ANA Milosavljevic

Reflections

Innova 776

 

 

1. Ana Milosavljevic: Reflections (2009) for violin and piano

Ana Milosavljevic, violin

Terezija Cukrov, piano

Recorded and mixed at the Sonic Arts Center, New York City

Engineer: Joseph Carman

Producer: Ana Milosavljevic

2. Aleksandra Vrebalov:

The Spell III (2008)

for amplified violin and computer  

Ana Milosavljevic, amplified violin and programmed looping

Brian Mohr, Max/MSP Programming

Recorded and mixed at the Sonic Arts Center, New York City

Engineer: Joseph Carman

Assistant engineer: Brian Mohr

Producer: Ana Milosavljevic

3. Katarina Miljkovic: White City (2008) for amplified violin,

electronics, and video

Ana Milosavljevic, amplified violin

Recorded at the Sonic Arts Center, New York City

Engineer: Joseph Carman

Mixed and produced by Katarina Miljkovic

4. Margaret Fairlie-Kennedy:

Undertow (1997) for violin and piano

Ana Milosavljevic, violin

Terezija Cukrov, piano

Recorded at Patrych Sound Studios, Bronx, NY

Produced and engineered by Joseph Patrych

5. Ana Milosavljevic: Untitled (2008) for violin and dancer

Ana Milosavljevic, violin

Recorded and mixed at the Sonic Arts Center, New York City

Engineer: Joseph Carman

Producer: Ana Milosavljevic

6. Eve Beglarian: Wolf Chaser (1995) for amplified and processed violin, wolf chaser, electronics, and optional video

Ana Milosavljevic, amplified violin and wolf chaser

Eve Beglarian, live electronics

Recorded live at The TimesCenter, New York City

Live recording produced and engineered by David Merrill

7. Svjetlana Bukvich-Nichols: Before and After the Tekke (2006) for amplified violin, electronics, and voice

Ana Milosavljevic, amplified violin

Svjetlana Bukvich-Nichols,

synthesizers, piano and voice

Recorded, mixed, and produced by Svjetlana Bukvich-Nichols at Purple Mountain studio, New York City

 

 

REFLECTIONS represents my dual musical citizenship through the sonic experiences of my native Serbia and my current hometown, New York City, where I have lived for more than a decade. Each work results from collaborations with dance and visual artists, composers, performers, and technicians who’ve made similar journeys. We consider our artistic creations platforms for processing and making sense of our life changes, bridging the old and the new as we move from one location to another. A number of works merge traditional Eastern European influences and 21st century boundary-stretching techniques into uncharted yet somewhat familiar musical languages.

 

The CD title refers to both the mental act of reflection — of contemplation, meditation, self-discovery — and the physical act of reflection, what you reflect out to the world after having taken it in. Through this music I aim to reflect and to share thrilling and unforgettable moments of love, happiness, sadness, regrets and no regrets, hope, peace, harmony, gratitude, and, most importantly, how I came to find my home in my heart.

 

1. REFLECTIONS

 

Ana: In late 2008, a colleague of mine asked me to write a new work for violin and piano, to be premiered by the two of us at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall. The inspiration for the piece came about organically. I was reflecting on my life as a whole as well as specifically my family and friends. Reflecting on the past, present and future, I felt a sense of both sadness and hope, which informed my composition. In Reflections, the violin line is inspired by the melody of the traditional Serbian folk song  “Djurdjevdan.” Since its Carnegie premiere, I adapted Reflections into music for an off-Broadway play. Also, a solo piano version of Reflections is used in FLIGHT by the New York City-based contemporary dance company TAKE Dance.

 

2. THE SPELL III

 

Ana: I have a very personal relationship to this piece, which was written for me by my former teacher and good friend Aleksandra Vrebalov. It incorporates parts of a folk song from an area in Eastern Serbia where my mother is from, which tells the story of a fairy who loses her powers after falling in love with a mortal. Aleksandra’s music is colorful and expressive; it has a mystical, elegiac quality befitting the fairytale. When performing The Spell III, adding each new layer (loop) allows me to create my own magical world as I play it.

 

Aleksandra: In The Spell III my intention was to create a complex sonic ambience by layering seventeen minimal musical patterns in various combinations. All violin sounds are played, captured, recorded, and looped live using the loop pedal by the performer on stage. Voices are prerecorded and are quoting the material from a folk song performed by Moba, a female vocal group from Serbia. The piece was written for my friend Ana Milosavljevic. Special thanks to Brian Mohr, who created the Max/MSP patch for the piece.

 

ALEKSANDRA VREBALOV (aleksandravrebalov.com) is a Serbian composer based in New York City. She has written numerous solo, orchestral, chamber and vocal works. A recipient of the American Academy of Arts and Letters Charles Ives Fellowship, Aleksandra has had her works commissioned by Kronos Quartet, Carnegie Hall, Belgrade Philharmonic, and Providence Festival Ballet, among others.

