Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Chamber Cartel to play Feldman's Crippled Symmetry

EDIT: Review by Mark Gresham on ArtsCriticATL

Percussionist Caleb Herron has put together a new music ensemble called Chamber Cartel, and their first concert will take place next Sunday, New Year's Day.

They will be performing the classic Morton Feldman piece Crippled Symmetry. This is a rare opportunity to hear one of Feldman's long-form (~90 minutes) works in concert!

January 1, 2012 - 7:30 PM
First Existentialist Congregation
470 Candler Park Dr NE, Atlanta, GA 30307-2113
$10 at the door

Facebook invite
Chamber Cartel Facebook page
Chamber Cartel webpage

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Atlanta Opera's 24-Hour Opera Project Returns!

From The Atlanta Opera's Education Director, Emmalee Iden:

Yes it’s true folks – The Atlanta Opera’s 24-Hour Opera Project is back! We had so much fun last year we’re ready to do it again! This is a fun event in which composers, lyricists, directors and singers are paired together to write, rehearse and perform an original opera scene – all in 24 hours. The application deadline for participants December 15. Applicants selected for participation will be notified by December 19.

The 24-Hour Opera Project will kick off at 5PM on Friday, January 20 at First Presbyterian Church in Midtown with the unveiling of the 2012 theme. Composers and lyricists will write all night until the whistle blows at 6AM. Stage directors and singers will take over at that point and begin rehearsing, all leading up to the showcase performance Saturday evening at 7PM. If you had a good time last year, just wait until you see what surprises we’ve got in store for you this year!!!

Some of the comments we received from participants last year:

“I really enjoyed participating in this project, it was like opera bootcamp! I was a lot of hard work and I felt accomplished after the performance. thanks again.”

“I truly had a great experience and was honored to be a part of the first (and hopefully annual) 24 Hour Opera Project.”

“I fell in love with opera. thank you.”

“I learned SO MUCH - which is why I wanted to be involved with the project to begin with. The structure of course made for a wonderful and rewarding challenge (thrilling!) - but collaborating with the artists on a new piece - in a form which is both familiar and different to me - proved mind blowing.”

All the information about the event can be found on our website here: www.atlantaopera.org/24hour.aspx, including video from last year’s event. Please pass this on to anyone you think may be interested in participating. The more the merrier!

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me directly at 404-881-8883 or eiden@atlantaopera.org.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Atlanta's forgotten history of composers

Just appeared this morning in ArtsCriticATL, although quickly disappeared from the home page due to a review by the same author (who should have held onto it for another day, I guess) being posted afterward:

Memorial Drive: Atlanta’s forgotten classical music history  [Mark Gresham | ArtsCriticATL, 21 Nov 2011]

Join in the discussion, and add your own memories of Atlanta composers from the pre-21st-century era to the comments, or e-mail them to me privately if you prefer.

You can also access it by going to the overall Classical Music page on ArtsCriticATL.

—Mark Gresham

Thursday, November 10, 2011

GSU Student Composer Concert

If you happen to find yourself in downtown Atlanta tomorrow, you are cordially invited to join us for a 

Concert of New Works 
by members of the Georgia State University Student Chapter of SCI

DATE: Friday, November 11, 2011
LOCATION: Kopleff Recital Hall, GSU Campus, Atlanta, GA
FREE Admission


Dreams and Fables (2010) for bassoon & piano - premiere - by Matthew EDMANDS 

Eight Little Sketches for Viola (2010) by Ioannis PAPASPYROU

Sonata for Viola & Piano (2010) - premiere - by Taylor HELMS

Gift From Epirus (2010) for woodwind quartet by Ioannis PAPASPYROU

Amalgam Collapsing (2011) for flute, alto flute, double bass & piano by William WALKER

Pathos (2010) for string quartet by Ioannis PAPASPYROU

Wind Quintet (2010) - premiere - by Matthew EDMANDS

Friday, October 28, 2011

Encores Galore

Hopefully of interest to composers, posted on my "EarRelevant" blog, from earlier today.

