Music Department Events

Sep 28

Christopher U. Light Lectureship Concert I: Nicola Melville, Piano

Come and be part of the first audience to hear the world premiere of twelve new solo piano works commissioned by faculty pianist, Nicola Melville. These new pieces are a wonderful celebration of American sounds and influences: jazz, funk, tango, Appalachian, Peruvian, rock, minimalism, blues, ragtime and more. Ten of the composers will be discussing their pieces during the evening, including Carleton’s own Phillip Rhodes, 2007 Pulitzer Prize finalist Augusta Read Thomas, and Minneapolis-based Stephen Paulus. A fun and intriguing evening, where the creative talents of these incredible composers will be shared through these diverse miniatures of American music. Funded by The Jerome Composers Commissioning Program, the Southeast Minnesota Arts Council, the Christopher U. Light Fund, the Dayton-Hudson Distinguished Visiting Artists Fund and Carleton College.

Friday, September 28th, 2007
7:00 – 8:30 pm / Concert Hall

Carleton College Presents World Premiere Concert of Twelve Newly Commissioned Works for Piano

Carleton College professor of music and renowned pianist Nicola Melville will present twelve newly commissioned pieces at a world premiere concert Friday, Sept. 28 at 7 p.m. in the Carleton College Concert Hall. This exciting event is free and open to the public.

Modern ideas will meld with familiar sounds of the Americas in this special solo piano concert showcasing original pieces by twelve contemporary composers. Commissioned and performed by Melville, the collection reflects each composer’s exploration of the common geographic and cultural theme—the Americas.

The world premiere not only presents an exciting new body of music, but it provides a unique educational opportunity to observe the collaborative process that takes place between performers and composers. As part of the program, ten of the contributing composers will discuss their work throughout the performance.

The program features several musical styles, including jazz, funk, tango, Appalachian, Peruvian, rock, minimalist, blues, and ragtime. Among the diverse, multi-generational group of composers are 2007 Pulitzer Prize finalist Augusta Read Thomas, Minneapolis-based Stephen Paulus, and Carleton College Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Humanities and Composer-In-Residence, Emeritus, Phillip Rhodes.

The project was conceived by Melville, with a desire to inspire student pianists by presenting contemporary art music that is “accessible on a technical as well as on a musical level,” she explains. With this eclectic musical collection that mixes imaginative pop and folk elements with more traditional concepts of classical art music, she hopes to bridge the gap between divergent styles by using the common thread of American sounds to “instill something that will be familiar” to listeners, she adds. In preparation for the concert, Carleton piano and composition students will have the opportunity to observe the collaborative process that takes place between performer and composer with a series of open rehearsals, designed to bridge the creation and delivery of a musical piece.

A native of New Zealand, Melville earned a Ph.D. from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y. She has toured in Europe, the South Pacific, and the U.S., and has been featured live in concert on multiple national and international radio stations. She is the recipient of several competition awards and was recently honored as a featured artist in the International Festival of the Arts in her native country.

The world premiere concert is the first of two Christopher U. Light Fund Lectureship concerts this year at Carleton College. Additional funding is provided by the Jerome Composers Commissioning Program, the Southeast Minnesota Arts Council, the Dayton-Hudson Distinguished Visiting Artists Fund, and Carleton College. For more information as well as disability accommodations, contact the Carleton music department at (507) 222-4347.


Tango Gardél Stacy Garrop

Sourpuss Kevin Beavers

Hitchin’ - a travellin’ groove Judith Lang Zaimont

Three preludes to missing the point Doug Opel It Gets Complicated
Eine Kinda Bachmusik, pt. 2

Explosions Stephen Paulus
I remember the 60’s…or was it the 70’s Phil Fried


Defensive Chili Marc Mellits

Love Twitters Augusta Read Thomas

Barcarola Latinoamericana Gabriela Frank

Soirée Macabre: with demons on the dance floor Carter Pann

Appalachian Breakdown Phillip Rhodes
Hommage à trois Mark Olivieri
Luca’s Swell (Hommage à Copland)
Gestures (Hommage à Takemitsu)
Funk for Nikki (Hommage à James Brown)

Sponsored by Music. Contact: Gao Hong, Music, x5852