LINDA HUDES     Composer
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
“Listening to a soundtrack years after seeing a movie can rekindle memories and emotions. Feelings of romance, excitement, fondness and passion return without the necessity of seeing the picture again. Composer Linda Hudes magically achieves the same effect with her original score for Barnum’s Kaleidoscape. It is impossible to separate the power and influence of the music from the live performance. Hudes created a score that, ultimately, stands on its own. The finale, when the entire company stomps to a gospel beat, practically defies the audience members to remain in their seats. If the level of excellence in Hudes work in Kaleidoscape is any indication of future circus music, maybe we are once again at the cutting edge of composition in performance.”        Pittsburg Post-Gazette
 
“Lucky New York. Its cornucopia of top-notch entertainment has just grown a little fuller…The depth and riches of Kadeidoscape extend still further. Kaleidoscape owes no little of its captivating atmosphere and propulsive energy to the music composed by Linda Hudes and directed by her husband, Rik Albani. This is a big-top show that will be hard to top.”         New York Times
 
“Feld and his creative team have done a superb job in giving the old time circus a new look, and the effect is magical and wondrous. This is the kind of show for which God invented the circus.”  New York Post
 
"The circus becomes music to her ears.  Linda Hudes has moved up in the world. As composer with the Big Apple Circus she has a lofty touch with the keyboard."  NY Newsday
 
"The Big Apple Circus offers the lively original music of Linda Hudes delivered in driving fashion by the Big Apple Circus Band under the leadership of Rik Albani."  New York Times
 
"Thus in keeping with the concept,  the resident musical wizards, Rik Albani and Linda Hudes, have emerged with appropriately jazzy music."  New York Post
 
"Linda Hudes captures the magic of the circus in her music."  Baltimore Evening Sun
 
“A full orchestra provides not circus music, but music for circus, a unique blend of melody and harmony whose rich sounds transports you to another place where truly a show for kings takes place.”
Cleveland Plains Dealer
 
“The orchestra casts a melodic spell of mystery with trumpet and cello. It is a circus in which physical skill is transported into artistry, where the phenomenal displays of agility, strength, coordination, are presented with such a measured pace and such consideration that they inspire not only awe of great daring but of great beauty, too. The experience is fresh and astonishing. It is not just something different, but something special, much as opera, ballet and theater are. It is a palace of wonders, and its amazements can be found nowhere else.”         Austin Chronicle
 
“Barnum’s Kaleidoscape lasts only two hours, but it seems afterwards like a week’s vacation. The orchestra maintains a steady flow of music throughout, giving Kaleidoscape the cohesion of a bizarre and colorful dream. Kaleidoscape is a show to savor in the moment. But also it’s one to be fondly revisited in memory in years to come.”     San Francisco Chronicle
 
“The symphonic accompaniment was a strong addition that supplied keen, clear sound. The refinement acts as a lush sensory stimulus that entertains all ages for its simplicity and strong aesthetic beauty.”  Daily Texan
 
“Linda Hudes and Rik Albani are able to do classical circus with unconventional music. They have more circus experience than any other composers, or most directors, in America. I had no hesitation in choosing them to compose the music for a show that I always had supposed would be based on music.”
Raffaele Deritis / Director, Barnum’s Kaleidoscape
 
“Linda has an amazing talent for using melody, harmony and rhythm to make us feel each performance. She is a brilliant composer. Rik has a knack for finding the right musicians and molding them into a powerful, dynamic orchestra. There is nothing standard about the Kaleidoscape ensemble, which includes a violin, cello and a flute. The orchestra’s melodies wander through the past, engage the present and take us to a timeless place.”    Kenneth Feld / Owner Feld Entertainment
 
“Kaleidoscape has the breathtaking vibe of a great experimental rock or jazz show.”  St. Paul Pioneer Press
 
“Kaleidoscape uses an original, electronic score with vaguely post-modern echoes.”    Chicago Tribune
 
