Staff Picks!

 

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Finals are approaching, if you need a soundtrack for your studying, we’ve got you covered. Need something to listen to on your long drive home, or while waiting in the airport? We can help you!

Our student workers and staff are constantly exploring our collection of CDs! Our new display shelf is featuring our favorites at the moment. Read about why we love these CDs below, and then come have a listen or check one of them out!

Amanda 

Music Library Coordinator

Lin-Manuel Miranda, In the Heights CD 9474

I’m completely obsessed with Hamilton, which led me to rediscover Lin-Manuel Miranda’s first Tony-award winning musical. In the Heights tells the story of a bodega owner and the people in his neighborhood, Washington Heights in northern Manhattan. Its mix of hip hop and more traditional musical theatre styles will sound familiar to Hamilton fans. My favorite part is “Blackout,” (“Look at the fireworks”) from the end of Act I.

Ben Folds and yMusic/Nashville Symphony, So There, CD 2154

I have been a Ben Folds fan for quite some time—I love his witty songs and unique style. This 2015 album features eight songs written and performed with yMusic, a chamber ensemble of strings and winds, in lieu of Ben’s typical rock style. It also includes a complete recording of the piano concerto he wrote and premiered with the Nashville Symphony in 2014. Ben Folds plays at the Kennedy Center with the National Symphony in June 2017.

Haley

Senior, Music

Arvo Pärt Alina CD 9432

Take a break from studying to get lost in the music of Estonian composer Arvo Pärt. It’s meditative and poignantly beautiful. This CD has been continued to be one of my favorites in the library for the last three years. Alina consists of 3 interpretations of Pärt’s piece Spiegel im Spiegel, with 2 interpretations of his improvisatory Für Alina between. It’s the perfect album to listen to with eyes closed, and let everything else fall away.

Uniko Kimmo Pohjonen, Samuli Kosminen, Kronos Quartet CD 5887

The library has countless Kronos Quartet CDs to explore, but I have been liking their album Uniko which is a collaboration with Finnish musicians Kimmo Pohjonen (accordion, vocals) and Samuli Kosminen (processing and programming), who both composed the music and are active as performers on the tracks. The manipulations of the accordion, vocal and quartet samplings are incredible. The energy coming from these performers is unmistakable and the pieces are truly amazing and cohesive collaborations between talented musicians of different trainings.

Alison

Senior, History

Beyonce, Lemonade, CD 2756

If you haven’t heard this album yet, you should definitely give it a listen. I have always been a big fan of Beyonce, but one of the virtues of this album is that it combines so many genres: Pop, R&B, Rap, and even a little bit of Country! If you’re not a huge fan of Beyonce, some of the featured artists are Jack White, Kendrick Lamar, and The Weeknd, who make the album even more versatile. The Music Library copy of Lemonade also includes the Visual Album, which tells a compelling and relatable story through her music videos and poetry from Warsan Shire.

Dario Marianelli, Pride & Prejudice: Music from the Motion Picture, CD 2757

This is my favorite album to listen to while studying, which is why I chose it for the end of the semester. Aside from the military march, all the songs on the album are both relaxing and motivating if you have to get some work done but don’t want to be too stressed! This album was also nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Score, so it’s also worth listening to during a study break. My favorite track is probably “Your Hands Are Cold”, because I love the way it builds to a climax and it plays during my favorite scene in the movie.  

Dan 

Sophomore, Language & Area Studies

Kevin Murphy & Laurence O’Keefe, Heathers: The Musical, CD 1694

This musical is an adaptation of the 1988 cult film Heathers! It is about the trials of a teenage girl in her last year of high school, with common themes of love, teen angst, murder, and suicide pacts! It is a dark comedy and features fantastic vocals by Jessica Keenan Wynn, Barrett Wilbert Weed, and Ryan McCartan. I really enjoy the humor surrounding some very heavy topics, with powerful vocals to tie the production together. It is the perfect tragedy gone comedy. I would recommend listening to this musical if you’re feeling nostalgic and want to tap into some overcharged angst.

Astor Piazzolla, Soul of the Tango, CD 9741

I was introduced to this album through my coworkers who had played some of the pieces as violists in the AU orchestra! I really enjoy this distinct interpretation of Tango, and my favorite piece is “Mumuki”. It is a wonderful album that jumps between charged, intense tango to sad, romantic tango! Great stuff!

