Concert #3: Shifting Relationships – Program Announced

3 Apr

Christie Finn and Jeffrey Gavett of Ekmeles from the 2011 Avant Music Festival Photo: Tear-n Tan for Avant Media

The third concert of the Hartford New Music Festival presents works by local, regional and international composers, all written within the last five years. This final installation of the HNMF presents a varied cross-section of some of the most exciting voices in the current new music scene.

This program takes place on Friday April 15 at 7:30pm at The Studio at Billing’s Forge, 563 Broad St, Hartford, CT 06106. Tickets are $8 in advance, $10 at the door.

Program:

Hints and Hauntings for double bass and electronics (2011) by Kirsten Volness

Ryan Ford, double bass

Go Down! You Blood Red Roses for percussion and electronics (2010) by Jacob Richman

Bill Solomon, percussion

Ἁμαδρυάδες (hamadryads) for five voices and glass harmonica (2010) by Martin Iddon

ekmeles: Christie Finn, soprano, Megan Schubert, soprano, Jeffrey Gavett, baritone, Michael Weyandt, baritone, Steven Hrycelak, bass

Metal for saxophone, trombone, viola and cello (2006) by David Macbride

ensemble 016: Sheri Brown, saxophone, Jordan Jacobson, trombone, Laura Krentzman, viola, Han-Wei Lu, cello

Corps Sonore for percussion and electronics (2011) by Christian Gentry

Bill Solomon, percussion

Premiere Performance

層 sō for flute(s) by Akiko Hatekayama (2010)

Akiko Hatakeyama and Aleksandra Miglowiec, flutes

Grab It! X12 for saxophone orchestra with soundtrack & videos (2007) by Jacob Ter Veldhuis

The Hartt Saxophone Ensemble, Director: Carrie Koffman
Joseph Abad, Kara Cook, Jared Charrette, Kendra Emery, Jeff Hullfish, Mallory Kokus, Victoria Medeiros, Joe Natale, Kindall NeSmith, Brittany Pisani, Ian Robinson, Anthony Speranza, Andrew Studenski, saxophones

Composer and Performer Biographies

016 ensemble – for more info, visit: http://016ensemble.com/

Saxophonist Sheri Brown has earned recognition as both a soloist and chamber musician.  She has performed and competed at the Adolphe Sax International Competition, the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, the World Saxophone Congress, and numerous North American Saxophone Alliance regional and national conferences.  In 2006, Miss Brown was the winner of The Hartt School’s wind ensemble concerto competition and a finalist in the North American Saxophone Alliance national classical competition.  She holds a Master of Music in saxophone performance from the Hartt School where she studied with Carrie Koffman and Rob Wilkerson, and a Bachelor of Music Education from Michigan State University where she studied with Joe Lulloff, Eric Lau, and Andrew Speight.  Miss Brown is a founding member of the 016: New Music Ensemble.  She teaches privately in the greater Hartford area.

