In the chilly early months of 2017, Strange Interlude was in the midst of a bi-coastal transition from the East to West Coast. While preparing to make that move by driving across the United States with harp, cello and cat in tow, the ensemble spent a series of recording sessions inside a historic Quaker meetinghouse in New Milford, CT.
Because 2017 marked ten years since Strange Interlude first began performing together, it felt like the perfect moment to spend some time with the repertory, arrangements and transcriptions that formed the core of their unusual harp and cello concert programs for those first ten years.
Each one of the works on this album is a product of intensive score and recording study, rehearsal, solo practice and hundreds of live chamber concert performances. Throughout this process, the pieces evolved and became more emphatically an expression of Strange Interlude's own unique musical voice.
Meetinghouse Sessions was recorded at the historic Housatonic Friends Meeting in New Milford, Connecticut that harpist and co-founder Lily Press grew up attending. The interior of the meeting house is effectively a simple wooden box - while this Quaker architecture was originally intended as a spiritual statement about the value of simplicity, it has the added advantage of creating a beautiful and warm acoustic space. Since the meeting was established in 1788, the area around it has changed and developed, and the acoustics now also include sounds from the nearby Route 7. Rather than try to work against this soundscape, we have chosen to embrace it as part of the sound of the space and of this album, and are including an Intro track of road noise captured from inside the meetinghouse.
For more information: housatonicmeeting.org