Friday, December 1, 2023

Events in the week following Thanksgiving- #2 Composer Pablo Chin Lecture and Fonema Consort Residency at University at Buffalo - Recording Session and Concert

Yesterday was an exciting for UB composition students, as the remarkable Fonema Consort rehearsed and recorded five new works composed by our graduate students for this opportunity. Fonema’s residency, sponsored by the Center for 21st Century Music, concludes today with a much-anticipated program of works by Pablo Chin, Graciela Paraskevaídis, and Julio Estrada, our distinguished guest whose masterclass and lecture on Wednesday provided a great deal of inspiration. Fonema’s artistic director and co-founder, Pablo Chin, also offers a lecture on his own music, as well as on the music of Julio Estrada, today from 3 to 4 pm in Baird Recital Hall (250 Baird). Tonight’s concert begins at 7:30 pm in Lippes Concert Hall (Slee Hall).

Described by the Chicago Reader’s Peter Margasak as “dazzling“, Fonema Consort’s debut album Pasos en otra calle (New Focus Recordings, 2014) features the music of Costa Rican composers Pablo Chin and Mauricio Pauly. Fonema’s 2017 album FIFTH TABLEAU (Parlour Tapes+) was supported by an Aaron Copland Fund for Music grant and featured new works by five rising American composers. The ensemble looks forward to the release of their third album, Vistas furtivas: the music of Juan Campoverde (New Focus Recordings), in February 2020. They have been broadcasted by WFMT and CAN-TV.

Fonema Consort is a recipient of a FACE grant (2013), an Aaron Copland Fund for Music grant (2016), two Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation grants (2016 and 2017), and two Amphion Foundation grants (2018 and 2019). They have received significant project support from the Goethe Insitut of Chicago. The ensemble is grateful to the City of Chicago’s DCASE, the Amphion Foundation, the Goethe Institut, and the Mexican Cultural Institute for supporting their 2019-2020 season.

Pablo Chin, whose recent music often draws inspiration from the narratives of film and literature, phonetic structures in text, and the use of idiosyncratic transcription methods that enable imaginative exploration of pre-existent musical sources. His dissertation focused on the work of Mexican composer Julio Estrada.

This week marks the first visit by the Fonema Consort to the Center and to Buffalo. We very much hope to see them back at UB in the near future!

Fonema Consort's Program

Mictlán by Julio Estrada

Yuunohui'sa'ehecatl'nahui by Julio Estrada

Sin ir más lejos by Graciela Paraskevaís

AquAria by Pablo Chin

Concert Information: 

🗓 Friday, December 1, 2023 

⏰ 7:30 PM

📍Lippes Concert Hall (North Campus)

💰$10 or free with valid UB card

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Events in the week following Thanksgiving - #1 Julio Estrada Residency at University at Buffalo - Masterclass and Composer talk to the public

In the week following the Thanksgiving holiday, the Center for 21st Century Music is sponsoring several exciting events in the Department of Music at UB, including a residency by Mexican composer Julio Estrada, a lecture by composer Pablo Chin, and a public concert by Fonema Consort (Fonema will offer workshop/masterclass for UB composition students—more information about Pablo Chin/Fonema will be presented in the following Edge of the Center post!).

Julio Estrada, Mexican composer, historian, researcher, and pedagogue, was born in Mexico City in 1943. Following his composition training with Julián Orbón in Mexico (1953-65), he studied with a number of the most widely recognized figures in the concert music of the 20th century, including Nadia Boulanger and Olivier Messiaen in Paris (1965-69), Karlheinz Stockhausen in Germany (1968), and György Ligeti (1972). Estrada has served as a researcher in music at the UNAM Instituto de Investigaciones Estéticas and helped design the Música, Sistema Interactivo de Investigación y Composición. He was recognized as a National Researcher by the Mexican Education Ministry (1984) and, with over 100 articles to his name, was the first musical scholar to be honored as a member of the Science Academy of México. 

