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Steve Heitzeg music in memory of Eric Stokes

Posted by: Claude Peck under Music, Classical, Concert news, Minnesota musicians, People Updated: October 23, 2013 - 1:48 PM

A pair of world premiere works by composer Steve Heitzeg (pictured) will be performed in a free concert at the University of Minnesota on Nov. 12.

One of them, titled "Earthshaker," is scored for solo piano with stones and plastic water bottles, with instructions for the pianist, in this case Timothy Lovelace, "to throw a variety of plastic bottles into the piano as a protest against the pollution of the oceans." Another section of the three-movement work incorporates sounds of Lake Superior recorded at pre-dawn on a stone beach near Grand Marais. The other Heitzeg work being premiered is "Quaker Peace Waltz."

Heitzeg says in a statement that he was inspired to write "Earthshaker" in memory of Eric Stokes, who died in 1999. Stokes, a professor at the U of M's school of music for 29 years, was also a prolific composer, and the concert will include works by him, including "Circles in a Round: Music for Pianos" and "Rock and Roll" (for five players and rocks).

Heitzeg studied with Stokes at graduate school. Lovelace, who teaches at the University of Minnesota, is a proponent of new music who has performed the music of Elliott Carter, John Corigliano and Osvaldo Golijov, among others. He will be joined in the concert by soprano Maria Jette, flutist Immanuel Davis, oboist John Snow and percussionists Randall Davidson and Heitzeg.

Concert is 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 12 at Ultan Recital Hall, Ferguson Hall, University of Minnesota.

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