranquillo [track 14], and Finale [track 15].

Written in 1999, Zoom Tube for solo flute by Ian Clarke is a bluesy and rhythmic piece that, to me, represent the sounds one may hear in a tube station in London. On his website, Clarke notes that inspiration for this piece came from “rhythm & blues, Bobby McFerrin, Stockhausen, Robert Dick, Ian Anderson & South American flute playing.”


About the Artists:

Flutist Meerenai Shim is a founding member of the Blithe Duo (flute duo) and the New Arts Alliance, where she is also a co-artistic director. A passionate advocate of contemporary composition, Ms. Shim has independently commissioned three pieces from three different composers in 2010. The first work, Entrometido for flute and cello, a new composition commissioned from San Jose composer Noah Luna, will be on Ms. Shim’s debut album titled, Sometimes the City is Silent, scheduled for release in May 2011. The second and third commissions engage Brooklyn composer Daniel Felsenfeld and Chicago composer Janice Misurell-Mitchell, respectively.

Ms. Shim’s book, Scale Studies for Beginner and Intermediate Flutists, published in 2007, has received praise from flute pedagogues and publications worldwide. Her teaching philosophy is influenced by studies in Body Mapping, Alexander Technique and Feldenkrais. As an Andover Educator trainee, she also incorporates the Body Mapping course, What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body, into her private flute teaching.

Ms. Shim’s most influential flute teachers are Linda Lukas, Mary Stolper, Liisa Ruoho and Alexa Still. She studied orchestral conducting at the Aspen Music Festival and Eastern Music Festival, with teachers such as Paul Vermel, Murry Sidlin, and Sheldon Morgenstern. Ms. Shim received a Bachelor of Music degree in Flute Performance from DePaul University in Chicago and a Master of Music degree in Flute Performance from San Francisco State University. She was born in Seoul, South Korea, and grew up in Novato, California.

Ms. Shim’s performances in 2011 and 2012 will include: the 2011 Areon Summer Flute Institute as Guest Artist, collaboration with dancer and choreographer Bianca Brzezinski for New Arts Alliance, premiering the newly commissioned piece for flute, cello and piano written by Daniel Felsenfeld, and premiering a new flute and percussion composition commissioned from Janice Misurell-Mitchell.

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Lori Lack, Piano, has performed as a soloist and chamber musician throughout Europe and the United States. She has a piano trio with Christina Mok and Joanne Lin, was a member of the Laurel Ensemble, and has performed with the San Francisco Chamber Orchestra and Gold Coast Chamber Players. As a collaborative pianist, she has performed in recital with many artists including the Alexander String Quartet, the Stamic Quartet, Robin Sharp, Jassen Todorov, Gary Gray, Stephen Paulson, and Matt Haimovitz. She received her degrees from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna, and San Francisco State University. In addition to serving on the faculty of CSU Summer Arts and California Summer Music, she has worked as an instrumental accompanist at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and San Francisco State University.

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