Ensemble for These Times (E4TT) is the somewhat unique chamber trio that brings together (in left-to-right order in the photograph below) soprano Nanette McGuinness, pianist Dale Tsang, and cellist Anne Lerner-Wright (guest artist for the current season):
Much of the group’s repertoire has been shaped by its Jewish Music & Poetry Project, which highlights the work of Jewish composers, both past and present, as well as contemporary composers setting texts by Jewish poets. The group was formed during the 2007–2008 season; and April of 2016 saw the first release of an album based on this project, Surviving: Women’s Words, a quartet of song cycles by David Garner each based on texts by a Jewish woman, who had survived the Holocaust. On Friday, January 27, E4TT will perform a concert for International Holocaust Remembrance Day as part of the San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music’s Presidio Series of free recitals held at the Presidio Officers’ Club that will include music from this album, as well as recent additions to its repertoire.
The one disadvantage with these free recitals is that the Presidio Officers’ Club is not situated conveniently for those who depend on public transportation. Fortunately, those interested in the E4TT repertoire will be able to take advantage of a free preview event that will be presented under the auspices of Noontime Concerts. Selections from Garner’s song cycles will not be included as part of the preview; but the preview will include music by the Dutch composer Henriette Bosmans, whose music had been banned by the Nazis. A more familiar banned composer, Erich Wolfgang Korngold, will also be included on the preview program, along with a new arrangement of music from Franz Waxman’s 1965 song cycle The Song of Terezin. Waxman originally scored this piece for mixed chorus, children’s chorus, soprano, and full orchestra. However, at this performance Lerner-Wright and Tsang will perform arrangements of two of the songs from the cycle for cello and piano; and the texts for those songs will be included in the printed program. (At the Presidio Officer's Club, where the acoustics are more conducive, McGuinness will read the texts.) Finally, the Noontime Concerts preview will include compositions by Klaus Miehling and Paulina Nazaykinskaya, both of whom submitted responses to E4TT’s 2016 Call for Scores.
This performance will take place at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, January 17. Noontime Concerts recitals take place at Old St. Mary’s Cathedral at 660 California Street, located in Chinatown on the northeast corner of Grant Street. These concerts require neither tickets nor reservations. However, donations are both accepted and encouraged with a suggested amount of $5.