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The 18th Biennial Festival of New Music will take place February 1 – 4 on the campus of the Florida State University’s College of Music. This year the festival will comprise seven different concerts featuring acoustic and electroacoustic compositions for both small and large ensembles. Twenty-three composers from across the country have been selected to attend performances of their works. The festival will also feature presentations, works, performances, and masterclasses by our special guests, composer Louis Andriessen, the Bugallo-Williams Piano Duo, and violinist Monica Germino.

guests

Featured Guests

Composer Louis Andriessen
(Francesca Patella)

Louis Andriessen

The Bugallo-Williams Piano Duo

Bugallo-Williams Piano Duo

Violinist Monica Germino
(Markus Kinch)

Monica Germino


Festival Composers

Ana Paola Santillan Alcocer · Daniel Barkley · Fernando Benadon · Benjamin Broening · Clifton Callender · Hon Ki Cheung · Kyong Mee Choi · Jon Lin Chua · Andrew Conklin · Nickitas Demos · Mark Kilstofte · Paul Koonce · Peter Kramer · Ladislav Kubík · Elainie Lillios · Lansing McLoskey · Mike McFerron · Fernanda Navarro · Ketty Nez · James Primosch · Aaron Spotts · Ondřej Štochl · Stephen Taylor · Roydon Tse · Daniel Thompson · Amy Williams · Mark Wingate

events

Festival Events

(All events are free and open to the public.
Schedule details are subject to change.)

Wednesday, February 1

2:30 pm Germino string-area masterclass
Lindsay Recital Hall

4:30 — 6:00 pm Andriessen masterclass
Longmire Recital Hall


Thursday, February 2

6:30 pm Andriessen pre-concert lecture
Lindsay Recital Hall

7:30 pm Opening Concert (I)
Opperman Music Hall
Andriessen’s Garden of Eros
Choi, Kubík, McFerron, Nez, Primosch
with Eppes Quartet, Phyllis Pancella, Hui-Ting Yang, Klaudia Szlachta


Friday, February 3

10:20 am Chamber Concert (IIa)
Opperman Music Hall
Cheung, Conklin, Kramer, Spotts

11:15 am Chamber Concert (IIb)
Opperman Music Hall
Barkley, Chua, Taylor

2:00 pm Chamber Concert (III)
Opperman Music Hall
New Music Ensemble
Andriessen, Benadon, Demos, Kilstofte, Navarro, Štochl

4:30 – 6:00 pm Andriessen masterclass
Dohnanyi Recital Hall

7:30 pm Guest Artist Concert (IV)
Opperman Music Hall
Bugallo-Williams Duo


Saturday, February 4

2:00 pm Electro-Acoustic Concert (V)
Opperman Music Hall
Broening, Callender, Lillios, Koonce, Thompson

6:30 pm Andriessen pre-concert lecture
Westcott 060

7:30 pm FSU Symphony Orchestra and Wind Orchestra Concert (VI)
(Concert will be live streamed. Link forthcoming.)
Ruby Diamond Concert Hall
with the Bugallo-Williams Duo
Andriessen’s Hague Hacking
Alcocer, McLoskey, Tse

program

Festival Program

Thursday 7:30 pm
Opperman Music Hall

Garden of Eros (2002)
Louis Andriessen
Eppes Quartet: Jia-Rong Gan, Sophia Han, Shelby Thompson, Adam Collins
in transit (2009)
Old Mother of Dzhaferbeg (2008)
Ketty Nez
Klaudia Szlachta, violin; Ketty Nez, piano
Dark the Star (2008)
James Primosch
Evan T. Jones, baritone; Deborah Bish, clarinet; Greg Sauer, cello; Heidi Williams, piano; Peter Soroka, percussion; Alexander Jimenez, conductor

— Intermission —

14 Haiku (2016)
Ladislav Kubík
Phyllis Pancella, mezzo-soprano, Hui-Ting Yang, piano
In Void (2012)
Kyong Mee Choi
Paige Li and Huizi Zhang, pianos
If You Walked a Mile (2015)
Mike McFerron
Nick Stevens, marimba

Friday 10:20 am
Opperman Music Hall

Eolian (2015)
Peter Kramer
Benjamin Sung, violin
Two Days' Bar Talk (2014)
Aaron Spotts
Duo Rodinia: Lisa Kachouee, clarinet; Jamie Whitmarsh, marimba
A Star Ferry Ride (2016)
Hon Ki Cheung
Michael Casey, tuba; Brett Chittenden, piano
Five Pieces for String Quartet (2015)
Andrew Conklin
Eppes Quartet: Jia-Rong Gan, Sophia Han, Shelby Thompson, Adam Collins

Friday 11:15 am
Opperman Music Hall

I Am Vertical / But I would rather be horizontal (2014)
Daniel Barkley
Lambert Hsieh, violin; Jordan Galvarino, cello; Thaya Kongpakpaisarn, piano
Huis clos (2016)
Jon Lin Chua
Tatiana Gorbunova, piano
Hox (2014)
Stephen Taylor
Katherine Weintraub, soprano saxphone
Cole Belt, alto saxophone
Nick Childs, tenor saxophone
Galo Morales, baritone saxophone

Friday 2:00 pm
Opperman Music Hall

New Music Ensemble
Clifton Callender, director

eight shades of metal (2014)
Nickitas Demos
Saxophone quartet: Katherine Weintraub, soprano; Cole Belt, alto; Nick Childs, tenor; Galo Morales, baritone
Trombone quartet: Kyle Schaefer, Tyler Coffman, Kevin Clancy, Jonathan Lacey (bass)
Trey Harris, conductor
Otherness (2014)
Fernanda Navarro
John Ross, flute; Brian Corbin, bass clarinet; Jared Starr, violin; Maria Santacruz, viola; Carrie Miller, cello; Yinhui Li, piano; Jacob Kight, percussion; Trey Harris, conductor
The White Album (2014)
  3. I Am Learning to Abandon the World
  2. The Mad Scene
Mark Kilstofte
Feryal Qudourah, soprano; Ayça Çetin, flute; Katsuya Yuasa, clarinet; Dani Hoisington, violin; Aleksandra Pereverzeva, cello; YingYing Wang, piano; Andrew Bockman, percussion; Rachel Friedman, conductor

— Intermission —

Rhythmensional (2015)
Fernando Benadon
Brian Corbin, bass clarinet; Shelby Thompson, viola; Tyler Tolles, vibraphone; Guilherme Godoi, piano
Šeptet (7/whispers) (2014)
Ondřej Stochl
Jen Kabbas, clarinet; Petra Bubanja and Edward Charity, violins; Jack Flores, cello; DK Issitt, contrabass; Huizi Zhang, piano; Jeremy Avalos, guitar; Michael Douty, conductor
Zilver (1994)
Louis Andriessen
Laura Clapper, flute; Jake Meyer, clarinet; Marianna Brickle, violin; Aleksandra Pereverzeva, cello; Chad Spears, piano; Mitchell Gribbroek, vibraphone; Jack Rutledge, marimba; James Chang, conductor

