Nicky Sohn - Burning (2021)
Composer: Nicky Sohn (www.nickysohn.com) Violin I - Jacob Schafer Violin II - Nicholas Lindell Viola - Matthew Weathers Cello - Chris Ellis Program note: Inspiration can hardly be predicted nor deliberate. It could be from opening a packet of hot sauce, watching a flame slowly flicker to an ember, saying a forever farewell, missing someone—these were my sources of inspiration for “Burning”, for string quartet. Winter of 2020 was a strange time for me—I am sure for many, 2020 was odd, never turning the way you’d think. ... All the four events I’ve mentioned above somehow to me gave the sensation of burning. To get through the obvious, eating hot sauce and watching a fire is easily connected to burning—your tongue, desert fire. Often I feel as if I’m a person immune to goodbyes, as if I’ve been trained since birth to be a stoic. But when I haven’t primed myself for it, if I have the uncertainty, or rather the certainty, of the goodbye being the last one, there’s nothing like it. The sensation of heartache it feels physical, that tearing and searing feeling. Then missing someone, crying, feeling small in this world, hopelessness, it burns. Works presented at the special exhibition, “Wild Life of Elizabeth Murray and Jessi Reaves”, also have this spark of energy and color that to me felt like burning. My ideas often tend to be scattered and my inspiration may seem chaotic, but the burst of energy and ideas has resulted in a dynamic and lively work. This piece bends several adjectives that resemble a fire, and the process of burning: luminous, flaring, glowing, sparkling. “Burning” cites the changing sensation, from rapture to grief, every sound to deep, unending silence.
Nicky Sohn - Minty Breeze (Bokyung Byun, guitar; Jennifer Hackbarth, choreography and dance)
Composer: Nicky Sohn, www.nickysohn.com Choreographer: Jennifer Hackbarth Guitarist: Bokyung Byun, https://www.bokyungbyun.com This work was created as a part of the Cloud Collaboration 2021 with Sounding Board Project (https://www.soundingboardfest.com/) This year’s project, Cloud Collaboration, aims to bring artistic minds from all around the world to create multidisciplinary works through virtual collaboration. The extended isolation from the pandemic has made collaborative art making more challenging than ever, but through virtual collaboration, the Sounding Board Project was able to provide a platform where artists can meld their creative ideas and energy together for creation of new works regardless of any distances or barriers between them. The Cloud Collaboration invited a diverse array of four guitarists, four composers, and four choreographers from all around the world. Each group consists of 3 artists from each discipline, and together they will present multi-perspective and multi-cultural forms of expression through music and dance. The Cloud Collaboration will be premiered in August 2021.
IN TANDEM: “Lullaby for Those Fast Asleep” by Nicky Sohn
Created by violinist Lucia Lin, “In Tandem” is a non-profit initiative dedicated to bringing new voices to classical music through co-commissions of ten emerging composers with the Gabriela Lena Frank Creative Academy of Music. “Lullaby for Those Fast Asleep” by Nicky Sohn Gloria Chien - piano Lucia Lin - violin 2/2021
Sohn – Whispers on a Sleepless Night (2021)
For violin, flute, and piano Written for Dal Duo "The initial inspiration of the work came from the unique (Korean) genre called "Trot," a type of popular music that is derived from the country's folk music. Recurring themes of this genre are nostalgia, longing, and grief, and often includes crooning in the empty space where a lover used to be... The piece, through its personal and cultural nostalgia, holds gravity in these times. As a Korean composer living in the US, the recent Atlanta shooting was a direct shock to my identity in this country. "Whispers on a Sleepless Night" was my reaction to this horrific incident, tying the distinct sound of Trot and its motifs of grief and parting to a dark time in history." –Nicky Sohn
Nicky Sohn - Can you stop the time? (no) (2021)
Premiere on April 10, 2021 at the Moody Center Mary Grace Johnson, Tinca Belinski, Sebastian Stefanović, Bree Ahern Program note: Time is the question, the answer, and the method of life. Despite knowing the units of time and what they roughly mean, this comes second to how we feel it. One could trudge through what feels like hours of a boring lecture, fending off sleep, to have only spent ten minutes. The opposite is true as well. For instance, a whole day with someone you love can pass by like a blur and you may forget what time does to you—sleep, hunger, and life is entirely disregarded. “Can you stop the time?” is about this second meaning of time and is a question we’ve all thought about in some form, at some point in our lives. Concurrently, this piece explores textures that resemble time slipping away too quickly, incorporating elements of tremolo, trills, ascending and descending runs, and sudden changes in dynamics. The moment that we ask “Can you stop the time?” is a moment too precious to forfeit. But time cannot be stopped, so we accept the answer that gives us another option, the future—one with hope and promise of good fortune.
