American Composers Orchestra Announces 2017-2018 Emerging Composers
American Composers Orchestra continues its commitment to the creation and development of new orchestral music with the announcement of sixteen emerging composers who will participate in its catalytic programs. Six emerging composers will participate in the 27th Annual Underwood New Music Readings on June 21-22, 2018 at a location to be announced. Ten emerging composers receive 2018 EarShot New Music Readings presented by Fort Wayne Philharmonic (February 7, 2018), Charlotte Symphony Orchestra (March 1, 2018), and Jacksonville Symphony (April 20, 2018). EarShot is a partnership between American Composers Orchestra, League of American Orchestras, American Composers Forum, and New Music USA.
Underwood New Music Readings:
ACO's 27th Annual Underwood New Music Readings give audiences a chance to look behind the scenes of bringing new, diverse orchestral music to life. The first day of Readings, an open rehearsal, is Thursday, June 21, 2018 at 10:30am; the second day of Readings is Friday, June 22, at 7:30pm, during which the new works will be polished and performed in their entirety. ACO Artistic Director Derek Bermel directs the Readings; ACO Music Director George Manahan conducts.
This year, six of the nation's most promising composers in the early stages of their professional careers are selected from over 250 submissions. Carlos Bandera, Lily Chen, Scott Lee, Ryan Lindveit, Tomas Peire Serrate, and Liliya Ugay represent a broad spectrum of musical backgrounds and sound worlds. One composer will receive a $15,000 commission for a new piece to be performed by ACO during an upcoming season. Additionally, one composer will receive the Audience Choice Award with an associated commission.
Each composer participating in the Underwood New Music Readings receives rehearsals, a reading, and a digital recording of his or her work. Feedback sessions with ACO principal players, mentor composers, and ACO's artistic and music directors provide crucial artistic, technical, and conceptual assistance. This year's mentor composers are Derek Bermel, ACO Artistic Director, Tania Leon, John Corigliano, and Robert Beaser.
In addition, the Readings offer a Career Development Workshop for composers, students, or anyone interested in exploring the business and realities of being a professional composer on Thursday, June 22 from 10am-3pm. These invaluable talks, led by leaders in the industry, present topics ranging from copyright and commission agreements to music preparation, from promotion to fundraising. Speakers and specific schedule will be announced by June 1. The cost for the Workshop is $10; reservations can be made at http://bit.ly/ACOUnderwood2018.
For over a generation, ACO's Underwood New Music Readings have provided all-important career development and public exposure to the country's most promising emerging composers, with over 150 composers participating. Readings alumni have won every major composition award, including the Pulitzer, Grammy, Grawemeyer, American Academy of Arts & Letters, and Rome Prizes. Orchestras around the globe have commissioned ACO Readings alumni.
The New Music Readings have launched many of today's top composers, such as ACO's own Artistic Director Derek Bermel, Lisa Bielawa, Anthony Cheung, Anna Clyne, Cindy Cox, Sebastian Currier, Jennifer Higdon, Pierre Jalbert, Aaron Jay Kernis, Hannah Lash, Carter Pann, P.Q. Phan, Tobias Picker, Narong Prangcharoen, Paola Prestini, Daniel Bernard Roumain, Huang Ruo, Eric Samuelson, Carlos Sanchez-Guiterrez, Kate Soper, Gregory Spears, Joan Tower, Ken Ueno, Dan Visconti, Wang Jie, Dalit Warshaw, Randall Woolf, Nina Young, and Roger Zare.
EarShot New Music Readings:
In 2018, ten emerging composers recieve EarShot (the National Orchestral Composition Discovery Network) New Music Readings with Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Charlotte Symphony, and Jacksonville Symphony. The New Music Readings are the culmination of a series of private readings, feedback sessions, and work with mentor composers.
On Friday, April 20, 2018 at 8pm, EarShot and the Jacksonville Symphony present new works by four emerging composers in Robert E. Jacoby Symphony Hall (300 Water St.) led by Jacksonville Symphony Music Director Courtney Lewis. This performance is the culmination of a series of private readings, feedback sessions, and work with mentor composers Courtney Bryan, Marcos Balter, and Steven Mackey. The selected composers, chosen from an international candidate pool, are Nicholas Bentz (E.W. Korngold Goes to Kikkatsu), Will Healy (Kolmanskop), Ursula Kwong-Brown (Night & Day), and Meng Wang (Blooming in the Long Dark Winter's Night).
