Kalistos Chamber Orchestra
2003-2004  Season Concert No. 3
February 17, 2004 Tuesday 8 pm
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click here for directions to
Edward Pickman Concert Hall
27 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138]


For more information:
Sasha Callahan


Boston, MA (January 21, 2004) – The Boston-based Kalistos Chamber
Orchestra’s February concert features renowned violinist Laura Bossert and
cellist Terry King, in a U.S. premiere of Vladislav Uspensky’s Double
Concerto.  The work was written for Ms. Bossert and Mr. King, and arranged
specifically for Kalistos Chamber Orchestra and this performance.   Ms.
Bossert and Mr. King have received international prizes and acclaim for
their solo and chamber performances and their longstanding commitment to
contemporary music.  Also joining Kalistos for this performance are members
of two acclaimed Boston chamber ensembles, Vento Chiaro and Huntington

Tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for students/ senior citizens, and are
available at the door or by calling 617-393-1960.

Kalistos Chamber Orchestra featuring guest artists Laura Bossert and Terry

Arvo Part                 Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten

Vladislav Uspensky         Double Concerto for violin and cello
                                     Featuring Laura Bossert and Terry King

Frank Bridge                Nocturne from Suite for Strings

Benjamin Britten        Variations on a theme of Frank Bridge

8:00 p.m.
Tuesday, February 17, 2004.

Edward Pickman Concert Hall
27 Garden St.
Cambridge, MA 02138

About Kalistos
Kalistos Chamber Orchestra was formed in the winter of 2002 by a group of
Boston area musicians brought together by their common love of music and a
desire to contribute to the community.  These players share a willingness to
bring their varied backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences together in a
collaborative environment, creating an orchestra that is democratic in its
artistic direction.  The group is fully rotational both musically and
administratively, allowing each member an opportunity to explore a broad
range of responsibilities and roles.  For more information visit
http://www.kalistos.org .

For more info please contact us at
800-896 7340 or email info@kalistos.org

Ticket Prices
Adults $20
Students with valid ID $10

Guest Artists' bio

LAURA ANNE BOSSERT, violinist, a Silver Medalist in the Henryk Szering International Violin Competition has earned recognition as a soloist and chamber musician of great artistry. She has appeared as soloist with the State Symphony of Mexico and has collaborated with the Muir String Quartet, the Raphael and Mirecourt Trios. This summer she performed as a Caramoor Virtuosi at the Rising Stars week at the Caramoor Festival in Katonah, NY. In the spring Ms. Bossert with cellist, Terry King, presented the world premiere of Lalo Schriffin’s Double Concerto .This May, Bossert spent two weeks at St.Petersburg Conservatory, Russia, giving Masterclasses and recitals. Bossert has taught at the Shanghai Conservatory, University of Rochester, Eastman School of Music and West Texas A&M . She is heard on a new video version of Charlie Chaplin’s masterpiece, the Gold Rush featuring the chamber music of Beethoven and on a CD entitled Sombre Y Sol featuring music for violin and guitar. Ms. Bossert is on the faculty of the Longy School of Music, Cambridge, MA The Quartet program and Walnut Hill School.

TERRY KING, cellist, was a protege of the late Gregor Piatigorsky and a former assistant to him in the famous master classes at the University of Southern California. Many prominent American composers have written works for King and he has premiered, commissioned and/or recorded important cello compositions by such celebrated masters as Roy Harris, Virgil Thomson, Henry Cowell, Paul Creston, Lukas Foss and many others. King is a member of two world-class piano trios, the Mirecourt Trio, and the International Trio. Dr. King currently is engaged in recording projects of the major works for cello (the complete Beethoven works on the Dutch label Erasmus) as well as American cello classics series (CELLO AMERICA on the Music and Arts label). Dr. King currently teaches at the Hartt School of Music, Longy School of Music and Walnut Hill School.

