RIP Charles Wuorinen (1938-2020)

American composer, conductor, and pianist Charles Wuorinen has passed away. Wuorinen was the first person to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize for an electronic music work, Time’s Encomium. He was also a MacArthur Fellow and received numerous other commissions and awards. His book, Simple Composition, is one of the clearest explications of composing using 12-toneContinue reading “RIP Charles Wuorinen (1938-2020)”

Two new recordings feature Carey compositions; new choral pieces

Out on Friday, December 6th, via New Focus Recordings, Wendy Richman’s Vox/Viola recording includes a piece I wrote for her in 2010, “He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven.” The CD significantly enlarges the repertoire for singing violists, with pieces by Ken Ueno, Everette Minchew, Arlene Sierra, Jason Eckardt, and others. Recently released on WestminsterContinue reading “Two new recordings feature Carey compositions; new choral pieces”

RIP Matt Marks (1980-2018)

All of us at Sequenza 21 are saddened to learn of the passing of Matt Marks. A musical polymath, he was a composer, new music advocate, provocative Twitter presence, co-founder and key organizer of New Music Gathering, and a versatile performer, both a vocalist-actor in various projects and a founding member of the ensemble Alarm Will Sound, in which he played FrenchContinue reading “RIP Matt Marks (1980-2018)”

Upcoming Performance: Westminster Kantorei

On April 28th, 2018, two of my Magnificat Antiphons will be performed by Westminster Kantorei, Amanda Quist, conductor. Kantorei will be recording them the following week for release on Westminster Choir College’s imprint (distributed by Naxos). I have been at Westminster since 2004. I am thrilled that, for the first time, my work will beContinue reading “Upcoming Performance: Westminster Kantorei”

Best Recording 2017 – Tyshawn Sorey’s Verisimilitude

Verisimilitude Tyshawn Sorey Tyshawn Sorey, drums, percussion, composer; Cory Smythe, piano, toy piano, electronics; Chris Tordini, bass Pi Records PI70 Tyshawn Sorey has had quite a year of musical accomplishments. After recently finishing up his doctorate at Columbia, he succeeded Anthony Braxton on the faculty at Wesleyan University, won a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, and receivedContinue reading “Best Recording 2017 – Tyshawn Sorey’s Verisimilitude”

RIP Klaus Huber (1924-2017)

The formidable Swiss pedagogue and composer Klaus Huber died last week, aged 92. Among his students were Kaija Saariaho, Wolfgang Rihm, Brian Ferneyhough, and Toshio Hosokawa, Below is one of my favorite works by the composer, his Quintet for Strings, performed by the Arditti Quartet and violist Garth Knox.

“3 Kenyon Songs” – “Psalm 103” (SoundCloud)

This week I am posting recordings from a May 2016 recital that was performed at All Saints’ Church in Princeton, New Jersey. Organized by soprano Sara Noble and the Contemporary Undercurrents of Song Project, it was given for me after I returned home last Spring from having cancer surgeries in Nashville. It was the mostContinue reading ““3 Kenyon Songs” – “Psalm 103” (SoundCloud)”

Hayes Biggs played by Thomas Stumpf (YouTube)

Pianist Thomas Stumpf’s latest Albany Records recording features composer Hayes Biggs’s first Piano Prelude, The Secret the Silent Lazarus Would Not Reveal. Based on the poem, “The Afterlife,” by Billy Collins, it is a virtuosic traversal of the piano’s low register, featuring sepulchrally jazzy chords and ominous angular melodies. Stumpf’s Reflections on Time and Mortality, a two-disc set, also includes pieces by Chopin, Debussy, Janàcek, Bartók, JohnContinue reading “Hayes Biggs played by Thomas Stumpf (YouTube)”

New Music Gathering

  I am very pleased to share that soprano Sara Noble and pianist Nadia Shpachenko will be premiering my Ross Gay Songs at New Music Gathering on May 11 at 2:30. This year, NMG will be held at Bowling Green State University.

RIP Pauline Oliveros (1932-2016)

Note: There have been several passings of note in recent months. 2016 has been an unkind year for musicians: hence the number of obituaries on the blog.  I am saddened to learn of Pauline Oliveros’s passing. I use her book Deep Listening: A Composer’s Sound Practice in my teaching: it has opened many students’ minds. I didn’t knowContinue reading “RIP Pauline Oliveros (1932-2016)”