Friday 7:30 pm
Opperman Music Hall
Bugallo-Williams Duo

Homage to Verdi
Homage to Halmágyi Mihály
Twittering
György Kurtág
Microlude for György Kurtág: O Rose! (2015) *
Peter Eötvös
Homage to Sáry Lázló (Dot and Spot)
Play with Infinity
Meandering Tune
Homage to J.S.B
Kurtág
Microlude for György Kurtág: Vier Hände (2015) *
Roland Moser
Faltering
Kurtág
Microlude for György Kurtág: Toll (2016) *
Jason Eckardt
Cineshape 4 (2015)
Amy Williams

— Intermission —

Sonata for Two Pianos (1966)
Salvatore Sciarrino
Microlude for György Kurtág: Spiel mit dem Unendlichen (2016) *
Caspar Johannes Walter
Fog-canon
Beating-Quarrelling
Prelude and Waltz in F (or F sharp)
Kurtág
Microlude for György Kurtág: One Two Three Four (2016) *
Klas Torstensson
The Hague Hacking Scrap (2003)
Louis Andriessen
Hoquetus
Kyrie
Kyrie (Machaut)
One More Voice from Far Away
Furious Chorale
Kurtág
Microlude for György Kurtág: G for K (2016) *
Philippe Manoury
Homage to Paganini
Flowers we are... (embracing sounds)
Kurtág
* Works commissioned by the Bugallo-Williams Piano Duo with generous support from the Bugallo-Williams Piano Duo.

Saturday 2:00 pm
Opperman Music Hall

Sleeps Undulating Tide (2016)
Elainie Lillios
Eva Amsler, flute
remnants (2015)
Daniel Thompson
Corinne Smith, clarinet
Ruckamuck (2000)
Mark Wingate
fixed media
Gathering Light (2011)
Benjamin Broening
Benjamin Sung, violin
Parallax (2013)
Paul Koonce
eight-channel fixed media
Canonic Offerings (2013)
Clifton Callender
Benjamin Sung and Taylor Giorgio, violins; Pamela Ryan, viola; Evan A. Jones, cello

Saturday 7:30 pm
Ruby Diamond Concert Hall

University Wind Orchestra
Rick Clary, director

What We Do is Secret (2011)
Lansing McLoskey
Rick Clary, conductor

— Intermission —


University Symphony Orchestra
Alexander Jiménez, music director and conductor
James Chang, assistant conductor

Nemesis (2008)
Ana Paola Santillán-Alcocer
Alexander Jiménez, conductor
Genesis (2015)
Roydon Tse
James Chang, conductor
The Hague Hacking (2002)
Louis Andriessen
Bugallo-Williams Duo: Helena Bugallo and Amy Williams, pianos; Alexander Jiménez, conductor
notes

Program Notes and Bios


Louis Andriessen was born in Utrecht in 1939 into a musical family: his father Hendrik, and his brother Jurriaan were established composers in their own right. Andriessen studied with his father and Kees van Baaren at the Hague Conservatory, and between 1962 and 1964 undertook further studies in Milan and Berlin with Luciano Berio. Since 1974 he has combined teaching with his work as a composer and pianist. He is now widely regarded as the leading composer working in the Netherlands today and is a central figure in the international new music scene.

From a background of jazz and avant-garde composition, Andriessen has evolved a style employing elemental harmonic, melodic and rhythmic materials, heard in totally distinctive instrumentation. His acknowledged admiration for Stravinsky is illustrated by a parallel vigour, clarity of expression, and acute ear for colour. The range of Andriessen’s inspiration is wide, from the music of Charles Ives in Anachronie I, the art of Mondriaan in De Stijl, and medieval poetic visions in Hadewijch, to writings on shipbuilding and atomic theory in De Materie Part I. He has tackled complex creative issues, exploring the relation between music and politics in De Staat, the nature of time and velocity in De Tijd and De Snelheid, and questions of mortality in Trilogy of the Last Day.

Andriessen’s compositions have attracted many leading exponents of contemporary music, including the two Dutch groups named after his works De Volharding and Hoketus. Other eminent Dutch performers include Asko Schoenberg, Nieuw Amsterdams Peil, the Schoenberg Quartet, pianists Gerard Bouwhuis and Cees van Zeeland, and conductors Reinbert de Leeuw and Lucas Vis. Groups outside the Netherlands who have commissioned or performed his works include the San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Kronos Quartet, London Sinfonietta, Ensemble Modern, MusikFabrik, Icebreaker and the Bang on a Can All Stars.

Collaborative works with other artists include a series of dance projects, the full length theatre piece De Materie created with Robert Wilson for the Netherlands Opera, and three works created with Peter Greenaway: the film M is for Man, Music, Mozart, and the stage works ROSA Death of a Composer and Writing to Vermeer, premiered at the Netherlands Opera in 1994 and 1999 respectively. Collaborations with film maker Hal Hartley have included The New Math(s) in 2000 and La Commedia, an operatic setting of Dante for Netherlands Opera premiered at the Holland Festival in 2008. Nonesuch Records has released a series of recordings of Andriessen’s major works, including the complete De Materie, ROSA Death of a Composer and Writing to Vermeer.

Commissions since 2010 include the music theatre piece Anaïs Nin for singer Cristina Zavalloni and 8 musicians and La Girò for violinist Monica Germino and large ensemble premiered at MITO SettembreMusica in 2011. The 2013/14 season brought premieres of Mysteriën by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra conducted by Mariss Jansons and Tapdance for percussion and large ensemble with Colin Currie in the ZaterdagMatinee series in Amsterdam. His new opera Theatre of the World received first performances in Los Angeles and Amsterdam in 2016.

Louis Andriessen held the Richard and Barbara Debs Composer’s Chair at Carnegie Hall, New York, and was awarded Composer of the Year Award by Musical America in 2010. He won the 2011 Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition for his opera La Commedia, which was released on CD and DVD by Nonesuch in 2014.

Louis Andriessen is published by Boosey & Hawkes.

(Reprinted by kind permission of Boosey & Hawkes.)


Garden of Eros (Tuin van Eros) is based upon an idea which is unusual, if not completely wrong for a string quartet: a piece for solo violin, accompanied by three string instruments.

While composing it, I realised that this idea was not far away from the roots of the string quartet: Haydn’s early quartets. However, the piece does not sound like Haydn.

The title comes from a long and beautiful love poem in 50 quatrains written by Jan Engelman in 1934. I follow the sentiment of the poem somewhat loosely in the music, but the structure of the poem quite rigidly: the piece contains as many beats as the poem contains syllables.

The work lasts 12 minutes and is written for Arditti Quartet, to the memory of my brother Jurriaan, the composer.


The opening of The Hague Hacking refers to an existing piece, which was in my mind while composing, but could not be tracked down immediately. I called a composer friend and sang the melody to him. ‘Liszt!’ he said and, after some thinking, ‘Hungarian Rhapsody No.2’. I did not know the Liszt piano piece but, when one evening I watched some early Tom and Jerry cartoons again, I saw and heard my true source: The Cat Concerto. In the cartoon Tom is the piano virtuoso accompanied by an invisible orchestra.

In The Hague Hacking the orchestra starts to play, in very slow note values, yet another melody: a once popular sing-along song about the city of The Hague. The whole work, which we could call a Toccata, has been composed with the material of these two melodies.

At the end of the piece, as a kind of triumphant denouement, the sing-along song is totally deconstructed by all the musicians. The material for this ‘de-composition’ had been first created in 2003 for my friends, the piano duo of Gerard Bouwhuis and Cees van Zeeland, as an encore for the concert on the occasion of their 25th anniversary.

