Music of Richard McCandless and Lewis Nielson, two concerts in Baltimore and North Bethesda, April 7, 9


Apr 7 2016 - 8:00pm

Composers Richard McCandless and Lewis Nielson present two concerts of dramatic virtuosic chamber music that blur the boundaries of musical performance and music theater. Richard McCandless's composition, Childhood, written in 1983, is one of the true ground-breaking works for speaking percussionist. Lewis Nielson's Il Romanticismo di Cesare e Lucrezia  for the remarkable singer/dancer/actress Sara Perez and double bass virtuoso Matthew Kline, was composed in 2015.

April 7, 2016 (Thursday), 8:00 p.m.  Baltimore
An die Musik
409 North Charles St.
Baltimore, MD 21201

April 9, 2016 (Saturday), 7:30 p.m.  (Note early start.)  North Bethesda
The Mansion at Strathmore (just west of the Music Center Concert Hall)
10701 Rockville Pike
North Bethesda, MD 20852

As the performer (speaking percussionist) Mr. McCandless recites the dramatic text of Childhood (by Arthur Rimbaud) while playing an array of percussion instruments.  The vivid imagery of the text interweaves with the percussion in ways that are at times wild and bombastic, and at others quiet and reflective.  One of the finest and most appropriate settings of Rimbaud's poetry, the musico-theatrical elements are shockingly effective and affectively shocking.  Once heard it stays in the memory.  The Washington Post said of the work, "McCandless showed himself a master of sounds - subtle, emphatic, expertly shaped and richly expressive."

Il Romanticismo di Cesare e Lucrezia was composed in 2015 by Lewis Nielson for the remarkable singer/dancer/actress Sara Perez and double bass virtuoso Matthew Kline. These artists play, sing, speak, and dance in a work that addresses the life and times of one of the most licentious families of the late Renaissance, the Borgias.  Using poetry from the period (including  texts by Lucrezia Borgia herself, as well as Lorenzo de Medici and Michelangelo, among others), the lives of Lucrezia and her brother Cesare play out in a combination of musical embodiment and studied pageant, ending with their tragic but predictable deaths.

Tickets for the Baltimore performance may be purchased online through the An die Musik website (, via phone at 410-385-2638, or at the door. For the Mansion at Strathmore performance there is a suggested donation of $10 at the door.  Please allow ample time for travel to the Mansion at Strathmore.  Metro is operating on a modified weekend  schedule.  The Grosvenor-Strathmore Metro parking garage is available at no charge on the weekend.  It is about a 15-minute walk from the Metro and the parking garage to the Mansion.  See