The selected composers and compositions for Fort Wayne Philharmonic (February 7, 2018) are Nathan Kelly - Redwood, Sohwa Lee - Palindrome, and Robert Rankin -Nijinsky Dances with mentor composers Melinda Wagner, Chen Yi, and Alex Mincek. For Charlotte Symphony Orchestra (March 1, 2018) the selected composers and compositions are Niloufar Iravani - Fantasy, Jihyun Kim - At Dawn, and Felipe Nieto - Artesania Sonora with mentor composers Trevor Weston, Wang Jie, and Robert Beaser. Of the experience in Fort Wayne, Robert Rankin remarks, "The opportunity to work with a professional orchestra is rare for young composers ... and this program did a fantastic job allowing me to experience the environment of a 'real world' orchestra" while Nathan Kelly echoes, "I can't imagine it being a more wonderful experience!"
EarShot enables connections between orchestras and emerging composers. Drawing from a national network of advisors and advocates, EarShot works with orchestras around the country to identify and support promising composers in the early stages of their careers. Orchestras have relied on EarShot to advise them on commissions, competitions, and program design in addition to identifying composers consistent with the orchestra's artistic vision. EarShot residencies include established composer mentorship, orchestra readings, and musician and conductor feedback sessions, and are customized to the orchestra's aesthetic and/or demographic interests and community and education activities.
About the Selected Composers and Their Music
Carlos Bandera (Lux in Tebebris): Underwood New Music Readings
Carlos Bandera (b. 1993) is fascinated by musical architecture and by the music of the past. His recent music explores these fascinations, often by placing a musical quotation, be it a phrase, scale, or sonority, within dense microtonal textures.
Carlos' music has been performed in the Faroe Islands, Scotland, Uzbekistan, China, and several spaces in the US, including Stern Auditorium, Carnegie Hall. He has attended the Fresh Inc Music Festival where he studied composition with Dan Visconti and the Wintergreen Summer Music Academy where he studied with Daron Hagen and Gylda Lyons and had his Florestan premiered by members of the Wintergreen Festival Orchestra.
Carlos earned his Bachelor of Music degree in Music Theory and Composition from the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair State University, where he studied with Elizabeth Brown, Dean Drummond, and Marcos Balter. Carlos recently received his Master of Music degree in Composition from The Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, where he participated in masterclasses with Christopher Rouse and Georg Friedrich Haas and studied privately with Kevin Puts.
Carlos notes about his piece, "Upon first hearing the music of Anton Bruckner, I felt deeply connected to the composer and his work. His Eighth Symphony in particular, with its immense harmonic landscapes, devastating silences, and profound 'darkness-to-light' narrative, continues to be one of my greatest influences - no doubt, in more ways than I am even aware of. Lux in Tenebris explores these elements of the Eighth Symphony by allowing Brucknerian light to pierce through a dense micropolyphonic fabric." For more information, visit www.carlosbandera.com.
Lily Chen (A Leaf Falls After): Underwood New Music Readings
Taiwanese-born Lily Chen (b. 1985) is a composer exploring timbral materials with subtle theatrical potentials in both acoustic and electronic music. Lily has received first Prize of Asian Composers League Young Composers Award, first and second Prizes of Nicola de Lorenzo Prize in Music Composition, among others. Her music has been performed at June in Buffalo, Mise-en Festival, International Computer Music Conference, SEAMUS, New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival, and Asian Composers League Conference and Festival. Lily has collaborated with St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Eco Ensemble, Ensemble Signal, Mivos Quartet, Ensemble Mise-en, and National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra.
In December 2017, she received her Ph.D. in music composition from the University of California at Berkeley, where she studied with Ken Ueno, Franck Bedrossian, Edmund Campion, and Cindy Cox. She also holds M.M. (2009) and B.F.A. (2007) from Taipei National University of the Arts in Taiwan, under the instruction of Chung-Kun Hung. For more information, visit www.chenlily.com.