Kat

Senior Musical Theatre

Alan Menken, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, CD 2725

Taking a childhood Disney movie, and turning it into a more adult musical is basically my dream for any Disney movie. Alongside Alan Menken, the composer of countless Disney films, the book writers, James Lapine and Peter Parnell adapted the 1996 film to more fittingly follow the original Victor Hugo novel, creating a slightly darker story than that of the children’s animated film. In turning this iconic film into a more mature portrayal of its unfortunate story, the composition has also matured. While still holding on to a lot of the music from the original film, Menken has created a choir-esque atmosphere of nearly resembling a large aria. It is fun while also incredibly beautiful to listen to, and a fantastic story to listen to and follow. It’s also a great dramatic soundtrack for any exam that needs to be studied for.

Lin-Manuel Miranda, Hamilton, CD 10488

Lin-Manuel Miranda has taken the American Musical Theatre world and turned it into a massive movement for diversity. Through his new musical Hamilton, he writes the story of Alexander Hamilton, an immigrant who rose the ranks in politics to become one of the most influential Founding Fathers. Through a combination of rap, hip-hop and contemporary musical theatre compositions, Manuel has created a piece of American History “as told by America today.” With a primarily minority cast, the story is told by the people who are still struggling today for equality and tolerance. The music is insanely energetic and fun to sing along to, while also being incredibly beautiful in some intense moments. It is a long soundtrack, but fantastic to listen to for those long, essay-writing nights.

Bisah

Sophomore,  Public Relations & Strategic Communications

Solange, A Seat at the Table, CD 2771

This 2016 album, is currently one of my favorites and has been a source of healing for me this year. It’s a discussion and meditation on what it means to be Black in America in 2016, it touches on independence, grief, healing and empowerment. Solange is able to use her light and melodic voice to balance the unapologetically opinionated album. Throughout the album, you hear connections to R&B artists that came before like Marvin Gaye, Janet Jackson, and Aaliyah. However, while the album is rooted in the Black musical tradition it’s still has a fresh and current sound. My favorite song is currently “Don’t Touch my Hair” but it changes every week.

OutKast,Speakerboxxx//The Love Below, CD 9898

This 2003 album, was essentially two albums in one: Andre 3000’s The Love Below and Big Boi’s Speakerboxx. Although, the album shows the growing divide between the two artists, when it was released, it moved hip hop into a new direction. Outkast was able to successfully combine funk, soul, R&B, disco, and rock into one lyrically strong album. This album brought in an era of hip-hop and pop cross-pollinating, that still exists today. My favorite song is “Prototype” on The Love Below.

Matt

Freshman, Audio Technology

Sufjan Stevens, Carrie & Lowell, CD 10467

Sufjan Stevens’ seventh studio album Carrie & Lowell is a coherent blend of soft, emotional indie folk music. Making a return to his roots in the folk music genre, Stevens tells the story of his troubled mother in the wake of her 2012 death. I first learned about Stevens in anticipation of his performance at a music festival I was about to attend in Boston. His deep understanding of orchestration and lyricism show in both his writing and his performance and his overall style give the album a very unique vibe to it. I highly recommend this record – it’s a great, chill album to listen to while studying or relaxing!

Steve Reich, Different Trains/Electric Counterpoint/Three Movements, CD 8752, no.8

I’m a huge fanatic of marching bands and drum corps – I first learned about Steve Reich when I saw a performance of the Bluecoats drum and bugle corps in 2015. They played a very interesting horn interpretation of Electric Counterpoint, and I was instantly hooked. With his use of phasing and repetitive motifs, he creates an amazing soundscape that pulls you in and puts you in a trance. The other two pieces on this CD – Different Trains and Three Movements are very similar in style and create a wonderful atmosphere that can help you focus.

Nicole

Senior, Music

Shrek (Motion Picture Soundtrack), CD 2634

This CD is full of classics, like The Baha Men. It’s a great soundtrack, and on your next study break you should have a dance party to Bad Reputation by Joan Jett.

Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, CD 10160

This electro-pop opera is just now taking Broadway by storm, but it’s been around for over a year! It’s full of some incredible music (No One Else is one of my favorites), and it’s incredibly different yet familiar at the same time. The show is based off of Volume 2 Part 5 of War and Peace by Tolstoy, (in case you didn’t realize how epically long that book was, now you know), and the music is beautiful, fun, and inventive.

 

New Scores!