The Hague Hacking was written for the matchless pianists Katia and Marielle Labèque. Like the group Hoketus, which I founded in the seventies, they manage to make the hocketing (interlocking) sound as if it is being played by one person.


The idea behind Zilver was to write a chorale variation as Bach did for organ: a long, slow-moving melody, combined with the same melody played faster. The ensemble is divided into two groups: the wind and strings play the sustained melody in chorale-like four-part harmony, and the rest of the instruments – vibraphone, marimba and piano – play increasingly fast staccato chords. The two groups play in canons.

Zilver is one of a planned series of chamber pieces named after a type of physical matter. Hout (‘wood’) is the first, and Zilver (‘silver’) is the second. The title also refers to the two silver instruments – flute and vibraphone – which start and end the piece.


Daniel Barkley is a Belfast-based Irish composer currently in the third year of his doctoral studies under Professor Piers Hellawell at Queen’s University, Belfast. He achieved a distinction in his MA and a first class honours BMus at the same institution studying with Prof. Hellawell and Dr Simon Mawhinney. Recent performances include those by the Fidelio Trio, the RTE ConTempo Quartet, the Hard Rain SoloistEnsemble, etc. His works have been played throughout Ireland, the UK, and further afield. He was recently awarded an Honorary Mention in the first annual Peter Rosser Composition Competition.

In I Am Vertical / But I would rather be horizontal, I experiment with an emergent approach to the technique known as formula composition. The harmonic structure is defined by the melody on which the piece is primarily focused. The melody itself is revealed gradually, bit by bit, and is only heard in full at the very end.


Praised by The New York Times as a composer of “ear-grabbing invention,” Fernando Benadon is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, Tanglewood’s Fromm Foundation Award, Copland House’s Aaron Copland Award, the League of Composers/ISCM composition prize, UC-Berkeley’s Ladd Prize, and numerous commissions. His debut album Intuitivo – called “equal parts engrossing, maddening, and bewildering” by sequenza21.com – brought together top musicians for a kaleidoscopic collage of improvisation. As a scholar, he publishes actively in leading journals and serves on the editorial board of Music Theory Spectrum. A native of Buenos Aires and graduate of Berklee (BM) and UC-Berkeley (PhD), he is associate professor at American University.

Rhythmensional showcases drummer Dafnis Prieto (2011 MacArthur Fellow), whose solo improvisation (created specifically for this project) serves as the foundation for a live ensemble that is superposed with the drums. The live players follow a score and perform alongside Dafnis’s pre-recorded solo, creating a superposition of past and present musical events. At the outset of the piece, Dafnis’s playing sparks new ideas that spread through the ensemble; this is followed by a playful and often fiery dialogue between both parties.


Benjamin Broening’s music couples his interest in the expressive power of sound with a sense of line derived from his background as a singer. A recipient of Guggenheim, Howard and Fulbright Fellowships, Broening has also received recognition and awards from the American Composers Forum, Virginia Commission for the Arts, ACS/Andrew Mellon Foundation, the Jerome Foundation, the Presser Music Foundation, and a teaching award from the University of Richmond. In addition to two solo CDs on the Bridge and Innova labels (recorded by eighth blackbird and duo runedako respectively), his music has also been released by Ensemble U: in Estonia and on the Centaur, Everglade, Equilibrium, MIT Press, Oberlin Music, Open G and SEAMUS record labels. Broening is founder and artistic director of Third Practice, an annual festival of electroacoustic music at the University of Richmond, where he is Professor of Music and Associate Dean of Arts & Sciences.

gathering light for violin and electronics grew out of a piece I wrote in 2008 for the Estonian sextet Ensemble U:. That piece, changing light, was one of several I have written in the past few years that imperfectly reflect my experience of being in Estonia: Dark Wood for cello evokes the feeling of being in the Estonian forests, Trembling Air for flute evokes a the quality of energy of the air there filled as it is with the sound of birds, of trees, of water, and changing light tries to capture my experience of the magical and changeable quality of Estonian light. changing light ends with an extended violin solo, the material and sound world of which seemed to demand further exploration. I revisit my exploration of the liminal light of the Estonian pre-dawn and the material of that violin solo in gathering light.


Clifton Callender is Professor of Composition at Florida State University, teraching composition and music theory and serving as Artistic Director of the FSU New Music Ensemble. His works are recorded on the Capstone, New Ariel, and Navona labels. Recent commissions include Canonic Offerings, for the Bridges Conference on the Arts and Mathematics, gegenschein, for Piotr Szewczyk’s Violin Futura project, Reasons to Learne to Sing, for the 50th Anniversary of the College Music Society, and Metamorphoses II, for the Florida State Music Teachers Association. His music has been recognized by and performed at the Spark Festival, SEAMUS, Forecast Music, Composers Inc., the Florida Electracoustic Music Festival, the American Composers Orchestra, the International Festival of Electroacoustic Music “Primavera en La Habana,” NACUSA Young Composers Competition, the Northern Arizona University Centennial Composition, the North American Saxophone Alliance Biennial Conferences, the World Harp Congress in Copenhagen and the ppIANISSIMO festival in Bulgaria. Also active in music theory, Callender has published in Science, Perspectives of New Music, Journal of Music Theory, Music Theory Online, and Intégral and serves on the editorial board of Perspectives of New Music and as Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Mathematics and Music. cliftoncallender.com

Canonic Offerings is based on my work with canons that have an infinite number of solutions. These are maximally self-similar melodic lines that can be combined successfully and performed simultaneously by any number of voices, each voice at its own tempo yielding either rational or irrational tempo ratios, with the melody moving either forward or backward. In Canonic Offerings I have selected a small number of these combinations based on three such melodies, attempting to give the flavor of the combinatorial possibilities within the context of a unified (and finite) composition.

Introduction
Canon 1
    canon 4:3:1
Canon 2 sempre accelerando
    canons 2:1, 9:6:4, 11:8
Canon 3
    canons 7:5, 4:3
Canon 4 sempre ritardando, sempre accelerando, sempre accelerando e ritardando
    canon , table canon 2:3 ritardando against 2:3 accelerando
Canon 5 introduction, sempre accelerando
    round 24:12:7:3 (48:24:12:7)


Born and raised in Hong Kong, Hon Ki Cheung started her musical training as a Chinese music player. After she finished her studies in Electronic Engineering at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, she continued her musical studies and earned her Bachelor’s degree in Organ Performance, Music Theory and Composition at the University of Kansas in 2016. Her composition teachers include James Barnes, Bryan Kip Haaheim, and Forrest Pierce. Hon Ki have participated in the Silk Road’s Global Musician Workshop in 2015, where she worked with Mike Block, Sarah Jarosz and Kaoru Watanabe, and the Wintergreen Summer Music Academy in 2016, studying with Daron Hagen and Gilda Lyons. Her compositions have been chosen to be featured in the 2016 American Guild of Organists (AGO) Convention in Houston, and she was chosen to be one of the composers participating in the AGO Student Commissioning Project 2016. She begins her master’s degree in music theory at the Florida State University in August 2016.