“Kaleidoscape is propelled by an able band supplying a soundtrack that ranges from hip hop to opera.
Minneapolis Star Tribune
 
“The circus wars are off and running. The winner so far; the audience. With the rousing ‘Barnum’s Kaleidoscape’ the people who own the Barnum label return to the one-ring big top in splendid form. Linda Hudes’ original score propels the action, but the otherworld, unintelligible lyrics of Cirque du Soleil are missing.”        Los Angeles Times
 
What helps the shows blend of old and new is its orchestra, directed by Rik Albani. It bursts into up-tempo numbers for Larible, and dissolves into lilting and graceful violin for the elegant trapeze artist. The electric hard-rock sounds pulsing for the archery routine are reminiscent of a David Copperfield show.”
Chicago Daily Herald
 
“Linda Hudes…the First Woman of Circus Music.”   Spectacle
 
"Hudes and Albani have almost singlehandedly transformed circus music from the traditional marches and waltzes to a genre of no less creative import than that of scoring for dance or film." Berkshire Eagle
 
"The Big Apple Circus Band is as sharp and tight as ever. While Otis Redding, Mitch Rider and James Brown would be proud of the eight musicians who rock through their songs, more than half of the great performing music was composed by keyboardist Linda Hudes."        Boston Herald
 
"Superlatives also apply to the band."      Chicago Sun-Times
 
"The musical accompaniment blends Gershwin and Ellington with the alternately ethereal and hard driving compositions of Big Apple keyboardist Linda Hudes."      Washington Post
 
"Some of the finest musicians in the country compose and play for the small one-ringer. Indeed, for nearly two decades Hudes' training in classical music and composition and Albani's in rock and jazz has resulted in a perfect, dynamic aural backdrop to the little circus that could."     Vermont News
 
"Because of the quality and seamlessness of the musical score (a mix of nostalgic ditties, rock and roll and original material)...this is a production as savvy as they come."      Washington Post
 
"As always, the music composed by Linda Hudes and played under the direction of Rik Albani adds zest to the proceedings."  New York Times
 
"While the clowns and acrobats and animals are dazzling the eye in the Big Apple's single ring, Rik Albani and the Big Apple Circus Band are tickling the ear."  New York Times
 
"The Medicine Show is performed to a particularly jaunty score by the circus' resident composer, Linda Hudes."      Berkshire Eagle
 
"Superlatives also apply to the band."      Chicago Sun-Times
 
"A black garden scene benefits - as does much of the show - from Linda Hudes original music."  
N.Y. Newsday
 
"The whole show, buoyed by Linda Hudes' original music, sustains the feel of a joyous public party."  
New York Newsday
 
"Hudes is breathing new life into a music form that had been frozen at the turn of the century."  
New York Newsday
 
"The first few notes really take your breath away.  It's the music that captures each person in a bubble of enchantment from the very beginning." Vanguard Press
 
 The jazz oriented band, led by Rik Albani (with originals by Linda Hudes) weaves a fine, lyrical spell over the proceedings."     Variety
 
"Composer Linda Hudes' original music often has a Latin beat, a drive, a wail that recalls the best of Nino Rota. She doesn't rip off, she celebrates. How does a composer create music to accompany elephants following Henry Mancini's classic and ubiquitous 'Baby Elephant Walk'? Hudes answers the question with saxes, trumpets and a strutting rhythm perfectly original and perfectly suited for the elephant act."  
Oakland Press
 
"Highest compliments for the musical score. It was quite enjoyable throughout the entire performance and complimented the ring demonstrations in a very fine manner. In today's world it is unusual to have the visual activity and audio accompaniment work so well together. When I attend the BAC I know I can have that experience."  Circus World Museum
 
"Enter Rik Albani and Linda Hudes, the husband and wife team responsible for the singular sound of the Big Apple Circus.  For 14 years they have not only written and played circus music-they've transformed it."  Vermont Times
 
