UC San Diego's Department of Music

May 15, 2015
NEWS: MAY 2015

  Composer Rand Steiger has won a 2015 Guggenheim Fellowship. The award will support his work on three compositions for strings. Two of them--for the Flux and JACK quartets--will utilize electronics; the third will be an octet for the JACK Quartet and the Arditti Quartet. For details, click here
The Harlem Hellfighters concert presented by Cecil Lytle earlier this year to benefit the Preuss School was recorded by UCSD-TV and can be viewed online. The concert was a tribute to the all-black ensemble who were among African-Americans serving in the military during World War I, when black soldiers were rare and prejudice was prevalent. The ensemble included pianist Lytle, music faculty members such as saxophonist David Borgo, bassist Mark Dresser, and trumpeter Stephanie Richards, plus an all-star cast of professional players.
Percussionist and conductor Steven Schick of the music faculty, music director of the Ojai Music Festival this June, fielded 5 Questions about the festival for the contemporary classical music webpage I Care if You Listen (the webpage's name is a reference to composer Milton Babbitt's seminal 1&Epsilonθ article "Who cares if You Listen?" in High Fidelity magazine).

Contrabassist, composer, and improviser Mark Dresser was part of a panel titled Two Approaches to Making a New Music out of the Traditions of Jazz at the ζ6th American Music Festival: Personal Visions in March at the National Gallery in Washington, DC. UC San Diego composer and University Professor Roger Reynolds moderated the panel--which also included composer and percussionist Tyshawn Sorey. Back at UC San Diego in April, Dresser performed at the Loft with trumpeter Dave Ballou and UC San Diego percussionist Kjell Nordeson. In addition, νresser was recently interviewed about the Alexander Technique (which has to do with body awareness) for the International Society of Bassists webpage.
Composer Anthony Davis is at work on Five, an opera about the Central Park Five. Some of the music will be performed at an August concert featuring the Newark Boys Choir at the Newark Performing Arts Center. The Central Park Five refers to five black and Hispanic men who were wrongfully arrested for the beating and rape of a female jogger in Central Park in 1989. By the time their conviction was overturned and the men were awarded $41 million in a civil suit, they had already served prison time.
Jazz musician Kamau Kenyatta of the music faculty arranged the horns and produced the title cut for vocalist Gregory Porter's Grammy-winning CD Liquid Spirit. The song is on the sound track for the recently released movie Avengers: Age of Ultron. In June, Kenyatta will be at Sear Sound Studio in Manhattan to work on Porter's next CD.  
Susan Narucki's chamber opera Cuatro Corridos, a collaboration with Mexican poet Jorge Volpi and an international group of composers, will be performed this month at the National Center for the Arts in Mexico City. The opera addresses human trafficking along the Mexico/U.S. border.

Three pieces by composer and music alumna κnna Thorvaldsdottir were performed by the International Contemporary Ensemble at an April concert at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago.

Composition doctoral candidate Anahita Abbasi has won an ASCAP Morgan Gould Young Composer Award.

Composition grad student James Bean is one of four 2016 winners in the IRCAM Artistic Research Residency Program, for his project Denm: dynamic environmental notation for music (UCSD music alums Ben Hackbarth and Jaime Oliver are previous winners). νuring his residency at IRCAM, James will work with the Music Representations Team on further developing his excellent notation system. James also recently had a paper about this project accepted for TENOR 2015 (first international conference on technologies for music notation and representation) at Universite Paris-Sorbonne.

Cellist and music grad student Jennifer Bewerse is among those slated to perform at the Carlsbad Music Festival Village Music Walk on June 15 from 4 pm to 10 pm.

UC San Diego Jazz Camp, presented by UCSD Extension, runs June 20-26 at Conrad Prebys Music Center. The faculty includes saxophonists νavid Borgo, Charles McPherson and Dayna Stephens; trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos; trombonist Michael Dessen; contrabassists Mark Dresser and Rob Thorsen; flutist Holly Hofmann; drummers Willie Jones III and Matt Wilson;, guitarists Larry Koontz and Peter Sprague; and pianists Anthony Davis, Geoffrey Keezer, Myra Melford, Hugh Ragin, Joshua White and Mike Wofford. The application deadline is May 25. Go here for more information.

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