Star Ferry is a major tourist attraction in Hong Kong. It has more than a hundred years of history, and the ferry carries passengers across the Victoria Harbour. As people wait for the ride and get aboard, one can hear the low-pitched ferry horn, beeps from the gates, lots of footsteps, and of course, water. I try to capture the sounds and the motion of the ferry in this piece. The tuba represents the movement of the ferry, from getting ready to depart to its arrival on the other side of the Harbour, while the piano mimics the environmental noise where the ferry locates. The pitch content of A Star Ferry Ride is completely taken from the opening gestures of the tuba part. They are arranged in a 9-chord series and are played several times before the series retrogrades.


Kyong Mee Choi, composer, organist, painter, and visual artist, received several prestigious awards and grants including John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, Robert Helps Prize, Aaron Copland Award, Illinois Arts Council Fellowship, First prize of ASCAP/SEAMUS Award, Second prize at VI Concurso Internacional de Música Eletroacústica de São Paulo. Her music was published at CIMESP (São Paulo, Brazil), SCI, EMS, ERM media, SEAMUS, and Détonants Voyages (Studio Forum, France). Ravello Records published her multimedia opera, THE ETERNAL TAO and Aucourant Records published her CD, SORI, featuring her eight compositions for solo instrument and electronics. She is an Associate Professor of Music Composition at Roosevelt University in Chicago where she teaches composition and electro-acoustic music. Samples of her works are available at http://www.kyongmeechoi.com.

In Void has five sections: water, fire, air, soil and void. Each section is named after one of the five basic elements of the Universe from ancient philosophy. Each section represents the composer’s sonic interpretation of the individual element. The title is from the idea that the void encompasses the rest of the elements.


Born in Singapore, Jon Lin Chua is a double major in composition and music theory in Eastman School of Music as a Presser Scholar, and also a recipient of the Howard Hanson Scholarship, Simon Rose Scholarship, and the National Arts Council of Singapore Arts Scholarship (Undergraduate). She is also a recipient of the Louis Lane Award (2016) and the Bernard Rogers Memorial Prize (2015). Her teachers in composition include Oliver Schneller, Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon, Robert Morris, David Liptak, and Robert Casteels. She was appointed as a composition fellow of the MusicaNova Orchestra based in Phoenix, Arizona for the 2015-2016 season. Other groups she has worked with include the Southeastern Ensemble for Today’s and Tomorrow’s Sounds (SETTS), the Singapore Chinese Orchestra, the Guitar Ensemble of the National University of Singapore, the Zen Ensemble, and has premiered works in festivals such as the National University of Singapore Arts Festival (2012), and the Women in Music Festival (2014).

Huis clos is piece for solo piano, inspired by Jean-Paul Sartre’s play of the same title. The entire play takes place in a single room and features only four characters. As the play unfolds, the audience realizes that three of the characters have died and are in Hell. They each secretly ponder upon the sort of severe torture that awaits them, and come to realize that each simultaneously serves as tormentor and victim to one another in a hell sculpted simply by the gaze of the Other, a torture worse than all physical brutality. Like the play, the tension in the music lies deep beneath the surface with the occasional outburst. The piece opens with a repeated figure that comes to dominate the musical texture. Although there is a fair amount of activity on the musical surface, it gradually breaks down, and the overall trajectory of the piece is static, reflecting the stifling vapidity found in most of the play’s dialogue that thinly veil the weighty philosophical themes within.


Andrew Conklin is a composer, songwriter, and guitarist based in Brooklyn, NY. He writes music that borrows with equal comfort from American popular music traditions and contemporary classical practices and aesthetics. He lives for collaborations with kindred curious musicmakers, and has enjoyed fruitful partnerships with musicians from a diverse cross section of today’s most inquisitive and probing collectives, including the International Contemporary Ensemble, Tune-Yards, Yarn/Wire, Earplay, Tala Rasa Percussion, and the Calidore String Quartet. His music has been championed by institutions such as the New York Foundation for the Arts, New Music on the Point, and Vox Novus, and his performances have ranged throughout the United States and Europe, at venues including Le Poisson Rouge and Spectrum (New York), the Ford Amphitheatre (Los Angeles), and Point Ephémère (Paris). In addition to teaching at Stony Brook University, he performs regularly with Michael Rocketship and Laurie Lewis.

American composers have long been fascinated by nature; the canon is filled with works that invoke the awe-inspiring majesty of the country’s landscape. In Five Pieces for String Quartet, however, I am interested in nature on a microbiological scale. I am thinking not about mountains, but microbes. In this spirit, the work explores the quirks of small-scale musical and physical form—the longest movement (“Organism”) is just over four minutes long; the shortest (“Breath”) is forty seconds. The piece can be performed in its full electroacoustic form or as a solely acoustic piece; in the case of the the latter, the second and fourth movements are omitted.


Nickitas Demos (b. 1962) holds a DMA in Composition from the Cleveland Institute of Music where he studied with Donald Erb (1927-2008). Commissions include works for the Cleveland Orchestra, Atlanta Ballet, Nashville Chamber Orchestra and the National Association of College Wind & Percussion Instructors. He is the recipient of numerous grants and awards including: Semi-Finalist in the 2015 Rapido! Composition Competition; MacDowell Fellowship (2012); Grand Prize: 2004 Millennium Arts International Competition for Composers; Grand Prize: 2005 Holyoke Civic Symphony Composition Competition; and 18 ASCAP Awards among others. His music is self-published through Sylvan Lake Press (ASCAP) and recorded on Ablaze Records, Albany Records, Capstone Records and MSR Classics. He is Professor of Music Composition, Coordinator of Composition Studies and Artistic Director of the neoPhonia New Music Ensemble at the Georgia State University School of Music. For more info visit: http://nickitasdemos.com

I was intrigued by the idea of writing for this instrumental combination, because I find areas of similarity and contrast between the sax & trombone quartets. Both the trombones and saxophones are made of brass and exude a certain powerful timbre. That trombones should produce this power is perhaps not surprising. However, one does not tend to think of woodwind instruments as “powerful.” The saxophone family is the exception to this rule. This may well be due to the origins of the saxophone. The instrument can trace its development back to the ophicleide, a keyed brass instrument of the 19th century. Despite taking advantage of some timbral similarities, the piece also seeks to highlight the unique differences between the two instrumental families. There is no programmatic element to eight shades of metal. Given my interest in fast, rhythmic music, I sought to create a rollicking good time for the performers. It’s my hope that this translates well and that audiences experience a similar joy.


Mark Kilstofte is “admired as a composer of lyrical line, engaging harmony, strong, dramatic gesture and keen sensitivity to sound, shape and event.” Praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as “exciting and beautiful, consistently gripping,” his music has garnered a growing number of awards and honors including the Rome Prize, the Guggenheim Fellowship, ASCAP’s Rudolf Nissim Award, and the Goddard Lieberson Fellowship and Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His music, performed regularly throughout North America and Europe, has been featured on NPR’s Performance Today and From the Top and heard in concert halls from Moscow to Bangkok. Kilstofte is a graduate of St. Olaf College and The University of Michigan. He currently teaches composition at Furman University and is a visiting professor at the University of Oslo’s Center for Ibsen Studies, where he is writing an opera based on Ibsen’s Brand. His music is published by the Newmatic Press.