What the press says about our guest soloists :

"...a master technician both in digital facility and in his richly varied tone."
-High Fidelity Magazine

"...a master player...perfectly polished performances...magnificent playing... can coax oceans of smooth, rich sounds from the cello."
-The New Records

"..to the instrument born...playing with passion, sweep and drive."
-Los Angeles Times

"...played with relish and technical aplomb...performances could not be faulted."
-New York Times

Volunteer opportunities,
If you would like to volunteer for Kalistos Chamber Orchestra, we have a number of opportunities ranging from ushers to graphic designer.  Please contact us at 800 896 7340 and leave your contact info.

Sponsorship Opportunities
We are always seeking sponsors to make our concerts possible.  Please contact us if you would like to join KCO's efforts in making our community a more beautiful place to live in.

Frank Bridge (b. Brighton, England, 26 February 1879; d. Eastbourne, England, 10 January 1941): “Nocturne” from Suite for Strings

From the time of his death, in 1941, up to the 1970’s, Frank Bridge’s music went through a period of considerable neglect—even today his name is not nearly as well-known as other English composers of the late-19th and 20th centuries, such as Edward Elgar, John Ireland, and, of course, Benjamin Britten. (It is actually by way of one of the works we hear this evening, Britten’s Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge, that his name has become best-known.) But scholarship in the past 30 years has taken a fresh look at Bridge and the significance of his musical achievement, especially his more modern, experimental tendencies in the later part of his career that placed him far in advance of many of his contemporaries.

Bridge’s musical output can be roughly divided into two periods: the works produced before 1920, and those after. The works of the earlier period, wherein falls the Suite of 1909 – 1910, have their style based on German models, particularly Brahms, but also exhibit a French influence, notably that of Fauré. Bridge knew his audience and what would please them—so it was with the Suite, another large-scale orchestral work, The Sea, and chamber music such as his Phantasy Quartet of 1910 (for piano, violin, viola and cello) that he made his name with the British public. It was after 1920, however, that Bridge recognized certain expressive limitations in his music, which impelled him to expand his musical language, particularly in his use of chord structures and bitonality—his Piano Sonata of 1924 is a prime example of this new, modernistic style. (Some writers have also suggested that the trauma of living through World War I was a major factor in Bridge’s plumbing new emotional depths in his art.) The Suite for Strings, however, is not without its darker moments, and indeed the “Nocturne,” as Anthony Payne in his book Frank Bridge: Radical and Conservative has suggested, foreshadows some elements of Bridge’s later style, citing a similarity of mood between this movement and the Lament for string orchestra of 1915.

The tonal stability so evident in the other movements of  the Suite is notably absent in the “Nocturne”: the resolution to a G-major chord at the beginning of the movement, heralded by the violas’ high D harmonic, is denied—instead, that D becomes the point of departure for the first violins’ longing melody in F minor. Another near-resolution, this time to C minor, instead gives way to a solo cello, its line sympathetically echoed by a solo viola, followed by a quasi-developmental section with an elaboration on the main theme, presenting some of the richest texture of the movement. After another appearance of the solo cello, the main theme returns in its original form—and again, with great poise, Bridge extends the longing, unrequieted harmonies almost till the very end, where the violas’ high D reappears, this time finding its place in the final G major chord to close the wistful lullaby.

Arvo Pärt (b. Paide, Estonia, 11 September 1935): Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten

