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Scott Ordway:
Nineteen Movements for Unaccompanied Cello (2017)

Commissioned by Arlen Hlusko with support from the Tarisio Trust

Of all of the orchestral instruments, the cello is said to have the range that most closely resembles that of the human voice. Composer Scott Ordway's ambitious Nineteen Movements for Unaccompanied Cello is an impassioned, wide-ranging monologue that explores the vast expressive capabilities of that voice in a rare, evening-length statement for solo cello. The work has been developed over the course of a year in close collaboration with Canadian cellist Arlen Hlusko, a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music who is quickly becoming one of the foremost instrumentalists of her generation. 

Arlen Hlusko will give two world premiere concerts of Nineteen Movements in Philadelphia in February 2018: first in James Turrell's architecturally and acoustically pristine Chestnut Hill Skyspace, and again at Paradigm Gallery + Studio in Queen Village. Receptions with the artists will follow both events.

Short video clips of Arlen rehearsing the work are available below.

03 February 2018, 6:30 PM
Chestnut Hill Skyspace
20 E. Mermaid Lane
Free Parking

09 February 2018, 6:30 PM
Paradigm Gallery
746 S. 4th Street
Limited Parking
Seating is Limited - please reserve early


Internationally acclaimed Canadian cellist ARLEN HLUSKO is a dynamic and versatile young artist who has performed extensively throughout Asia, Europe, and North America. She has appeared professionally as a soloist and chamber musician in prestigious venues across the world, including Carnegie Hall, Field Concert Hall, Walt Disney Concert Hall, The Kimmel Center's Perelman Theater & Verizon Hall, Roy Thompson Hall, Jack Singer Concert Hall, and Guangzhou Opera House.

As a soloist, Arlen has appeared with numerous orchestras (including the Calgary Philharmonic, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, l'Orchestre Symphonique de Sherbrooke, the Kitchener Waterloo Chamber Orchestra, and more), has given recitals across North America and China, and has been a featured performer on WHYY.

Arlen is an avid chamber musician and has collaborated with renowned artists such as Ida Kavafian, Donald Weilerstein, Roger Tapping, Roberto Diaz, Hsin-Yun Huang, Ricardo Morales, Lynn Harrell, Tara Helen O'Connor, Andres Diaz, Stephen Taylor, Ronald Leonard, the Tokyo & Miami String Quartets, and members of the Guarneri, Orion, London Haydn, and St. Lawrence String Quartets. Festival appearances include Perlman Music Program's Chamber Music Workshop & Winter Residencies in NY & FLMusic from Angel Fire, the Taos School of MusicFour Seasons Winter WorkshopNorfolk Chamber Music FestivalAvaloch Farm Music InstituteThe Banff Centre's Chamber Residency and Masterclasses, Lake George Music Festival, Innsbrook Festival’s Emerging Artists Program, Pinchas Zukerman’s Young Artist Program, and Domaine Forget Chamber Festival

SCOTT ORDWAY (1984, Santa Cruz, CA) is an American composer, conductor, and Assistant Professor of Music Composition and Theory at Rutgers University, as well as a 2017–19 Fellow at American Opera Projects in New York City. Previously, he was a member of the faculty at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. His work is passionately multidisciplinary, fusing music with original text, video, digital soundscape, and experimental theater to explore a diverse array of contemporary themes including natural landscape, protest and revolution, and the lives of cities.

Ordway’s work has been called “exquisite” by The New York Times, “a marvel” by The Philadelphia Inquirer, and “an American response to Sibelius” by The Boston Globe. In recent seasons, he has collaborated with leading orchestras, ensembles, and soloists, including the Hong Kong Philharmonic, Buffalo Philharmonic, Curtis Symphony Orchestra, Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler (Berlin), Tanglewood New Fromm Players, So Percussion, Fireworks Ensemble, Syzygy New Music (NYC), Juventas New Music Ensemble (Boston), Eugene Contemporary Chamber Ensemble (Oregon), Norbotten NEO (Sweden), Boston Musica Viva, SOLI Chamber Ensemble (San Antonio), and the Momenta, Arneis, and Daedalus String Quartets. His music for vocal ensemble has been commissioned and performed by the Lorelei Ensemble (Boston) and The Thirteen (Washington, D.C), among many others.

Recent international collaborations include: a staged production of Detroit at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin; a commercial recording for NAXOS Records featuring principal players from the Hong Kong Philharmonic; performances at the Beijing Modern Music Festival and Hong Kong Arts Festival; and an in-progress opera on the Arab Spring, with an original libretto by the Algerian author, scholar, and journalist Meryem Belkaïd.

Ordway's upcoming projects include new works for the Tucson Symphony, Dover String Quartet (Philadelphia), and SOLI Chamber Ensemble (San Antonio).