I began to assemble the poems of The White Album during a residency at Copland House where I poured through hundreds of poems before selecting those by four Americans (Mark Strand, James Merrill, Linda Pastan and Erica Funkhouser). The cycle’s primary unifying element is the color white, which appears at least once in each poem. But the poems share other themes, most notably love, loss, life and death, if not some expectation of renewal. As I began to work with them in earnest I was struck by their common imagery: trees (leaves, branches, limbs), laundry (sheets, towels, clothes), light (sun, moon, morning, night), weather (snow, ice, cloud-clot, lightning) and windows with their views on internal and external worlds, to name just a few. There are musical motifs as well. Of course many of these similarities can be traced to their association with the color white, but there is a kinship that runs much, much deeper. As Mark Strand’s poem concludes, “All things are one.” The performance on this festival will include the first two songs, “White” and “The Mad Scene.”

3. I Am Learning To Abandon the World

I am learning to abandon the world
before it can abandon me.
Already I have given up the moon
and snow, closing my shades
against the claims of white.
And the world has taken
my father, my friends.
I have given up melodic lines of hills,
moving to a flat, tuneless landscape.
And every night I give my body up
limb by limb, working upwards
across bone, towards the heart.
But morning comes with small
reprieves of coffee and birdsong.
A tree outside the window
which was simply shadow moments ago
takes back its branches twig
by leafy twig.
And as I take my body back
the sun lays its warm muzzle on my lap
as if to make amends.

Linda Pastan
(b. 1932)

2. The Mad Scene

Again last night I dreamed the dream called Laundry.
In it, the sheets and towels of a life we were going to share,
The milk-stiff bibs, the shroud, each rag to be ever
Trampled or soiled, bled on or groped for blindly,
Came swooning out of an enormous willow hamper
Onto moon-marbly boards. We had just met. I watched
From outer darkness. I had dressed myself in clothes
Of a new fiber that never stains or wrinkles, never
Wears thin. The opera house sparkled with tiers
And tiers of eyes, like mine enlarged by belladonna,
Trained inward. There I saw the cloud-clot, gust by gust,
Form, and the lightning bite, and the roan mane unloosen.
Fingers were running in panic over the flute’s nine gates.
Why did I flinch? I loved you. And in the downpour laughed
To have us wrung white, gnarled together, one
Topmost mordent of wisteria,
As the lean tree burst into grief.

James Merrill
(1926-1995)


Paul Koonce (b.1956) studied composition at the University of Illinois and the University of California, San Diego where he received the Ph.D. in Music. He is the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim and McKnight Foundations, and has received awards and commissions from the Luigi Russolo Competition, the National Flute Association, Prix Ars Electronica, IMEB, ICMA, and Dartmouth College. His music is available on CD from SEAMUS, Mnemosyne, ICMA, Panorama, Innova, Einstein, Centaur, Computer Music Journal, and Mode records. He holds the position of Professor of Music at the University of Florida.

Parallax explores the violin as an object of both sound and performance. Sounds were constructed using my PVCplus audio processing software and individual tone samples taken principally from the violin. Sounds were designed and sequenced so as to present the listener with trajectories of timbre, tuning, and space. As each trajectory advances, the listening experience is reframed or shifted, suggesting, perhaps, a kind of auditory parallax that pits our memory of the instrument against the work’s more skewed forms of it.


Peter Kramer was born in Portland, Oregon (b.1989) where he studied composition, piano and violin with Dr. Marshall Tuttle at Mount Hood Community College. He has recently graduated from the Oberlin Conservatory (2014) with a double major in Composition and Harpsichord Performance, and is currently pursuing his PhD in Composition at the CUNY Graduate Center, studying with Jason Eckardt. His principal teachers also include Dr. Lewis Nielson and Webb William Wiggins. Peter’s music focuses on “musical parasites” i.e. residual and musical anomalies/artifacts resulting from performance paired with the resonant sound-world of 16th and 17th century music, particularly keyboard and choral repertoires, as well as the sound world of American folk and blues traditions.

Eolian refers to the mode that is today commonly known as the Aeolian mode, finding its roots in the name of the Greek god “ruler of the winds” Aeolus. Structurally this solo is based on the prelude and fugue model of the baroque era, and is in part inspired by the instrument known as the Aeolian harp, an instrument placed outside or at an open window whereby the strings are put into motion by wind alone. This piece is dedicated to and was premiered by my close friend William Overcash.

Eolic “…was fittest for lyric verses, as having a particular sweetness mixed with gravity. —Brossard Dictionary (1703)


Ladislav Kubík (born in Prague, Czechoslovakia) has served as Professor of Composition at Florida State University since 1991. He is the recipient of many awards and prizes, including the Guggenheim Fellowship, distinctions from the UNESCO International Rostrum of Composers in Paris, France; Prix Italia in Venice, Italy; World Music Contest in Kerkrade, Netherlands; the Intervision Prize in Prague, Czech Republic; and a three time recipient of the Florida Individual Artist Fellowship, among others. His works have been commissioned by the Salzburg Festival, Radio France; the Center for Diffusion of Contemporary Music in Madrid, Spain; the Czech Music Foundation, and other prestigious music institutions. His works have been performed in 24 countries. More than thirty of his recorded works are available for purchase through the Col Legno and NEOS record labels. His scores are published by Triga Publishers and distributed by Schott Music International. Since 1994, Ladislav has served as the president and artistic director of the popular CASMI International Summer Program in Composition in his native city of Prague.

The poetry of the Japanese haiku, a tradition that has existed for more than three hundred years, has inspired me for a long time. When I decided to compose my first haiku, the focus of my creativity was exploring the many compositional possibilities hidden within the miniature form. However, it was soon revealed to me the depth at which this specific genre of Japanese poetry reflects the coalescensce of life, death, and our fundamental connection with nature. Thus, the concept of 14 Haiku emerged. Recently, I have extended this cycle to twenty four parts. 24 Haiku was published by Triga and recorded for the NEOS label. It is dedicated to its first performers, mezzo-soprano Phyllis Pancella and pianist Hui-Ting Yang.

  1. In the cicada’s cry
    no sign can tell
    how soon it must die.
          Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)
  2. The crow has flown away
    swaying in the evening sun,
    a leafless tree.
          Soseki Natsume (1867-1916)
  3. Over the wintry forest
    winds howl in rage
    with no leaves to blow.
          Soseki Natsume (1867-1916)
  4. My life –
    How much more of it remains?
    The night is brief.
          Kobayashi Issa (1763-1826)
  5. In this world
    we walk on the roof of hell,
    gazing at flowers.
          Kobayashi Issa (1763-1826)
  6. Dead my old fine hopes
    and dry my dreaming but still …
    Iris blue each spring.
          Ome Shushiki (1668-1725)
  7. Summer night –
    even the stars
    are whispering to each other.
          Kobayashi Issa (1763-1826)
  8. An autumn eve;
    There is joy too,
    in loneliness.
          Yosa Buson (1716-1784)
  9. No sky
    no earth – but still
    snowflakes fall.
          Kajiwara Hashin (1864-?)
  10. Don’t weep, insects –
    lovers, stars themselves,
    must part.
          Kobayashi Issa (1763-1826)
  11. The wild geese take flight
    long along the railroad track
    in the moonlight.
          Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902)
  12. A lovely thing to see:
    through the paper window’s hole,
    the Galaxy.
          Kobayashi Issa (1763-1826)
  13. One by one,
    letting the cool breeze through
    fingerholes of the flute.
          Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902)
  14. On how to sing
    the frog’s school and the skylark’s school
    are arguing.
          Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902)