Dr. Estrada has published on various theoretical topics, including a General Theory of Intervallic Classes, applicable to macro- and micro-intervallic scales of duration and of pitch. Many of his compositions are based on his discontinuum-continuum theory, which has been described as bringing together “...two different situations in the compositional process: continuous transformation of the sound and chronographical method, using strictly defined recording process in order to receive three-dimensional movements of the sound in the topological order.” (Manuel Salas) Estrada has stated, “The techniques and theories I have developed are based on mathematics and acoustics; the more neutral they remain, the better they serve the description of the imaginary : it is my ear---there everything is allowed---that gives birth to my music, which becomes the accurate, almost phonographic representation, of every detail coming from my inner hearing experiences.” His compositions offer new notational concepts which are available for other composers to employ. 

He is the recipient of the French award Ordre des Arts et de Lettres (1981, 1986), the Premio Universidad Nacional en Creación Artística (2000) and the Medalla Bellas Artes (2016).  He is professor of composition at the University of Mexico and has held visiting positions at such institutions as Stanford University, University of California, San Diego, Musikwissenschaft Institut, Rostock, the Sorbonne, and Darmstadt Summer Course. Estrada’s music has been presented in numerous festivals on the American continent, in Europe, and in Japan, and performed by leading ensembles and musicians such as Percussions de Strasbourg, Fátima Miranda, Barbara Maurer, Velia Nieto, Stefano Scodanibbio and the Arditti String Quartet. 

Julio Estrada will offer a composition masterclass for our PhD students on November 29, from 10:30 am to 1:00 pm at Baird Recital Hall, and then present a composer talk to the public from 2:00 to 3:40 pm in the same venue. These events are open to the University community and the wider public.

Monday, November 13, 2023

Kyle Hutchins Residency at University at Buffalo - Concert and Workshop

This week, the Center for 21st Century Music is delighted to welcome Kyle Hutchins, back for his second period of residency this semester. Hailed as “epic” (Jazz Times), "formidable" (The Saxophone Symposium), and "gripping" (Star Tribune), Kyle Hutchins is an internationally acclaimed performing artist and improviser. He has performed concerts and taught masterclasses across five continents at major festivals and venues in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Chile, China, Croatia, the Czech Republic, England, France, Germany, Ireland, Latvia, Mexico, Scotland, South Korea, and across the United States including Carnegie Hall, The Walker Art Center, World Saxophone Congress, Internationales Musikinstitut Darmstadt, International Computer Music Conference, among many others. He has recorded over two dozen albums on labels such as Carrier, Lurker Bias, Klavier, GIA, farpoint, Mother Brain, Noise Pelican, and his work has been recognized by awards and grants from DOWNBEAT, New Music USA, The American Prize, American Protégé International Competition, Music Teachers National Association, Mu Phi Epsilon Foundation, and others.

As a specialist in experimental performance practice and electroacoustic new music, Kyle has performed well over 200 world premieres of new works for the saxophone. He has worked with some of the leading composers and performers of our time including Pauline Oliveros, George Lewis, Chaya Czernowin, Georges Aperghis, Richard Barrett, Steven Takasugi, Claire Chase, Douglas Ewart, Duo Gelland, and Zeitgeist. Over the past fifteen years, Kyle has built long standing collaborations and championed the music of many close collaborators such as Ted Moore, Tiffany M. Skidmore, Joey Crane, Emily Lau, Elizabeth A. Baker, Charles Nichols, Eric Lyon, and many more wonderful artists and dear friends.

Tiffany M. Skidmore - Tharmas the Father/Enion the Mother

Ted Moore - Saccades for baritone saxophone, electronics, and video

Kyle has served on the faculty of Virginia Tech since 2016 where he is Assistant Professor of Practice and Director of the New Music + Technology Festival at the Institute of Creativity, Arts, and Technology.

