In these challenging economic times it's quite remarkable that Maui's Ebb & Flow Arts organization continues to present innovative musical programs at no cost to the public.
Beginning on Saturday they will launch a three-island "Summer Music Hawaii" series of concerts comprising modern and classical chamber music plus multimedia events, with free performances in Honolulu, Makawao, Makena, Olinda and Hilo.
"We're trying to keep the ship afloat in difficult waters," says Ebb & Flow's founder/pianist/composer Robert Pollock. "So this series is designed to do more with less, continuing to bring in artists from the Mainland and feature work from around the world."
San Francisco’s Tilden Trio featuring Sarn Oliver (from left), June Choi Oh and Peter Wyrick performs in Ebb & Flow Arts’ Music Hawaii series.
The Maui concerts begin on Sunday at the Makawao Union Church, featuring the Tilden Trio from San Francisco, and works by Sarn Oliver, Pollock, Felix Mendelssohn and Japan's Toru Takemitsu.
"Toru Takemitsu's 'Beyond Tides' will be played by the Tilden Trio in three concerts," Pollock explains. "Takemitsu was the leading composer in Japan in the second half of the 1900s. The Tilden Trio is here because of a grant from the National Endowment or the Arts, the first one we have received."
Formed in 2004 by Juilliard schoolmates Oliver (first violin, San Francisco Symphony), Peter Wyrick (associate principal cello, San Francisco Conservatory of Music) and June Choi Oh (piano faculty of The Dominican University and San Francisco Conservatory of Music), The Tilden Trio "is one of the Bay Area's most sought-after ensembles," noted North Bay Classical Music.
* Ebb & Flow's "Summer Music Hawaii" series of concerts begins on Maui at 5 p.m. Sunday at Makawao Union Church, featuring the Tilden Trio from San Francisco. At 7:30 p.m. Tuesday , a "French Fare" concert will be presented at the Ke'eawalai Congregational Church in Makena. The series closes with a "Grand Finale" concert at Seabury Hall at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 1. Admission is free to all events. Along with the concerts a free music education and outreach workshop with the Tilden Trio will be offered to students from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday at Makawao Union Church. For details, call 876-1854.
"They will play works from the 19th century with the Mendelssohn Second Piano Trio, and then works from the 20th century with the Takemitsu, Debussy and Ravel, and works from the 21st century," Pollock continues.
"The Tilden Trio's Sarn Oliver is also a composer and we commissioned him to compose a new trio which will be premiered in Hawaii. The trio has also been playing a piano trio of mine in California, 'Trio Number 4,' which they will play here."
On Tuesday, a "French Fare" concert at Makena's Ke'eawala'i Congregational Church features the Tilden Trio with works by Ravel, Debussy and Takemitsu.
And on Aug. 1, the series closes with a "Grand Finale" concert at Seabury Hall, featuring percussionist Paul Carroll, and solo percussion works by Bendian, Pollock, Xenakis and Osborne, along with multimedia experiments with painters Martha Woodbury and Gabriel Mott. Plus Oliver and his wife, San Francisco Symphony violinist Mariko Smiley, will perform works by Berio, Prokofiev and Wieniawski.
"Paul Carroll will perform some really cutting-edge work," says Pollock. "The Greek composer Iannis Xenakis wrote many percussion pieces. His compositional system is extraordinary and highly complex, but the music is quite accessible and riveting. Thomas Osborne is a composer who resides in Honolulu, and there's a piece of mine which I dedicated to Paul.
"Sarn and his wife, Mariko, perform duo violin recitals, and we'll hear them perform original works for two violins by Prokofiev, the great Italian composer Luciano Berio and Polish composer Henryk Wieniawski. And we'll have multimedia experiments at our final event featuring Maui artists Martha Woodbury and Gabriel Mott."
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Keli'i Kaneali'i returns to Maui to perform his new original songs and Hapa favorites at Mulligan's on the Blue at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $10 in advance (from Bounty Music and Mulligan's) or $12 at the door.
Earlier in the day he will perform with Amy Hanaiali'i at book signings for author Dr. Carolan and his new children's book, "A President from Hawai'i," at Borders Books Music Movies and Cafe in Kahului at 11 a.m., and at Barnes and Noble in Lahaina at 4 p.m.
The book illustrates some of Hawaii's unique history and includes quotes from President Obama and photographs from his childhood. It includes an audio CD narrated by Amy, along with the song "These Islands," recorded exclusively for the book package. She's accompanied on the CD by Keli'i on slack key guitar.
Amy previously collaborated with Dr. Carolan on the book "Goodnight Hawaiian Moon," which included her rendition of Brahms' "Lullaby," sung in Hawaiian and English on the accompanying CD.
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Following the release last year of their single "Back in the Day" Cecilio and Kapono are offering another new song, "Smooth Sailin'," available as a free download from their web site. It's at: www.ceciliokapono.com/downloads.htm
* Contact Jon Woodhouse at email@example.com.