Elainie Lillios’s music reflects her fascination with listening, sound, space, time, immersion and anecdote. Her compositions include stereo, multi-channel, and Ambisonic fixed media works, instrument(s) with live interactive electronics, collaborative experimental audio/visual animations, and installations. She was a 2013-14 Fulbright Scholar in Thessaloniki, Greece, and her music has received numerous international and national awards and performances. Elainie’s acousmatic music is available on Entre Espaces, produced by Empreintes DIGITALes. Other pieces appear on Centaur, MSR Classics, StudioPANaroma, La Muse en Circuit, New Adventures in Sound Art, SEAMUS, Irritable Hedgehog and Leonardo Music Journal. Elainie serves a Director of Composition Activities for the SPLICE institute (www.splice.institute) and also as Interim Associate Dean and Professor of Composition at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. elillios.com

Sleep’s Undulating Tide takes its inspiration from Margaret Atwood’s poem “Variations on the Word Sleep.” Her expressive text reveals desire, intimacy, and longing – “I would like to sleep with you, to enter your sleep as its smooth dark wave slides over my head.” Atwood’s imagery progresses through a dream-like state where she desires to accompany her lover through the beauty of a “lucent wavering forest of bluegreen leaves” and then into a foreboding darkness “towards the cave where you must descend, toward your worst fear.” Her continuing journey references Orpheus’s descent into hell to rescue Eurydice by yearning to “become the boat that would row you back carefully.” Atwood’s evocative poem ends with a simple yet profound expression to “be the air that inhabits you for a moment only,” with its intent to be simultaneously unimportant yet vital. Sleeps Undulating Tide was commissioned by Phoenix Concerts for Lindsey Goodman and is dedicated to her with appreciation and admiration.


Mike McFerron is professor of music and composer-in-residence at Lewis University and he is founder and co-director of Electronic Music Midwest www.emmfestival.org. A past fellow of the MacDowell Colony, Ucross, June in Buffalo, and the Chamber Music Conference of the East/Composers’ Forum, honors include, among others, first prize in the Louisville Orchestra Composition Competition, first prize in the CANTUS commissioning/residency program, recipient of the 2005 CCF Abelson Vocal Music Commission, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s “First Hearing” Program. He serves on the board of the directors for the Metropolitan Youth Symphony Orchestra and also as the Chair of the Executive Committee for the Society of Composers, Inc. McFerron’s music can be heard on numerous commercial recordings as well as on his website at www.bigcomposer.com.

“We must talk about poverty, because people insulated by their own comfort lose sight of it.” – Dorothy Day
If You Walked a Mile for marimba and computer was written in 2015 for acclaimed percussionist, Andrew Spencer. Texts in this work are excerpted from George Miller’s eponymous social justice poem, which was written specifically for this composition.


Described as “a major talent and a deep thinker with a great ear” and “a distinctive voice in American music,” Lansing McLoskey has had his music performed in sixteen countries on six continents. He has won more than two dozen national & international awards, including the prestigious Goddard Lieberson Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts & Letters, the International Joint Wind Quintet Project Competition, and most recently the 2014 Red Note Festival Composition Competition and an Aaron Copland Grant. Among his dozens of commissions are those the FROMM Foundation, Meet The Composer, National Endowment for the Arts, Barlow Foundation, and Pew Charitable Trusts. Current commissions include works for ensemberlino vocale and Berlin PianoPercussion. Professor at the University of Miami, McLoskey’s music is released on Albany, Wergo Schallplatten, Capstone, Tantara, and Beauport Classics and published by Theodore Presser Co., American Composers Press, and Subito Music & Odhecaton Z Music.

“…the only truly significant and meaningful work for solo brass quintet and wind ensemble composed to date. What We Do Is Secret is sophisticated, gripping, abstract yet engaging, sometimes hauntingly beautiful, and filled with virtuosity. This is American music at its best - imaginative, challenging, powerful, and direct.” ― Eric Hewitt, Director, Boston Conservatory Wind Ensemble. “[What We Do Is Secret] is a very intriguing and unique work, both in terms of inspiration and execution. Thanks so much for avoiding the clichés and formulas we hear in so much band/wind ensemble writing these days….very original and highly imaginative!” ― Col. Michael J. Colburn, Director, United States Marine Band. What We Do Is Secret is a concerto for brass quintet & wind ensemble, commissioned by the Barlow Endowment for Triton Brass & a consortium of wind ensembles. The work has won four national and international awards, and is released on The Unheard Music CD (Albany Records, 2013).


Fernanda Navarro is a composer born in Brazil based in San Diego, California. She’s a PhD candidate at UCSD, studying with Rand Steiger and Roger Reynolds. She had pieces performed in Europe, Brazil, Argentina and the US, and participated in several contemporary music festivals such as Darmstadt Summer Festival, Visiones Sonoras and Harvard Festival . She’s engaged with promoting contemporary music and worked as producer/curator of concerts and music festivals such as FIME (Festival Internacional de Música Experimental), and SpringFest. She enjoys working in collaboration with soloists and had pieces performed by ensembles such as Talea,Yarn/Wire, Platypus and Gnarwhallaby. She composes electroacoustic music, has been exploring performance art and installations. Fernanda doesn’t like to be reduced to a gender,doesn’t know how to samba, procrastinates to write program notes, doesn’t know how to react to compliments or critiques, goes to the cinema every week drinks coffee everyday.

Moving to a foreign country forced me to deal with the idea that I am “the other”: I’m a non-citizen, an alien, “the international student”, “the Brazilian girl”, “the female composer from Brazil”. It was strange to see my whole identity become so intensely bound to the country in which I was born and my gender. Some thoughts about being uprooted, culturally inadequate, socially dis-empowered and artistically overlooked set the tone of Otherness. In this piece I worked with materials that were radically different from each other and tried to manipulate them to find points of similarities, either via physical gesture, timbre, melodic shape and/or rhythmic patterns. The idea of being in someone else’s shoes -as a way of understanding different perspectives and then being able to incorporate and/or transform these perspectives - colored the way I treated the instruments in this piece, as well as some decisions about form.


Composer/pianist Ketty Nez joined the Boston University School of Music in 2005, after teaching for two years at the University of Iowa. Her folk opera, The Fiddler and the Old Woman of Rumelia, was premiered 2011 by Xanthos Ensemble, and staged by the Juventas Ensemble in 2012. Ketty’s portrait CD, Listen to a Wonder Never Heard Before!, was released in 2010 by Albany Records, and her piano concerto, thresholds, with the Boston University Wind Ensemble, was released by Ravello Records in 2013. Ketty completed a residence of several months at the Ecole Nationale de Musique in Montbeliard, France, prior to the premiere of her chamber opera An Opera in Devolution: Drama in 540 Seconds, at the 2003 Seventh Festival A•Devantgarde in Munich. Ketty studied at IRCAM in 1998-9, after working for two years in Amsterdam with Louis Andriessen. Current projects include Lina and the Wolf, an opera on the life of Lina Prokofiev, based on the book Lina and Serge by Simon Morrison.