Symphonic:

Jean Sibelius Symphony no. 4 in A Minor op.63 M1001 .S567 op.63 1998

Musical Theater:

Bruce Montgomery and Arthur S. Sullivan Thespis or the Gods Grown Old M1503.M79 T44 2016

Instrumental:

Sergei Prokofiev Selected Pieces for Viola and Piano from the ballet “Romeo and Juliet” Arr. Vadim Borisovsky M228.P964 R71 2007

Oscar Zimmerman Solos for the Double Bass Player with Piano Accompaniment M237.Z55 S6 1966

Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf Double Bass Concerto in E Major Henle Verlag M1018 .D6 K.172 2011

Paul Hindemith Sonata for French Horn or Alto Saxophone and Piano M271.A4 H56 1984

Heitor Villa-Lobos Fantasia for Saxophone and Orchestra- Piano Reduction M1035.S4 V55 2011

Paul Creston Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Orchestra Piano Reduction M1035.S4 C74 op.26 1966

William Bolcom Housemusic for Flute and Piano M242.B675 H68 2016

Richard Danielpour Piano Fantasy for Solo Piano M25.D185 F3 2016

Gary Burton 6 Unaccompanied Solos for Vibe M175.X6 B87 1995

Various Composers Yorke Solos Volume One for Unaccompanied Double Bass M56 .Y67 1979

Steve Reich Nagoya Marimbas for Two Marimbas M298.R45 N3 1998

The New Best of Wayne Shorter for Solo Saxophone M106.S56 N4 2004

 

New Arrivals!

laz

New Musical Theater CDs

Cagney the Musical Original New York Cast Recording CD 2790

Himself and Nora 2016 Off-Broadway Cast Recording CD 2778

Simply Heavenly Original Cast Recording CD 2779

Lazarus Original Cast Recording CD 2777

Disaster Original Cast Recording CD 2783

Robber Bridegroom 2016 Cast Recording CD 2781

Like You Like It Studio Cast Radcording CD 2782

Songs from Shuffle Along CD 2787

The Crucible Philip Glass CD 2788

 

Other New CDs

A Seat at the Table Solange CD 2771

Music from the Motion Picture: When Harry Met Sally… Harry Connick, Jr. CD 2786

The Writing’s On the Wall Destiny’s Child CD 2784

Concerto for Cello and Ten Players; Piano Trio No. 1; Sextet Richard Wernick CD 2775

Eighth Symphony; Fourth Piano Concerto Charles Wuorinen CD 2776

Cuatro Corridos: A Chamber Opera Various Artists CD 2773

New DVD

Dance for Camera 2: Dance Films from Around the World  ML DVD 269

Rest in Peace Leonard Cohen

Poet and songwriter Leonard Cohen passed away last week. Everyone has been touched by his songs and lyrics at some point in time.

Malcolm Gladwell recently did a feature on his podcast “Revisionist History” on the writing of Hallelujah, and the song’s slow ascent to fame.

Take a moment to remember the life of Leonard Cohen, and take a listen:

“Hallelujah” is about the role that time and iteration play in the production of genius, and how some of the most memorable works of art had modest and undistinguished births.

http://revisionisthistory.com/episodes/07-hallelujah

 

New Scores!

Instrumental

Kronos Collection: Volumes 1 and 2 for String Quartet M451 .K76 2006

Jonathan Bisesi Log Cabin Blues for Brass Quintet with Solo Xylophone M685.G74 L64 2016

Jacob Druckman Reflections on the Nature of Water for Solo Marimba M175.X6 D84 2000

David Friedman and Dave Samuels Carousel for Vibraphone and Marimba M298.F77 C37 1985

Gordon Stout Four Faces for marimba, percussion quartet, and bass M685.S768 F68 2015

Marc Mellits Tachycardia for two alto saxophones M289.M45 T3 2014

George Vance Progressive Repertoire for the Double Bass Vol. 1-3 MT322.V36 P76 2000

Dominico Dragonetti Concerto in A Major for String Bass and Piano M1018 .D73 S36 1963

Pierre Lantier Sicilienne for alto Saxophone and Piano M269.L36 S55 1944

Schubert Arpeggione Sonata for Cello Henle Verlag M236.S375 D.821 1995

Christopher Fulkerson Suite for Cello Solo M52.F85 S85 2015

Avner Dorman Impact for percussion and amplified cello M385.D766 I66 2015

Chopin Preludes Henle Verlag for Piano M22.C545 P76 2007

Orchestral

Ravel La Valse M1520.R26 V35 2008

Sibelius Symphony No. 6 M1001 .S567 op.104 1997

Richard Strauss Burleske for Piano and Orchestra Full Score M1010.S86 B8 2005

Vocal

William Bolcom Cabaret Songs Complete for Medium Voice M1620.B63 C3 2009

Benedetto Marcello Cassandra for voice and recitative accompaniment  M2 .R238 v.192

Facsimile

Ludwig van Beethoven Sonata for Violoncello and Pianoforte Op 69 First Movement ML96.5 .B44

 

November DPA Performances!

