Shevet Achim (Brothers Dwell) by Meira Warshauer featured on New Richard
Nunemaker CD Project – Work Has Special Relevance for Today
Clarinetist Richard Nunemaker has released a new CD “The Louisville
Project”, which features Meira Warshauer’s “Shevet Achim (Brothers Dwell).”
The Louisville Project (AUR CD 3127). The piece, for two bass clarinets, is a response to the troubled
relationship between the descendants of half-brothers Yitzchak and
Yishmael (sons of Abraham), now Israelis and Palestinians. Written in
fall, 2000, the piece roils with the conflict between the two peoples,
expressing both intense animosity and common identification. It has been
observed that the most strongly felt conflicts are between peoples whose
lives and histories are intertwined on many levels.
For more information,
including how to order this CD from Arizona University Recordings,
please visit http://www.aurec.com/louisville_project.htm.
The composition exploits the acoustic properties of the bass clarinet.
Color trills, tremolos, flutter tongue, glissandi, quarter tones, and
extreme registers help express the confrontation. In contrast, the
audible overtones in the low register, two voices contained in one,
represent resonance, mutual recognition. As the piece progresses, the
moments of recognition become longer, softer; the possibility of another
path emerges, even though the conflict does not yet completely recede.
The title recalls Psalm 133, vs. 1: “Hinei ma tov u’ma nayim, shevet
achim gam yachad (How good and how pleasant it is when brothers dwell
together as one).” The composer comments: “As we send out this CD
announcement, we are painfully aware of the current fighting between
Israel and Hezbollah and the destruction in Lebanon and Israel and
elsewhere. It is my hope and prayer that this music can in some small
way help point all of our hearts –the children of Israel and of
Ishmael, the children of Abraham, the children of Adam and Eve, the
hearts of all who dwell on earth–towards a path of peace and life.”
Performers for this recording of “Shevet Achim” are Mr. Nunemaker and
fellow bass clarinetist Timothy Zavadil. Mr. Nunemaker describes his
feelings about the composition: “I love ‘Shevet Achim.’ Every time I
perform ‘Shevet Achim’ I well up at the sheer beauty and emotion that it
evokes. It is music for our time and music for humankind. A wonderful
and beautiful work of art.” Visit Richard Nunemaker online at
The Louisville Project (AUR CD 3127) is music that was commissioned by
Richard Nunemaker and premiered by him in performances in Louisville,
Kentucky and Chicago, Illinois with the composers present. This CD was
recorded in Louisville, Kentucky immediately following performance on
the campus of the University of Louisville.
For more information about Meira Warshauer, including a complete catalog
of her works, visit her website at http://home.sc.rr.com/meirawarshauer/.