Arvo Pärt, like Arnold Schönberg before him, is an composer who was forced to invent a new method of composition that was both deeply meaningful to him, as well as one that would be recognized as a truly original artistic voice. Whereas Schönberg all but abandoned tonality and functional harmony to develop his twelve-tone technique, Pärt began his career employing serial and collage techniques, and juxtaposing tonal and atonal sections in his music, before recognizing a need to reinvent his musical language, which would eventually lead him back to complete tonality. This journey began in 1968 with Pärt’s study of Gregorian chant, and his own forays into writing simple monody (a single melodic line, with no accompaniment), in an effort to recapture the eloquent simplicity of first-century ecclesiastical song in a twentieth-century musical context. In his biography of Pärt, Paul Hillier expressed this artistic mission as “an attempt to reconstitute art within past and future time, to fly in the face of the disconnectedness of postmodernism and seize a cultural meta-narrative from time so distant, yet so potently realized, that it has the force of new life.” [1] Pärt was not the only composer to reject the disconnectedness of much of twentieth-century music: the American composer George Rochberg had his own rebellion against the avant-garde’s denial of their musical heritage—he rejected the serial method as insufficient to meet his own needs of emotional expression, and began to find his way back to tonality. Pärt too re-embraced the tonal system, through his invention of the “tintinnabuli” method. As the word implies, the works based on this method resemble in many ways the ringing of a bell—both the initial sound one hears when it is struck, but also the rich resonance with all its overtones heard afterwards. The Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten of 1977 was one of Pärt’s first tintinnabuli works, and it remains a major milestone in his artistic development. The piece begins with an actual bell, sounding an A—the funereal sonority which provides the work with both its emotional and tonal grounding. From this A, the simplest of melodies (taking its cue from Gregorian chant) begins in the first violins: a descending A aeolian (natural minor) scale. This scalar pattern is repeated in four layers of string texture below, entering one at a time, and each playing the melody twice as slow as its predecessor (i.e., the first violins begin with a half note, followed by a quarter note; the second violins begin with a whole note followed by a half note; and so on, down to the double-basses). To this is added the essence of the tintinnabuli method: each of the other divided string parts continuously plays one note of the tonic A-minor triad—that is, an A, C or E. The effect is a constantly evolving resonance of the tonic triad against the descending melodic line, expressing wave upon wave of grief, all the while punctuated by the bell’s lamenting A. Pärt himself addressed the highly personal nature of this work, with respect to its dedicatee:

Why did the date of Benjamin Britten’s death—December 4, 1976—touch such a chord in me? During this time I was obviously at the point where I could recognize the magnitude of such a loss. Inexplicable feelings of guilt, more than that even, arose in me. I had just discovered Britten for myself. Just before his death I began to appreciate the unusual purity of his music . . . And besides, for a long time I had wanted to meet Britten personally—and now it would not come to that. [2]

It is interesting to note that a similar (yet certainly more agonizing) event in Rochberg’s life touched off a need to find a new emotional and artistic outlet for grief: in 1964 his 20-year-old son died of a brain tumor, and it was then Rochberg started to recognize the expressive limitations of the serial composition, and began to incorporate more tonal gestures in his musical language, beginning with the chamber work Contra Mortem et Tempus. It is perhaps this recognition of the persistent significance of human emotion in art—and not just grief, but joy, love, hope—that allows us to recognize composers such as Pärt, Rochberg and Britten, among many others, as great the voices of twentieth-century music—and allow us to recognize too the continued need for such voices in our own century.

[1] Paul Hillier, Arvo Pärt (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997), 74.

[2] Arvo Pärt, liner notes to ECM recording of the Cantus, quoted in Hillier, 103.

Benjamin Britten (b. Lowestoft, England, 22 November 1913; d. Adelburgh, England, 4 December 1976): Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge, op. 10.