[ɛk’mɛlɛs]
In Ancient Greek music theory, an adjective used to describe tones of indefinite pitch and intervals with complex ratios, tones “not appropriate for musical usage.” In New York City, a new vocal ensemble breathing life into those disallowed tones, new and old.
Ekmeles is dedicated to the performance of new and rarely-heard works, and gems of the historical avant garde. New York is home to a vibrant instrumental New Music scene, with a relative paucity of vocal music. Ekmeles was founded to fill the gap by presenting new a cappella repertoire for solo voices, and by collaborating with these instrumental ensembles.
Recent performances include a sold out collaboration with violinist Mary Rowell of Knee Plays from Philip Glass’s Einstein on the Beach at Issue Project Room, and a trio concert featuring regional and US premieres by Aaron Cassidy, Kenneth Gaburo and Mauricio Kagel. Ekmeles has been lauded for performing “with great sensitivity and precision” (drewbakermusic blog). Bruce Hodges of MusicWeb International praised Ekmeles’s recent performance of John Cage’s “Song Books” on the Avant Music Festival: “To see these performers so nimbly grappling with Cage’s experiments—so patiently, yet so joyfully—was to feel engulfed in the composer’s singular universe.” This, their inaugural season, also featured three world premiere commissions by British and American composers, ranging from a game piece with video for two singers to a work for five voices and 15 wine glasses.  http://ekmeles.com/
A two-time winner of an interpretation prize at the International Stockhausen Concerts and Courses (Kürten, Germany), Christie Finn, soprano, recently performed in the New York premiere of Georges Aperghis’ Sextuor: L’originedes Espèces. As a member of the Tactus Contemporary Ensemble based in NewYork City, Finn has performed as a soloist numerous times. Performances with Tactus this season include Pierrot Lunaire, Karin Rehnqvist’s Davids Nimm, Ursula Mamlok’s Stray Birds, and Elliott Carter’s A Mirror on Which to Dwell. Finn is a founder and member of the experimental music duo NOISE-BRIDGE collaborating with clarinetist Felix Behringer, as well as the trio Synchronous (cello, piano, andsoprano trio). Finn has been an active member of ekmeles since its premiereconcert. Recent solo performances this season include Pozzi Escot’s Trio #2 Your Kindled Valors Bend (Seton Art Gallery, University of New Haven) and Robert Cogan’s Celanporträt/Celan Portrait (Jordan Hall, New England Conservatory). Finn made her recording debut on the album The Year Begins to Be Ripe (Sonic Arts Editions) in works of John Cage and Stuart Saunders Smith. She has performed Lieder recitals in Austria, operatic works in Italy, and contemporary works by southwestern American composers with the Voices of Change Ensemble of Dallas, Texas. Recent opera roles include Chabris (Scarlatti’s Giuditta) and Belinda (Didoand Aeneas). Finn completed her Master of Music at Southern Methodist University in 2009 and will finish her Master of Music in the Contemporary Performance at Manhattan School of Music this May. http://christiefinn.com

Ryan Ford holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from the University of Florida, a Master of Music from the Hartt School at the University of Hartford, and is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts from the Hartt School. He has studied under Kevin Casseday at the University of Florida and Robert Black at the Hartt School of Music. He has also attended eight summer sessions with world renowned solo bassist Gary Karr.

During his first year at the Hartt School of Music, Ryan won the Miami String Quartet Competition in its first year of existence. In 2003, he had the privilege of performing at Carnegie Hall with the National Festival Orchestra under the baton of Lukas Foss.
Ryan lives in Manchester, CT with his wife Jennifer and their daughter Margeaux. He is a member of the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra, the Waterbury Symphony Orchestra, and is a founding member of the new music ensemble The Sophisticates.

Jeffrey Gavett, baritone, is dedicated to the creation and presentation of new music as composer, performer and improviser. He has performed with a broad range of collaborators, ranging from the indie rock group Clogs to new music groups Ensemble de Sade, ICE, SEM Ensemble, Signal, Talea Ensemble, and Wet Ink Ensemble. His own ensemble loadbang has premiered more than 15 new works in the past two years. He has worked with such composers as Nick Didkovsky, Reiko Füting, Liza Lim, Somei Satoh, Steven Takasugi, David Lang, and Terry Riley, performing the music of the latter two at the 2008 Bang on a Can Summer festival, where he was a fellow.Since his arrival in New York, Mr. Gavett has sung many premieres, including Somei Satoh’s The Passion and Matt Marks’s The Adventures of Albert Fish; US premieres of Liza Lim’s Chang-O, Philip Maintz’s Fluchtlinie, and Steven Takasugi’s Strange Autumn; and works by Nils Vigeland and Susan Botti in a performance at Zankel Hall. Recently he performed at Merkin Hall with Signal, under the direction of Brad Lubman. In this performance he sang the US premiere of Harrison Birwistle’s scena The Corridor and the premiere of Nico Muhly’s Stabat Mater, and was praised for his “attractive” voice by the New York Times.Mr. Gavett holds degrees from Westminster Choir College and Manhattan School of Music’s Contemporary Performance Program, where he studied with Lucy Shelton.