 

3. WHITE CITY

 

Ana: I asked Katarina to create a piece for my multimedia concert at The TimesCenter and she came up with the idea of working around the sounds and sights of Belgrade, the capital of our native Serbia. I was excited to have this work written for me, both because of its subject and its highly experimental nature. This colorful work also incorporates ideas of proportion and time flow from physics and mathematics.

 

Katarina: White City, written for Ana, is dedicated to the city of Belgrade (“Bel” means white, “grad” means city). Its backbone is an uninterrupted, 12-minute documentary recording of Terazije, an area of downtown Belgrade, and follows a non-directional, random flow of street sounds including traffic, speech, clapping, and bells, all blended with pre-recorded violin. This soundscape evolves with the entrance of the live violin part, which is based on Serbian Orthodox chanting, uniting the spiritual with the everyday sounds of the city. A video was created for the piece by Katarina Miljkovic and Milan Popovic, shot from the point of view of an observer of street life.

 

KATARINA MILJKOVIC (katarina-miljkovic.net) is a Boston-based composer who investigates the interaction between generative music, video, and live performance. Her work, which has been presented at international festivals, is often based on collaboration with video artists, computational scientists, dancers, and music performers. She is currently working on mapping cellular automata to sound.

 

4. UNDERTOW

 

Ana: Several years ago I received Undertow in response to a call for scores issued by New York Women Composers, who awarded me a grant to produce a concert featuring music by its members. Sifting through dozens and dozens of pieces, Undertow stood out for its emotional power. I always imagine grey skies when I play it, which erupt toward the end and then leave a quiet space for resurrection.

 

Margaret: The title Undertow is open to various interpretations. My own is that of an analogy between the treacherous, invisible but powerful drag beneath the tide’s eternal ebb and flow and the subversive, destructive elements within our global societies which threaten human tides seeking survival and, ultimately, transcendence.

 

MARGARET FAIRLIE-KENNEDY (composers.com/margaret-fairlie-kennedy) is an American composer who writes for chamber groups, voice, orchestra, contemporary dance, and mixed media. She’s received numerous commissions, awards and grants, and served as Composer in Residence at Bennington College and Cornell University.  Her music extends the usual sonorities of the instruments and has been described by the New York Times as “eloquent, atmospheric, and dreamy.”

 

TEREZIJA CUKROV is a Croatian-born and U.S.-based pianist and educator, and a cofounder of the Terra Magica Music Festival, which takes place in Poreč, her hometown. She holds a master’s degree from Mannes College The New School for Music and a doctorate from Rutgers University, and has performed in significant venues throughout Europe, North America and Asia.

 

5. UNTITLED

 

Ana: I wrote this piece for a collaboration with choreographer Takehiro Ueyama, and we premiered it at The (New York) TimesCenter in 2008. Like much of my work, it is rooted in Serbian folk traditions, but I also incorporate a repetitive motif inspired by Buddhist chant. The work is a wordless prayer expressed in music and, when performed live on stage, movement.

 

6. WOLF CHASER

 

Ana: When Eve sent me a recording of Wolf Chaser, I was instantly hooked on its spiritual, meditative qualities and knew I had to perform it.  For The TimesCenter concert, Eve mixed the electronics components live, and our music was accompanied by the world premiere of a powerful video, created by Vittoria Chierici and Phil Hartley especially for the piece, depicting oil rigs amidst the Alaskan wilderness.

 

Eve:  In the early summer of 1995, the violinist Robin Lorentz gave me a wolf chaser — a tool made of whale baleen for scaring wolves in the Arctic. It had been a gift, in turn, from the man who made it, James Nageak. I sampled the wolf chaser and made a recording that slowed the sound down so far that you can hear the sampling rate as a rhythm (sort of the audio analog to the jaggies you see when displaying curves at low resolution on a computer.) That recording is the bed for this piece for acoustic wolf chaser, and amplified and processed scordatura violin.

 

EVE BEGLARIAN (evbvd.com) is an American composer and performer described by the LA Times as “a humane, idealistic rebel and a musical sensualist.” Commissions include the American Composers Orchestra, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Los Angeles Master Chorale, and Bang on a Can All-Stars, among others. She has worked extensively with noted artists in theater, dance, video, and visual arts.

 

7. BEFORE AND AFTER THE TEKKE

 

Ana: In 2006, I was looking to expand my repertoire with works by composers from the former Yugoslavia. Hearing samples of Svjetlana’s work, I was captivated by her combination of modern and traditional sounds, and that year I commissioned Before and After the Tekke. Since then, I’ve played and premiered it in North America, Europe and Asia, often joined by Svjetlana. In 2008, Jessica Lee added a new dimension to live performances of the piece, creating animated abstract paintings that are projected on the stage and the performers.

