Hosted by Dr. Louise Toppin, Videmus, and The University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance
This conference focuses on the curation of music of the African Diaspora for future research and performance. Through a series of lectures, panels and performances by leading scholars, composers, and performers, attendees will discuss rediscovered operas (Freeman, Perry, Boatner and White); have conversations on the newly created operas on African American themes; hear a workshop performance of Edmonia by William Banfield; discuss sociopolitical musical thought, and the 400 year suite (commemorating 400 years since the beginning of slavery); discuss innovations in art song curation; discuss institutional aspects of diverse faculty and student development; composer discussions about the creation and delivery of African American music; discuss the duality of composition and preaching; creating sustainable organizations for African American music; discuss the salon for building black musical thought and much more.
Featured presentations by Dr. Kyra Gaunt, Dr. Tammy Kernodle, Dr. Naomi André, Dr. Carlos Simon and Dr. Mark Lomax lead an illustrious lineup of presenters and performers.
Hosted by Dr. Louise Toppin, Videmus, and The University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance
The American Opera Initiative is a comprehensive commissioning program founded in January 2012 by Washington National Opera. The Initiative was created to stimulate, enrich, and ensure the future of contemporary American opera by providing talented emerging composers and librettists with mentorship and opportunities to write for the stage.
Each season of the American Opera Initiative commissions three 20-minute operas and an hour-long opera, using a chamber ensemble drawn from the WNO orchestra and the singers of the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program. Commissioned works are based on American themes and stories. Each team of composers and librettists workshops their operas throughout the development cycle at the Kennedy Center and has the invaluable experience of witnessing their work performed on a Kennedy Center stage during the January AOI Festival. Performances are followed by a Q&A session with the artists and the creative team.
Participants are chosen from around the country, in collaboration with the Kennedy Center Conservatory Project. The Conservatory Project is an initiative of the Performing Arts of Everyone’s Millennium Stage, designed to present the best young musical artists in classical, jazz, musical theater, dance, and opera from our nation's leading undergraduate and graduate conservatories, colleges and universities.
A key element of the American Opera Initiative is connecting the young composers and librettists to professional mentors who have successfully brought new American operas to the stage. Past mentors have included conductors Anne Manson, Steven Osgood, and John DeMain, composers Jake Heggie, Ricky Ian Gordon, John Musto, and Kevin Puts, and librettists Mark Campbell and Gene Scheer. These mentors work closely with WNO Artistic Director Francesca Zambello and AOI Director Robert Ainsley throughout the creative process, offering detailed feedback and advice to each team.
Mentors for the 2018-2019 season are conductor Steven Osgood (General and Artistic Director, Chautauqua opera; Artistic Director, Composers and the Voice), composer Jake Heggie (Dead Man Walking, Moby Dick, Three Decembers), and librettist Gene Scheer (Moby Dick, Cold Mountain, An American Tragedy).
The year 2020 marks the 250th birthday of Ludwig van Beethoven. The Philadelphia Orchestra celebrates this milestone by performing music by composers of today in dialogue with Beethoven’s symphonies in a concentrated four-week format, March 12 through April 5, 2020. The Orchestra has commissioned works by Composer-in-Residence Gabriela Lena Frank and a diverse group of composers from her Creative Academy of Music, who will offer newly written works that will challenge, inspire, and push boundaries, creating fresh perspectives on the relevance of Beethoven’s legacy today.
“Beethoven passionately decried the forces of intolerance at play in his own lifetime, and he coded both his dismay and ardent optimism in music. Without doubt, this is in line with the philosophical heartbeat of my Creative Academy of Music,” said Frank. “Through my Academy, I set out to create an environment where emerging composers from a vast array of styles can come together for mentorship, readings of works in progress, and world premiere performances from master musicians. While forming new friendships, diversity has proven to be both abundant and authentic as we embrace all contemporary voices to best honor the voices of the past. I am honored that for its inventive celebration of the nine symphonies of such a musical giant in a special year, The Philadelphia Orchestra is investing in the voices of three diverse alumni of my small school who demonstrate themselves to be Beethoven’s kindred spirits.”
The selected composers from Frank’s Creative Academy of Music are Iman Habibi, whose work will be paired with Symphonies No. 5 and No. 6; Jessica Hunt, whose work will be paired with Symphonies No. 2 and No. 3; Carlos Simon, whose work will be paired with Symphonies No. 8, No. 4, and No. 7; and Frank herself, whose work will be paired with Beethoven’s first and last symphonies (No. 1 and No. 9).
ASU Gammage in collaboration with the ASU Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Jeffery Meyer presents TOWARDS A MORE PERFECT UNION, a theatrical concert with film and spoken word, highlighting new works and powerful compositions that speak to the challenges of our times in beautiful and moving ways. Featuring works by Tamar-kali (Mudbound – Academy Award Nominated Film), Daniel Bernard Roumain (New York Times top 10 classical new works – WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED), Joel Thompson (ASU Projecting All Voices Fellow), Carlos Simon (Sundance/Time Warner Composer Fellow), renowned spoken word artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph and Grammy®-winners Martha Gonzalez and Joan Tower.
TIME FOR THREE
Ranaan Meyer, Double Bass
Nick Kendall, Violin
Charles Yang, Violin
with special guest Matthew Scarano, Drums
Carlos SIMON: Amen!