Christian A. Gentry, an Arizona native, received his BM at the University of Utah and MM at the University of Louisville, where he was a Bomhard Fellow. He is now a Mildred and Herbert Lee Graduate Fellow at Brandeis University where he is pursuing a PhD in Music Theory and Composition. He has written music for a variety of instrumentation and genres including, orchestra, choir, art song, chamber music, film, theater and electroacoustic music. Some of his works have been played and/or recorded by Canyonlands New Music Ensemble, Arsenal Trio, Emily Hindrichs (soprano), East Coast Contemporary Ensemble, Juventas, White Rabbit, the Lydian String Quartet, New York Virtuoso Singers, VERGE Ensemble and the International Contemporary Ensemble.  He has been a composer fellow at June in Buffalo, Wellesley Composers Conference and the Norfolk New Music Workshop. He received a Barlow Endowment Composition Commission to write Flux Flummoxed for Jihye Chang (piano) and Benjamin Sung (violin) which premiered in the spring of 2010 and will appear in a recording summer 2011. His current projects include Corps Sonore for percussionist Bill Solomon and riff(s) and/or transfiguration(s)for trombonist Ben Herrington, with pianist Geoffrey Burleson and percussionist John Ferrari. His teachers include Morris Rosenzweig, Miguel Chuaqui, Steve Rouse, John Gibson, Martin Boykan, Eric Chasalow and David Rakowski. He resides in the Boston area with his wife Laci, son Berkeley and dog McDuff. http://christiangentry.com/

Akiko Hatakeyama is a singer, song writer, a flutist, a composer, and a video artist who is a native of Yokohama, Japan. She is interested in crossing boundaries between traditionally written music, electronics, improvisation, and visual components. Now, she incorporates real-time elements into her multimedia works, and working on computer based interactive pieces. Akiko most often finds beauty in simplicity. She has been involved in festivals such as the International Women’s Electroacoustic Listening Room Project in California, Chicago Calling Arts Festival, the Musica Viva Festival 2009 – Sound Walk in Lisbon, Portugal, and Death Jewel Film and Video at Anthology Film Archives in NY. She received the Bachelor’s degree in Arts in Music at Mills College in Oakland, California, where she received numerous scholarships and the Maurthea Friedberger Cup, which was given to the most outstanding senior music major of class 2008. She is pursuing her MA in Experimental Music/Composition at Wesleyan University in Connecticut, where she studies with Alvin Lucier, Anthony Braxton, and Ronald Kuivila. http://akikohatakeyama.com/

Martin Iddon is a musicologist and composer. He studied musicology and composition at the Universities of Durham and Cambridge with John Butt and Ian Cross (musicology) as well as Robin Holloway and Fabrice Fitch (composition), and has studied composition privately with Chaya Czernowin, Steven Kazuo Takasugi, Ole Lützow-Holm, and Steve Martland. His articles have been published in journals such Musical Quarterly, Twentieth-century Music, and Contemporary Music Review. His music has been performed in Great Britain, Germany, Canada, Spain, Italy and the USA, and has been shortlisted by the Sound & Music. He currently lectures at the University of Leeds.

Jordan Jacobson recently completed coursework for  his DMA degree at CCM, studying trombone with Tim Anderson. He graduated from Brigham Young University with a Bachelor of Music degree in 2003 where he studied with Daniel Bachelder. In Utah, he also studied with Russel McKinney, James Nova, both of the Utah Symphony. He received his masters degree from the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, Massachusetts where he studied with Darren Acosta and Boston Symphony trombonist Norman Bolter. As an undergraduate, Jordan performed with BYU’s jazz ensemble, touring Russia, Finland, and England, and also played at the Pori Jazz Festival and at the IAJE convention in Long Beach, California. He also was a member of the Salt Lake City area salsa band, Son del Callao. In Boston, he was a member of the Peter Cassino Quintet. Jordan was a member of the Orchestra at Temple Square from 2001-2005, performing, recording, and touring regularly with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He has also performed with the Utah Symphony, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Kentucky Orchestra, Lexington Philharmonic, and the Dayton Philharmonic.