 

Svjetlana:  Before and After the Tekke was inspired by a book about an 18th century dervish in Bosnia, my visit to a Herzegovinian tekke (dervish monastery) on the Buna river, idioms from Bosnian Christian Orthodox and Islamic music, and the sounds of New York City. Strangely, if you travel to Bosnia and Herzegovina you won’t find this music. Its microtones are dreamed up from sounds that I had once known and then forgotten.

 

SVJETLANA BUKVICH-NICHOLS (svjetlanamusic.com) is a Bosnian-New Yorker composer and producer whose genre-bending works range from acoustic and performer-driven to electronic and theatrical, and often include video, voice, and tuning of her own design. Her music has been performed widely at international festivals and major experimental music venues.

 

“An imaginative artist willing to think big” — The Strad

 

“Virtuoso performer” with “a wonderful mix of technique, sensitivity and passion” — New Music Connoisseur

 

ANA MILOSAVLJEVIC (anamilo.com) is an acclaimed violinist and composer who specializes in cutting-edge contemporary music informed by various genres including traditional Balkan music, electronica, jazz, pop, and hip-hop. Ana has fostered numerous multimedia collaborations, bringing music together with live dance, the spoken word, electronic sounds, natural sounds, film and visual arts. A native of Serbia, Ana’s work unites her Eastern European roots with the New York new music scene. Her music has been premiered at Carnegie Hall and Off-Broadway, and has been choreographed by Takehiro Ueyama (TAKE Dance). One of New York’s most in-demand violinists, Ana has premiered and recorded works -— some written especially for her — by such renowned composers as John Adams, Chen Yi, Tania León, Eve Beglarian, Aleksandra Vrebalov, Svjetlana Bukvich-Nichols, John Eaton, Ljubica Maric, Milos Raickovich, and Gian Carlo Menotti, to name a few. Ana has been granted awards from Artists International Presentations, Inc., New York Women Composers, Inc., the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, and the Serbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She has given solo recitals at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, the Kennedy Center, Kolarac Concert Hall, Belgrade Philharmonic Hall, and The TimesCenter, among other venues, and appeared at major festivals, including Spoleto in Italy, Aspen, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, the American Festival of Microtonal Music, 2008 Beijing International Congress on Women in Music in China, Music With a View @ The Flea, ASCAP’s Thru the Walls showcase series, and ComposersCollaborative’s Serial Underground at New York’s landmark Cornelia Street Café.  Ana serves on the violin faculty of Mannes College The New School for Music, and can be heard on the Albany, Chandos, Innova, Pitch, and Neos Classics labels. A New York City resident, Ana performs, composes, acts, teaches, and also plays piano and the 6-string fretted Viper electric violin.

 

• Tracks 1, 2, and 5 recorded and mixed by Joseph

Carman at the Sonic Arts Center, New York City,

with additional violin recording on track 3

• Track 3 mixed and produced by Katarina Miljkovic

• Track 4 recorded, mixed, and produced by Joseph

Patrych at Patrych Sound Studios, Bronx, NY

• Tracks 1, 2, and 5 produced by Ana Milosavljevic

• Track 6 recorded live at The TimesCenter and

produced by David Merrill

• Track 7 recorded, mixed, and produced by Svjetlana Bukvich-Nichols at Purple Mountain studio, New York City

Mastering by Craig Slon, with additional

mastering by Joseph Patrych

Executive producer: Ana Milosavljevic

Photos: Martyn Gallina-Jones

Photo of Ana and her mother Danica by

Dragan Milosavljevic

 

This recording was made possible in part through grants from the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, New York Women Composers, Inc., AMC’s Composer Assistance Program through the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, and with the support of Selig and Angela Sacks.

 

Thank you to all of the wonderful artists who shared their creative talents in this project; special thanks to Muneko Otani, Margot Moser, Silas R. Mountsier, Graeme J. Hardie, Freda and Evan Eisenberg, Aleksandra Vrebalov, Joseph Carman, Craig Slon, Joseph Patrych, Brian Mohr, Lynda Ciolek/Steorra Enterprises, Selig and Angela Sacks, Jed Distler, Vladimir Pavlov, Nevena Arizanovic, Aleksandar Djordjevic; Philip Blackburn, Chris Campbell, and all of the great people at Innova for their support of this project; my family, and Take for his love and inspiration.

 

I dedicate this CD to my mother.

 

Innova is supported by an endowment from the

McKnight Foundation.

Philip Blackburn: director, design

Chris Campbell: operations manager

www.innova.mu