Sergei RACHMANINOFF: Symphonic Dances, op. 45
Chris BRUBECK: Travels in Time for Three
Ellis HAMILTON: Possibilities [World Premiere of Orchestral Version]
Expect the unexpected when virtuosic string trio Time for Three joins the Reno Phil. The group will perform a piece written specifically for them by composer Chris Brubeck (son of legendary jazz artist Dave Brubeck). The work takes on a “train” theme with the musical adventure that embraces a variety of genres, including classical, jazz, country, funk and gospel. The Reno Phil Orchestra’s musicianship will also be on display with Rachmaninoff’s final work, the stunning showpiece Symphonic Dances.
January 12 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
January 13 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
AANMI is pleased to be partnering with Matthew Aucoin and the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA, to create a year-long commissioning and presenting series that will feature the music of Matthew alongside that of his peers in Asia and the United States.
Please join us for In the Current, on November 11, 2017 at the Peabody Essex Museum. PEM’s Composer-in-Residence Matthew Aucoin returns with the Asia/America New Music Institute to celebrate musical influences and heritage. For In the Current, seven dynamic composers premiere new works, each paired with its musical “ancestor” in a blending of old and new, tradition and experimentation.
Performed by renowned Japanese shakuhachi player Kojiro Umezaki and Boston’s own Hub New Music Ensemble (flute, clarinet, violin, cello). Featuring commissions by Chad Cannon, Sun-Young Park, Sayo Kosugi, Carlos Simon, Takuma Ito, Kojiro Umezaki, and Matthew Aucoin. Lighting design by Mary Ellen Stebbins. Directed by Victoria Crutchfield.
Next summer, AANMI will tour these pieces to prominent temples and shrines in Japan.
Immerse yourself with 4 days of concerts, interactive experiences, and artistic happenings with the Dogs of Desire, Yarn/Wire, pianist Marc Peloquin, Carlos Simon, Derrick Spiva, and vocalists Lucy Dhegrae and Nancy Allen Lundy.
Discover the next generation of composers as they have their newest works read and rehearsed for the first time at the First Draughts Reading Session. Each work will be paired with a new unreleased or small batch beer. Tasting and meet & greet begins at 7PM
In celebration of President Kennedy, KC Jukebox presents an evening of music informed by the Civil Rights movement, from Carlos Simon's An Elegy: Cry From the Grave—a haunting dedication to those wrongfully murdered by an oppressive power, performed by the Mivos Quartet—to a special performance by David T. Little's band, Newspeak. Composer Ted Hearne presents his moving The Answer to the Question that Wings Ask, performed by the Mivos Quartet with poet Saul Williams. The evening also features The Holy Presence of Joan d'Arc for 10 cellos by recently rediscovered visionary Julius Eastman, performed by American Contemporary Music Ensemble (ACME). The program is conducted by Colin Burnham.
On MY ANCESTOR’S GIFT, his Navona Recordings debut, composer Carlos Simon combines influences from jazz, gospel, and neoromanticism, incorporating spoken word and historic recordings, to craft a multifaceted program of musical works that are inspired as much by the past as much as they are by the present.
Launched by “Our Ancestor’s Legacy,” the composer’s personal introduction to the themes he will musically address throughout, MY ANCESTOR’S GIFT sets out to depict the evolution of black people in America through the lens of the black woman with “Portrait of a Queen.” Dramatic spoken word poetically reveals her thoughts and feelings of throughout various time periods, reflected by musical themes that draw on melodies, textures and rhythms of those eras.
Simon provides breathing room between the intense topics he explores with several brief, often conversational “Interludes” that also serve to offer emotional or explanatory context for his longer compositions, such as the sorrowful and contemplative “Elegy,” dedicated to “those wrongfully murdered by an oppressive power.” He mines his personal family history with “Generations,” which includes audio clips of sermons given by his great-grandfather, his grandfather and his father, with musical elements that feature a processed Fender Rhodes guitar that Simon inherited from his grandfather, and Hammond B3 organ.
The melodic and meditative “Be Still and Know” appears in sharp contrast to “White Only, Colored Only,” which plays George Wallace’s infamous Segregation Now, Segregation Forever speech against free-flowing improvised lines and a consistent rhythm. Hope for change, however, is offered by the interlude “Change the World,” which concludes with a quote from Martin Luther King, and by the smooth R&B-tinged vocal track “I Feel It Somewhere,” before the album concludes with another tribute to his personal history, the whimsical “Lickety Split.”
Performed by the Hub New Music Ensemble
Commissioned by the Asia/America New Music Institute.
In June, American Composers Orchestra (ACO) continues its commitment to serving as a catalyst for the creation and development of new orchestral music with two Readings sessions of brand new orchestral works by 14 composers hailing from across the country, held at Miller Theatre at Columbia University (2960 Broadway, NYC). ACO’s 25th Annual Underwood New Music Readings will take place on Tuesday, June 14 at 7:30pm and ACO’s third Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute (JCOI) Readings will take place on Thursday, June 16 at 7:30pm. Both Readings, during which the new pieces will be polished and performed in their entirety, are open to the public free of charge, giving audiences a chance to look behind the scenes at the process involved in bringing brand new, stylistically diverse orchestral music to life (reservations at www.americancomposers.org suggested). Both Readings are conducted by ACO Music Director George Manahan. Mentor composers for the Underwood New Music Readings are ACO's Artistic Director Derek Bermel, and composers Sarah Kirkland Snider and Stephen Hartke. Mentor composers for the JCOI Readings are Bermel, Anthony Davis, Gabriela Lena Frank, and James Newton. Newton leads JCOI as the program director. George Lewis is director emeritus. Each composer participating in these Readings receives rehearsal, reading, and a digital recording of his or her work. Review and feedback sessions with ACO principal players, mentor composers, guest conductors, and industry representatives provide crucial artistic, technical, and conceptual assistance.