One welcome facet of the Festival of Chicago Composers, which runs on successive Sundays this month, is its inclusion of several generations of local composers. The oldest on this week’s program is Northwestern’s William Karlins, who’s in his 60s, and the youngest is Ted Hearne, a 14-year-old who attends Whitney Young High School and sings with the Chicago Children’s Choir. It was his training with the latter that inspired Hearne to compose, though he also acknowledges his musical family as a seminal influence. (Hearne’s mother, a singer, cofounded Music of the Baroque, and a number of his relatives have gone to Oberlin and other distinguished conservatories.) He embarked on his vocation, which he hopes will last a lifetime, about three years ago, and now takes college-level courses in theory and composition. The five choral pieces of his to be performed in the festival are all in a neo-romantic musical style; each lasting no more than three minutes, they use as texts the writings of Shakespeare, Thomas Morley, and Robert Frost as well as a Yaqui chant. These songs will be performed a cappella by a group of Hearne’s peers from the choir. Another interesting piece on the bill is Bob Marsh’s “Les Michelins (Etude for Quintet),” which carries the practice of graphic notation to a logical extreme: improvising on the lines and colors of a Michelin road map. His conspirators in fun at this concert include avant-garde cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm and free-jazz reedist Ken Vandermark. Sunday, 3 PM, Lunar Cabaret and Full Moon Cafe, 2827 N. Lincoln; 327-6666.
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Ted Hearne photo.