Of her piece, Chen notes, "A Leaf Falls After is inspired by my recent memories of living in Europe. In the fall of 2015, I received the Ladd Prize funded by UC Berkeley and had the great opportunity to live in Paris for ten months. This was my first time in Paris as well as in Europe; I experienced intimate incidents of fragile beauty that touched me, but also shocking and terrifying ones during my residence there. Based on such images, I created a constantly flowing process of different kinds of vibrations along with air sounds to represent falling leaves, fallen leaves, and flaps of rising butterflies' wings. Besides this, metallic sounds/noises either with pure resonances or with intense pressure make up another important element, which is associated with my memories of the ringing bells and the metal 'fallen leaves.'"
Scott Lee (Anadyr): Underwood New Music Readings
Composer Scott Lee (b. 1988) writes concert music infused with the visceral sounds of popular music. Lee has worked with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the North Carolina Symphony, the Portland Symphony Orchestra, Winston-Salem Symphony members, Symphony In C, and the Peabody Symphony Orchestra, chamber groups such as the Jack Quartet, yMusic, the Da Capo Chamber Players, Deviant Septet, chatterbird, and ShoutHouse, as well as multi-platinum pop artist Ben Folds. He has received commissions from the Aspen Music Festival, the Baltimore Classical Guitar Society, loadbang, the Raleigh Civic Symphony, and the American Craft Council.
Notable honors include a Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, two ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Awards, winner of the Symphony In C Young Composers Composition, the grand prize in the PARMA Student Composer Competition, and the Gustav Klemm Award in Composition from the Peabody Institute. Lee has also received fellowships to attend the Tanglewood and Aspen Music Festivals.
As a James B. Duke Fellow, Lee recently earned a PhD in Composition at Duke University, mentored by Scott Lindroth and Steve Jaffe. He earned the Master of Music degree at the Peabody institute, where he was the recipient of the Philip D. Glass Endowed Scholarship in Composition and studied with Michael Hersch. He received his Bachelor of Music degree from the Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University, where he studied with Michael Rose, Michael Slayton, Stan Link, and Michael Kurek. For more information, visit www.scottlee.net.
Of his piece, Lee says, "Anadyr refers both to a remote port town in Northeastern Russia and to the secret 1962 operation ('Operation Anadyr') in which Soviets deployed missiles and supporting forces to Cuba, prompting the Cuban missile crisis. The mission involved a complex campaign of deception, and was shrouded in secrecy. This work aims to evoke the deception and subterfuge that characterized this period in international dealings with Russia."
Ryan Lindviet (Like an Altar with 9,000 Robot Attendants): Underwood New Music Readings
Ryan Lindveit's (b. 1994) works have been performed across the United States and abroad by Alarm Will Sound, "The President's Own" United States Marine Band, Orkest de Ereprijs, the USC Thornton Symphony, the Donald Sinta Quartet, FearNoMusic, and the City of Tomorrow, among others. His music has received recognition from BMI, ASCAP, SCI, the American Modern Ensemble, the National Band Association, Tribeca New Music, and the Texas Music Educators Association. Ryan grew up in Texas and is a graduate of the University of Southern California, where he was selected as Salutatorian for the class of 2016 and named the Thornton School of Music's Outstanding Graduate. He is currently a master's student at the Yale School of Music. His past teachers include Aaron Jay Kernis, Christopher Theofanidis, Andrew Norman, Ted Hearne, Frank Ticheli, and Donald Crockett. Recent and upcoming projects include Mysterious Butterflies ?for chamber ensemble and eight voices, a wind ensemble version of Like an Altar with 9,000 Robot Attendants commissioned by a consortium of 30 university wind ensembles organized by conductor H. Robert Reynolds, a commission for the Big 12 Band Directors Association, and pieces for chamber ensemble and orchestra to be premiered at the Aspen Music Festival in the summer of 2018. For more information, visit www.ryanlindviet.com.
Lindviet notes, "Like an Altar with 9,000 Robot Attendants was inspired by Ray Bradbury's short story 'There Will Come Soft Rains' (1950). The futuristic story describes a computer-controlled house, in which robots perform a myriad of tasks such as cooking breakfast, cleaning house, and telling time. Bradbury's futurist prose remains characteristically exuberant in describing these household robots-a tension which calls to mind the satirical ebullience of Stanley Kubrick's Cold War satire Dr. Strangelove. My piece lives in the same brazenly ecstatic spirit as Bradbury's story and Kubrick's film. Sometimes the only response to misfortune is a wild, full-teeth smile."
