Spotlight is the Music Network's regular podcast shining the spotlight on someone involved in music in their working life.
Dr Mark Hutchinson is an academic, lecturer, and piano accompanist at the University of York, where he is course leader for the MA in Piano Studies, gives performance coaching, and teaches an undergraduate course called "Approaching the Contemporary: Western art music after 1980".
In this podcast recorded over Zoom in March 2021, Music Network co-ordinator Tom Chevis interviews Mark about his work, especially his interest in contemporary music, and how being a Christian affects (1) how he interacts with the world of 'new music' and (2) how he teaches. You can see his academic profile on the University of York's website here.
In the podcast Mark mentions five pieces which he recommends as good starting points for exploring new music. He has kindly provided links of what he considers good performances of these:
- Adès - Arcadiana - Endellion Quartet on this album (with Living Toys, another much more riotous but amazing early work): https://open.spotify.com/album/3PmOMN4f2JgCEXXT2GLKtS?si=isijoV7WR6WgVZ5VenNHnw
- Adams - Violin Concerto - Gidon Kremer and the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO): https://open.spotify.com/album/1xcdxLG29naXIGcTKOlKUt?si=FH3TM-zgQ4-UDBkbqrl8-g
- Ligeti - Études - Pierre-Laurent Aimard is a must-listen: https://open.spotify.com/album/2N0KhIJJ0EaiDXJmxEj05T?si=zZ-VnUp6RC64ZfnuKTCiEQ
- Takemitsu - Quotation of Dream - this recording with the LSO and Oliver Knussen is just packed with other beautiful late works too (especially How Slow the Wind and Twill by Twilight): https://open.spotify.com/album/51SzC3p2zqlYw2Q3pUc03A?si=nAnvG87wSGiKI0SeUK_opA
- Saariaho - Lichtbogen - Avanti! Chamber Orchestra plays it beautifully here: https://open.spotify.com/album/0sS1loCOhNJYmv3xB3P7dw?si=VNjnHnz8SkuOZitBJ6w4YQ