Benjamin Britten’s ascendancy to the position as the foremost British composer of his generation was in no small part a result of his study with Frank Bridge (1879 – 1941), one of the more prominent British composers of his own time. Bridge met Britten in the fall of 1927; impressed with the thirteen-year-old’s work—particularly his forays into a more modern harmonic idiom, with Holst and Ravel as models—Bridge agreed to take him on as his only composition student. It was from him that Britten learned his impeccable compositional technique, including an ability to write idiomatically for each instrument of the orchestra. Later in life, Britten summed up Bridge’s influence by citing two principles: “One was that you should find yourself and be true to what you found. [The other was] scrupulous attention to good technique, the business of saying clearly what was in one’s mind.” [1] The Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge, written on commission from the Boyd Neel Orchestra in 1937, aptly demonstrate adherence to these rules, though as biographer Humphrey Carpenter [2] has noted, the work is as much Britten’s declaration of independence from his teacher as it is a homage to him. As Britten was one of the first British composers to rebel against the so-called “pastoral school” of Edward Elgar and Ralph Vaughan Williams, his choice of a decidedly pastoral theme, from Bridge’s second Idyll for string quartet, as the basis for his variations was made not without irony: first presented by a solo quartet against a pizzicato accompaniment in the rest of the orchestra, Britten seized upon the theme’s harmonic ambiguities and melodic intervals (particularly the falling fifth) to create a dazzling array of set pieces that stretch far beyond the placid mood of the original theme. The result is a work of tremendous musical ingenuity with a wide scope of mood and affect, making it one of the finest contributions to the 20th-century string orchestra repertory. The variations are summarized below:

I.  Adagio.  The opening chords of the violas, cellos and basses recall the both the falling fifth of the theme and its unsettled harmonies; over this the violins play a quasi-recitative derived from the latter part of the theme, the straining melody growing ever more poignant toward the middle of the variation. The disembodied harmony finally come to a resolution with the final, unambiguous C major chord.

II. March. The theme is transformed into an insouciant dotted-rhythm figure in the lower strings, juxtaposed with the trills in the violins. The triplet figure, derived from the scalar measures of the theme, adds to the jollity, along with the pizzicato eighths, which parody the falling-fifth figure.

III. Romance. In one of the more straightforward variations, the violins follow the general outline of the theme, but the grace of the melody is thrown slightly off-kilter with its implied 6/8 meter against the violas’, cellos’ and basses’ 3/4 . The two meters come together with the violins’ scalar descents in quarter notes, one beginning on a B-flat three octaves above middle C—the variation ends on the same high B-flat, played as a harmonic.

IV. Aria Italiana.  In perhaps the most fun-loving variation, Britten suggests a send-up of a Rossini aria, with the first violins as the prima donna, against a pizzicato accompaniment (marked “quasi guitara” in the second violins and violas). The falling fifth figure is expanded to ever greater intervals in the first violins, finally reaching the span of two octaves by the variation’s end.

V. Bourée Classique. The falling fifth takes on a decidedly rustic character here, played on the open A and D strings in the first violins and cellos. This figure creates an ongoing harmonic conflict, sandwiched between the changing harmonies marked by the stringent chords in the rest of the orchestra. In a bravura solo, a violin takes on both these roles, in a style of string writing, as Peter Evans has noted, reminiscent of Stravinsky. Like the first variation, resolution is achieved only with the final chord, in this case, a D-minor triad.

VI. Wiener Walz. Britten’s musical wit is again evident here, with the C-centered tonality skewed by chromatic inflections, both in the semitone clashes between the second violins and violas, and in the first violins’ writhing, scalar melody; while the two chordal “sighs” recall the opening chords of the theme. After a contrasting episode which provides somewhat more tonal stability, the strings’ timbres undergo a complete transformation in the recapitulation of the first section—the second violins and violas playing col legno (with the wood of the bow), the first violins recapping their melody with a wraith-like tremolo played sul ponticello (near the bridge of the instrument), and the chordal sighs played pizzicato.

VII.  Moto perpetuo. The unrelenting sixteenth note pattern here effects a complete inversion of the theme’s original pastoral mood, its demonic forward motion centered on the key of D minor. The melodic line moves in a rapid-fire exchange between all the string sections, most brilliantly displayed in the final bars, with the 16th-note figure traded off between the chordal exclamations.

VIII. Funeral March. Over a repeating, appropriately dirge-like figure in the cellos and basses (again, a falling fifth), the violins and violas intone their despairing lament, with the melodic leaps of the theme expanded and filled in with rising and falling glissandos. In a tip of the hat to Bridge, the harmonies of upper strings’ triplets near the middle of the variation recall Bridge’s Ravel-like sonorities, demonstrating Britten’s skill in blending familiar elements with new ones.