Last night at the Schwartz Center's Emerson Concert Hall, violinist Hilary Hahn and pianist Valentina Lisitsa performed thirteen of the twenty-six "encores" Hahn had recently commissioned for violin and piano...

Questions for discussion:

Composers: Are you writing encores for Atlanta's musicians?
Performers: Are you requesting encores from Atlanta's composers?

—Mark Gresham

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

neoPhonia New Music Ensemble Concert

neoPhonia New Music Ensemble
Nickitas Demos, artistic director

Please join us for the second concert of our 2011/12 season!

WHEN:      Tuesday, November 1, 2011 - 7:30 PM
WHERE:    Kopleff Recital Hall - Georgia State University
COST:        FREE



During the 1960's and 70's, under the direction of the legendary Bill Hill, Georgia State University was a center for contemporary brass music in the United States. We pay homage to this great tradition with a diverse concert of 20th Century/21st Century brass works! With music by GSU student composers and established composers, a mix of well-known brass compositions plus five world premieres and performances by the stellar GSU Brass Faculty & Students - there is something for everyone on this program!

Brass Quintet No. 1 - premiere - by GSU student composer, Matthew FRANK
Solus for solo trumpet - by Stanley FRIEDMAN
Conversations for Tenor & Bass Trombone - by Charles SMALL
Tonoi IX for solo euphonium - premiere - by Nickitas DEMOS
The Hollow Men for trumpet & piano - by Vincent PERSICHETTI
Hearing Confetti for trumpet trio - premiere - by GSU graduate student composer, Amy LEVENTHAL
The Troubadour for solo trombone - American premiere - by Henry R. WIXON
Flying Trapeze for euphonium quartetpremiere -  by GSU graduate student composer, William MAY
Concert Variations for euphonium & piano - by Jan BACH

As always, you can meet and greet many of the composers and all the performers at a reception after the performance sponsored by the GSU Student Chapter of the Society of Composers, Inc.
Directions to the Kopleff Recital Hall: http://www.music.gsu.edu/locations.aspx
Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

World Premiere of "Rabbit Tales"

Saturday, October 29, 2011 from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Rabbit Tales premiere @ 1 p.m.

The Wren’s Nest
1050 Ralph David Abernathy SW
Atlanta, GA 30310

Join us for family-friendly activities from 11a.m. to 2:30 p.m. including storytelling, museum tours, craft activities and face painting. At 1 p.m., audiences will be enchanted with the world premiere performance of the Atlanta Opera’s first-ever opera commission, Rabbit Tales, on the outdoor stage in the natural grass amphitheatre. Stick around after the performance for a talk-back session with the composer Nicole Chamberlain, librettist Madeleine St. Romain, director Park Cofield, production director Michael Benedict, and costumer designer Joanna Schmink. Bring your lawn chair or blanket and enjoy your picnic or snack on the lawn!

Monday, October 17, 2011

DEADLINE EXTENDED: Georgia Tech’s 2012 Margaret Guthman Musical Instrument Competition

Dear inventors, composers, artists, and musicians:
Georgia Tech is extending the deadline to submit your ideas to the Guthman Musical Instrument Competition to Monday, November 7th. If you have an idea, or know someone who does, don’t let it go unnoticed.

Submit now: http://gtcmt.gatech.edu/?p=7461

Finalists will be invited to Atlanta February 16-17, 2012, where contestants will compete for $10,000 in cash prizes.

In addition to Best in Show prize and Best Student Submission award, prizes will be given for entries in five categories. See examples from past competitions on our YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/gtcmt

The categories are:

Mobile: musical instruments that take advantage of the unique interface elements and extreme portability of either standard smartphone platforms or custom-made hardware devices to revolutionize how and where music is made.

