Open Stage: Toronto Messiaen Ensemble

Thursday, June 11, 2015 at 7PM

Korean Cultural Service New York

“Has been accessed that it goes well with the motivation of the Ensemble’s establishment; to comfort people suffering from the lack of courage and hope and encourage them with hope”
-The Sisa Hankyoreh News

“Piano Trio No. 2, D. 929 -Franz Schubert”
II. Andante con motto

“You Raise Me Up” -Rolf Løvland
Arr. Gideon Gee-Bum Kim for clarinet, violin, cello and piano

“Song of the Heavens and Firmament” for piano trio - Gideon Gee-Bum Kim
I. When I cry with my voice
II. Song of the heavens and firmament
III. Song of the ransomed of the Lord


“Quartet for the End of Time” for violin, clarinet, cello and piano - Olivier Messiaen
I. Crystal liturgy
II. Vocalise, for the Angel who announces the end of time
IV. Interlude
VI. Dance of fury, for the seven trumpets
VII. Tangle of rainbows, for the Angel who announces the end of time
VIII. Praise to the immortality of Jesus

An eagle can live up to seventy years. But to reach this age, the eagle must make a hard decision. In its fortieth year, its long and flexible talons can no longer grab prey. The eagle’s long and sharp beak becomes bent. Its old-aged and heavy wings, due to their thick feathers, stick to its chest and make it difficult to fly. Then, the eagle is left with only two options: die or endure a painful transformation that lasts 150 days. The process requires the eagle to fly to a mountaintop and sit on its nest. There the eagle knocks its beak against a rock until it can pluck it out. Then the eagle will wait for a new beak to grow back and then it will pluck out its talons. When its new talons grow back, the eagle starts plucking its old-aged feathers. And after 5 months, the eagle takes its famous flight of rebirth and lives for 30 more years. 

The “Adversity and Transfiguration” concert was programmed using the mythical rebirth that an eagle undergoes through its lifetime. The repertoire selected for this concert expresses the message of the story. 

Why is change needed? Many times, in order to survive, we have to either adapt or go through a transformation. 

We sometimes need to get rid of old memories, habits and other past traditions. By freeing ourselves of past burdens, we can then take advantage of the present. 

Gideon Gee-Bum Kim Founder/Artistic Director
Takayo Noguchi Violin/Principal
Peter Pinteric Clarinet
Hee Yeon Kim Cello
Matthew Ming Li Piano

Toronto Messiaen Ensemble
The Toronto Messiaen Ensemble is a Canadian chamber ensemble dedicated to the performance of classical and contemporary music. It was founded in 2011 by the composer Gideon Gee-Bum Kim, who is the ensemble’s artistic director. Other founding members include Takayo Noguchi, Peter Pinteric, Seolhee Ashely Choi, and Hyuk Kim. The instrumentation of the ensemble symbolizes our homage to the 20th century French composer, Olivier Messiaen, reflecting the instrumentation of his work, “Quator pour la fin du temps”(Quartet for the end of time). TME has built a reputation through its unique and spiritual musical programming. It also extends its repertoire by joining established musicians such as pianist, Matthew Ming Li and violinist, Joelle Jihiye Kee. The TME has recently been appointed as guest ensemble with the Colorado College in the USA. The goal of the ensemble is to express a positive and hopeful message through music. 

Miro Yoon