"Central to the continuity and atmosphere of the spectacle is a musical score played by a live band.  Composer Linda Hudes and her husband, trumpeter, conductor, and music director Rik Albani have been part of the Big Apple's creative team since 1980."  Circus Fanfare
 
 "Linda Hudes, the Bach of the big top, composed an engaging score for Rik Albani's band."  The Bandwagon
 
"The circus band, directed by trumpeter Rik Albani and playing original scores by keyboardist Linda Hudes, is more than a circus band. It is the heartbeat and the spirit of the show, as well as being a talented and entertaining group in its own right."  Burlington Free Press
 
"A special round of applause is due Linda Hudes who composed great music for several acts."  Circus Report
 
"...great music by Rik Albani's band."  Vermont Free Press
 
"The show is further enhanced by keyboardist Linda Hudes original music, ranging from jazzy to cosmic in nature, and played by a great-sounding band led by lively trumpeter Rik Albani."  Fairfax Times
 
"The Big Apple Circus is no ordinary circus- and Linda Hudes is no ordinary musician. Hudes has taken what she learned studying classical piano and world music, and transferred it into a circus environment- to change our perception of circus music forever."  Korg Proview
 
"Original music has now become the central core that holds the whole show together. By mixing modern music with classics, rock n' roll and the circus feel, Ms. Hudes scores each act by simultaneously emphasing its stregths and incorporating it into the show's overall theme."  Korg USA
 
"Hudes is no ordinary big-top band member.  Much of the credit for the Big Apple's blend of intimacy and spectacle, razzle-dazzle and mystery, belongs to Hudes, whose arrangements and composition provide the repertoire for the company's eight piece ensemble."  Keyboard
 
"The transitions between acts, aided by Linda Hudes lively original music, are smooth."  New York Newsday
 
"The score is a panorama of styles and sounds."  Boston Globe
 
"Linda Hudes creates a new circus sound."  Huntington Record
 
"Their music forms the core of the Big Apple."  Chicago Sun Times
 
"Linda Hudes writes all the mood-evoking music, which ranges from reggae to big band to jazz to new age.  Rick Albani is the trumpeter and musical director."  Reston Times
 
"Circus music challenge solved.  The tradition of circus music is brought up-to-date by music director and trumpeter, Rik Albani, and his composer, keyboardist and wife, Linda Hudes."  Sun Chronicle
 
"The music by Rik Albani and crew is crisp and echoless."  NY Daily News
 
"High above the single ring at the Big Apple Circus is where the excitement begins. Linda Hudes arranges her music scores and computer discs.  Twenty years of classical training might have something to do with Hudes' penchant for perfection. Eight years of composing for the Big Apple Circus has given Hudes the confidence and skill to move out even further."  Vanguard Press
 
“From the act's excellent entrance with the elephant appearing out of the fog as the portal curtain opens to the act's close in reverse as the elephant backs away through the curtain and into the fog, I was completely enraptured... As impressive as it is, much credit also must be given to Linda Hudes who composed the superb music that is almost haunting yet most appropriate for this awe-impressive number. For many years Linda Hudes did the Big Apple show music and now she's done several compositions for this edition of the Gold but her elephant composition makes this act a standout.Dick Flint. Former President, Circus Historical Society
 
“A Modern Maestro. There’s also exciting new music being written today, and Music Alive was delighted to speak with today’s leading composer for the circus, Linda Hudes. For eighteen years Linda was composer and keyboardist for the Big Apple Circus and more recently has worked with the Feld Entertainment production Barnum’s Kaleidoscape as well as the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. It’s been her goal to bring contemporary musical sounds and styles into the circus, to make it relevant and appealing to today’s audiences. She writes in a dizzying variety of styles--funk, rock, and jazz are just the beginning! For Linda, it’s all about creating music that is as fresh and exciting as the acts it accompanies.”
Music Alive Magazine
“...a unique blend of melody and harmony whose rich sounds transports you to another place...” Cleveland Plains Dealer