Earlier this semester, Kyle gave a terrific presentation in which he shared his professional experiences in experimental performance practice and electroacoustic new music to UB Music’s PhD students in composition. The students learned a good deal about contemporary extended techniques for saxophone, how to notate these techniques, and more generally about the possibilities for saxophone performance in the contemporary context. Next Thursday, November 16, Kyle will offer a concert featuring intriguing recent works for saxophone and electronics, including those by Ted Moore, Leah Reid, Barry Moon, The Honourable Elizabeth A. Baker, and two world premieres of works by Margaret Schedel and Cort Lippe! Please come join us for this fantastic concert!  The following day, November 17, Kyle will offer a composition workshop for PhD students in composition, including conversations with the students and playing demonstrations of current drafts of their pieces.

Kyle Hutchins' Program

saccades for saxophone, electronics, tape, and video (2022) by Ted Moore

Jouer for soprano saxophone and electronics (2023) by Leah Reid

metanoia for saxophone and electronics (2023) by Margaret Schedel  (World Premiere)

Duo for tenor saxophone and computer (2023) by Cort Lippe  (World Premiere)

Gonna cut you up for alto saxophone and electronics (2021) by Barry Moon

ICD-10CM R55 for saxophone, electronics, and breath (2019) by The Honourable Elizabeth A. Baker
film by Kyle Hutchins

Concert Information: 

🗓 Thursday, November 16, 2023 

⏰ 19:30 PM

📍Baird Recital Hall (North Campus)

💰$10 or free with valid UB card

Workshop Information: 

🗓 Friday, November 17, 2023 

⏰ 02:00 PM - 04:00 PM

📍Baird Recital Hall (North Campus)


Monday, November 6, 2023

Anthony R. Green Residency at University at Buffalo - Masterclass and Open talk to the public

Anthony R. Green, composer, performer and social justice artist, will be in residence in the Music Department at the University at Buffalo on Friday, November 10, working with our PhD students in composition, as well as giving a composer talk open to the public.

Anthony R. Green has multiple roles as an artist, and his artistic output includes musical and visual creations, interpretations of original works or works in the repertoire, collaborations, educational outreach and more. Behind all of his artistic endeavors are the ideals of equality, freedom and warm humanity, which manifest themselves in diverse ways in a composition, a performance, a collaboration, or social justice work.

credit by Anthony R. Green Website

“But when our work is blatantly ignored, disrespected, not studied, and not programmed, our voice is all we have.”   — Anthony R. Green, from his article "What the Optics of New Music Say to Black Composers"

As a composer, his works have been presented in over 25 countries across six continents by various internationally acclaimed soloists and ensembles, including: vocalists Anthony P. McGlaun, Julian Otis, Anna Elder, and Amanda DeBoer Bartlett; violists Ashleigh Gordon, Gregory Williams, Carrie Frey, and Wendy Richman; pianists Stephen Drury, Kathleen Supové, Jason Hardink, Kimi Kawashima, Lewis Warren Jr., Clare Longendyke, Hayk Melikyan, and Eunmi Ko; cellists Matthieu D’Ordine, Patricia Ryan, and Ifetayo Ali-Landing; percussionists Bill Solomon, Michael Skillern, and Dame Evelyn Glennie; saxophonists Neal Postma, Benjamin Sorrell, and Kendra Williams; and ensembles Tenth Intervention (Hajnal Pivnick – violin, and Adam Tendler – piano), ALEA III (with Gunther Schuller, conductor), the Thalea String Quartet, counter)induction, Ensemble Dal Niente, Dinosaur Annex, andPlay, NorthStar Duo, fivebyfive, Transient Canvas, the McCormick Percussion Group, the Icarus Quartet, Opera Kansas (as winner of the 2018 Zepick Modern Opera Contest), the American Composers Orchestra, the Lowell Chamber Orchestra, the Boston Landmarks Orchestra, the Minnesota Philharmonic, the String Archestra, the Playground Ensemble, Ossia New Music Ensemble, and Alarm Will Sound, to name a few. 