Violist Laura Krentzman completed her undergraduate studies at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston and graduate studies at the University of North Texas,where she studied with Carol Rodland and Susan Dubois. While at the Universityof North Texas, Laura studied Baroque viola performance with Cynthia Roberts and was principal viola of the Collegium Musicum. She has participated in many summer festivals, including the Henry Mancini Institute, Mimir Chamber Music Festival,Bowdoin International Music Festival, Killington Music Festival, and the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. Laura has performed in masterclasses with Kim Kashkashian, Helen Callus and Michelle LaCourse and has worked with Lawrence Dutton of the Emerson Quartet as well as Danny Seidenberg of the Turtle Island Quartet. In 2004, she was a soloist with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra and in 2008 with the University of North Texas Collegium Musicum. Since 2005, Laura has premiered and recorded numerous works by Boston-based composer Alla Elana Cohen. Currently Lauraplays with the New Haven Symphony, Hartford Symphony, Waterbury Symphony, and the Glens Falls Symphony and is attending the Hartt School where she studies with Rita Porfiris and is a member of the Performance 20/20 program.

Taiwanese-born cellist Han-Wei Lu has concertized in recitals and music festivals in North, South America, Austria and Taiwan. Ms. Lu has collaborated with such renowned musicians as Katy Lansdale, Marcy Rosen and Bright Sheng. A founding member of the Sylvanus Ensemble and the 016 New Music Ensemble, she recently completed a concert tour in Taiwan and several performances in Connecticut. Ms. Lu has also participated in master classes with Timothy Eddy, Slovatcri Serghvsky and the Miami String Quartet. Ms. Lu received her Master’s Degree at The Hartt School, University of Hartford, where she was awarded a full-tuition scholarship to be a member of the chamber music program, Performance 20/20. She is currently pursuing an Artist Diploma at The Hartt School, under the tutelage of Mihai Tetel.

David Macbride has written numrerous works, ranging from solo, chamber and orchestral music to music for film, TV, dance and theatre, with particularemphasis on music for percussion. His compositions have been performed extensively in the United States and abroad: performances include the Hartford Symphony, the Arditti String Quartet, League ISCM, Percussive Arts Society International Convention, World Saxophone Congress, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. His Percussion Park, a full-length percussion ensemble installation was recently premiered outdoors at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke,and will be performed here at Hartt in April, 2011 by the Hartt Percussion Ensemble.

Tim Page of Newsday wrote: “In David Macbride’s music, one finds technical skills of a high order, a direct lyricism that informs the most complex passages, and a personal aesthetic that combines Western chromaticism with a fascination for the music of China.” Awards include the Georges Enesco International Composition Prize, two Leo Snyder Memorial Composition Prizes sponsored by League ISCM Boston, and the Composers Inc. Prize.

Recent commissions include The Roberts Foundation New Works Initiative,Chamber Music America, Concert Artists Guild, and the Hartt School Community Division. Macbride’s compositions are recorded on Concora, Hartt/Next Exit, Opus One,Owl, and True Media Recordings. A solo CD of his works on Composers Recordings Inc. (CRI).was reviewed by Alex Ross of the New York Times: “…Macbride achieves a remarkable balance of technical rigor and free spirited invention…Composers Recordings has donejustice to a distinctive voice in American music.” Solo CDs entitled Conundrum: The Percussion Music of David Macbride featuring Benjamin Toth and In Common: Duets by David Macbride are available on Innova Recordings. David Macbride: A Composer’s Journey with the Poetry of Federico Garcia Lorca is available on Albany Records, as well as In Passing: Solo Piano Music composed and performed by the composer. Macbride’s string quartet, A Muse, has recently been recorded by the Avalon String Quartet and released by Albany Records.

