‘In the Shadow of the Mountain’ — Part 2 with Jennifer Higdon and Matthew J. Detrick

Crossover Media
2 min readMar 8, 2023

Houston Texas based ‘Apollo Chamber Players’ sixth studio recording; ‘Moonstrike’ on Azica Records includes Jennifer Higdon’s groundbreaking work for string quartet; ‘In the Shadow of the Mountain.’ The piece is the 20th and final work in Apollo’s 20 by 2020 multicultural commissioning initiative and multiple GRAMMY and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Jennifer Higdon joined us for this podcast along with Apollo Chamber Players violinist and founder Matthew Detrick to discuss the piece. Listen to the Segment.

‘In the Shadow of the Mountain’ has great intensity and emotionalism, while at the same time is very technically challenging. Jennifer Higdon grew up in the shadow of the Smoky Mountains and the subject matter for this commission was heavily influenced by her childhood memories of sound, light, and music of the mountain and its people.

The genesis for this piece and it’s relationship to Jennifer Higdon’s first opera which honors the resonance of the Great Smoky Mountains.

Jennifer Higdon’s approach rethinking the structure converted an opera, a work that has words, to a string quartet arrangement, which is wordless.

The Apollo Chamber Players return to Carnegie Hall for a program celebrating the ensemble’s 15th season of multicultural programming and the conclusion of its Moonshot-inspired 20x2020 commissioning project. New works by Grammy and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Jennifer Higdon, Emmy-winning Chickasaw composer Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate, and Rome Prize-winning composer Pierre Jalbert are showcased, along with a homage to Turkish-born composer Erek Eryilmaz’s heritage and a peace-infused work by Prairie View A&M composer John Cornelius. Special guests include Houston Poet Laureate Outspoken Bean, vocalist Kenneth Gayle , and astronaut narrator John Herrington, the first Native American to fly in space.

The Program Is As Follows:
JENNIFER HIGDON In the Shadow of the Mountain (NY Premiere)
PIERRE JALBERT L’esprit du Nord (NY Premiere)
ERBERK ERYILMAZ Thracian Airs of Besime Sultan (NY Premiere)

Apollo Chamber Players Performers are:
··Matthew J. Detrick, Violin
··Anabel Ramirez Detrick, Violin
··Matthew Dudzik, Cello

Produced by Max Horowitz — Crossover Media, This content, as well as the related podcast, are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) for redistribution and adaptation.