Anthony R. Green : a portrait concert, presented by Boston University & Castle of our Skins

As a performer, Green has appeared at important performance venues around the world, and premiered original works and worked with student, emerging, and established composers such as David Liptak, Renée C. Baker, and George Crumb for various performance presentations. Moreover, he has participated in consortium commissions organized by Neal Postma (saxophone), Meraki (clarinet and piano duo), and New Works Project (solo percussion). His music has been performed at Symphony Space (New York), Marian Anderson Theater at Aaron Davis Hall (New York), the DiMenna Center (New York), Jordan Hall (Boston), Tivoli Vredenburg (Utrecht), Kunstraum (Stuttgart), Cité de la Musique et de la Danse (Strasbourg), the Shoe Factory (Nicosia), the TWA Hotel (New York), the Edward A. Hatch Memorial Shell on the Charles River Esplanade (Boston), and the Elbphilharmonie (Hamburg), amongst many others.

credit by Anthony R. Green Website

The core of thought behind his various output is contained in his observations and comments on many issues related to social justice, such as immigration, civil rights, the historical links between slavery and current racial injustice in the US, the contributions of targeted and/or minority groups to humanity, Black queerness/queer racism, and more. His compositional/creative strategies also shape him as a social justice artist. Green’s most important social justice work has been with Castle of our Skins: a concert and education series organization dedicated to celebrating Black artistry through music. 

Anthony R. Green will offer a composition masterclass for our PhD students from 10:30 am to 01:00 pm at B1 Baird, and then present a composer talk to the public from 02:00 to 03:40 pm! Please come join us for this amazing masterclass and talk!

Masterclass/ Composer Talk Information: 

🗓 Friday, November 10, 2023 

⏰ 10:30 AM - 01:00 PM - Masterclass

     02:00 PM - 03:40 PM - Composer Talk

📍B1 Baird (North Campus)


Sunday, October 15, 2023

Opening Concert of Slee Sinfonietta 2023-24 season: “Pan-Americana”

The Slee Sinfonietta is the professional chamber orchestra in residence at the University at Buffalo and the flagship ensemble of the Robert and Carol Morris Center for 21st Century Music. The Sinfonietta presents a series of concerts each year that feature performances of challenging new works by contemporary composers and lesser-known works from the repertoire, in settings ranging from mid-size chamber orchestra to chamber ensemble and even “Soloists of the Slee Sinfonietta” programs. The season-opening concert on  Tuesday, October 17 in Lippes Concert Hall will be led by the brilliant Argentinian conductor/composer Christian Baldini, who is one of several composers with ties to UB featured on the program.

Christian Baldini

The title of the evening's program, “Pan-Americana,” honors Hispanic Heritage Month with works by composers from throughout the Americas. With that title, we draw reference to the Pan-American Association of Composers (1928-34) and pay tribute to that organization’s inspiring efforts to bring a diverse and challenging mixture of new music composed throughout the Americas to the listening public of its day. The group’s founders were composers Edgar Varése, Carlos Chavez and Henry Cowell, major figures whose music is too seldom heard in the concert hall. Alongside works by Varése and Cowell, we will perform an array of more contemporary works by composers from throughout Latin America (Mexico, Nicaragua/Columbia, Argentina), nearly all still alive and composing. In this way, the Slee Sinfonietta and the Center for 21st Century Music attempt to continue the forward-looking, even prescient, work of the Pan-American Association of Composers.

Christian Baldini serves as Professor of Music at UC Davis, and his career as both conductor and composer regularly takes him around the globe, including conducting posts and appearances with the San Francisco Symphony, BBC Symphony in London, English National Opera, Buenos Aires Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra of Argentina and Portugal, Northwest German Philharmonic, North Netherlands Symphony and Munich Radio Orchestra. He memorably led the Sinfonietta in concert in 2021, and we’re pleased to welcome him back to UB “post-pandemic.” We’re also delighted to be performing Nora Ponte’s Amarrada al recuerdo 2 (2006). Nora is Professor of Musical Composition at the University of Puerto Rico and, like Christian, received her PhD at UB. Her evocative work for guitar and ensemble features another UB doctoral alum, Zane Merritt, as its soloist. 

