The latest commissioning initiative from the contemporary chamber group Ensemble for These Times (E4TT) is entitled The Film Noir Project. This group consists of the trio of soprano Nanette McGuinness accompanied by pianist Dale Tsang and cellist Anne Lerner-Wright. It also includes composer and co-founder David Garner.
The idea behind the initiative was to pay homage to the musical side of American film noir classics that were produced during the Thirties and Forties. The five new compositions that resulted from this effort will be performed at the beginning of next month in the final E4TT performance of the season to be given in San Francisco. That concert will also bear the title The Film Noir Project.
The compositions to be premiered will be as follows:
- “Indigo Codes” for solo piano, composed by Aleksandra Vrebalov (also a participant in the Fifty for the Future project initiated by the Kronos Quartet)
- Polina Nazaykinskaya’s “Waltz-noir” for piano and cello
- a duo for cello and piano by Lennie Moore, a member of the Technology and Applied Composition (TAC) faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM)
- Garner’s solo cello composition “Elegy for David Raksin”
- the winner in the “Best Sound Track to a Film Noir Clip Student Competition,” organized in conjunction with MaryClare Brzytwa at TAC
The program will also include “Noir Vignettes,” composed for cello and piano by Stacy Garrop in 2014, and the 2016 version of Justin Merritt’s “the great famine,” scored for soprano and cello. In addition the music will be accompanied by images created by Corinne Whitaker, Man Ray, Emma Kazaryan, and Vrebalov.
This concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 6, at SFCM. The performance will take place in the Osher Salon. SFCM is located at 50 Oak Street, between Van Ness Avenue and Franklin Street and a short walk from the Muni Van Ness Station. There will be no charge for admission to this concert. Nevertheless, reservations are recommended; they may be made through the following hyperlink to a Google Forms Web page.
In addition, there will be a special preview performance of “Elegy for David Raskin,” as well as a performance of “the great famine,” that will be held at the Mechanics’ Institute’s CinemaLit Film Series. E4TT will perform these works in conjunction with a screening of the 1950 film Gun Crazy. That program will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday, March 29. The Mechanics’ Institute is located at 57 Post Street, and films are screened in the fourth floor Meeting Room. Members will be admitted at no charge, and the general public is requested to make a donation of $10. Reservations are desirable and may be made through a Mechanics’ Institute Web page or by calling 415-393-0101.