Monday, June 6, 2011

Jeffrey Stadelman: "Meaning is sedimented form"


On the eve of the opening of June in Buffalo 2011, we conclude our series of posts on this year's Senior Faculty with composer Jeffrey Stadelman, Associate Chair of UB's Music Department. 

Stadelman's music -- once described by a Los Angeles Times reviewer as "painterly . . . , deftly dispersed in time and glazed with a dry wit" --  has been performed in the U.S and Europe by a number of the leading groups active in contemporary music performance. This list of ensembles -- including the New York New Music Ensemble, Boston Musica Viva, the California Ear Unit, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, Het Trio, 175 East Ensemble (New Zealand), Earplay, the New World and Cassatt String Quartets, the League/ISCM and the June in Buffalo and Wellesley Conference Players, among others -- continues to grow as Stadelman's work attracts increasing attention in the U.S. and abroad.

Originally from Wisconsin, Stadelman studied composition as an undergraduate with Stephen Dembski at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and went on to receive the Ph.D. in Music from Harvard University, where his principal teachers were Milton Babbitt, Earl Kim, Donald Martino and Stephen Mosko. Stadelman has since received commissions and invitations for compositions from, among others, the Fromm Foundation and Boston Musica Viva, Nuove Sincronie, Concert Artists Guild, Trio Italiano Contemporaneo, Phantom Arts, Bernhard Wambach, Elizabeth McNutt, Jon Nelson and UW-Madison. Grants and awards include those from Meet the Composer, Harvard University, Friends and Enemies of New Music, and the Darmstadt Summer Courses.

The composer taught at Harvard University during the 1992-93 academic year, and currently serves as Associate Professor of Music at the State University of New York at Buffalo, where he teaches composition and twentieth-century music. Stadelman's music is published by APNM and BMG Ariola. Recently completed and ongoing projects include Eight Songs, a collection for bass-baritone and piano; House Taken Over for the flutist Elizabeth McNutt, with and without electronics; a quintet for a University at Buffalo faculty quintet; and a violin concerto, entitled Pity Paid, for Movses Pogossian with the Slee Sinfonietta. The latter work was released as the centerpiece of an eponymously-titled CD in 2008 on the Centaur label. 

A number of recent electroacoustic works have been performed at June in Buffalo 2004, SEAMUS conferences (Ball State and University of Oregon), ICMC 2004 Miami, the University of North Texas/CEMI, the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, COMA 2005 (Vaxjo, Sweden), and other venues.

Also active as a writer on musical subjects, Stadelman has authored a number of analytic papers since 1986, and made presentations on Babbitt and Schoenberg at universities and festivals in the U.S. and Europe. 

Stadelman is a cogent thinker whose forthright remarks on composition are laced with wit in this interview by James Gardner of Radio New Zealand. Responding to a question about recent compositional paradigms, Stadelman says, "I tend to prefer the choral model, imagining not reflection and amplification of the lone voice—but instead repetition and massing of plural voices in a social context. That's what's so compelling about the origins of classical polyphony to me. A kind of splitting of the solo song, and then its multiplication..."

No comments:

Post a Comment