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Elizabeth Brown (b.1953): Mirage / Elizabeth Brown, flute & theremin; Ben Verdery, amplified classical guitar

Album Summary

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Seahorse, for theremin & Partch instruments
>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Arcana, for flute & recorded sound
>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Piranesi, for theremin & string quartet
>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Arias (3), for theremin & recorded sound (from "A Bookmobile for Dreamers")
>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Atlantis, for amplified classical guitar & theremin
>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Mirage, for shakuhachi & string quartet
>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Shinshofukei, or an Imagined Lanscape, for Japanese traditional instrument ensemble
Performers Conductor Ensembles Composer

Notes & Reviews:

The music of Elizabeth Brown (b. 1953) revels in paradox, but of a subtle kind. The strangeness of the music sneaks up on you; its liquid, mellifluous quality masks a far more radical stance. Seemingly irreconcilable instrumental timbres coexist peaceably: shakuhachi with string quartet, theremin with guitar, Partch instruments with theremin. The music is blessed with an old-fashioned gift for clear and singable melody . . . except for the fact that the tune keeps bending and melting. There is a genuine romantic sensibility, yet it exists in a soundworld that can only be avant-garde. But the avantgardisme is in turn presented within a sensibility that is tender, sweet, and toylike. In short it expresses a genuine innocence, something we encounter far too rarely in an era of postmodern irony. Brown's musical world is one of dreamlike sounds, images, textures, colors, and harmonies. One sees the literature of the past, especially the romantic era, transformed through its colored filter. One also glimpses a musical future that is fresh and imaginative, but never afraid of beauty, nor of humane warmth.

American Record Guide, January/February 2014
The result is utterly seductive. This is the most fun I've had with contemporary music in a while. Shakuhachi, Vietnamese monochord, theremin, diamond marimba, and other exotic instruments create a vibrating delicacy aided by the vivid recording, pulling the listener in. There is a gentle surrealism that makes us feel we are inside Brown's dreams and that they are mainly happy ones.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Issue Project Room, Brooklyn, NY (03/27/2008).



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Works Details

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Seahorse, for theremin & Partch instruments
  • Performers: Jared Soldiviero (Harmonic Canon); Elizabeth Brown (Theremin); Bill Ruyle (Diamond Marimba); Dean Drummond (Guitar); Joe Bergen (Bass Marimba); Dave Broome (Chromelodeon); Joe Fee (JustStrokeRods); Joe Fee (Zoomoozophone)
  • Ensemble: Newband
  • Running Time: 9 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2008

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Arcana, for flute & recorded sound
  • Performer: Elizabeth Brown (Flute)
  • Ensemble: Pro Musica Nipponia
  • Running Time: 9 min. 37 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2004

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Piranesi, for theremin & string quartet
  • Performers: Annaliesa Place (Violin); Joanne Lin (Cello); Sharon Roffman (Violin); Elizabeth Brown (Theremin); Stephanie Griffin (Viola)
  • Running Time: 13 min. 57 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2007

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Arias (3), for theremin & recorded sound (from "A Bookmobile for Dreamers")
  • Performer: Elizabeth Brown (Theremin)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 55 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2011

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Atlantis, for amplified classical guitar & theremin
  • Performers: Ben Verdery (Guitar); Elizabeth Brown (Theremin)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 54 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2007

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Mirage, for shakuhachi & string quartet
  • Performers: Annaliesa Place (Violin); Joanne Lin (Cello); Sharon Roffman (Violin); Elizabeth Brown (Shakuhachi); Stephanie Griffin (Viola)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 45 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Chamber Music
  • Written: 2008

>Brown, Elizabeth [Flute] : Shinshofukei, or an Imagined Lanscape, for Japanese traditional instrument ensemble
  • Performers: Takashi Harago (Shakuhachi); Chie Sakurai (Koto); Keiko Hisamoto (Koto); Noriko Tamura (Koto); Takei Makoto (Shakuhachi); Takei Makoto (Percussion); No Soon (Percussion); Hiromu Motonaga (Shakuhachi); Chizuko Yamazaki (Shamisen)
  • Conductor: Yasushi Inada
  • Ensemble: Pro Musica Nipponia
  • Running Time: 13 min. 55 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2010