Nicky Sohn's "The Last Smile Of Love" performed by Bokyung Byun on an Otto Vowinkel '2a'
Download a FREE pdf of Capricho Árabe arranged by Agustín Barrios here! https://tinyurl.com/y5cm7byv Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/guitarsaloninternational/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/guitarsalon Twitter: https://twitter.com/guitarsalon Guitar: 2020 Otto Vowinkel '2a' SP/IN (https://tinyurl.com/yyhvcrsk) Here's Bokyung Byun performing "The Last Smile Of Love" by Nicky Sohn on an Otto Vowinkel '2a' classical guitar made with spruce top and Indian rosewood back and sides. Recorded at the Guitar Salon International showroom in Santa Monica, CA. Huge thanks to the folks at Apogee Electronics (ApogeeDigital.com) for the use of their Ensemble interface in these recordings. http://www.guitarsalon.com/ All proceeds from monetization of this video goes to the GSI Foundation, a non-profit organization that raises money to support music education in public schools. Visit our site for more information: https://www.gsifoundation.org/ #friendsofgsi #classicalguitar #guitarsaloninternational #gsi
Nicky Sohn - Waves (2021)
Jerry Hou, conductor Rice Brass Department Rice Stadium, Sunday, March 21, 2020 Video provided by the Moody Center for Arts at Rice University Program notes: Waves was written for the Rice Stadium in the winter of 2020. The initial idea of the work came from the spacial distribution of the ensemble. The work explores different shapes and configurations that form wave-like sounds. The piece contains ten different sections and each section experiments with various patterns, speeds, and dynamic levels.
Nicky Sohn - If You Love For Beauty - Ken-David Masur, conductor - Robert Fleitz, piano
Nicky Sohn - If You Love For Beauty (2019 World Premiere & Festival Commission) Chelsea Music Festival - June 11, 2019 - St. Peter's Episcopal Church, NYC Thank you for donating: https://www.chelseamusicfestival.org/support If You Love For Beauty (2019 World Premiere & Festival Commission) by Nicky Sohn (b.1992) https://www.nickysohn.com/ https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCf0QRJ2lufdLPr_EEobJkpw Piano | Robert Fleitz Festival Strings Violin | Jocelyn Zhu, Chloe Fedor, Mariella Haubs, Chloé Kiffer, Soo Yeon Kim, Natsumi Tsuboi, Hasse Borup, Ryosuke Suho Viola | Maiko Takimoto, Jeremy Kienbaum, Jesus Rodolfo Cello | Jonathan Butler, Angela Lee, Tatsuki Sasanuma Double Bass | Mariya Andonova, Kaden Henderson Conductor | Ken-David Masur Part of: --Premieres at the Chelsea Music Festival playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWIgLmkq5gpYTyeLbygp0zZeLxlOekL-f --21st Century Music at the Chelsea Music Festival playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWIgLmkq5gpZ3vX812pU6TqByCEHaxxK6 --Female Composers at the Chelsea Music Festival playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWIgLmkq5gpba5zrFONOCOIBJJWic6iSN --Orchestral Music at Chelsea Music Festival playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWIgLmkq5gpbCMhTsIOHH7iG8BYDIHDY3 Chief Audio Engineer: Brett Leonard Video Director: Lauran Jurrius, Polycast Productions Video Editor: Ashley Hassell https://www.chelseamusicfestival.org Follow us! https://linktr.ee/chelseamusicfestival THANK YOU for watching! Please consider contributing to the Festival & its artists: https://www.chelseamusicfestival.org/support Subscribe to our YouTube channel and click the bell icon to turn on notifications! #ContemporaryClassicalMusic #ModernClassical
Toad, toad (2020)
Atlanta Chamber Players, January 17, 2021 Program note: Toad, toad was written from June 1st to June 10th, 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic and the deep and prolonged isolation that followed gave me the opportunity and space to participate in a special competition called “Rapido!”, a platform where composers are assigned a specific instrumentation, duration and theme for a chamber piece. This year’s required theme was to create a piece that expresses the sea-change the virus brought to everyone’s personal and professional lives. This has been a difficult time for me as it has been for everyone. With the endless and harrowing solitude, I was unable to continue my career