"I like the idea that music is somewhat ear-bending or mind-bending," says Erik Peterson, a Colorado Symphony Orchestra violinist who founded the chamber music group EarWarp. He'll be taking the stage at the Concert Hall at the Denver School of the Arts at 7 p.m. tonight, along with Abby Raymond, principal clarinet with the CSO, and Dr. Tamara Goldstein, an associate professor of piano at Metro State University.
This is the first chamber concert of the year by the group, which last year performed under a decidedly less exciting name: Denver School of the Arts Chamber Series. "I try to get whoever is performing into the schools, working with the students," Peterson explains. This year, as EarWarp, the group created a makeshift board of directors that includes a student representative. "It has inspired students to work on chamber music," Peterson notes.
While the repertoire leans heavily on the contemporary and modern, it's still approachable. Stravinsky's "Suite from L'Histoire du Soldat" was his first foray into jazz. And Raymond describes her clarinet duet with the piano, Nino Rota's "Sonata in Re," as "a just really beautiful piece." And "Serenade for Three" throws jazz and boogie-woogie into the classical mix. "He has a lot of humor in his music," Peterson says of Schickele, who started his career composing satirical music.
The final piece, Handel's "Sonata in D Major," is a staple of violin students; Peterson says that he wanted to show students that "this music that a lot of them come into contact with is professional."
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While the students of the Denver School of the Arts are the target audience, the shows are open to the public. Tickets are $15 at the door, with all proceeds going to the performers and charity.