Macbride has been extremely active in bringing diverse musics to the Greater Hartford community, having produced numerous outdoor events in Elizabeth Parkand other venues over the past twenty years. He regularly performs in schools and senior citizen homes, and received a University of Hartford Community Service Award in recognition of his contributions.
As a pianist, Macbride was invited to give a recital tour of Peru by theInstituto Cultural Peruano Norte Americano, and has performed recitals in Spain (sponsored by the Centro de la Difusion de la Musica Contemporanea) and in Mexico at the Universidad Nacional Autonomo de Mexico in Mexico City. Macbride is Professorof Composition and Music Theory at the Hartt School, University of Hartford. Seewww.dljamacbride.com for more information.

Jacob Richman is a mixed-media composer whose work explorers the relationship between sight and sound in live performance.  His pieces mix live-processed moving images (film and video), music, and sound to create interactive, multimedia settings in which performers can interact.

Jacob was born in Chicago in 1981, and grew up there and in Sacramento, California.  He has played jazz bass and classical trombone since his youth, and graduated with a joint BA in music composition and film/video from Harvard University. He later received his MA in Media Arts from the University of Michigan.  He has studied composition with Bernard Rands, electro-acoutic composition Kurt Stallmann, and studied film/video/mixed-media with Robb MossRoss McElweeHal HartleySteven Subotnick, and Andrew Kirshner.  His pieces have been performed in NYC, Boston, as well as in Michigan.  He was recently a Lecturer in Video at the School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan, and has been awed by the opportunity he has had to learn from his many talented students. He is currently a doctoral student in Media Arts in the MEME Department at Brown University.

Jacob’s use of mixed-media is always in an attempt to express a certain subject or experience to which he is deeply drawn.  The particular relationships between sound and image, such as movement, tempo, subject matter, as well as the media and performers he chooses to work with depend on these subjects.  At this point they have included such disparate things as a favorite poem, an old lullaby, Sardinian folk singing, and a herd of elk.

He is fascinated by what he sees in his subjects as the interconnectedness of things: people with places, sounds with textures, humans with animals, plants and the natural world. He feels that exploring the relationships between sounds and images in
performance is an effective way to both investigate and convey these greater inherent connections that surround us. http://www.jacob-richman.com/

Sarah-Jane Ripa is a graduate of Wesleyan University, and attended the School for Performing Arts in Mannheim and University of Heidelberg in Germany. She is a passionate advocate of the arts and social change, and is currently the Artistic and Education Coordinator at Green Street Arts Center of Wesleyan University in Middletown.

Megan Schubert, soprano, is a devoted ambassador of new and experimental music of the 20th and 21stcenturies. Versatile and sensitive to style and context, she has been heard singing everything from Milton Babbitt to Philip Glass to works of her colleagues and mentors “fresh off the press”.  Schubert has shared the stage with such luminaries as Meredith Monk and the Bang on a Can All Stars.  Schubert’s tribute to Cathy Berberian at John Zorn’s venue The Stone was listed as a Critic’s Pick in Time Out New York.

Schubert has performed world premieres at Carnegie Hall; music by Stockhausen for an audience under umbrellas in a torrential downpour for Make Music New York; with robots while locked inside a Van de Graaff Generator at Boston’s Museum of Science; on a bike flying by the audience in an installation piece at McCarren Park Pool, Brooklyn; in a giant potato sack while video was projected onto her frontside at Webster Hall; for inmates at a maximum security prison in Ossining, NY; with puppets at E 4th Street Fab! Fest; in live concert footage used as promotional material for Alex Ross’s book, The Rest is Noise; and with many ensembles championing art music and experimental jazz of today.