as an artist in the way that had been second nature to me. The possibility of reaching my family back in South Korea was entirely out of the question, and the human ties I strongly depended on were largely severed. I was timidly looking down the long barrel of a seemingly endless summer. With a thoroughly unfulfilled longing for home, for a return back to my eternal resting place, the theme for this piece was instantly apparent. The Korean folk song, “Toad, Toad”, despite its simplicity and popularity as a nursery rhyme, struck something within me and painted the feeling of my separation from home. Offering a new house for toad’s old house felt like something I would dream about during my quiet quarantine. Translation: Toad, toad Toad, toad I’ll get you a new house, so give me your old house. Toad, toad bring me some water and I’ll build you a new house. Toad, toad your house is on fire, come on down with a pitchfork. Focusing on the isolation and repetition of my life in quarantine, the piece is structured around 12 measure long phrases. The melody from the folk song is the main source of the piece, and each phrase is treated as a variation from the main theme. The beginning of this decade has already been incredibly unpredictable, and all these unusual events estrange us from life as we had known it. Anger, despair, grief, frustration, and regret to a degree we don’t often see are becoming a daily occurrence. This abrasive world has calloused us in what feels like a single moment. Nevertheless, like toad I look to build my home again, clearing the debris and wreckage and finding a new place to rest.
Nicky Sohn -"Chesterton's Garden"
Nicky Sohn- "Chesterton's Garden" (Korean Premiere -Live Performance) Cello, Antonio Hallongren Piano, Sophy HY Chung *From ballet to opera to Korean traditional-orchestra, the wide-ranging talent of composer Nicky Sohn is heard across the US, Europe, and Asia. Characterized by her jazz-inspired, rhythmically driven themes, Sohn has enjoyed commissions and performances from the world’s preeminent performing arts institutions, including Stuttgart Ballet, National Orchestra of Korea, Minnesota Orchestra, and New York City Ballet. She recently received a commission from the Orchestra of St. Luke’s for a new orchestral work. *In listening to Korean composer Nicky Sohn’s music, you may hear influences from jazz greats such as Chet Baker, Bill Evans, and Antônio Carlos Jobim, as well as the living composers Michael Torke, David Del Tredici, and Esa-Pekka Salonen. “Much of their music,” Sohn says, “is characterized not just by major and minor triads at their foundation, but also a very organic way of generating rhythmic patterns—you get a natural sense of forward motion that’s also harmonically compelling.” "Chesterton's Garden" was the only piece by a Korean composer featured in the program of the concert. ・ "SOPHY'S SONATENABEND (III)" with Swedish Classical Music ・ Sunday, December 15, 2019 at 3 pm ・ Kumho Art Hall Yonsei (금호아트홀 연세), Seoul, Korea [Sophy's Sonatenabend (III) featuring Swedish Classical Music with Swedish Cellist Antonio Hallongren] was part of the official celebrating event of the 60th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between Sweden and the Republic of Korea. Thank you very much. Sophy & Company presents
Bach at Home: Home-Body, Home-Bach by Nicky Sohn, perf. by Daire Fitzgerald
For articles, interviews, and more, visit https://www.OSLmusic.org/Bach ____ Daire Fitzgerald performs Degaetano Compostion Institute Participant Nicky Sohn's piece for solo cello, Home Body, Home Bach. Special Thanks to Tristan Cook, producer Adam Abeshouse, audio consultant
Summer Music Series: Leo Villareal, "Radiant Pathway," (2010)
As part of the Moody's Summer Music Series, five composers from the Shepherd School of Music were commissioned to create original works responding to individual objects in Rice’s Public Art collection. Each composer wrote a short solo or duet to be performed in front of the artwork. The final composition in the series is inspired by Leo Villareal's "Radiant Pathway." It is composed by Nicky Sohn and performed by cellist David Dietz. This video is produced by Brandon Martin, Manager of Videography, Rice University.