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Articles
Aaron Gervais

Some Reflections on Transitioning Out of Being a “Young Composer”

Composing is about who you know…The reasons why you write music will become clearer… Thinking back on the past few years, I suppose I have learned a few things that would have been useful to my 20-something self. So in the spirit of paying it forward, here are some reflections on composing after young-composer-hood.

Articles
Ed Windels

Do You Have What It Takes to be a 5-to-9 Composer?

When your writing time arrives, you embrace it and WRITE.

Articles
Ursel Schlicht

Remembering Connie Crothers (1941-2016)

It took Connie Crothers several years of profound study before she would perform in public. She she eventually began to perform solo, and to experience rejection from the audience. She also offered reasons why her band would not perform more frequently. She was adamant that it had to do with the divide in the jazz world—jazz tunes versus free jazz/free improvisation—and with the fact that she was a woman leader and would be hired less often because of it.

Articles
Eve Sicular

Auditory Tourism

My enthusiasms for “World Music” have been exuberant and far-flung. I also tend to embrace independent, analog media, such as locally-based broadcasts from the heart of a community.

Articles
George Grella Jr

Sounds of Futures’ Past

Unlike older, lost civilizations that had no means to record and preserve audio, nor a method for notating musical instruction, we have been preserving sound for 150 years, and digital audio has been accumulating like an avalanche at easily the same speed as digital words. But these are all based on technology and need a means with which to reproduce the sound, from a cylinder player to a set of AA batteries.

Articles
Ed Windels

Coming Out (as a 5-to-9 Composer)

Since I lack sufficient instrumental ability to support myself as a performer or the temperament for academia, making a salary in various office capacities has provided several advantages to maintaining a life as an artist, both during my school years and since—even if it is more time consuming than I’d ideally like.

Articles
Frank J. Oteri

Yarn/Wire: From The Ground Level

One of the most exciting as well as one of the most articulate groups of DIY new music interpreters is the two piano/two percussion quartet Yarn/Wire. Performing together at the highest possible level now for a decade and working with composers ranging from Alex Mincek and Sam Pluta to Tristan Murail, Misato Mochizuki, and Michael Gordon to craft repertoire for their idiosyncratic instrumental configuration, Yarn/Wire is an extremely important catalyst for music that is happening right now.

Articles
Michael Compitello

Summer Residency Snapshots: Where Trust Meets Productivity

With less pressure to produce concrete results, composers and performers tend to create with more verve. This week, a few more Avaloch New Music Institute examples illustrate how friendship can be a vital collaborative tool and how developing trust over a long period of time generates more interesting, sustainable work.

Articles
NewMusicBox Staff

Showcase of Six New Operas-In-Progress plus an Entire New Opera to be Presented in L.A.

The L.A. based opera company, The Industry, has announced the third installment of its biennial West Coast workshop for new American operas. In February 2017, portions of six new operas-in-progress–composed by Nicholas Deyoe, William Gardiner, John Hastings, Laura Karpman, Marc Lowenstein, and Dylan Mattingly–will be presented as well as the concert premiere of Bonnie and Clyde by composer Andrew McIntosh and librettist Melinda Rice.

Articles
Robert Carl

Jonathan Kramer’s Gift

Jonathan Kramer’s Postmodern Music shows how our contemporary experience colors and reshapes our audition of everything, from Beethoven to new pieces he never could have encountered. And so his last book, published this month and more than a decade after his death, is not only still relevant; it’s prescient.

Articles
Joe Chambers

California Sunshine: Remembering Bobby Hutcherson (1941-2016)  

Hutcherson had his own distinct tone and sound on the vibes, very different from the prominent mallet players of the day, but as a composer and musical philosopher he was also one of the most important conceptualizers of music in the last half of the 20th century.

Articles
NewMusicBox Staff

Wadada Leo Smith Receives $25K Mohn Career Achievement Award

Composer and trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith has received the Hammer Museum’s 2016 Mohn Award for Career Achievement “honoring brilliance and resilience.”

Articles
Kevin James

An Open Response to “… But I Hate Modern Music”

Subjectivity isn’t actually a matter of taste. It’s a matter of expectation. When it comes to art and artistic renderings, there is, unfortunately, often a disconnect between what an artist is presenting and what an audience believes their price of admission is buying.

