On November 29th I’ll be presenting my annual faculty recital. The big focus for this program will be works for horn with other instruments by Jan Koetsier, in preparation for a forthcoming CD. The second of two recording sessions for this project is scheduled for December, so I programmed this recital much later in the semester than usual. Hopefully this will help me be in top shape for the session. Here’s the program.
- Sonatina, Op. 59, No. 1
- Romanza, Op. 59, No. 2
- Scherzo Brillante, Op. 96
- Variationen, Op. 59, No. 3
- Three Russian Miniatures (Arr. Jason Rinehart)
- Selections from 13 Etudes Caractéristiques
- Sonate für Horn und Harfe, Op. 94
All of the works are by Koetsier, with the exception of the Three Russian Miniatures arranged by Jason Rinehart, a colleague and fellow horn player. Jason was kind enough to arrange these brief works for me, composed by Mily Balakirev (“On the Volga”), César Cui (“From my Tears”), and Alexander Gretchaninov (“The Joker”). They work very well for horn and piano, and are a great way to finish up the first half. My collaborators for this recital and the recording are Richard Seiler from the University of Louisiana at Monroe and Jaymee Haefner from the University of North Texas. Both are incredibly skilled and sensitive musicians, and I am honored to be working with them. I generally like to give spoken program notes from the stage, but for this recital I have also included the following statement about the performance.
This evening’s recital is given in preparation for a recording project which will feature several works for horn with other instruments by the Dutch composer Jan Koetsier (YAHN koot-SEER). Though little known in the U.S. – except among brass players – Koetsier is well-regarded throughout Europe, and especially in Munich, Germany, where he served as professor of conducting at the Hochschule für Musik (Music Academy) for many years. As a composer he devoted much of his efforts to brass and wind instruments, and seemed especially interested in developing the repertoire for unusual or under-utilized combinations of instruments. His music is often virtuosic, as in his Scherzo Brillante and Variationen, but also lyrical, as in his Romanza and the second movement of his Sonate für Horn und Harfe. In all cases, whether serious or humorous (sometimes both within the same work), Koetsier’s compositions are always well-crafted and enjoyable to perform. Why choose to record his music, given that there are numerous other works for horn by more famous composers? One reason is that very few of these pieces have been recorded, and are seldom programmed on recitals by students and professionals. It is my hope that our forthcoming recording will help in some small way to bring Koetsier’s music to a wider audience, and encourage other performers to program all or some of these works on their own recitals.
If you happen to be in the area, we’d love to see you there! Admission is free and open to the public. Follow this link for more details.