THE NEW PERFORMANCE GROUP IN MUSIC
1. Breathing Songs from a Turning Sky - Ten Meditations (1980, revised 1984) 30:23
New Performance Group
2. Thunder, Like a White Bear Dancing - Performance Ritual (1977) 13:39
Thomasa Eckert soprano
New Performance Group
3. "Callin' Home Coyote" - A Burlesque (1978) 9:02
John Duykers tenor
Andy Narrell steel-drums
Deborah Deloria string-bass
First recordings of these works from Seattle-based composer Janice Giteck, supervised by the composer. Greatly influenced by Native American music, her compositions are in turn rhythmic and meditative, ritualitsic and serene. Ms. Giteck's works strive to recapture the ancient musical attributes of ritual and trance, exploring ways in which music can be a truly healing experience.
Giteck has studied with Olivier Messiaen and Darius Milhaud, with subsequent studies of Indonesian Gamelan music with Daniel Schmidt and percussion with the master drummer from Ghana, Obo Addy.
Guest artists with the New Performance Group of the Cornish Institute (Seattle) include the popular Windham Hill recording artist Andy Narrell on steel drums and tenor John Duykers, who appeared as Chairman Mao in John Adams' Nixon in China.
'Janice Giteck's name seems to come up a lot these days, and now that I finally get to hear her music, I'm not disappointed. ...Giteck is refreshingly versatile as to style, and I enjoy the nonchalant air which she can turn from static tonality to discontinuous gesture, from religious ecstacy to ribald humor. It's too theatrical a disc to make good background listening; but for those who'll pay close attention, Giteck's warm and very individual musical personality will delightfully repay the effort."
"...contemplative and scored with considerable individuality."
"It will come as no surprise to fans of Janice Giteck, composer in residence at Cornish College of the Arts, to hear that this is a first-rate CD. Those who don't know Giteck's work could have no better introduction than this disc..."
"The New Performance Group plays this music with great virtuosity, and Giteck's compositions show an intense insight as well as a vigorous sense of wonder--and humor."
"Callin' Home Coyote" reminds me of Harry Partch's good-humored eccentricities, without sounding in the least like watered-down Partch. The ten "Breathing Songs from a Turning Sky" (there are no vocals) are purely delicious. "Thunder, Like a White Bear Dancing" with instrumentalists and voices, achieves a dream-state, while "Coyote", no less fantastic, indulges in jazzy hi-jinks."
"Seattle-based composer Janice Giteck demonstrates a fresh, quirky sensibility and a strong sense of color and proportion in the three works presented here. "Breathing Songs from a Turning Sky" is the strongest work; a set of ten post minimal/world music-influenced miniatures. Each segment is so sharply etched that one hopes for continuation or development just as that segment comes to a close."
©1998 Mode Records