Robotics: mechanical devices that play an existing acoustic instrument or contain such an instrument within their design, facilitating the performance of novel music and/or creating novel collaborations with other musicians while they demonstrate the potential for musicianship in the robotic realm.

Repurposed: musical instruments that are inspired by existing non-musical objects, building upon their design to show the latent musicality we regularly encounter but might not otherwise notice.

Augmented: musical instruments inspired by existing acoustic instruments, building upon their existing design, playing technique and performance practice with new elements that extend their expressive capabilities.

Controller: novel hardware interfaces that can be readily connected to other software or hardware via a standard protocol, immediately expanding the expressive performance capabilities of anything with which they are linked.

Prizes will be awarded to Best in Show, Best in Category, Best Student Submission and People’s Choice.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

neoPhonia New Music Ensemble begins its 17th Season!


First Concert of the 2011/12 Season:

Date: TUESDAY, OCTOBER 4, 2011
TIme: 7:00 PM
Location: KOPLEFF RECITAL HALL (on the Georgia State University Campus)


This program will be another in our series spotlighting Atlanta composers!

Special Guest Artists:
Nicole CHAMBERLAIN, flute
Tom GIBSON, trombone
Laura GORDY, piano
Ted GURCH, clarinet
Helen KIM, violin
Kevin LYONS, trumpet

Faculty Artists:
Ken LONG, clarinet
Amanda PEPPING, trumpet


Heavy Metal (2011 - premiere) by NICKITAS DEMOS
for Trumpet & Trombone duo

Mobile-Stabile-Mobile (2010 - premiere) by ROBERT SCOTT THOMPSON
for Flute, Clarinet, Cello & Piano

Nautica (2010 - premiere) by NICOLE CHAMBERLAIN
for Solo Piano

t1 (2001) by TAE HONG PARK (Atlanta debut)
for Trumpet & Electronics

Jasper Drag (2000) by ALVIN SINGLETON
for Clarinet, Violin & Piano

Reception to follow sponsored by the GSU Student Chapter of the Society of Composers, Inc. (SCI)

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

From the Briar Patch to the Big Stage: Adapting Brer Rabbit for Opera

The Atlanta Opera has commissioned a one-hour children’s opera called "Rabbit Tales", based on the famed Br’er Rabbit stories, popularized by Joel Chandler Harris. The AJC Decatur Book Festival will host a special presentation called “From the Briar Patch to the Big Stage: Adapting Br’er Rabbit for Opera,” in which composer, Nicole Chamberlain; librettist, Madeleine St. Romain; director, Park Cofield; and Executive Director of The Wren’s Nest, Lain Shakespeare will discuss its development and creation. There also will be singers giving a sneak peak of some of the arias!

Sunday, September 4 at 2:30pm
Decatur Book Festival - Decatur High School Auditorium
310 N. McDonough St.
Decatur, GA 30030

Friday, August 05, 2011

Sonic Generator, gloATL and Robert Spano perform Kaija Saariaho's Maá at Atlanta Symphony Hall

Friday and Saturday, September 9 and 10, 2011
8 p.m.

Atlanta Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center
1280 Peachtree Street

Tickets now on sale for $50 (premium seats), $25 (general admission), and $12 (students with valid ID in person at the box office).


A new multimedia, in-the-round production of Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho's ballet for chamber ensemble and live electronics, featuring Georgia Tech's Sonic Generator, gloATL and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra music director Robert Spano.

Friday, July 22, 2011

An article from Wednesday's New York Times, by Rob Deemer:

Who, and Where, Are America’s Composers?

The extensive comments by readers are also worth your time.

—Mark Gresham

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Q&A with Composer Darren Nelsen

1) Name five influences.

Charles Ives, Frank Zappa, Howard Skempton, Philip Glass, Andy Summers (along with numerous other electric guitarists, way too many to mention)

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

I'm working on an album of solo guitar loops and improvisations. It's in the mixing stage right now and I hope to publish it in the next month or two. I'm really excited about the work and looking forward to releasing it. Also, I just completed a set of glockenspiel miniatures for percussionist Stuart Gerber. Hopefully we'll have a chance to premiere it this fall. Beyond that, I'm working on a couple of other chamber pieces and planning my next guitar album.

