February 28, 2024

‘Una Corda’ – Many Facets. The Third album from San Jose’s Peter Colclasure

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Peter Colclasure, photo by Adam Pearl

Pianist and award-winning local composer Peter Colclasure presents his beautiful new cinematic album ‘Una Corda’, consisting of 12 beautifully fluttering compositions. Currently based in San Jose, California, Colclasure plays piano at the New Ballet School (formerly Silicon Valley Ballet), in addition to teaching at Evergreen Studio of Music and the Arts. He currently plays with several San Jose groups, including Cola, the Jean Jackets, the Rose Peddlers, and the Vanities. Occasionally he performs with groundbreaking artist Cellista and flies to Seattle to record and perform with the Foghorns.

The new album follows Colclasure’s ‘Long Form’ LP, released in early 2019 and debut solo instrumental ‘Artigo’ LP the year before. His compositions have been used for choreography by the eMotion Arts dance troupe, the Memphis Ballet and Boise Ballet Academy.

“This music was written and recorded during the winter of 2019-20, innocent of a looming pandemic. I wanted to create something calm. When the shelter-in-place order hit in mid- March, I was just starting to mix the record, a process that involved hours of close listening on various speakers and headphones, as well as frequent midnight walks to my car parked down the street to sit in the dark with a notepad on the steering wheel, deciding whether to pan a particular sound to the left or adjust the reverb,” says Peter Colclasure. “The transition from routine to quarantine was sudden and disorienting. The grocery store shelves were emptied; the streets were silent; and as weeks went by, time seemed to expand in every direction at once. ‘Una Corda’ is a musical directive that indicates the use of the soft pedal. It’s when things go quiet.”

Written, performed, recorded and mixed by Colclasure on his laptop computer, this album was mastered by Kenny Schick at Basement3Production. His sound and esthetic are inspired by the works of Max Richter, Philip Glass, and Steve Reich, as well as John Luther Adams and Arvo Pärt.

After graduating with a degree in piano performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2004, Peter Colclasure spent a decade touring, recording and performing with various rock bands. While living in Seattle from 2007 to 2012, he discovered ballet accompaniment. He has played for Dance Fremont, Spectrum and Evergreen Ballet, providing live music for dance rehearsals, as well as composing and arranging original music for choreography.

The ‘Una Corda’ album is now available online stores such as Apple Music and streaming platforms such as Spotify. It can also be obtained directly from the artist via Bandcamp.

On Saturday, October 24, several of Colclasure’s compositions for piano and strings will feature in the New Ballet School’s live performance from the Hammer Theater in San Jose. This is a livestream event presnts this contemporary ballet world premiere, performed live for the first time by string quartet and piano. Tickets available at https://newballet.com/sjdances.


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Hey people I'm Mike D from Athens GR (43). I'm a sound engineer, radio producer, and certainly a music "freak." I couldn't be anything else, you see: I grew up in a musical home (my father was a composer), and wanted to be a rock-star but wasn't patient enough to study music. Instead, I studied the technical stuff and went really "nuts" when I started writing articles about the bands and artists I love. It all started back in 2002 in a printed magazine (Sound Maker - RIP) and I still do it because I really like sharing my libraries, discotheque, info, connections, knowledge, and all. I'm involved in all "waves" music (new wave/darkwave/post-punk/shoegaze), punk, industrial, EBM, alternative rock, indie, electronic, avant-garde/ experimental/ freestyle...but on the other hand I can easily throw a classical CD in the player, or a jazzy tune, or...ok you get it: Music! I'd like to read your comments on my writing because you know how it goes, and you all know the glorious song by Placebo,"Without You I'm Nothing"...Thanx and enjoy Freedom and Music, Loud!
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