The library of Poet’s House, normally a place of quiet and peaceful reading, will be the setting for the Sirius String Quartet’s premiere of a one movement, 30-minute string quartet by Julie Harting in a program of new music and poetry on Sunday November 6 at 4:00 pm. Also on the program, clarinetist Enid Blount Press will perform Harting’s Coagula for solo clarinet, and scholar, writer and poet James Currie will read selections from his poetry.

For over a decade the Sirius String Quartet has championed innovative music. Expanding the classical repertoire, these four strong improvisers have enjoyed performing works influenced by rock, jazz and other popular styles. The Sirius has premiered works in Lincoln Center's Tully Hall, Merkin Hall, the Los Angeles County Museum, American Composers Alliance Music Festival, the Knitting Factory, and the Kitchen.

Clarinetist Enid Blount Press premiered Harting’s Coagula last year. Lyrical atonal fragments, quarter tones and multiphonics frame the “heart” of this piece – a recitation of Paul Celan’s poem Coagula. Blount Press commands the piece with impeccable technique and passion.

Honoring the living tradition of poetry at the Poets House, poet James Currie will be on hand to read selections from his poetry. Currie’s poetry is inspired by John Donne, T.S. Eliot and Coleridge. Of particular import to him are the poets John Donne, T. S. Eliot, and Rilke. His poetry, intensely lyrical, with a strongly musical rhythmic orientation, is unabashedly focused on the issue of subjective expression and the poetic traditions that have contributed and motivated it.

Poets House, a reading room and library founded by Stanley Kunitz and Elizabeth Kray, is located at 72 Spring Street in Soho.

Poets House is being rented for use under a “special rental agreement” for this concert and is not sponsoring this event.

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Julie Harting has been composing music since the early 1980’s, and has written over two dozen original compositions, including several orchestral pieces, three string quartets, songs, solo pieces and various chamber ensemble pieces. Her body of compositions is diverse, demonstrating ample skill and talent in a comprehensive array of musical forms. Her works have been performed in New York City at the Knitting Factory, Galapagos, South Oxford Space, the Broadway Presbyterian Church, Kathryn Bache Miller Theater, Greenwich House, Greenwich School of Music, Cornelia Street Café, Third Street Settlement School and the Theater for a New City. Harting earned her M.A. and D.M.A in Music Composition from Columbia University, and she holds a B.M. in Music Composition from Manhattan School of Music. She studied under Ursula Mamlok, Mario Davidovsky, George Edwards, David Rakowski, Jacques Monod and Harold Seletsky. More information about Julie Harting can be found at www.julieharting.com.

James Currie is originally from London in Great Britain and read music at Cambridge University before coming to New York in the early 1990s where he completed a PhD at Columbia University. He currently holds a tenure-track position at the State University of New York at Buffalo. Academically, he works on the relationships between music, aesthetics, ethics and politics, his work appearing in numerous locations, including 'Current Musicology,' 'Eighteenth-Century Music,' 'Music and Letters,' and a forthcoming volume, 'Mozart Studies,' to be published by Cambridge University Press for the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth. He is at work on a book entitled, 'Come in Under the Shadow: Music, Failure, and the Act,' and he has been writing poetry since he came to the States. Presently, he is at work on a collection of his poems entitled 'Reluctantly towards the end of night.'

Sirius String Quartet Gregor Huebner, Jennifer Choi, Ronald Lawrence and Dave Eggar
For over a decade the Sirius String Quartet has championed innovative music. Expanding the classical repertoire, these four strong improvisers have enjoyed performing works influenced by rock, jazz and other popular styles. The Sirius has premiered works in Lincoln Center's Tully Hall, Merkin Hall, the Los Angeles County Museum, American Composers Alliance Music Festival, the Knitting Factory, and the Kitchen. In Europe, they have joined John Zorn in performances at Koln"s Musik Triennal, and performed with Nick Didkovsky and Dr. Nerve at festivals in Moers, Germany; Nancy, France; and Musique Actuelle in Victoriaville, Canada. Recent premieres include works by Nick Didkovsky, Elliot Sharp, Meg Okura, Nancy Magarill, and Phil Kline. In the next two seasons Sirius plans to perform new works by Anthony Braxton, John Eaton and Tom Johnson. The Sirius can be heard on CD with Jin Hi Kim on Living Tones (O.O. Discs), Einojuhani Rautavaara's String Quartet No.4 (Atalyst), Jeffery Schannzer's No More in Thralll (CRI), and Dr. Nerve's Ereia. (Cuneiform).

Enid Blount Press, clarinetist, has performed in Weill Recital Hall, Alice Tully Hall and Merkin Hall, among other venues in the New York area, playing new music, chamber music, opera and orchestra concerts. She has played on extensive chamber music tours in Germany and Italy and recently completed a clarinet recital tour in the South. Ms. Press holds a Master’s Degree in Clarinet Performance form the University of Southern California and is near completion of a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Arizona. She teaches chamber music at the Mannes College of Music.

Poets House is a literary center and poetry archive - a collection and meeting place that invites poets and the public to step into the living tradition of poetry. Founded in 1985 by poet Stanley Kunitz and arts administrator Elizabeth Kray, Poets House is a home for all who read and write poetry. At the heart of the organization is a 40,000 volume poetry collection. Free and open to the public, the library includes books, journals, chapbooks, audio tapes, videos and electronic media.