Also, I have an instrumental rock group called Gravity Machine that I want to use as a vehicle for performing and promoting the work of local composers. We're working on a piece of Adam Scott Neal's now and I've invited several other friends to write for the group.

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

Atlanta has an abundance of composers. Among them, I have several friends and I always like to hear what they're doing. These include Adam Scott Neal, Nicole Chamberlain, Mark Gresham, Tim Jansa, Curtis Bryant, and more. Plus, I'm always impressed with Nickitas Demos and Jason Freeman's work. There are so many doing good work here, it's hard to mention names without leaving someone out.

The chamber ensembles in the area are outstanding. The most visible, adventurous ones are Bent Frequency, Sonic Generator, and neoPhonia who have concerts throughout the school year. If you haven't seen their performances, you must. They're the highest representation of new music in the area. Also, there are smaller, less known ensembles that premiere new works including Morningside Chamber Players, Chamberlain Duo, and the Cerberus Percussion Group.

At the orchestra level, there's the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Robert Spano, who have premiered a lot of new music and produced amazing concerts. They're spectacular. World-class. I love what Spano has done with the ASO and I have a lot of respect and admiration for him despite his promotion of the specious 'Atlanta School of Composers' (which doesn't represent Atlanta composers much at all).

More recently in my awareness is the Georgia Symphony Orchestra, which has championed new music by local composers as well. I'm looking forward to learning more of their work.

Lastly, there are great new music festivals: SONICpalooza, Kennesaw State New Music Festival, and others.

There's a lot going on here. I'm happy to be here and part of the scene.

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

The biggest challenges are networking the community and connecting with audiences. Atlanta is spread out. Sprawl has us scattered. Until a few years ago, lots of composers here didn't know each other. In 2006, I put together the Atlanta Composers Blog to network composers and get us talking to each other. Thankfully, that's been successful and now we're connected and I think we could say we're a community (loose knit though it is). Now that we've built that community, we need to do a better job of reaching out to listeners and building our audience. We can do that through more performances and recordings. And marketing, I'm afraid to say... which composers are notoriously bad at doing. But we need to work on that because no one will do it for us.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

There are lots of folks I would love to work with. I'd like to premiere my set for glockenspiel with Stuart Gerber, as previously mentioned. I would like to work with each of the chamber ensembles I mentioned (Bent Frequency, Sonic Generator, neoPhonia.) Someday, though it's a long way off and I need to grow a lot more as a composer, I'd like to work with the ASO. I also welcome the opportunity to work with Atlanta artists in other disciplines--dance, film, visual arts---because it would be fun and would make me a better composer by expanding my depth and scope.

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

Plenty. Among them, saxophone and trumpet, so I'm working on a piece for glock, sax, and trumpet. Beyond that, there are more instruments I haven't written for than I have, so my work is cut out for me.

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

It helps me get things done. And helps me reach people.

I use Macs for most of my work, and I use a lot of music software--LilyPond (engraving), Logic (recording and mixing), Csound (synthesis), etc.

I collaborate with others online using cloud technology (Dropbox, Gobbler, iDisk).

I publish my work through my website and others including ReverbNation, Soundcloud, and Bandcamp. I also use a distributor to get my work to online retailers like iTunes, Amazon, eMusic, etc.

I market through social media, Twitter, Facebook and the like. I journal new music concerts by tweeting them as they happen.

I store sheet music (PDFs) on my iPad. I keep all my scores with me everywhere I go.

My main instrument is electric guitar, which has seen huge advances in the last 10 years in effects processors, simulators, and modeling. That's been a lot of fun. It's expanded my tonal range immensely, and makes it incredibly easy to record any guitar sound I want (or could imagine) straight to disk.

