Christopher Watford – bassoon

Chris Watford opens EUROMicroFest 2017 at E-Werk on Thurs 18th May.  On Fri 19th May he is giving a free talk about the Microtonal Bassoon.

Here’s something about Chris, his recital programme and a description of his talk:

CHRISTOPHER WATFORD is a Boston/New York based bassoonist concerned with the expansion of the instrument’s capabilities. Praised for bringing “smooth varnish” (The Boston Globe) to his performances with a “clear consistent tone,” Watford works to advance the instrument’s relevance within varying contexts. As a specialist incontemporary music, his performances pursue the limits of extended techniques, microtonality, and electroacoustics, with a focus on extreme sonic identities and the exploitation of the instrument’s acoustic peculiarities. Watford has worked closely with many leading composers including Pierluigi Billone, Salvatore Sciarrino, Tristan Murail and Franck Bedrossian, and has commissioned and premiered numerous works exploring the range and potential of the instrument. He is a member of Boston’s acclaimed new-music sinfonietta Sound Icon and appears regularly with ensembles throughout New England and New York. Watford is a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music and the North Carolina School of the Arts.

Jason Eckardt
A Compendium of Catskill Native Botanicals, book 2 “Wild Ginger” (2014)
for solo bassoon
Pierluigi Billone
Legno.Edgre II. Edre (2002)
for solo bassoon
Liza Lim
Axis Mundi (2012-14)
for solo bassoon
Katarina Miljkovic
Drop (2008-2017)
for bassoon and electronics

The Microtonal Bassoon – a demonstration of the bassoon’s microtonal potential as well as an examination of key methods/issues of execution and notation. Drawing on music by Pierluigi Billone, Liza Lim, Joseph Maneri, and others, the discussion will explore the bassoon’s relationship to three specific microtonal systems: ¼ tones, 72 note, and “inherent”intonation (irregular scales derived from the instrument’s natural microtonal structure). The talk will address issues for both composers and performers on approaching microtonal writing for the bassoon.

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