With the April 8 release of her new CD, “REACT,” West Virginia University violinist Mikylah McTeer has completed a three-year collaboration and captured work that she describes as “career-defining.”

“The project began as an idea supported by WVU Women’s Leadership Initiative in 2013, which grew into a Big XII Fellowship-supported project collaboration with two other universities, Baylor and the University of Texas, Austin, in 2014,” said McTeer, an associate professor of violin in WVU’s School of Music.

It’s culminated in this CD’s release by PARMA Recordings’ Ravello Record Label, which was supported by a 2015 WVU Senate Research Grant, along with the WVU School of Music, and the College of Creative Arts Office of the Dean, along with a number of grants from Baylor University.

“Flutist Francesca Arnone and I began collaborating as a duo in 2009, and a work central to our repertoire was WVU composer David Taddie’s ‘Category 5’ for flutes, violin and computer, which we commissioned David to write in 2011,” said McTeer. “With support from WVU and Baylor University, we continued commissioning composers specializing in writing music for acoustic instruments and electronics to compose pieces for us.”

The duo had an incredible collection of spectacular new music, by composers Ben Johansen (Baylor University), Margaret Schedel (Stonybrook University) and Russell Pinkston (University of Texas, Austin) and a recording contract offer from PARMA Recordings.

“Everyone on the project is so grateful that both West Virginia University and Baylor University so clearly support innovation in the arts,” said McTeer.

Subtitled “Music for Flute, Violin, and Interactive Computer,” the CD features McTeer and Arnone, an assistant professor at Baylor. McTeer and Arnone formed the duo reACT with a commitment to performing music of living composers

“On this recording we perform a variety of compositions composed for our duo, along with several solo works, all with interactive computer,” McTeer said. Two of the pieces on the CD were composed by WVU professor of composition David Taddie.

Taddie composed “Luminosity” for flute, alto flute, and electro-acoustic accompaniment. His “Category 5 (Echoes)” was composed for flute, alto flute, piccolo, violin, and computer.

“Collaborations are of great interest to me particularly in pieces that incorporate electronics,” said Taddie. They allow me to sample the performers’ own playing for processing and inclusion in the electronics as well as to get immediate feedback on some new technique I want to employ. Not only are Mikylah and Francesca great players, they work extremely well together and are very receptive – even eager – to try new technical and musical ideas. The Big XII Fellowship turned out great for all of us.”

“WVU is at the forefront among its peer institutions in that the School of Music has our very own recording engineer on faculty, collaborating with us on professional recording projects,” said McTeer. In fact, most of “REACT” was recorded at WVU with recording engineer Mark Benincosa.

“Mark is a master of his craft, evident in the clarity and depth of the recording engineering on this CD,” said McTeer.

The works on this album demonstrate well the potential range of electroacoustic music in facilitating both experimental and traditional compositional ideas. The featured composers explore new ways of creating and organizing sound, and as performed with either computer or other interactive electronics, the violin and flute help construct unique sonic landscapes.

The CD is available at Amazon.com and Itunes. The recording’s interactive website is at http://www.ravellorecords.com/catalog/rr7930/index.html



CONTACT: David Welsh, WVU College of Creative Arts
304.293.3397; David.Welsh@mail.wvu.edu

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