Vignettes, a tight, one-hour show, weaves theatrics with music for even the most reticent chamber music virgins, as well as die-hard classical fans who want to keep chamber music flourishing with new sounds and fresh ways of presenting them.  The Mousai specialize in new music relevant to ears that have grown up with the sounds of pop.  Never pandering, we’re not afraid to venture out from behind our music stands and grab audiences with stories and theater moves that meld with the pieces.

Pianist Maria Choban has this to say about it:

My classical band, The Mousai, is taking contemporary chamber music to the theater: 6 new pieces (all written in the last few years, by young and young at heart American composers), all of them nestled within scenes or accompanied by stories.  Friday, December 4, 7:30pm at Portland State University’s Recital Hall – Lincoln 75 (1620 SW Park Avenue).

  • Ride our roller coaster as Sam Spade introduces the LA Confidential noir sounds of LA composer George Gianopoulos’s City Vignettes.

  • Hang on through the crazy turns when Brooklyn composer Daniel Schlosberg’s Two Remarks, first evokes Nabokov’s crazy piano player who refuses to die when shot in Lolita, retreating in the second Remark into hopeful/hopeless repentance.

  • Relax and celebrate the Hollywood genre with Variations, by Scott Pender.

  • Meet the dominatrix who tames Tony’s Tango — Antonio Celaya’s Chongos Morongos.  (Cascadia Composers member)

  • Cry with Portland State student, Thomas DeNicola’s Memories; how can someone so young be so wise?  (Cascadia Composers member)

  • And cheer with both arms waving as recent high school graduate and past principal percussionist for Portland Youth Philharmonic, Kaleb Davies, joins us for Bill Douglas’s jazz- influenced Quartet, careening us down the hill and to a marginally safe stop.

One hour/No intermission: In and out, nobody gets hurt.

Tickets: Pay what you can and/or what you think it’s worth after the show!