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No 13 without logo 2 Gwendolyn Masin

The Space Between the Notes - XIII

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“Sing yourself to where the singing comes from.” – Seamus Heaney

For those new to this space, welcome! This is where I share music and musings, my work and the work of others. This is also the place I turn to for support, encouragement, critique and feedback. It is a gateway, not just to the stories I have to tell, but also to the stories that others tell.

“Kunst ist schön, macht aber viel Arbeit” (from the opera «Die verkaufte Braut» / «The Bartered Bride»), and sometimes that, “lots of work” is a pile of rubble that’s hard to get out from under. On those days I feel lucky that I can find encouragement from you and draw great inspiration and a sense of peace from knowing you care.

Thank you!

Gwendolyn’s Bridge Club

2021 10 28 Cocktails fur die Musen Casino 44 small Gwendolyn Masin

Called to life earlier this year, Gwendolyn’s Bridge Club (GBC) has, at its heart, the wish to bring people together to celebrate music.

On 28 October, in partnership with Casino Bern, 45 members of GBC gathered for a pre-concert introduction. Accompanied by a glass of bubbly, Daniel Schnyder, the Melisma Saxophone Quartet, Domenico Catalano and I had the opportunity to talk about “West Side Story”, about its impact on the musical scene, and about the men behind the composition. By the time Leonard Bernstein wrote the music, he was already somewhat of a superstar, but the work would be one of the young Stephen Sondheim’s first forays into the world of musical. He certainly shook things up with daring lyrics and an ability to handle sensitive subjects. Sondheim, unfortunately, passed away last week.

Our concert at Casino which, at its heart, featured “West Side Story”, was interspersed by works from Daniel Schnyder who, as ever, was not only a deeply engaging speaker, but who also mesmerised the audience with his renditions of his pieces. I feel blessed that an audience member sent us the final notes of the concert – listen to the Finale of West Side Story here, or to the whole work here, or gift someone the CD here.

What Projects Gwendolyn’s Bridge Club is Prefinancing

For those who work in the arts, you know how much work goes into raising the necessary funding to do any one project. Currently, many foundations in Switzerland are so overworked dealing with the fall-out from the pandemic that telephones go unanswered and emails are responded to many weeks after being sent. In short, finding financial means to back arts projects continues to be a struggle. Your contribution to GBC makes a difference. Your contribution can help enable projects such as the following:

Listen to Miklós Lukács here, and Söndörgő here.

Give the Gift of Music, Arts and Community this Festive Season

Gwendolyn’s Bridge Club builds bridges between artists and listeners, and between different art disciplines. The club connects social circles by bringing people together to experience and discuss music and art, to drink and dine and to converse in a fashion as convivial as an evening of bridge. Through Gwendolyn's Bridge Club, I want to give people the gift of music, art, and friendship, to develop unique and holistic cultural events, and while doing so, raise funds to realise and prefinance forward-looking artistic visions.

Gift a family member or friend membership to GBC. They will receive the gift of community, music, and art this festive season! To do so, respond to this email with a “yes please!” and we will be very happy to get in touch and share more information with you.

Kreutzer Etudes with Peter Sheppard Skaerved at The Exhale

Banner Image Gwendolyn Masin

Peter and I will continue our capricious peregrinations with two more Etudes, namely, numbers 21 and 22 before completing the second of three cycles revolving around Rodolphe Kreutzer’s seminal works at The Exhale.

About Those Projects…

Gwendolyn and Yale Strom Screenshot 2021 07 26 at 18 12 45 Gwendolyn Masin

Since June of this year, I speak monthly with violinist and composer Yale Strom as part of my research into forgotten folk music. I discovered Strom through a composer called Coreen Morsink after she heard that I am working on a project focusing on folk music. Strom is a pioneer among Klezmer revivalists in conducting extensive field research in Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans among the Jewish and Rom communities. Sharing stories and learning about communities where music is such an integral part of society is both exhilarating and hugely nourishing. One of the pieces he shared with me recently is called “Svalava Kozatshok”. He learned it from a Romani cellist in the Carpathian Ukraine.

Listen to the Klezmer version of the Ukrainian Kozatshka.

Blog – The Fifth Element

Gwendolynmasin and ysaye saint gervais Gwendolyn Masin

Recently, while running errands with my son, we passed a shoe store and my son unexpectedly stopped to look into the window. This is unusual for him because he has just begun to walk and explore the concept of forward motion. And so, he is usually running on his tiptoes, shrieking in delight at his own locomotion. My son is of a very sunny nature. He is cheerful, curious, fun, and very present. This latter trait forces me to drop everything and be just as present as he is. What he is not, is someone who stops in his tracks to look at something, whilst processing an impression that he can’t apprehend yet.

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I hope you’ve enjoyed the music and the stories and look forward to connecting with you!



*(all underlined words are hyperlinks that lead to further information, films, sound files etc.)