Written during the summer of 2009, in transit was inspired by Béla Bartók’s ethnomusicological research on the music of various cultures of East Europe and Asia Minor. I was drawn not only to the sheer sonic qualities of the songs themselves, but also by the fact that every song is a story. Melodic material is based on Bartók’s annotations of a Turkish folksong from Asia Minor: “how should I praise such a beauty: she mingled her hair with golden twine.” In a brusque manner, eventually dominating the musical discourse, are quotations of my own setting of a Bosnian folksong, “The Old Mother of Dzhaferbeg.” The text of this second song recounts the lurid tale of a jealous old mother wrongly accusing her beautiful daughter-in-law of an affair, and the resulting murder of the innocent woman by the enraged husband. My setting featured the textures of the “kemence” fiddle accompaniment in addition to the vocal line. The piano mimics the “kemence,” and the (Western) violin wailing voices.


Born in Cleveland, Ohio, James Primosch studied at Cleveland State University, University of Pennsylvania, and Columbia University. He counts Mario Davidovsky, George Crumb and Richard Wernick among his principal teachers. Primosch’s works have been performed throughout the United States and in Europe by such ensembles and artists as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony, the Albany Symphony, Collage, the New York New Music Ensemble, the 21st Century Consort, Lambert Orkis, and Dawn Upshaw. He has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, a Guggenheim Fellowship, three prizes from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Stoeger Prize of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and a fellowship to Tanglewood where he studied with John Harbison. In 1994 he was in residence at the Marlboro Music Festival. 19 of his compositions are available on CD. He has taught at University of Pennsylvania since 1988.

Composing this cycle of songs began with my discovery of three poems in Susan Stewart’s collection Columbarium that I knew I must set to music. The deep, dreamlike wisdom of these poems haunted me, just as I had experienced with Susan’s poem “Cinder” that had served as the fulcrum of my song cycle Holy the Firm. Eventually, texts by Rilke and an earlier setting I had done of a psalm verse were drawn into the gravitational orbit of Susan’s poems. I ordered the texts in a nearly symmetrical pattern, with two texts set a second time in versions that shadow their first readings. This is partly for the sake of the formal design, but, more importantly, to re-examine the poems in the penumbra of what comes before. Rounding the cycle in this way reflects not only the circles and repetitions in Susan Stewart’s texts, but also the way in which, as Rilke writes, the things we have let go of yet encircle us. Dark the Star was premiered by William Sharp and the 21st Century Consort.


Ana Paola Santillan Alcocer is pursuing a doctoral degree at the Schulich School of Music, McGill University. Simultaneously, she has also been experimenting at the McGill Digital Composition Studios, studying with Philippe Leroux. She is composer in residence for the McGill Contemporary Music Ensemble under the direction of conductor Guillaume Bourgogne. Paola received her MM degree from Rice University and her Licentiate in music composition from Trinity College London. She has been the recipient of several awards and fellowships including the Fulbright Scholarship. Her piece Nemesis represented Mexico at the UNESCO’s 57th International Rostrum of Composers. Her piece Fractum is published by Alea Publishing & Recording.

In Astronomy, the Nemesis Hypothesis postulates that our sun may have a yet undetected companion star called “Nemesis”. When the Nemesis star’s orbit brings it closer to our solar system, its gravity disturbs the Oort cloud, a mass of comets one light-year from the sun. As a result of these disturbances, a high number of comets are driven through the inner solar system, with a resulting increase in impact events on earth. K-T, the massive dinosaur extinction of the Cretaceous-Tertiary period, is an example of such an event. Nemesis, for chamber orchestra, is divided into three sections: the “Nemesis” music is grounded and solid; the “Oort cloud” music is more vaporous and mysterious; and the “K-T” impact music is rhythmic and forceful. Musical motives, drawn from a nine-tone source scale, help to link the three sections, creating a musical analogue for this intriguing cosmic phenomenon.


Aaron Spotts (b.1980) is a composer originally from Washington state, studying with Dr. Roger Briggs, and receiving his bachelors degree from Western Washington University in 2008. He earned his masters degree in composition from Florida State University (FSU) in 2015, where he is currently continuing study with Dr. Ladislav Kubik as a doctoral student. His recent activities have included: holding the Zwilich graduate assistantship in ’15-’16, which focused on orchestral studies under Dr. Alex Jimenez in conjunction with the FSU orchestras; the premier of his Two Days’ Bar Talk at the 2016 SCI Region VI conference; and having his string quartet chosen as a finalist for the 2016 Bruno Maderna Composition Competition, taking place the last week of July in Lviv, Ukraine.

Two Days’ Bar Talk, written for a Duo Rodinia commission in 2014, is inspired by personal compositional material I accumulated over a number of years. When envisioning the piece in the early stages of the writing process, I had an epiphany that these unused and separately conceived ideas had a common character somewhat reminiscent of Bartók. I subsequently employed them in pursuit of this connection, composing them out and tying them together with music that altogether framed a rhythmically driven and dynamic musical form that somewhat imitates the folk music that influenced Bartók. Thus, the title, whose surface meaning may allude to the boisterous atmosphere of a bar for “two days” (outer sections, which are separated by a slower “late night” section), also has a second, more apt meaning: today’s Bartók.


Ondřej Štochl (b. 1975) studied viola and composition at the Prague Conservatoire. He continued his composition studies under Marek Kopelent at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. His works include chamber and orchestral pieces, sometimes with voice and electronics. Since 2002, he has been the Artistic Leader as well as violist of the renowned “Ensemble Konvergence“ in Prague. In this role, he curates the Ensemble’s concert series and festival projects (Brno International Music Festival, Prague Spring Festival, Mélos-Étos Bratislava, Unerhörte Musik Berlin). He also took part in ISCM World Music Days in Hong-Kong. His works have been commissioned by leading orchestras and ensembles such as Prague Modern, Brno Contemporary Orchestra, and Berg Orchestra. He is a Professor of Composition at the Jan Deyl Conservatory in Prague. He has an extended discography, and some of his most recent music can be heard his latest CD, on the way to kindness. www.ondrejstochl.info.

7/whispers is a spatially conceived septet in which the most important things occur in a whisper. The original Czech title “Šeptet” is a play on words, a combination of “Šeptat” (to whisper) and “Septet”. It increasingly appears to me that, these days, human communication begins and ends with stock phrases. Such phrases are polite and courteous, because they are devoid of all true emotion. Instead of proper understanding, we achieve the exact opposite. We misapprehend others; we put up defenses to protect ourselves against their sincerity. We start to think in platitudes when we are toddlers. If we want to perceive others, we have to study the subtle signs: the hushed, unspoken gestures, involuntary signals, things that slip out by chance. And what has my 7/whispers in common with all this? Its main theme is receptiveness, a fragile microclimate for whispered communication. But we need to do more than just whisper… Commissioned by the Prague Spring festival in 2014.


Stephen Andrew Taylor composes music that explores boundaries between art and science. His first orchestra commission, Unapproachable Light—inspired by images from the Hubble Space Telescope and the New Testament—was premiered by the American Composers Orchestra in 1996 in Carnegie Hall. Other works include the quartet Quark Shadows, commissioned by the Chicago Symphony; and Seven Memorials, a 30-minute cycle for piano inspired by the work of Maya Lin and featured at Tanglewood in 2006. The Machine Awakes, a CD of his orchestra, chamber and electronic music, was released in 2010 on Albany Records. Paradises Lost, an opera based on a novella by Ursula K. Le Guin, received its Toronto premiere in 2013, conducted by the composer. In popular music he has worked with Pink Martini and rock singer Storm Large. A 2014 Guggenheim fellow, Taylor is Professor of Music at the University of Illinois, where he lives with his spouse, artist Hua Nian, and their two children.

