Posting Date: February 13, 2009
Kennesaw State University String Trio presents concert
By Gina Gareri-Watkins
The Kennesaw State University School of Music will present a free concert featuring the KSU String Trio of Helen Kim on violin, Catherine Lynn on viola and Charae Krueger on cello Mar. 2 at 8 p.m. in the performance hall of the Dr. Bobbie Bailey & Family Performance Center. The trio will be joined by two guest artists— clarinetist Ted Gurch and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra violinist Sou-Chun Su—to complete the evening’s performance. The program will feature contemporary classical compositions for both strings and clarinet by the influential American composers Elliot Carter and Steve Reich.
The strings will perform “Elegy” for String Quartet by Carter, one of the composer’s earlier works. The trio will be joined on stage by guest clarinetist Gurch for the second work on the program, the jazz-influenced composition, “New York Counterpoint” for clarinet by Reich. The third, and most important, piece on the program, “Different Trains,” by Reich, “makes this concert unique and unlike any concert that we have done,” says Kim. “The string instruments will be mixed and amplified and play along with a pre-recorded tape that gathers together nine clarinets and three bass clarinets to compliment the clarinet performance by Gurch,” explains Kim.
Reich’s three-movement “Different Trains” is a concert piece that artfully blends both music with recordings of sound and speech. In addition to recorded speech, the piece includes recordings of train sounds, sirens and warning bells. The recorded speech in “Different Trains” was taken from interviews with people in the United States and Europe describing the years leading up to, during and after World War II. Several Holocaust survivors recount their experiences during World War II, including their train trips to concentration camps, as well as the years immediately following the war. The musical construction itself is also unique. Each melody is introduced by a single instrument (generally the viola or cello), followed by a recording of the spoken phrase from which the melody derives, with the melody developing as the instruments play along with the recording of the phrase. The music for the strings makes extensive use of paradiddle percussive rhythms, but with alternating pitches rather than drum sticking.
The KSU String Trio was established on the campus of Kennesaw State. Helen Kim (Violin) is an assistant professor of violin at KSU, having joined the music in 2005. Kim earned her master’s degree from the Juilliard School, where she was concertmaster of the Juilliard Orchestra and featured soloist. A dedicated recitalist and award-winning chamber music performer, Kim has toured extensively throughout Canada and the United States. In addition to her KSU position, Kim is assistant concertmaster of the Atlanta Opera Orchestra, and served as assistant and associate concertmaster for the Atlanta Symphony for three seasons.
Catherine Lynn (Viola) was appointed artist-in-residence in viola at KSU in 2004. Lynn joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in the fall of 2002, and is also a returning performer with the Atlanta Chamber Players. Lynn received her bachelor’s from the University of Alabama under the instruction of Patrick Rafferty, and continued her master’s and doctorate at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Prior to coming to KSU, Lynn served as principal viola of the Flint Symphony Orchestra in Flint, Mich., and as a member of the Ann Arbor School for the Performing Arts.
Charae Krueger (Cello), KSU’s artist-in-residence and cello professor, received her training in cello studies and her bachelor of music at the New England Conservatory of Music and holds an Artist Diploma from the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, Mass. Krueger received her chamber music training with Eugene Lehner of the Kolisch Quartet, as well as with Robert Mann and Samuel Rhodes of the Juilliard String Quartet. Now principal cellist of the Atlanta Opera Orchestra and the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra, Krueger also finds time to perform with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Chamber Orchestra of Tennessee.