Tomas Peire Serrate (Rauxa): Underwood New Music Readings
Barcelona-born Tomas Peire Serrate (b. 1979) studied piano at the Sant Cugat del Vallès conservatory and composition at the Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya (Barcelona) with Salvador Brotons andthe Sibelius Academy (Helsinki) with Tapio Tuomela and Risto Väisänen. In 2013 he graduated from New York University with a Master´s in Scoring for Film and Multimedia. That year he moved to Los Angeles to explore the film music industry and participate as a composer in different projects including writing the music for the films The Anushree Experiements and Prism, and orchestrating and arranging music for If I Stay, Minions or Love and Friendship.
In the fall of 2015, Tomàs initiated his PhD studies at UCLA, where studies with Bruce Broughton, Richard Danielpour, Ian Krouse, Mark Carlson, Peter Golub and David S. Lefkowitz. His research at UCLA is about music, space and media, with particular interest in new technologies and virtual reality. His concert works have been performed in Europe, US and Asia, and is currently working on a short opera-monologue that will be premiered at the Off-Liceu series in Barcelona in June 2018. For more information, visit www.tomaspeire.com.
Of his piece, Serrate notes, "Rauxa is a sudden determination, like the impulse I had to write this piece, or an outburst, which actually is how this work begins. It is a Catalan word that has been used in pair with another one, Seny, meaning balance and sensibleness, to describe or refer to the Catalan people and their character. This duality, like in other cultures and traditions, is essential, indivisible, and necessary to understand each part separately, which is what I tried to explore here. I worked on sketches and sections of Rauxa in different moments and places, always away from my home country, Catalonia, and I kept coming back to it looking to improve it as well as to learn more about myself and about music."
Liliya Ugay (Rhapsody in Color): Underwood New Music Readings
Music by the award-winning composer and pianist Liliya Ugay (b. 1990) has been performed in many countries around the globe. Recipient of a 2016 Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and a 2017 Horatio Parker Memorial prize from the Yale School of Music, Ugay has collaborated with the Nashville Symphony, Albany Symphony, New England Philharmonic, Yale Philharmonia, Raleigh Civic Symphony, Aspen Contemporary Ensemble, Molinari Quartet, Antico Moderno, Omnibus ensemble, and Paul Neubauer among others. Her music has been featured at the Aspen, American Composers, New York Electroacoustic Music, June in Buffalo, and Darmstadt New Music festivals, as well as the 52nd Venice Biennale. During 2017-2018 season Ugay has worked on a new opera as a Resident Composer at the American Lyric Theater.
Originally from Uzbekistan, Liliya is currently a Doctor of Musical Arts candidate at the Yale School of Music studying with Aaron Kernis and David Lang. Besides new music, Liliya is passionate about the music of the repressed composers from the Soviet era. She regularly presents a series of the lecture-recitals on this topic with guidance of Boris Berman. For more information, visit www.liliyaugay.com.
Of her piece, Ugay notes, "I chose the title Rhapsody in Color to evoke two musical associations: Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsodies and Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. The idea of Rhapsody in Color is similar to the process of reproduction of old sepia photographs or films into color with individual, unrealistic to the time of the original, touch. Rather a simple, and, in a sense, traditional, motive and harmonic progression are taken through the contemporary lens by coloring it out with the sporadic and often unpredictable formal and orchestral realization. Similarly, in the second half of the piece, the idea of the ostinato dance is approached from modern perspective, transforming it into what sounds more like an electronic dance loop track with constantly adding/changing shades and timbral colors."
Nathan Kelly (Redwood): EarShot, Fort Wayne Philharmonic
Nathan Kelly (b. 1980) is a composer whose music reflects an eclectic mix of musical cultures and influences. From playing gospel piano in East Texas churches, to Broadway in pit orchestras in New York City, to sprinting leaps around the world playing in bands on cruise ships, to working in Hollywood with music producers and film composers, Nathan's music draws from a variety of inspirations. His work seeks to situate between notions of pulses, ambiguity, virtuosity and quiet beauty. He has orchestrated for artists such as Dionne Warwick, Rod Stewart, Jackie Evancho, Andrea Bocelli, Jennifer Lopez; Broadway shows (Gypsy, Curtains, The Tony Awards); TV's Macy's 4th of July Fireworks on NBC, Audra McDonald on PBS and more; and was recently a Visiting Artist at The American Academy in Rome. For more information, visit www.nathankelly.com.