IX. Chant. Perhaps nowhere else in the work is Britten’s mastery of string tone-color so wonderfully displayed: with the divided violins on high harmonics, the cellos play pizzicato, half of them plucking the string in their extreme upper range, producing the brittle, cavernous sonority which accompanies the “song” in the divided violas, which is now but a ghostly memory of the theme.

X. Fugue and Finale. A brilliant contrapuntal display begins the variation, with the theme fragmented in the restless fugue subject (the melody heard at the outset of the variation). Before the basses can be added to the fugual mix, however, a recap of some of the previous variations begins: first, a reference to the dotted-rhythmic figure of the “March,” then the descending quarter-note scale from the “Romance,” and finally, after a reappearance of the march material, an elaboration on the “Bourée Classique.” The fugue then resumes, this time with the theme presented in nearly its original state by the string quartet (which introduced the theme at the beginning of the work). But Britten’s true homage to his teacher is saved for the very end: in a tempo marked “slow and solemn” some of the pastoral beauty of Bridge’s Idyll is regained, but not without Britten’s own melodic poignancy added in the violins’ upper range, supported by hushed tremolos in the violas and pizzicato in the cellos and basses. A gradual accumulation of sound, affirming the D major tonality, finishes off the finale to this, one of Britten’s instrumental masterpieces.

[1] “Britten Looking Back,” Sunday Telegraph, 17 November 1963, quoted in Humphrey Carpenter, Benjamin Britten: A Biography (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1992), 17.

[2] No relation.

Program notes (c) 2004 by David Carpenter.

David Carpenter is a composer living in Somerville, Massachusetts. He and Boston-area composer Dan Kennedy, a master’s student at the New England Conservatory, will be presenting a concert of original works at the First Parish Church in Beverly on April 18th at 3pm. Come hear some new voices in contemporary music!

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Forged from the fires of musical passion, Kalistos has emerged as the newest Chamber Orchestra to beat its heart in harmonic motion.  Coalescing from many nations and backgrounds, the members bring fresh insight to traditional repertoire and a keen glance at the cutting edge.  Beyond just a musical choice for an evening, Kalistos is a force bringing energy to education and other community programs.
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Bios of Musicians
Joanna Goldstein*
Sarah Brady*
Michelle Doyle*
Juliet Lai*
Elah Grandel*
Mark Emery*
Tom Cupples*
Bron Wright*
Sarah Privler*
Mark Fabulich*
Aaron Trant*
David Little*
Frank Kumiga*
Dan Bauch*
Barbara Lieurance*

Antonaneta Anguelova
Sasha Callahan
Adda Kridler
Andrew Eng
Lydia Peno*

Nikola Takov
Viktoria Tchertchian
Angel Valchinov*
Miwako Yamanaka*

Shannon Farrel*
Dimitar Petkov
Bradley Ottesen

Pierre-Alain Bouvrette*

Philip Boulanger*
Leo Eguchi
Leah Johnson*

Brian "Commodore"

Randy Ziegler*

Chris Younghoon Kim

* denotes guest artist


Our past concerts
2003-2004 season

October 9, 2003

November 20, 2003

February 17, 2004

May 21, 2004

2002-2003 season

May 19, 2002

September 27, 2002 

November 1, 2002

March 14, 2003

May 9, 2003

Phillips Exeter Residency
February 17-18, 2003

Dean College Concert
February 22, 2003



 Origin of Kalistos:
Callisto   n.
Greek Mythology. A nymph, beloved of Zeus and hated by Hera. Hera changed her into a bear, and Zeus then placed her in the sky as the constellation Ursa Major. One of the four brightest satellites of Jupiter and the eighth in distance from the planet. Originally sighted by Galileo, it is the largest planetary satellite.
Contact Kalistos via
email: info@kalistos.org
web: http://www.kalistos.org
phone: 800.896.7340