Practically everything I do is impacted by technology. Without it, being a composer would be a lot less fun for me.

8) When and where is your next performance?

I may have a CD release party for my guitar album for which I might do a small performance. I hope to perform with my instrumental rock band Gravity Machine this fall and premiere works by my fellow composers who have or are writing for the group. Join my mailing list and I'll let you know when and where I'll be performing next.

9) Where can we find you online?


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Q&A with Composer Charles Knox

1) Name five influences.

- Performance in a symphony orchestra
- Performance in jazz ensembles
- Association with good musicians from everywhere in the United States in a service band. (That was in the days of the draft.)
- The music of Hindemith, Bartok and Stravinsky (the most prominent classical composers of my youth)
- Study with Bernhard Heiden at Indiana University

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

During my late wife's long illness I wrote very little. But I have just finished two church anthems and am working on a flute ensemble piece. I have in mind a concert piece for (I-won't-say-what) instrument and orchestra.

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

I grew up in Atlanta and have spent much of my life here. My principal employment was at Georgia State University for 30 years. Life has been good to me here.

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

I would like to get more performances.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

Occasionally I collaborate with a writer of singable texts. I like to write choral music but am poor at writing texts.

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

The instrument for my planned concert piece (no. 2 above). Actually I have written for this instrument but not in a concert solo.

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

Computer notation (Mosaic, Finale, Sibelius) has become very necessary. I have never been a competent electro-acoustic composer.

8) When and where is your next performance?

I have been in discussions for a university brass ensemble performance and and a flute ensemble performance.

9) Where can we find you online?

I can receive email at cknox@gsu.edu. I am one the composers at luxnova.com (the publisher). I have been told that I will be a featured composer next month on the web site of the Pytheas Center for Contemporary Music.

Thanks, Charles.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Q&A with Composer Mark Gresham

1) Name five influences.

The music which influences me most tends to involve the tensile dynamic between Apollonian and Dionysian aesthetics. But limiting myself to five names, and without explaining why these, I will say: Beethoven, Charles Ives, Paul Hindemith, John Cage (more his ideas than the music itself), and Buckminster Fuller.

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

In terms of new compositions in progress: “The Marshes of Glynn” for baritone William Stone, based upon a poem by 19th-century Georgia poet Sidney Lanier. Also, a body of string quartet music, and a couple of other promised chamber pieces.

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

I'm an Atlanta native. That's not to say I haven't considered living elsewhere. But most of the other places I've considered don't interest me enough. Atlanta is a communication, transportation, media and financial hub. All the necessary tools are here, the costs of living and working are less than half that of New York City, and we can easily reach out to anywhere in the world from here. Think CNN, and apply that thinking to being a composer.

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

The biggest challenge for me is the simple economic challenge of being a freelance composer who has neither an academic position nor who composes for film or video. That has nothing to do with Atlanta per se, but is the single biggest challenge, bluntly stated. That includes not having a non-musical day job where I draw a known paycheck every week. I deal with a new deck of cards every day.

As far as the challenges to any composer living in Atlanta, the city does pose a few, and those are challenges which it largely self-imposes.

First of all there is a long-standing “it's better if it's from somewhere else” attitude in the cultural community. It's not unique to Atlanta, but it seems to be particularly strong here, for whatever reasons.

Secondly, there is a certain amount of “cultural amnesia” when it comes to the new music scene in Atlanta before Robert Spano arrived. Either people think it didn't exist at all, or someone's gone about re-inventing the history in ways that leave people who were active in it back then scratching their heads and wondering, “Where in the hell did that come from? That's so wrong.”

Thirdly, there is the city's curious reluctance to declare an identity that is truly its own, rather than being a “blank.” Representative of that is the 1996 Olympics mascot, “Whatizit.” “It can be anything you want,” they touted, but in reality it's not anything at all. Perhaps this avoidance of identity is because Atlanta is afraid of offending this group or that group or whatever. But I don't recall Atlanta always being without a sense of self-identity; rather it seems to have only lost its self-identity within my lifetime. Or perhaps its self-identity has been slowly dismantled rather than actually lost.