Articles
Michael Compitello

Summer Residency Snapshots: Into the Workshop

Composer/performer collaborations may run in both directions at once: input from performers can help composers create more easily interpretive, idiomatic work, and composers can bring interpretive clarity to hard to parse scores while writing with their collaborators in mind.

Articles
Patrick Zimmerli

Concerts in the Park and Modes of Listening to New Music

New music has been as much about challenging modes of listening and perception as anything else. What is most wonderful to me about the park experience was that all modes of listening are available simultaneously.

Numbered theater chairs upholstered in burgundy
Articles
Alicia Byer

Whither Los Angeles: The Émigrés

Los Angeles is a place where cultural dichotomies are magnified, and the rift between American and European musical priorities illustrated by the experiences of émigré composers of the ’30s and ’40s offers a powerful case in point. This was a collision of worlds which never fully resolved or came to an agreeable integration, reflecting some of the fundamental fragmentation of Los Angeles.

Articles
Michael Compitello

Summer Residency Snapshots: The Composer / Performer Mind Meld

For ensembles of composer/performers, neither the tight, goal-oriented schedules of summer festivals nor the creative isolation of writers colonies fit. At Avaloch, both Triplepoint Trio and Invisible Anatomy were able to stretch their legs creatively while being inspired by the diverse community around them.

Articles
Aaron Siegel

What Happens When Composers Make Opera

A collaborative conversation at Hunter College’s Ida K. Lang Recital Hall featuring some of the most prolific and interesting composers, librettists, and singers working in New York’s new opera scene.

Los Angeles, USA - February 29, 2016: The Hollywood sign overlooking Los Angeles. The iconic sign was originally created in 1923.
Articles
Alicia Byer

Whither Los Angeles? New Music in Tinseltown

It’s hard now to find a week in which you can’t hear something new—really new—in Los Angeles. Perhaps like many composers who grew up grumbling about its pop culture backdrop and who are now witnessing the flowering of an LA new music community, I am wondering: how did we get here?

Articles
Michael Compitello

Summer Residency Snapshots: Lessons in Dynamic Collaboration

How can taking part in a close dialogue over the genesis of a piece lead to more sustained and flexible partnerships between composers and performers? How can being in an idyllic natural setting, surrounded by other interesting musicians and away from one’s normal routine, impact creative work? Is it important to be friends?

Articles
NewMusicBox Staff

Carlos Simon Wins $15,000 ACO Underwood Emerging Composer Commission

Carlos Simon, recipient of the $15K 2016 ACO Underwood Commission, was chosen from seven finalists during ACO’s 25th Underwood New Music Readings on June 13-14, 2016. Simon won the top prize with his work Plagues of Egypt.

Interviews
Frank J. Oteri

Eleanor Cory: What I Really Want To Do

Eleanor Cory gets inspiration from listening to a wide variety of music as well as attending poetry readings and her music thrives from creating sonic dialogues between elements that don’t immediately seem to belong together.

Articles
Sam Reising

Stream the 2016 Bang on a Can Marathon

Tune in to this page to watch the Bang on a Can live stream from 4-10 PM on Saturday, July 30, 2016.

chess game
Articles
Isaac Schankler

The Generalization Generation

When we elevate a certain kind of craft and its formal concerns above all else, this kind of gatekeeping doesn’t just hurt young composers, it also shuts out other potential voices, marginalized voices, voices that could bring new life to new music. It is completely inimical to the spirit of creativity that should animate and drive us.

Funders

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NewMusicBox receives major support from the Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts and The ASCAP Foundation.

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NewMusicBox is funded in part by public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and with support from The Aaron Copland Fund for Music and The Amphion Foundation, Inc. Support for New Music USA and its many programs and activities is provided by foundations, corporations, government agencies, and hundreds of individual contributors.

NewMusicBox receives major support from the Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts and The ASCAP Foundation. NewMusicBox is funded in part by public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and with support from The Aaron Copland Fund for Music and The Amphion Foundation, Inc. Support for New Music USA and its many programs and activities is provided by foundations, corporations, government agencies, and hundreds of individual contributors.