Schubert holds degrees from Bennington College and Manhattan School of Music. She recently created the role of Saint Francis of Assisi in a world premiere of the opera I Fioretti at La Mama E.T.C. and performed and produced the NY premiere of Georges Aperghis’s Sextuor: L’origine des especes with Avant Media.

Bill Solomon is a Hartford, CT-based percussionist specializing in solo and chamber contemporary classical music performance, mentioned as “a stand out among unfailingly excellent performances” in the Boston Globe.  Performance credits include the solo vibraphone part for Pierre Boulez’s Répons in collaboration with the Lucerne Festival, IRCAM, Ensemble InterContemporain and Mr. Boulez; a member of the ensemble SIGNAL with composers Helmut Lachenmann and Steve Reich, including an upcoming recording of Music for 18 Musicians and performances at Tanglewood, (Le) Poisson Rouge and Society for Ethical Culture (NYC); a soundtrack by Philip Glass for the 9/11 documentary “Project Rebirth”; and a sound installation at Yale-Haskins Labs Gallery in collaboration with composer Matt Sargent.

Other performance highlights include June in Buffalo, Sebago-Long Lake Chamber Music Festival, Tune In Festival, Percussive Arts Soceity International Conference, Bang on a Can Marathon, HOT!Fest NYC, Pixelerations, Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Miami String Quartet, Full Force Dance Theater, Yale Repertory Theatre, Brattleboro Music Center, EXILKABARETT, Luduvico Ensemble, Island Chamber Musicians, as well as recitals at universities and galleries throughout the northeast with cello/percussion duo The Uncanny Valley and the new music collective Hartford Sound Alliance (which he co-directs). He is currently a board member for the Studio of Electronic Music, Inc. and is also co-curator for the Hartford New Music Festival, which took place at The Studio at Billings Forge. Current and forthcoming recordings can be heard on Mode, Cantaloupe, EUROArts, Naxos, Capstone, Tzigane and Equilibrium labels.  Bill currently teaches at The Loomis Chaffee School and is a doctoral candidate at The Hartt School where he studies with Benjamin Toth.

Dutch ‘avant pop’ composer JacobTV (Jacob Ter Veldhuis 1951) started as a rock musician and studied composition and electronic music at the Groningen Conservatory, where he was awarded the Composition Prize of the Netherlands in 1980. He became a full time composer and soon made a name for himself with melodious compositions, straight from the heart and with great effect. ‘I pepper my music with sugar,’ he says. Long queues at the box office of the four-day Jacob TV Festival in Rotterdam in 2001 already attested to his growing popularity. The NRC called him the ‘Jeff Koons of new music’ and his ‘coming-out’ as a composer of ultra-tonal, mellifluous music reached its climax with the video oratorio Paradiso, premiered the day after 9-11 and released on CD and DVD by British record label Chandos.

In the last decade JacobTV’s boombox music, for live instruments with a grooving sound track based on speech melody, became internationally popular. Although JacobTV is one of the most performed European composers, he is still an outlaw in the established modern classical music scene, and was recently accused of ‘musical terrorism’ after a premiere at the World Harp Congress in Amsterdam. According to the Wall Street Journal his newest work ‘makes many a hip-hop artist look sedate’.
In 2007 the ‘box set trilogy, an anthology of his work with 12 hours of audio and video, was released by Basta and presented at a 3 day JacobTV mini festival at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City.

JacobTV lives in the Dutch country side. Momentarily he is composing a video opera called ’The News’ about the credit crunch and other world events, while touring with his JacobTV Band and the multi media show ‘Cities Change The Songs Of Birds’.

Main works: The Rainbow-, Tallahatchie- and Goldrush- concertos, the video oratorio Paradiso, Mountain Top, the 2nd Pianoconcerto ‘Sky Falling’, ‘NOW’, String Quartets 1,2 & 3, Drei Stille Lieder, Diverso il Tempo, Laws of Science, Grab it!, Heartbreakers, Buku, Jesus is coming, May this Bliss never end, the Body of your Dreams, Les Soupirs de Rameau, Cities change the Songs of Birds, the Postnuclear Winterscenarios, piano trio Nivea Hair Care Styling Mousse, Cheese Cake, Lipstick.

