Thursday, March 11, 2010

Shatin introduces Jefferson work

"Jefferson, in His Own Words" by Judith Shatin will be given its premiere by the Illinois Symphony Orchestra in concerts on March 12 in Bloomington and March 13 in Springfield. The four-part work, drawing from Thomas Jefferson's letters, sets out to "embody both the complications and contradictions as well as the imagination, the foresight, the individualism that he projected," the University of Virginia-based composer tells Brian Mackey of Springfield's State Journal-Register:

Shatin was commissioned to write the piece by the Illinois orchestra with the Richmond and Virginia symphonies and Charlottesville & University Symphony. The Virginia orchestras have not yet announced dates for performances of the work.

The Richmond-bred conductor Karen Lynne Deal, music director of the Illinois Symphony, is dedicating the performances to Gerald Morgan, the longtime Richmond record-shop owner and arts patron. Morgan assisted Deal in her education and career development. "Without his friendship and help, I surely would not have had the opportunities that I have had or the life changing experiences I have enjoyed," the conductor says in a statement.