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Chicago Center For Contemporary Composition Announces 2021-22 Season


The season will feature 9 commissioned works and over 35 world premieres.

Chicago Center For Contemporary Composition Announces 2021-22 Season

The University of Chicago's Center for Contemporary Composition has announced the 2021-22 concert season featuring seven concerts with nine CCCC commissioned works and over 35 world premieres. Matana Roberts will serve as this season's Distinguished Guest Composer, joining and a number of other established and emerging composers.

"Here's to chasing, catching, and sharing dreams!" said Augusta Read Thomas. "This season, we are thrilled to welcome you to our celebrations of creativity and community. Together we will discover new ways to appreciate beautiful, nuanced, ever-expanding, panoramic landscapes of new music."

The CCCC's resident Grossman Ensemble performs 12 world premiere works, nine commissioned by the CCCC, in three concerts this season. The resident Ensemble comprises musicians of the highest caliber whose passion is to perform music with a sensitive understanding, meticulous preparation, and abundant rehearsal time. The 12 world premiere works are developed over several weeks, during a series of unique workshopping rehearsals that focus on the interaction between composers, musicians, and conductors. This process allows the music time to grow in the mind of the composer and to fully inhabit the minds of the players.

This year, the CCCC has invited Chicago-born artist Matana Roberts to serve as Distinguished Guest Composer. As part of the residency, the CCCC has commissioned an original musical composition that will become a new 45-minute chapter in Roberts's COIN COIN series project. In addition, CCCC is supporting the recording of the commissioned work and Roberts will participate in composition activities on campus and take the CCCC's programming outside of the concert hall with a variety of university and community activities.

Nine other guest composers have been commissioned by the CCCC to create new works for the Grossman Ensemble, which will be led by three guest conductors this season. Commissioned composers include Zosha Di Castri, Frédéric Durieux, Ingrid Laubrock, David Serkin Ludwig, Eric Nathan, Daniel Pesca, Christopher Trapani, Amy Williams, and Krzysztof Wołek. This season's conductors are Vimbayi Kaziboni, Timothy Weiss, and James Baker.

The 21-22 Postdoctoral Researcher, Felipe Tovar-Henao, will also premiere two new works this season. Characterized by a strong interest in engaging the audience on multiple perceptual levels, the music of Colombian composer Felipe Tovar-Henao has been consistently awarded and performed throughout his emerging professional career. His creative work is deeply rooted in aesthetic experiences with technology, philosophy, and cinema, and exists primarily within the realms of chamber, electro-acoustic, multimedia, choral, vocal, and orchestral music.

Composers Baldwin Giang and Dongryul Lee also receive world premieres by the Grossman Ensemble, and composers Maria Kaoutzani and Ted Moore receive world premieres and Ben Lamar Gay receives a Chicago premiere on Wet Ink's season-opening performance.

Wet Ink is one of five guest ensembles performing on the CCCC's 21-22 season. Named "The Best Classical Music Ensemble of 2018" by The New York Times, the Wet Ink Ensemble is a collective of composers, performers and improvisers dedicated to adventurous music-making. Three ensembles will present brand new works by UChicago composer: Ekmeles, a vocal ensemble dedicated to the performance of new and rarely-heard works, and gems of the historical avant garde, Sandbox Percussion, an ensemble that has established themselves as a leading proponent of this generation of contemporary percussion chamber music, and Fonema Consort, an ensemble driven by a fascination with pieces that foster rich interplay of voices and instruments and that are characterized by deep expressivity. The University of Chicago's Don Michael Randel Ensemble-in-Residence - Quatuor Diotima - will also present a concert of new works by UChicago composers that were created as part of the year-long residency.

The health and safety of our community is of the utmost concern to the CCCC and The University of Chicago. The CCCC is following University-recommended guidelines for hosting events, and these recommendations are subject to change at any time. Please visit for the latest information about mask and vaccine requirements.

Tickets to the Wet Ink and Grossman Ensemble concerts are $20, free with student ID. Tickets for the October and December concerts are on sale now and can be purchased at or by calling 773.702.ARTS (2787). For more information, please visit

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