College of Charleston SCHOOL OF THE ARTS

Magnetic South Music: Bártôk, Higdon & Koumendakis

Magnetic South, a collaborative project between the College of Charleston Department of Music and the Charleston Symphony Orchestra (CSO), will present its fall concert, Bártôk, Higdon & Koumendakis, conducted by CSO Music Director Ken Lam.

Bártôk’s Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion, an iconic early 20th century repertoire staple, will be performed by guest pianists Beata Moon and Matthieu Cognet, with CSO percussion power duo Beth Albert and Ryan Leveille. The program will also include the world premiere of a large ensemble work, Five more steps till you fall asleep, by Greek composer Giorgos Koumendakis whose work was featured in the opening ceremonies of the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, and a recent piece, Dark Wood, by American composer Jennifer Higdon highlighting the bassoon within the framework of a true chamber dialogue among violin, cello and piano, featuring CSO principal bassoonist Josh Baker.

The concert will take place on Friday, Nov. 10, 2017, at 7:30pm, Recital Hall/Simons Center for the Arts, 54 Saint Philip St. SPECIAL TICKET PRICE is $10.00  and can be purchased at the door, by calling (843) 723-7528, ext. 110, or online at

Magnetic South is an innovative partnership between the Charleston Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and the College of Charleston Department of Music. It combines the resources of the two institutions to present contemporary classical music in Charleston in an informative context. The goal of the Magnetic South partnership is to bring to the audiences of the Lowcountry, including students at the College, masterworks of the 20th and 21st centuries along with important new works by living composers. The concerts, performed by CSO musicians and conducted by Ken Lam and College of Charleston faculty member Yiorgos Vassilandonakis, feature carefully selected works from a variety of aesthetic directions and styles to represent the panorama of the music of our time. Magnetic South was co-founded in 2012 by Vassilandonakis, fellow faculty member Edward Hart and CSO concertmaster and Principal Pops conductor, Yuriy Bekker.

The next concert will take place on Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, featuring  new music from CofC faculty composers: Edward Hart’s song cycle The Caged Bird Sings is based on poetry by Paul Laurence Dunbar and features tenor Rodrick Dixon; a new chamber orchestra work by Yiorgos Vassilandonakis explores the sonification of fluid dream states; and a sextet by Nathan Michel, who is a composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist making all kinds of acoustic and electronic music, from pop to experimental and classical.