Wide-ranging composer William Bolcom at 80: Cabrillo, jazz, classical, and more

Posted on: July 31, 2018

“Trying to pin down a stylistic profile for the composer William Bolcom is a mug’s game, a bout of Whac-a-Mole against an elusive and wily opponent,” writes Joshua Kosman in Tuesday’s (7/31) San Francisco Chronicle. “Ragtime and tango, Mozartean pastiche and full-scale modernism all take turns at center stage…. ‘I have a huge palette of things I want to express,’ he says…. Bolcom, who recently celebrated his 80th birthday, [is] gearing up for a return to … the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in Santa Cruz, where he was a regular presence during the 1970s and ’80s. The … festival … will include a [August 4] performance of his 1983 Violin Concerto, with … violinist Philippe Quint as soloist and Artistic Director Cristian Macelaru conducting. The piece, with its confluence of jazz and classical strains, is as representative a taste of Bolcom’s eclecticism as anyone could wish for…. He’s quick to point out, … ‘There’s a whole crew of composers that are turning 80 this year—John Harbison, Joan Tower, Charles Wuorinen, Paul Chihara, John Corigliano.’ … This year, Bolcom seems gratified by the attention. ‘It’s nice to know that people are still interested and enjoying what I have to say,’ he says.”

Posted July 31, 2018