Faculty Artist Recital: Sarunas Jankauskas

Tuesday, January 29, 2013
7:30 PM Central

A native of Lithuania, clarinetist Sarunas Jankauskas is an active performer in a variety of settings. Currently he serves as the Assistant Professor of Clarinet at Wichita State University and member of the Lieurance Woodwind Quintet. Sarunas was appointed as principal clarinetist of Wichita Symphony Orchestra, and he has been praised in the press for "notable precision and beauty." This past fall, Dr. Jankausas appeared with the Lieurance Woodwind Quintet at the International Conservatory Festival Week at the St. Petersburg Conservatory in Russia.

As a soloist, Dr. Jankauskas appeared with Round Rock Symphony Orchestra, Texas Festival Orchestra, The University of Texas Symphony Orchestra and Austin Singers. As a chamber musician he collaborated with St. Petersburg, Jasper and Aeolus String Quartets, Colette Valentine, Toby Blumenthal, Kris Becker and other accomplished artists. He participated in a number of concert series, including Spring of Harmony, Syzygy, Clutch, Music under the Stars, Kaunas Contemporary Music Festival as well as prestigious summer programs such as Sarasota Music Festival, New Music Workshop at Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, Round Top Festival-Institute and Texas Music Festival. 

As an orchestral musician, Dr. Jankauskas also performed with Round Rock Symphony Orchestra, Mid-Texas Symphony, River Oaks Chamber Orchestra and Brazos Valley Symphony. He is a prizewinner at Entergy Young Texas Artists, Kingsville International Young Artists, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Young Artists competitions as well as Round Top Festival-Institute, Butler School of Music and Grand Valley State University concerto competitions.

Robert Schumann (1810-..1856)...............Fantasy Pieces,Op.73 
     I.Zart und mit Ausdruck 
     II.Lebhaft, leicht
     III.Raschundmit Feuer

Olivier Messiaen(1908-..1992)..................Abyss of the Birds

Gabriel Santiago(b.1980)........................Choro for Kristin


Anders Koppel(b.1947)...................Caprice for Clarinet Solo 

Arturo Márquez(b.1950).................................Zarabandeo 

Paquito D’Rivera (b.1948)...........Vals Venezolano & Contradanza


Among the four duos for piano and solo instruments that Robert Schumann wrote in Dresden in 1849 were the Fantasy Pieces, Op. 73, originally composed for clarinet and piano and published with versions for violin and cello. Schumann had just finished his opera Genoveva, and some large choral works, and was emotionally exhausted. An additional stress was caused by the burden of the Schumann’s growing family, which prevented his wife Clara from going on concert tours. The Schumanns stayed in Dresden and found particular solace in making music with friends including musicians from the Dresden Court Orchestra.
The Fantasy Pieces were conceived as a cycle of poetic miniatures unified harmonically. The moods range from delicate and expressive in the first piece to lively in the second and fiery and urgent in the third piece. As in Schumann’s piano pieces written a decade earlier, his strong affinity with
literature is displayed in the clear story-telling quality of the composition. - Ingrid Fischer-Bellman

In 1940, Olivier Messiaen was interned in a German prison camp, where he discovered among his fellow prisoners a clarinetist, a violinist and a violoncellist. The success of a short trio, which he wrote for them, led him to add seven more movements to the Interlude, and a piano to the ensemble, to create the Quartet for the End of Time. Messiaen and his friends first performed it for their 5000 fellow prisoners on January 15, 1941.
Messiaen's religious mysticism found a point of departure for the Quartet in the passage in the Book of Revelation about the descent of the seventh angel, at the sound of whose trumpet the mystery of God will be consummated, and who announces "that there should be time no longer." According to the composer, the Quartet was intended not to be a commentary on the Apocalypse, nor to refer to his own captivity, but to be a kind of musical extension of the Biblical account, and of the concept of the end of Time as the end of past and future and the beginning of eternity. Also, his development of a varied and flexible rhythmic system, based in part on ancient Hindu rhythms, more or less literally put an end to the equally measured "time" of classical music. Messiaen’s preface to the score: Clarinet alone. The abyss is Time with its sadness, its weariness. The birds are the opposite to Time; they are our desire for light, for stars, for rainbows, and for jubilant songs.

Brazilian guitarist and composer Gabriel Santiago is a rising star in the modern jazz world as well as winner of numerous composition honors, including the 2010 ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Award. He has been composing music for a wide variety of ensembles, styles and medias including Film, TV, and Internet. His music is fresh and carries all of his influences from Brazilian Music to Jazz and Classical Music. Choro for Kristin was written for Kristin Almond, while both, the composer and the dedicatee were students at The University of Texas at Austin. “Choro” (“cry” or “lament”) is a Brazilian popular music instrumental style, characterized by improvisation, virtuosity, subtle modulations, syncopation and, contradictory to its name, often is joyous and celebratory.
Danish composer Anders Koppel received training as a classical clarinetist and pianist, but at first became known as a member of Scandinavia’s leading experimental rock band, Savage Rose. Since the mid-1980s he has increasingly worked with classical genres and composed music for over 150 films, 50 plays and ballets, as well as various instrumental music. Caprice was composed for the 3rd International Carl Nielsen Clarinet Competition. The work explores playful rhythms, varied harmony and occasionally hints to Jazz, Minimalism and Baroque music.

Arturo Márquez is widely recognized as the most outstanding Mexican composer of his generation and best known for his popular Danzons for orchestra.
Composer discusses this work: “Zarabandeo for clarinet and piano was first performed by pianist Joseph Olechovsky and clarinetist Luis Humberto Ramos to whom I have dedicated the piece. The Zarabanda (Sarabande) was a popular dance of unknown origin. There are records of this dance being performed in Mexico during the second half of the sixteenth century. During this same period, the dance was condemned and its performance was prohibited in Spain. In the next century, the Sarabande “reappeared” as part of the Baroque instrumental “suite” form, but in a character very different from the original. These concepts were introduced to me by the Cuban musicologist Rolando Perez. I have no idea how the original Zarabanda sounded, but I feel certain that its prohibition came about due to the fact that it was a very sensual dance. I am fascinated with how the Sarabande we know now could be related to the Zarabanda which has disappeared. In my “Zarabandeo,” I have incorporated a “Tangueo” and a “Danzoneo,” two of my favorite dances, because of the relationship between people, music and dance, and because I hoped to write something for clarinet and piano that might inflame the passions.”

The winner of eleven GRAMMY Awards, Cuban clarinetist and saxophonist Paquito D’Rivera is celebrated both for his artistry in Latin jazz and his achievements as a classical composer. Also, as a classical clarinetist he appeared as soloist with a number of the World’s leadings symphony orchestras. His compositions blend elements of Classical, Jazz and Afro-Cuban music and are exciting and enjoyable for both, audiences and performers alike. Vals Venezolano (“Venezuelan waltz”) is based on a simple melody and embellished with syncopations and hemiolas. Contradanza is a popular Cuban dance genre of the 19th Century, reflecting common energetic rhythms and characters of Latin music.