The National Orchestral Composition Discovery Network
JCOI La Jolla Symphony
The JCOI EarShot La Jolla Symphony Orchestra New Music Readings will take place at the University of San Diego's Mandeville Auditorium, with mentor composers Anne LeBaron (California Institute of the Arts), and Anthony Davis (University of California, San Diego), conducted by Steven Schick. ACO’s featured participating composers are Alan Chan, Tobin Chodos, Michael Dessen, Daniel Marschak, and Miya Masaoka. The Readings will include an open rehearsal on Thursday, September 19th at 7pm, and a run-through of the composers’ pieces on Friday, September 20th at 7:30pm. Both events are free and open to the public, but reservations are suggested.
The composer participants:
Alan Chan: Etoin Shrdlu
Alan Chan's genre-shaking works can be heard in an array of venues serving Classical (Taiwan National Concert Hall), experimental (the Stone, NYC) and jazz (Typhoon Restaurant at Santa Monica Airport), as well as conferences and festivals such as the International Jazz Festival Enschede and PASIC. The composer and bandleader of the 17-piece Alan Chan Jazz Orchestra, Alan has received awards and fellowships from ASCAP, ArtEZ (Netherlands), New Music USA, RTHK4 (Hong Kong), the Ucross Foundation and Percussive Arts Society (PAS), among others. His works are currently published by Keyboard Percussion Publications, HoneyRock, Meridian and Navona Records..
Alan writes: Etoin Shrdlu Is an orchestral variation that was inspired by a non-sense phrase etoin shrdlu, which appears on newspapers using “hot metal” typesetting – a “run down” of the keys on the Linotype keyboard when errors were made by the operator. Etoin Shrdlu explores the possibilities of sound of the orchestra, spontaneity, freedom in form and errors.
Tobin Chodos: Control Flow
Tobin Chodos is a composer and jazz pianist. He was awarded a Dave Brubeck Fellowship in 2003, graduated magna cum laude with a degree in Ancient Greek and Latin from Columbia University in 2009, and in 2013 will begin doctoral work in music at UC San Diego. His trio album, Salmon Up, was released in 2012.
One of the problems that the symphony orchestra presents to the contemporary composer is that it seems to embody the hierarchies and stratification of the aristocratic classes that it was originally devised to entertain. In Control Flow, I respond to this issue by exploring various kinds of musical control.
Michael Dessen: Slippages
Michael Dessen is a composer-improviser who performs on the slide trombone and computer. Active in a variety of ensembles as leader or collaborator, he creates music for improvisers and engages new technologies of telepresence and digital networking. His music has been praised by critics in numerous jazz and contemporary music publications, and recorded on labels such as Clean Feed, Cuneiform, and Circumvention. Dessen’s teachers include Yusef Lateef, George Lewis, and Anthony Davis, and he has also been schooled through extensive freelance experiences ranging from salsa bands to avant-garde new music ensembles. He has published writings on music and culture, and is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music, the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and the University of California, San Diego. In 2006, he joined the music faculty of the University of California, Irvine, where he recently co-founded a new MFA emphasis in Integrated Composition, Improvisation and Technology (ICIT).
Inspired by experiences with family members experiencing dementia and coma recovery, Slippages is a multifaceted meditation on the fluidity of our self-consciousness. More than expressing sadness or a loss of control, the piece moves through a range of emotional spaces seeking musical expression for those moments that function like hinges between disparate states of perception and experience. In musical terms, the piece explores the seductive power of texture and color to momentarily pull us out of the narrative directionality of melodic development.
Daniel Marschak Two Rivers
Daniel Marschakis a Los Angeles-based composer, jazz pianist, and educator. His music reflects his love of both improvised music and contemporary classical music, with extended harmonies and an improvisatory approach. Marschak earned both his BA in music (piano) and his Masters degree in music composition from UCLA. His composition teachers include Paul Chihara, Ian Krouse, David Lefkowitz, and James Newton; and piano studies with Tom Rainier and Tamir Hendelman. Dan's works have been performed by the UCLA Philharmonia, the UCLA Chorale, and the UCLA Wind Ensemble. Marschak’s debut album Likewise (2010) was heralded as “adventurous and well developed” by Lalo Schifrin. Steering clear of conventional formats, the album explores an array of genres, instrumentations, and textures, while maintaining a unique compositional sensibility. In addition to his career as a composer/performer, Marschak is currently on faculty at UCLA where he teaches a music theory class concentrating on classical music as well as jazz, pop, and non-western styles. Marschak also maintains an interest in music for visual media, and has scored several short films and one feature. In 2011, he co-founded Well Versed Productions, a music composition/production company.
Daniel Marschak's Two Rivers takes inspiration from his late Russian-Jewish grandfather Jacob, who emigrated from Russia during the Communist revolution to Germany, then to England, and ultimately to the United States. The work uses the imagery of two flowing bodies of water converging and separating as a representation of Jacob’s journey from hardship to salvation.
Miya Masaoka: Other Mountain
Miya Masaoka resides in New York City and is a classically trained musician, composer and sound/installation artist. She has created works for traditional Japanese instruments, chamber ensembles, mixed choirs, telematic performances and designed interactive wearable textiles, as well as pieces using spatialization, sonification of data, mapped behavior of plants, brain activity and insect movement. Masaoka holds degrees from San Francisco State University, and Mills College. Teachers include Alvin Curran, Cecil Taylor, Steve Coleman, and Ornette Coleman and Pauline Oliveros and Suenobu Togi, a Gagaku Imperial Court master musician. Miya was the director of the San Francisco Gagaku Society for seven years and has also studied koto both the Chikushi and Sawai Schools. She been commissioned by Bang on a Can All-Stars, Kathleen Supove, Volti, ROVA, Piedmont Choirs and the San Francisco Chorale Society, SO Percussion, Joan Jeanrenaud (formerly of Kronos), and Either/Or. She has been the recipient of the Alpert Award, an Asian Cultural Council Japan Fellowship, a Wattis Fellowship, an Other Minds Residency, a Gerbode Fellowship, an NEA and the MAP Fund. She currently teaches Music/Sound Department of the Milton Avery School of the Arts at Bard College, and was an adjunct lecturer in Music Composition at NYU in 2012.
If you find yourself kayaking on a lake near the Fukushima Nuclear Plant that was damaged during the Earthquake in Japan, is it fun or perilous? Maybe a bit of both? Crazy? My imagination went wild when my friend invited me kayaking there, and a combination of thoughts both horrific and mundane ensued. What could possibly happen kayaking near the “other mountain?” This orchestral segment takes one through this imagined kayak ride.
The readings are free and open to the public. No ticket is required but reservations are recommended.
EarShot is made possible with the support of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and The Aaron Copland Fund for Music.