Kelly notes, "Redwood opens with a 'pedal point' on Ab that expands in its intensity and stretches its melodic limbs ever-upward, frequently using intervals of the 7th and 9th in its mighty twists and turns, as it infuses brief contrasting moments of alternating powerful and delicate textures that display a somber and majestic dissonant beauty. The expansive orchestral tuttis mark prominent, relentlessly unfurling musical material writhing and aching with intensity and passion that fearlessly clash -- above, below and in-between -- balancing registral development with motivic seeds of growing contrapuntal figuration and ornamentation that evolve into dense, complex textures and overlapping, competing voices. The churning and undulating fluidity of multiple stratifications of voices explore the enormous and awesome colorful orchestral range and dark tessitura of the orchestra, like a fitting musical portrait of our towering national treasures, the great Redwoods."
Sohwa Lee (Palindrome): EarShot, Fort Wayne Philharmonic
Korean-born composer and theorist Sohwa Lee (b.1987) received Bachelor's and Master's degrees in composition at Sungshin Women's University in Seoul. She currently studies music composition and theory at Mannes School of Music in New York City. She strongly embraces a sense of humor in her approach to music. Under the proposition that humans are social animals, she thinks interacting each other is the key aspect of music. She actively writes music to develop her career as a composer and lives with communicating in the joy of music every day. To hear recordings of Lee's music, visit www.soundcloud.com/sohwalee1987.
Palindrome was premiered by the Mannes School of Music Orchestra on March 10th, 2017. The title is inspired by Joseph Haydn's Symphony No. 47 in G major, nicknamed "The Palindrome." Palindrome, by definition of the word, has a backward point in the middle of the music. The first section maintains a tranquil mood and follows with a rhythmic passage. This piece is inspired by Gamelan music and Asian themes and was arranged for Fort Wayne Philharmonic Orchestra from the original composition.
Robert Rankin (Nijinsky Dances): EarShot, Fort Wayne Philharmonic
Robert Rankin (b. 1994) is an Indiana-based composer of concert and theatre music. His works are characterized by colorful orchestration, a neoclassical nod to the past, and a deep love of narrative storytelling through music. Robert's music has been commissioned and performed by the Burning Coal Theater Company, the Lux Quartet, Split The Lark, and several middle school and high school wind ensembles across the country. He has attended the Atlantic Music Festival (2014) and the Brevard Music Center (2016 and 2017) where he worked as both a composer and teaching assistant. In addition, he has received several awards and honors including from New York's Tribeca New Music in which he was named an "Emerging Composer" in 2015 for his Clarinet Quartet. For more information, visit www.robertrankinmusic.com.
Of Nijinsky Dances, Rankin says, "Valslav Nijinsky has often been described as the greatest male dancer of the 20th century. In addition, Nijinsky was arguably the greatest choreographer of the 20th century, choreographing such landmark ballets such as Debussy's L'après-midi d'un faune, Strauss' Till Eulenspiegel, and Stravinsky's Le Sacre du Printemps. Myself, alongside countless other concert goers, rank these early 20th century ballets as some of our top pieces. In Nijinsky Dances, I create a quasi 'pocket concerto for orchestra' that highlights each section of the orchestra doing what they do best while making subtle reference to the masterful orchestration of those famous ballet scores."
Niloufar Iravani (Fantasy): EarShot, Charlotte Symphony Orchestra
Niloufar Iravani (b. 1990) is a composer of acoustic and electroacoustic music. She received her Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and Master of Music in Composition from University of Tehran, Iran. Iravani achieved several national honors including the second rank in the field of Musical Arts at the National Master Degree Examination before starting the PhD in Music Composition at Louisiana State University, under the supervision of Prof. Dinos Contantinides. She is now the graduate teaching assistant and the coordinator of the Composers Forum at LSU. Her music has been performed in Iran, Greece, and the USA by great ensembles and soloists including Athanasios Zervas, Maria Asteriadou, Kostas Tiliakos, Angela Draghicescu, and Amalia Sagona. The Summer 2017 concert series at Baton Rouge libraries, conducted by Prof. Constantinides, featured her work, Shadows in Chase, for string quartet. Recent highlights include the performance of DIR for solo violin at LMTA 65th Annual Convention at the University of New Orleans and the performance of Seven for fixed media for seven channels at the University of Tennessee Contemporary Music Festival. For more information, visit www.niloufariravani.com.