Also on Tuesday’s program is Gabriel Bolaños’s Ecosystem (2015), which opens up an intricate world of tone and noise, as well as the space of the concert hall itself. An interview Christian Baldini conducted with Gabriel Bolaños is available here. The evening concludes with Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon’s Páramo (1999), a virtuosic sextet whose title indicates its close relationship to Mexican author Juan Rulfo’s seminal novel, Pedro Páramo. Zohn-Muldoon served as Visiting Slee Professor in Fall 2020, the first composer to hold the position since the 1970s. We’re thrilled to present his music, something we were unable to do back in 2020 because of the then-ongoing pandemic. Ricardo’s imaginative and intricate music is certainly worth the wait!


Slee Sinfonietta

Nicole Murray, flute

Michael Tumiel, clarinet

Shannon Reilly, violin      

Jonathan Golove, cello 

Nicholas Emmanuel, piano

Eric Huebner, piano

Steve Solook, percussion

Tiffany Du Mouchelle, soprano

Zane Merritt, guitar soloist

Christian Baldini, guest conductor

Concert Information: 

🗓 Tuesday, October 17, 2023 

⏰ 07:30 PM

📍Lippes Concert Hall (North Campus)

💰$10 or free with UB card

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Events in the first week of September

The Center for 21st Century Music was pleased to sponsor some terrific events by guests who were in residence while preparing for the September 7th performance of Prof. Tiffany Skidmore’s The William Blake Cycle (Also co-sponsored by the Center). The guests included saxophonist, Kyle Hutchins, who gave a workshop on composing for his instruments, and composer Ted Moore, who offered a masterclass for our PhD students in composition, as well as a composer talk open to the public. Percussionist Annie Stevens, also in town for The William Blake Cycle, gave an excellent workshop for composers, as well.

Friday, September 15, 2023

Duo Gelland Residency at University at BUffalo - Workshop and Concert

Duo Gelland Violin Duo will be in residence at the University at Buffalo from Monday, September 18 through Tuesday, September 19 for a composition workshop and concert. Additionally, Duo Gelland and UB composers will meet with the students of Buffalo String Works for a new project! Duo Gelland was founded in 1994 by the violinists Cecilia and Martin Gelland who met in the Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra and started exploring the duo repertoire together. The eminent European ensemble turned an 18th century concept into the driving force of contemporary exploration. Their passionate, profound and playful interpretations earned them the Annual German Record Critics' Award 2008, Swedish Nutida Sound 2011, Fanfare Yearbook 2001. They revive forgotten gems with historically inspired insight, and in close collaboration with composers they bring new scores to life - so far nearly 200. Duo Gelland premiered and performed duos and double concerti in Berliner Philharmonie both halls, Konzertverein Wien, Grünewaldsalen Stockholm, Tonhalle Zürich.

Duo Gelland

... with scintillating virtuosity... the fantastic sound worlds of the remarkable Gelland Duo.
The Strad Magazine, May 2008

In a new project, they are going to collaborate with UB composers and Buffalo String Works for the premiere of a new double concerto for Duo Gelland and the Buffalo String Works student string orchestra. A special aspect of the double concerto score is that it uses graphic notation, rather than conventional staff notation. A second work will be created for the Buffalo String Works student orchestra alone. 

Duo Gelland will feature works by Arnold Schönberg, Tiffany M SkidmoreErika FörareMikael ForsmanBirgitte Alsted Zweigeigen, and  Hans-Joachim Hespos in the concert on September 19. Among them, German composer Hans-Joachim Hespos's aglaja - dem engel "katastroph" zum angedenken (2019) will be world premiere!

Workshop Information: 

🗓 Monday, September 18, 2023 

⏰ 11:00 AM - 01:00 PM

📍Baird Recital Hall (North Campus)


Concert Information: 

🗓 Tuesday, September 19, 2023 

⏰ 19:30 PM

📍Baird Recital Hall (North Campus)

💰$10 or free with UB card