November is a month full of music and events in Katzen and Greenberg! Come out and support your friends or classmates in any of these student group performances happening in your backyard.

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Chamber Singers Concert: Election Edition

CHORUS

November 5th at 8pm & November 6th at 3pm in the Abramson Family Recital Hall

The AU Chamber Singers reflect on the meaning of peace and democracy by exploring the tradition of protest and political songs in the US dating from the American Revolutionary War to present day.
Settings of great words by Lincoln, Jefferson, Kofi Annan, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Jan Amos Comenius, and the Bible among others. Choral music by Billings, Schütz, Thompson, Byrd, Bono, Bernice Johnson Reagon, Oscar Peterson, Jiøí Laburda, and others.
Tickets: $5 Students, seniors and AU Community, $10 others

Choreolab 2016: Creative Differences

DANCE

November 9th at 8pm in the Greenberg Theatre

Erin Foreman-Murray, artistic director. AU student choreographers present an exciting evening of concert dance. You will see an array of works-in-progress by these emerging choreographers. Tickets: $5

JQA: A Theatrical Inquiry

THEATER

November 10th, 11th at 8pm and November 12th at 2pm and 8pm in the Studio Theatre

By Aaron Posner and The JQA Team

Directed by Aaron Posner and Jenna Duncan
John Quincy Adams, the sixth president of the United States and son of the second president, was the ultimate Washington insider. Part of a political dynasty, Adams was known for having contradictory views, some conservative and some liberal. Who exactly was this remarkable (or unremarkable) president? And what can we learn from him and his complex legacy?
Tickets: $10-15

Music of the Spheres

WIND BAND

November 11th at 8pm in the Abramson Family Recital Hall

Ben Sonderman, director. Join the AU Symphonic Band for a celestial journey as they perform works inspired by the cosmos. Music influenced by science and science fiction will share the same stage. Tickets: $5 Students, seniors and AU Community, $10 others

Schubert, Sibelius, Bartok, Bizet, and Tcherepnin

ORCHESTRA

November 12 at 8pm & November 13th at 3pm in the Abramson Family Recital Hall

The American University Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Matthew Brown, kicks off its season with a wide variety of great works. The program begins with the little-known but gorgeous piece La Princesse Lointaineby Nikolai Tcherepnin. Violist Christopher Hacnik, Class of 2018, one of the three winners of the 2016 American University Concerto and Aria Competition, performs the great Bartók Viola Concerto. Selections from Bizet’s Carmen Suites I and II are followed by Franz Schubert’s sublime Symphony no. 8 (Unfinished). The program concludes with the epic tone poem Finlandia by Sibelius.

 

The Music of Steve Reich

NEW MUSIC

November 18th at 8pm in the Abramson Family Recital Hall

 

 Noah Getz, director. The AU Workshop explores the music of Steve Reich in celebration of his 80th birthday. Reich was one of the founders of minimalism and he remains one of its most creative and active proponents. Enjoy works by Reich and other minimalist composers that have been influenced by this renowned American composer.

Tickets: $5 Students, seniors and AU Community, $10 others

Fall for Jazz

JAZZ BAND

December 2nd at 8pm in the Abramson Family Recital Hall

The AU Jazz Orchestra, directed by Joshua Bayer, and the Jazz Academy of Music, directed by Paul Carr, will perform a varied program of big band music including swing, bebop, and blues.Tickets: $5 Students, seniors and AU Community, $10 others

 

New Arrivals

CDs

Beyonce Lemonade CD 2756

Pride & Prejudice: music from the motion picture CD 2757

Bruce Springsteen Greetings from Asbury Park CD 2761

John Pizzarelli John Pizzarelli Salutes Johnny Mercer CD 2701

Magic to Do: a new musical from Stephen Schwartz CD 2745

West Side Story: the New Broadway Cast Recording CD 2760

Scores

Michael Becker Long Tone Duets for Trombone MT465 .B3 2015

Dimitri Kabalevsky Piano Concerto no 3 op.50 M1010 .K13 op.50 2015

Juliana Hodkinson Lightness for 3 Percussionists  M385.H63 L54 2015

Nils Rohwer Mimikry duet for two marimbas M298.R64 M5 2015