Fantasy, for Symphonic Orchestra, was part of Iravani's final thesis for her Master of Music degree in Composition. In this work, she tried to demonstrate her innovate and personal approach to the concept of fantasy as a musical genre. The work presents meaningful imitation and development of thematic ideas as well as the dynamic use of rhythm, register, and texture. The second and fourth intervals, as the main intervallic materials, are smoothly combined with larger intervals to provide a distinct impression of unity and diversity throughout the work. The work has the formal structure of ABCDA.
Jihyun Kim (At Dawn): EarShot, Charlotte Symphony Orchestra
Jihyun Kim (b. 1988) was born in Seoul, South Korea in 1988. Studying composition with Shinuh Lee, she graduated early from Seoul National University with a Bachelor of Music as valedictorian and then earned a Master's degree in Composition. Later, she graduated with a Master of Music from Indiana University where she studied with Don Freund, Aaron Travers and PQ Phan. She is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts at Rice University, studying with Karim Al-Zand and Shih-Hui Chen. Her music has been performed at the Korean Music Expo, the Daegu International Contemporary Music Festival, the Pann Music Festival, and the 2016 ISCM World Music Days, the 2017 John Donald Robb Composers' Symposium, the 2017 ISCM New Music Miami Festival, the 2016 LaTEX Festival, the International Symposium of New Music at Curitiba, the RED NOTE New Music Festival Composition Workshop, and the Midwest Composers Symposium. Additionally, she won the Libby Larsen Prize in the International Alliance for Women in Music 2015 Search for New Music Competition, the Merit Award in the 1st Lin Yao Ji International Competition for Composition in Hong-Kong, and second place in the Contemporary Music Society Competition for Composition in Korea. For more information, visit www.coolsound88.wixsite.com/jihyunkim.
Kim notes, "At Dawn for orchestra portrays a silent village where church bells ring in the distance. For me, the two phenomena - light from the sun slowly brightening the village and the sound from the church bells slowly filling the air - look and sound similar, because these phenomena gradually change the environment. In this piece, the gradual shift from low light to brightness and meaningless noise to meaningful sound. In order to depict such imaginary sceneries, I use the fundamental and the overtones from bell sounds."
Felipe Nieto (Artesania Sonora): EarShot, Charlotte Symphony Orchestra
Originally from Bogota (Colombia), Felipe Nieto's (b. 1988) music is rooted in a combination of lyricism and rhythmic complexity and intends to touch upon themes that range from political commentary to simple sound exploration. At the same time, he believes strongly in versatility and feels that his musical language is open to the exigencies of every piece he composes. Felipe has received first prize at the annual PUBLIQuartet Composition Competition, first prize at the Exit 128 Ensemble Composition Competition, Honorable Mentions at the Buffalo Chamber Players call for scores and the Boston Guitar Festival Composition Competition, and is a two-time recipient of the Smadbeck prize for Music Composition at Ithaca College.
Recent engagements include his assignment as Assistant Artistic Director of Las Americas en Concierto (New York) and collaborations with Brower Trio (Spain), Vox n Plux (New York), and the Bogota Chamber Orchestra (Colombia). Felipe holds a Bachelor of Music in Composition from Oklahoma City University where he studied with Edward Knight and a Master of Music in Composition from Ithaca College where he studied with Jorge Grossmann and Dana Wilson. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/FelipeNScomposer.
Of Artesania Sonora, Nieto says, "It is a work conceived in the manner of an artisanal piece. The opening passages represent raw material from which all other elements of the piece emanate, through a process of constant transformation and growth. As in much artisanal work, form and content are earned and not exposed from the outset. I borrowed this idea from the aesthetic values I encountered in the artisanal work on gold in the indigenous cultures of South America, particularly that of the Colombian territory where I come from."
Nicholas Bentz (E.W. Korngold Goes to Kikkatsu): EarShot, Jacksonville Symphony
Nicholas Bentz (b. 1994) is forging a path of the composer-performer that hasn't been explored in generations. His music often takes its inspiration from pieces of literature and poetry, film, and visual art. He has received commissions from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, the Robinson Jeffers Association, the College of Charleston Contemporary Music Ensemble, SONAR New Music Ensemble, Troika, Symphony Number One, and the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, and has had his music played by the Peabody Modern Orchestra and the Peabody String Sinfonia. Nicholas was a winner of SONAR New Music Ensemble's RADARLab Competition