Shadow, Echo, Memory is a collection of nineteenth-, twentieth-, and twenty-first century music arranged and written for cello ensemble. It draws its inspiration from the cello itself—that is, in the instrument’s mysterious captivating force. Many believe the power of the cello lies in the fact that its range and timbre bring to mind those of the human voice. Indeed, “Après un Rêve,” “Vocalise,””Lux Aeterna,” and “Three Lacquer Prints” are arrangements of vocal works that showcase the instrument’s dynamic and versatile voice. In Mahler’s “Adagietto” and Kernis’ “Ballad,” two songs of love that extend beyond the capabilities of the human voice, the cello shows its power to express what is inexpressible. And finally, Thomalla’s “Intermezzo” and van der Sloot’s “Shadow, Echo, Memory” both use the cello to transport the listener to an entirely new sound world; one where we come face-to-face with the haunting and disarming voice of a distant past.
All together, this varied group of compositions explores the cello’s power to sing, to express textures of light and dark, to bring to life sounds and images from another time, and to aid a listener in revisiting their own history.
The Northwestern University Cello Ensemble:
"A beast of a group" (WQXR, Q2 Music), the Northwestern University Cello Ensemble is comprised of current and former cello students at Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music. The group appeared on The New York Times’ Top 25 Classical Recordings of 2015, and The New Yorker’s Top 10 Classical Recordings of 2015.
Upcoming engagements for the Northwestern University Cello Ensemble include a tour of the Midwest starting and ending in Chicago in the fall of 2016, as well as a European tour in March 2017 with concerts in Salzburg, Rome and Munich.
Three Lacquer Prints
1. I – Temple Ceremony
2. II – A Year Passes
3. III – A Burnt Offering
4. Après Un Rêve
Michael van der Sloot
5. Shadow, Echo, Memory
7. Intermezzo (from Fremd)
Aaron Jay Kernis
9. Lux Aeterna
10. Adagietto (from Symphony No. 5)