Discovering the Music of Composer Jeffrey Kaufman on Classical Archives

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I had by no means heard music written by the American composer Jeffrey Kaufman till I listened to “Vocal Music of Jeffrey Kaufman,” a Pheonix CD that’s accessible for listening right here on Classical Archives.

On first listening, I questioned why I had by no means heard this composer’s music earlier than. The very first thing about it’s that it’s invariably stunning. After “stunning,” different adjectives come to thoughts, like “skillful,” “transferring,” “deceptively deep” and “distinctive.” That’s the reason I plan to put in writing a number of extra weblog posts about Kaufman’s great music. When you begin to pay attention, I believe it would be best to hear extra of it too.

About Jeffrey Kaufman

Jeffrey Kaufman studied at Juilliard and the Manhattan Faculty of Music, the place his academics included Nicolas Flagello, Ludmila Uleha and David Diamond. He has obtained awards and grants from The New York State Council on the Arts, The Nationwide Endowment for the Arts, The Rockefeller Basis, The Martha Baird Rockefeller Basis, and extra.

In 1978, he based the document label Phoenix USA, devoted to presenting the music of latest American composers. He’s clearly a person of many skills.

Concerning the “Vocal Music of Jeffrey Kaufman” CD

The CD opens with excerpts from a Kaufman work known as Nexus, an eight-movement work for soloists and small chamber ensemble that mixes singing, instrumental passages, and spoken narrations. The phrases have been written by Richie Havens – that’s proper, the Richie Havens who opened Woodstock, the Richie Havens who has been known as the voice of his technology. Havens not solely composed the very transferring phrases for Nexus (“All day lengthy the streets are crowded, automotive upon automotive, pilgrims into mirrors, and crimson rear gentle thought patterns going to Brooklyn, Crossing the bridge on daily basis and by no means seeing the crying little one”), he additionally recites them in two sections of the work.

Do you know that there’s a attractive mini cantata composed to phrases written by Richie Havens? I didn’t.

Different works on this CD embody 4 Songs of Nature, that are settings of 4 poems by Emily Dickinson for soprano and chamber ensemble. The soprano for this recording, Kristin Plumley, sings them purely and fantastically. For my part, these settings of Dickinson texts may function a becoming follow-up to the higher recognized Dickinson songs by Aaron Copland.

The final choice on his CD is Hineni, a liturgical work for Cantor, refrain, organ, and vibraphone that was commissioned in 2016 by the Park Avenue Synagogue in New York and Cantor Azi Schwartz, who performs the work fantastically on this recording.

I really like all the pieces about this recording, and I plan to return to it typically. I’ll discover extra recordings of Jeffrey Kaufman’s music in future posts on the Classical Archives weblog. I invite you to hitch me and pay attention alongside.




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