The Washington Square Contemporary Music Society: Jayn Rosenfeld, flute; Jean Kopperud, clarinet; Dominic Donato, percussion; James Winn, piano; Margaret Kampmeier, piano; Curtis Macomber, violin; Deborah Wong, violin; Lois Martin, viola; Christopher Finckel; cello; Cheryl Marshall, soprano; David Gilbert, conductor
The Da Capo Chamber Players: Patricia Spencer, flute; Jo-Ann Sternberg, clarinet; Pablo Rieppi, percussion; Stephen Gosling, piano; Eva Gruesser, violin; Andre Emilianoff, cello; Andre Solomon-Glover, baritone soloist; Louis Karchin, conductor
The Second String Quartet [is] a ten-minute work in a single movement…..creating a series of fascinating cameos based on a single motive heard in the first measure. By turns the music is aggressive, ruminative… The Sonata da camera reveals an outpouring of emotion that takes Karchin back to thematic and melodic materials. Whereas in the quartet we find Karchin almost toying with a motive, we here feel a more cohesive approach, the development of material being more clearly defined.
“Rustic Dances, a work in one continuous movement scored for violin, clarinet and marimba, comes from the same year . There appears to have been so many ideas impinging on Karchin’s thought process, with Jewish, Latin American and Hungarian traditional music playing a role. Rhythmically it is very strong, the sound colors multifarious, each instrument starting an idea that is taken up and expanded upon by the other two. Cascades draws upon the Impressionist era for its sound spectrum….the darting sprays of water taking the music in very differing directions, at times crashing down as a moment of musical dissonance; but more frequently it is playful and of luminous quality.
“I would describe Karchin as a 21st century musician, taking us into the new millennium with a new vision of music.
Karchin's pieces combine the rhythmic drive associated with downtown music with the harmonic and structural rigor of uptown serialism. These pieces are serious as well as fun to listen to. —Steve Hicken, American Record Guide