The ancient gene Hox, found in everything from people to sea cucumbers, has the crucial job of telling where to put our heads and our tails. This saxophone quartet is in three parts: the first, “Homeobox,” represents the oldest section of the gene, conserved for millions of years; it refers to a chunk of DNA (the box) that stays the same (homeo). The rhythms are sonifications of the four bases (CATG), while the harmonies represent the amino acids that the DNA encodes; these form the Hox protein. In the second movement, “Helix turn helix,” melodies and canons are based on a part of this protein whose job is to latch onto DNA (here, fast descending scales) and unwind it, so its instructions can be read by other genes. Finally, the last movement, “From head to tail” is an impression of the gene doing its job: at first, its melodic gestures start only to end in dissolution. But gradually, the end becomes more forceful, culminating in a group of chords that grow more and more emphatic.


Daniel J. Thompson is a composer and improviser primarily fixated on electroacoustic and algorithmic music. His chamber works have been performed in New York City and Tokyo, and in 2014, his piano etude electronumbcomfy was selected as a finalist in the BMI Student Composer Awards. In addition to creative endeavors, Daniel is also active in music scholarship, with a primary focus on semiotic approaches to meaning in East-Coast jazz of the 1950s and 60s. He has presented this work at several music theory conferences–including the national meeting of the Society for Music Theory (SMT). Currently residing in Tallahassee, FL, Daniel is pursuing a PhD in music theory–where he has also served as a graduate teaching assistantship in both the areas of music theory and jazz studies.

remnants is a work for clarinet and computer that plays on the notion of indexicality (C.S. Peirce)—in which a signifier is produced by that which it signifies. For instance, a hangover might index a night of celebration (or despair), just as the smell of smoke might index a cigarette. In remnants, this effect is achieved musically by the processing of the lyrical clarinet material by the computer (using patches coded in SuperCollider)—resulting in a texture whose source is audibly a clarinet, but only a trace of it. This work is ultimately a contemplation of the union between meaningful events in our lives and the souvenirs that index them, as well as the transience of human consciousness. How meaningful are our memories if our brains constantly change, reshape, and distort the recollection of experiences that make us who we are? If you prefer not to ponder such infinite subjectivity and chaos, just follow the ABCB form of the movement for syntactic comfort. ; )


Roydon Tse is an award-winning composer who strives to communicate to all audiences with his music, from the first time listener to the classical connoisseur. His career began at age 16 when he received his first commission from the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra. Since then, his music has been performed internationally in venues such as the Kennedy Center and Vienna’s Schonbrunn Palace. Prominent ensembles he has collaborated with include the Hong Kong Philharmonic, Brussels Philharmonic, Brno Philharmonic, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Locrian Chamber Players, Land’s End Ensemble, Ensemble Mise-en, the Bozzini Quartet and the Cecilia String Quartet. He holds degrees from the University of British Columbia and the University of Toronto, and he is currently completing his doctorate in music composition at the latter institution with Dr. Norbert Palej.

Based on the dramatic creation story outlined in the Book of Genesis in the Bible, Genesis is a one movement work for orchestra that was inspired by the seven days of creation according to the Bible. Within the work, there are eight subdivisions and themes that allude to the various processes that occur during creation. The subdivisions are 1) Formlessness and Chaos 2) Day & Night 3) Separation of the Vaults 4) Dry Land 5) Stars, Sun, & Moon 6) Creatures of the Sea and Sky 7) Mankind; Glorious Dance of the Earth 8) Nocturne; The Seventh Day.


Amy Williams has appeared as a composer and pianist at renowned contemporary music venues including the Thailand International Composition Festival, Ars Musica (Belgium), Gaudeamus Music Week (Netherlands), Dresden New Music Days (Germany), Festival Aspekte (Austria), Festival Musica Nova (Brazil), LA County Museum of Art, Piano Spheres (Los Angeles), and Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music. Her compositions have been performed by leading contemporary music soloists and ensembles, including the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, JACK Quartet, Ensemble Aleph, Dal Niente, Wet Ink Ensemble, Talon, Empyrean Ensemble, Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, International Contemporary Ensemble, H2 Saxophone Quartet, Bent Frequency, and pianists Ursula Oppens, Corey Hamm, and Amy Briggs. Her pieces appear on the Parma, VDM, Blue Griffin, New Ariel, and Albany labels. Ms. Williams has received a John S. Guggenheim Fellowship in Music Composition (2015-2016), Howard Foundation Fellowship (2008-2009) and Fromm Music Foundation Commission (2009). She holds a Ph.D. in composition from the State University of New York at Buffalo, where she also received her Master’s degree in piano performance. She has taught at Bennington College and Northwestern University and is currently Associate Professor of Composition at the University of Pittsburgh. She is also Artistic Director of the New Music on the Point Festival in Vermont.

Cineshape 4 borrows structural elements from the German film “Run Lola Run.” This film is divided into three episodes; Lola repeats the same day three times, starting in exactly the same way, but each time hoping that a slight modification of her actions will save the life of her boyfriend. This simple concept—that there are numerous ways to develop a particular idea and that minor choices have serious consequences—leads to a multifaceted structure. Much like the film, the piece is a high-paced, energetic tour-de-force, literally running from start to finish with only occasional moments to stop and take a breath.


Mark Wingate is a composer on the faculty of the College of Music at Florida State University where he serves as Associate Professor of Composition and Director of Electroacoustic Music. Dr. Wingate came to FSU after co-founding and directing the Electronic Arts Studio at Istanbul Technical University in Turkey. He holds a D.M.A. from the University of Texas, during which time he composed lived in Stockholm as a Fulbright Scholar to Sweden. Wingate has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the Rome Prize, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Arts Composer Fellowship. His electroacoustic works have received international acclaim at new music festivals such as the International Society for Contemporary Music’s World Music Days (Copenhagen and London), the Autumn International Festival of Contemporary Music (Warsaw), le Festival Rien à Voir (Montreal), the Acousmatic Experience (Amsterdam), the Pierre Schaeffer Concert de Bruits (Perugia), and many others.

Ruckamuck is based upon the text of a poem by Danella Carter which uses extended word play, nonsense syllables, and whimsical double entendre. The musical equivalent features many digital studio techniques, special effects, and all manner of sonic tomfooolery. All the vocalizations were done by Chris Theofanidis. Stylistic influences range from jazz (Danella’s music of choice) to hip-hop, Russian men’s choir, and beyond.


performers
about

Florida State University
College of Music

Patricia Flowers, Dean
Stanley Pelkey, Associate Dean for
Community Engagement and Entrepreneurship

The Residencies of Louis Andriessen, the Bugallo-Williams Duo, and Monica Germino are provided by the Wiley and Lucilla Housewright Eminent Scholar Chair in Music.

Additional funding for the Eighteenth Biennial Festival of New Music provided by The Florida State University College of Music

Festival Committee

Deborah Bish
Michael Buchler
Clifton Callender, co-chair
Evan A. Jones, co-chair
David Kalhous
Ladislav Kubík
Benjamin Sung
Mark Wingate

Many thanks to:
Heather Mayo, Director of Production for the Festival
Wendy Smith, Publicity Officer


JPG