Composing a concerto during the COVID crisis

Musical work-in-progress celebrates the lively sounds of Klezmer

In early June, two musicians traveled from New York City intent on a brief stay while working with Hill and Hollow Music, the chamber music organization in Saranac, New York. They wound up staying weeks beyond what they’d originally planned, however, retreating from a summer of canceled concerts. Clarinetist David Krakauer and sound explorer Kathleen Tagg used their time among the glorious Adirondack nature to continue writing a major composition, their first concerto for a soloist and symphony orchestra.

Preview the work in progress and enjoy the composer interviews here.

The concerto was co-commissioned by the Santa Rosa Symphony, the Eugene Symphony and The Adele and John Gray Endowment Fund. The duo is designing the composition to showcase Krakauer’s innovative way of honoring the eastern European traditions of Klezmer music.

In addition to writing music, Krakauer and Tagg also perform together.  Their acclaimed Breath and Hammer Acoustic program airs on Mountain Lake PBS this month. The clarinet and piano duo present an eclectic musical journey that lives at the intersection of world music and improvisation and is sure to delight audiences of all ages.

The television presentation results from a partnership between Hill and Hollow Music and Mountain Lake PBS.  It was recorded in June at the historic Methodist Church in Saranac, New York.

Breath and Hammer Acoustic airs Friday, November 27 at 1:00 pm on Mountain Lake PBS.

See Paul Larson’s previous interview with Krakauer and Tagg here, highlighting the concert special.

Spotlight is made possible, in part, by the Glenn and Carol Pearsall Adirondack Foundation, dedicated to improving the quality of life for year-round residents of the Adirondack Park.  Spotlight is also supported by Hill & Hollow Music.