all water has a perfect memory

all water has a perfect memory

A flood of musical memory that bursts its banks
David Dzubay
Orion String Quartet
Voices of Change
Miranda Cuckson
Barkada Quartet
Emily Levin
Indiana University New Music Ensemble
Simin Ganatra
John Rommel
David Dzubay
Catalog Number: 
#1 011
new classical
string quartet

Bloomington, IN

Release Date: 
Oct 25, 2019
Liner Notes: 
2 CD
One Sheet: 

The title of this collection of David Dzubay’s recent solo, chamber, and ensemble music comes from Toni Morrison:

“You know, they straightened out the Mississippi River in places, to make room for houses and livable acreage. Occasionally the river floods these places. “Floods” is the word they use, but in fact it is not flooding; it is remembering… All water has a perfect memory and is forever trying to get back to where it was. Writers are like that: remembering where we were… It is emotional memory--what the nerves and the skin remember as well as how it appeared. And a rush of imagination is our “flooding.””

As Dzubay himself states:

“Nearly all of these pieces involve emotional memory to an extent, some more clearly so than others. In my composing, I enjoy “floods” of the imagination inspired by extra-musical imagery, from stars in the string quartet, flocking birds in Volando, Rocky Mountain ski runs in Double Black Diamond, to the Mayan ruins of Chichén Itzá in Kukulkan or deep waters of the ocean. However, regardless of any suggestive title or narrative, I always try to compose music that a listener can approach from the sound alone, following a line of musical flow from beginning to end.”

The first part of this double album presents recordings by professionals Dzubay has worked with over the years, including especially the Orion String Quartet and the Dallas-based Voices of Change.

The second part features the student ensemble Dzubay leads at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, the IU New Music Ensemble. Though the personnel for this ensemble shifts semester to semester, the performance level is consistently high thanks to the exceptional student performers at IU. Faculty members Simin Ganatra (1st violin of the Pacifica Quartet) and trumpeter John Rommel join the ensemble for the Chamber Concerto.

A member of the faculty and director of the New Music Ensemble at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music since 1992, David Dzubay is professor of music and has been chair of the composition department since 2006. He has conducted at the Tanglewood, Aspen, and June in Buffalo festivals. He has also conducted the Grossman Ensemble of the Chicago Center for Contemporary Composition, the League of Composers Orchestra in New York, the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, Music from China, and Voices of Change, among others.