JacobTV was performed by The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Tokyo City Philharmonic, the Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Russian State Academy, the Düsseldorf Symfoniker, the Metropole Orchestra, and by soloists such as Branford Marsalis, James Galway, Evelyn Glennie, Ronald Brautigam, Arno Bornkamp, Kevin Gallagher, Margaret Lancaster, Andrew Russo and ensembles like Het Nederlands Kamerkoor, Electra, Electric Kompany, Ethel, Fulcrumpoint, Quasar, E.A.R. Unit, Real Quiet, Onyx-, Ruysdael-, Aurelia-, Prism- and New Century Quartet, Safri Duo, Calefax, Amsterdam Sinfonietta, De Volharding, Fireworks, Gending, Combustion Chamber, Glass Farm & Fifh House Ensemble and several others. Choreographers Hans van Manen, Nanine Linning, Annabel Lopez-Ochoa, Dominique Dumais, Johan Inger and others have created ballets on his music in productions for the Nederlands Danstheater, Het Nationaal Ballet, Introdans, Scapino Ballet Rotterdam  http://www.jacobtv.net/

Kirsten Volness grew up in a small town in southern Minnesota — a place that fostered in her a keen interest in the outdoors and the wonders of nature.  The magic to be found in the natural world informs and inspires her creative work as do Earth-based spiritual traditions.

She received her DMA in Composition from the University of Michigan(from which she also holds an MM) where she worked with Bright ShengWilliam BolcomBetsy JolasMichael DaughertyKaren Tanakaand studied electronic music with Evan Chambers and Erik Santos.  She received a Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude, from the University of Minnesota where she studied with Judith Lang Zaimont.  Recipient of the 2010 Fellowship in Music Composition from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, Kirsten was also named winner of the 2007 BMI Women’s Music Commission and a 2007 ASCAP/SEAMUS student commission.

Her electronic work has been performed at numerous festivals including BourgesSEAMUSNYCEMFElectronic Music Midwest, and Third Practice. Her acoustic work has been performed by the NOW EnsembleColorado QuartetAnn Arbor Symphony Orchestra, featured at Midwest Composers’ Symposia, the Montreal and Edinburgh Fringe Festivals, and presented at various concerts throughout North America, Europe, and Australia.

She currently resides and teaches privately in Providence, RI, is a member of Awesome Collective, and produces new music/multimedia concerts in New York and New England. She is on the board of directors for the Boston New Music Initiative and serves as Director of Publicity and Marketing. http://www.kirstenvolness.com/

Noted for his beautiful tone, meticulous musicianship, and charismatic stage presence, baritone Michael Weyandt recently appeared as Junius in The Rape of Lucretia with Lorin Maazel’s Castleton Festival Opera, under the direction of Maestro Maazel. He has also performed Lockit in Britten’s arrangement of The Beggar’s Opera and Marco in Gianni Schicchi at the Castleton Festival, and been seen as Guglielmo and Masetto at the Tanglewood Music Center, under the direction of James Levine. Other roles include Belcore, Mercutio, and Lescaut. An advocate of contemporary music, he has previously appeared in New York City at the Miller Theater, as Pete Dayton in the U.S. premiere of Olga Neuwirth’s opera Lost Highway, based on the David Lynch film, and at Merkin Hall as the soloist in a staged performance of Davies’ Eight Songs for a Mad King. He was a New England Regional Finalist in the 2010 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, as well as the First Place winner in the New York Singing Teachers Association David Adams Art Song Competition and a prizewinner in the Liederkranz Competition (General Opera division). During a leave of absence from his Master’s degree studies, he spent two years living and teaching in rural China, Shanxi province

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