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Brooklyn Rider Releases So Many Things with Anne Sofie von Otter on Naïve Classique (Sep 30)


Brooklyn Rider, the game-changing string quartet hailed as “the future of chamber music” (Strings), releases a new album with Grammy Award-winning Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter on Naïve Classique on September 30. The album juxtaposes the music of selected classical composers, who share what von Otter calls “anything from a toe to a whole foot in the world of popular music and jazz,” with that of adventurous popular composers with a well-documented interest in classical music. Included are works by Nico Muhly and Anders Hillborg; new compositions, specifically created for the project by Pulitzer Prize-winner Caroline Shaw and Brooklyn Rider violinist Colin Jacobsen; and specially commissioned arrangements of pieces by John Adams, Elvis Costello, Rufus Wainwright, Sting, Björk, Kate Bush, and Brad Mehldau, who also collaborated with von Otter on her 2010 album, Love Songs. Brooklyn Rider tours with the mezzo to support the new album this fall, both in Europe and the U.S., including an October 13 date at Carnegie Hall.

Last summer, during the farewell season of Brooklyn Rider’s ten-year-old Stillwater Music Festival in Minnesota, the ensemble’s performances of material slated for So Many Things were an outstanding highlight. As the Star Tribune reported: “For some, the main attraction of the evening was the eminent Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter. … [who] brought … a voice subtly modulated from its operatic origins into that of a creamy chanteuse.” The mezzo described the experience in liner notes for the recording:

“Brooklyn Rider have been the most wonderful of partners. … We initially met in New York to discuss the project, [and] subsequently sent endless emailed ideas and sound clips back and forth to narrow down the programme choices before our first rehearsal together in Stillwater, Minnesota in a log cabin by a little lake. It was an idyllic and perfect setting for concentration and creative thinking. “

As Brooklyn Rider adds:

“Working with the incomparable Anne Sofie von Otter has been a near constant reminder that there is nothing quite as expressive as the human voice. … In our experience, it is almost always in the reaching between two mediums where the interesting ‘stuff’ happens.”

Brooklyn Rider has long been known for an adventurous spirit of collaboration that embraces styles from jazz to world music and everything in between. Partners in the group’s wide-ranging and groundbreaking collaborative ventures have included pianist and singer Gabriel Kahane, on his recent release The Fiction Issue; dancer Wendy Whelan and choreographer Brian Brooks; jazz icon Bill Frisell; Wilco’s Glenn Kotche; Deerhoof’s Greg Saunier; Irish fiddler Martin Hayes; saxophonist Joshua Redman; banjo star Béla Fleck, on his 2013 DG/Mercury Classics album The Impostor; folk singer Aoife O’Donovan; and kamancheh virtuoso Kayhan Kalhor, on his 2008 recording Silent City, named one of Rhapsody’s best world-music albums of the last decade.

As Brooklyn Rider explains, in summing up So Many Things, the music is “a constellation of diverse songs and compositions whose only prerequisite for inclusion was that the music touched an emotional chord for us collectively.” Von Otter more than confirms this assessment:

“The music that speaks to me … has to be driven by human emotion, it has to be so much more than a technical or intellectual travail. … On So Many Things, we are bringing together music from two worlds although I don’t really see them as two worlds at all, it’s all just music – really good music! ”

For high-resolution photos, click here.



So Many Things

Label: Naïve Classique
Release date: Friday, September 30

Anne Sofie von Otter, mezzo-soprano
Brooklyn Rider

Track List:
Pi (Kate Bush, arr. Kyle Sanna)
Am I in your light? (John Adams, arr. Evan Ziporyn)
Cant voi l’aube (Caroline Shaw)
For sixty cents (Colin Jacobsen)
Cover me (Björk, arr. Erik Arvinder)
So many things (Nico Muhly)
Kväll (A. Hillborg)
Hunter (Björk, arr. Vince Mendoza)
Love sublime (Brad Mehldau, arr. Patrick Zimmerli)
Speak darkly, my angel (Elvis Costello, arr. Rob Mathes)
Practical arrangement (Sting, arr. Rob Mathes)
Les feux d’artifice t’appellent (Rufus Wainwright, arr. Dana Lyn)
Bonus track: The birds will still be singing (Elvis Costello, arr. Rob Mathes)

Brooklyn Rider: fall tour with Anne Sofie von Otter

Sep 1
Copenhagen, Denmark
Tivoli Concert Hall

Oct 7
Chapel Hill, NC
Carolina Performing Arts

Oct 8
Washington, DC
Washington Performing Arts

Oct 13
New York, NY
Carnegie Hall

Nov 3
Stockholm, Sweden

Nov 5
Utrecht, Netherlands

Nov 8
Brussels, Belgium
La Monnaie

Nov 11
Saffron Walden, UK
Saffron Hall

Nov 12
Luxembourg, Luxembourg
Philharmonie Luxembourg

Nov 13
Zurich, Switzerland
Opernhaus Zürich


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© 21C Media Group, August 2016

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