Bach's Lunch
Virtual Chamber Music Festival

Bach, Books, and the Home Bar
featuring Alan Kay, clarinet

Alan takes a break from editing music in GarageBand to speak with Stephanie and Jeffrey about his students, the music of Bach, Lester Young, and Charlie Parker. He also talks about his current reading list, which includes Becoming , by Michelle Obama, Thick , by Tressie McMillan Cottom, and Quichotte , by Salman Rushdie. (Offline we learn about his love of a well-made martini , Manhattans, gimlets, and a BDDS favorite, the Corpse Reviver!)

Alan offers this, speaking to his Bach selection, "There’s little evidence to suggest that J.S. Bach was aware of the early clarinets in development in the early to mid-18th century in Europe. My feeling is that, had he been aware, he would have written for the clarinet, as he did for the many types of flutes, oboes, bassoons, trumpets, horns and other brass instruments known and available to him during his lifetime. If he lived another 10 or 20 years, he may well have. Too bad! But it doesn’t mean that we can’t 'borrow' occasionally. There’s no greater joy as a musician than sitting down to play Bach, whatever your means of expression is. So, I offer two movements from the Violin Partita No. 1 in B Minor, with apologies to my violinist friends."

A special thanks to Evan Richards for helping us put these videos together and managing our YouTube channel.
J.S. Bach: Partita No. 1 in B Minor, BWV 1002. II - Double and III - Corrente
Alan explains what he will be serving for your Bach's Lunch main course: "I was first introduced to The Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind in the summer of 2000 and got to work with Osvaldo Golijov on it, which was inspiring. The soulfulness and poignancy of the Klezmer element of the piece really affected me—permanently—and led me to really explore Klezmer music in general, which I’ve dabbled in ever since. One of my heroes of the genre is Giora Feidman, the longtime principal clarinetist of the Israel Philharmonic (now retired) but the man who, in my opinion, singlehandedly brought Klezmer music back into the mainstream in the ’70’s and ’80’s and for whom Osvaldo wrote the piece. His playing is beyond beautiful and what I try to emulate whenever I have a chance to play anything tinged with the Klezmer style."

For your dessert? He writes, "some pieces bring out our spiritual side; some are more serious; some send a shiver up the spine. And some, like John Harbison’s Songs America Loves to Sing , for flute, clarinet, violin, cello and piano, bring out a little of everything…but mostly are just plain fun! I have to admit my favorite movement is the clarinet solo, Poor Butterfly , but I also love taking up the harmonica with two of my beloved colleagues in the final Anniversary Song ( Happy Birthday to you ….)." 
Osvaldo Golijov: The Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind (1994) performed at the Hillside Theater, Taliesin, in 2014. Alan Kay, clarinet and bass clarinet; Carmit Zori, violin; Suzanne Beia, violin; David Harding, viola; Anthony Ross, cello. Recorded by Evan Richards.
John Harbison: Songs America Loves to Sing (2004) featuring Alan in VII. Poor Butterfly. Stephanie Jutt, flute; Alan Kay, clarinet; Axel Strauss, violin; Jean-Michael Fonteneau, cello; Jeffrey Sykes. Recorded at the Hillside Theater by Evan Richards in 2015.
We hope you enjoyed our Virtual Festival.
Join us for our Grand Finale, Sunday, at noon!
We have been channeling the Inextinguishable Flame of BDDS to bring you a fabulous virtual festival entitled Bach's Lunch .

If you loved what you saw, please consider a donation. We have been able to partially compensate our wonderful musician friends and keep the lights on at BDDS Worldwide Headquarters. We will connect with you throughout the year and be back in June 2021.
Questions? Email or call BDDS 608.255.9866

We are doing our best to support one another during this crisis. We thank you for your support and kind thoughts and we wish you health and happiness until we meet again.
Samantha Crownover | Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society | 608.255.9866 |