Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Anna Clyne: Collaboration and dialogue

The second in our series of June in Buffalo Senior Composer profiles is dedicated to another first-time faculty at the festival: Anna Clyne. Born in London, Clyne is a Grammy-nominated composer of acoustic and electro-acoustic music who has been described as a "composer of uncommon gifts and unusual methods" in a New York Times profile and as "dazzlingly inventive" by Time Out New York,
Her work often includes collaborations with cutting-edge choreographers, visual artists, filmmakers, and musicians worldwide.

(Anna Clyne)

Clyne has served as composer in residence for several important American and European orchestras, such as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (2010-2015), the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (2015-16), the National Orchestra of Île-de-France (2014-2016) and the Berkeley Symphony (2017-2019). The Scottish Chamber Orchestra recently announced Clyne as its Associate Composer for the next three years, through the 2020-2021 season. She has been commissioned by the American Composers Orchestra, BBC Radio 3, BBC Scottish Symphony, Carnegie Hall, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Houston Ballet, London Sinfonietta, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Seattle Symphony, and the Southbank Centre, and her work has been championed by such world-renowned conductors as Marin Alsop, Pablo Heras-Casado, Riccardo Muti, Leonard Slatkin, and Esa-Pekka Salonen.

Clyne, a member of the compositon faculty at Mannes / The New School, was nominated for the 2015 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Classical Composition for her double violin concerto, Prince of Clouds. She is also the recipient of several prestigious awards including the 2016 Hindemith Prize; a Charles Ives Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; awards from Meet the Composer, the American Music Center, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, and the Jerome Foundation; and prizes from ASCAP and SEAMUS. Recent premieres include Restless Oceans with the Taki Concordia Orchestra and Marin Alsop at the World Economic Forum; Beltane with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Thomas Dausgaard; Three Sisters, her mandolin concerto for Avi Avital and the Kremerata Baltica; Pocket Book VIII for Roomful of Teeth; Threads & Traces for 100 cellos, commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic and performed at Disney Hall; and her violin concerto, The Seamstress, performed by Jennifer Koh with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at Orchestra Hall, and with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican Center, London.

This year's edition of June in Buffalo will feature four of Clyne's works. On their June 5th concert, the Mivos Quartet will play Roulette, a work from 2007 for string quartet and tape, whereas on June 7th, Ensemble Dal Niente will perform Steelworks, for flute, bass clarinet, percussion and tape, and the next day, it will be Signal's turn with Just as they are, for flute, clarinet, violin, cello and piano (all amplified), and tape. The works have something in common connected to the use of fixed media: all three tapes include vocal sounds (breath sounds and melodies sung by vocalists Caleb Burhans and Martha Cluver in Roulette, interviews with employees of a Brooklyn factory in Steelworks, and a recording of John Cage in Just as they are).

(Clyne's Roulette)

Last but not least, the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra will play Clyne's Within Her Arms, for string ensemble, during their matinee concert on June 9th. The work, which has been described by Alex Ross as "a fragile elegy", was premiered in 2009 by the LA Philharmonic conducted by Esa-Peka Salonen, and is dedicated to the composer's mother.

(Clyne's Within Her Arms)

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