All three of these challenges are forms of self-denial. My cousin Randy, who is a poet in Chicago, used to speak ironically about “the Southern saga of misery and self-denial.” He was born in Atlanta, too, and has joked about people like himself who grew up in the South and couldn't wait to get away from it, then after they did found themselves constantly defending it. While I didn't move away like he did, I understand his point. To some degree it is thematic of Southern literature. But I don't apologize for being an Atlantan, Georgian, or Southerner—or an American. This is where my roots are, and frankly, the older I get, I'm finding that more relevant within the scope of an increasingly global society, not less relevant.

Oh, yes, there are observable, long-standing frictions between “Atlanta” and “Georgia,” of course. But I believe there is greater commonality than there are ultimate differences, greater than they are respectively willing to admit. The big differences lie between a self-identity-denying Atlanta and the instinctive, intuitive parts of its own Jungian shadow, things which are intrinsically connected to being geographically, and historically, part of Georgia and part of the American South. They can be denied or repressed, but cannot be erased.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

Well that's a tough question if you are meaning for me to name only one person among all the composers, performers, choreographers, writers, and visual artists who interest me!

But let me suggest this: I've known Michael Palmer since I was a teenager, when he was an associate conductor for the Atlanta Symphony, back in the early '70s. Since he returned to Atlanta in 2004, I've been nominally involved, in non-musical ways, in a few of his projects, such as the Bellingham Festival of Music.

Nevertheless, in all that time we've never collaborated on a major project as composer and conductor (though he has conducted one of my short orchestral works). I think it's time we did.

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

Well, I haven't written anything specifically for almglocken! (Go figure.) That would be kind of fun.

Also, I have never written an opera, but that is more much more problematic. Not to say that it hasn't been suggested to me by interested parties, but I haven't yet found a theatrical context or fresh story which attracts my attention enough.

What interests much more than opera is orchestral song, solo voice with orchestra, in a concert rather than theatrical setting, and solo voice with instrumental chamber ensemble. Even so, my musical interests overall lie in mostly the purely instrumental realm these days.

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

The same way it plays a role in most anyone's everyday life, like, say, when you enter a room and turn on a light. I'm not “wowed” by superficial aspects of technology, for the most part, perhaps because I don't view technology as an end in itself. That doesn't mean a lack of appreciation for technology, by any means. I'm hardly a Luddite. It's just that I'm not inclined to treat technology as a religion.

So my use of emerging digital technology, since the late 1980s at least, has primarily been for global communication, not so much as a prominently visible aspect of musical works. And I do, of course, use computer software for music engraving.

8) When and where is your next performance?

I have a piece in the upcoming SONICpalooza concert on June 25, in the 5 p.m. time-slot: “Genshi,” for E-flat clarinet and violin, which Ted Gurch and Helen Kim are playing.

9) Where can we find you online?


Thanks, Mark.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Q&A with Composer Jason Freeman

1) Name five influences.

Charles Ives, Steve Reich, Max Neuhaus (with whom I was lucky enough to get a chance to work), Sol Lewitt (a visual artist who nonetheless thinks much like a composer), and Beethoven.

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

I'm working on a few projects in various stages of development right now. I continue to work on UrbanRemix, where participants record sounds with their mobile phones and explore and remix them online, and then watch live performances by electronic musicians that use the same recorded sounds. We presented this project in Atlanta, San Francisco, and New York over the last year, and we're currently planning for some additional presentations in New York that expand the educational components of the project.

I'm also extending my work for laptop orchestra: last year, I developed a software environment for laptop orchestra called LOLC in collaboration with my students; it was performed here in Atlanta by Sonic Generator and my students just traveled to Oslo to perform it at the New Interfaces for Musical Expression (NIME) conference. This coming year, we're focusing on extended that system to enable the laptop players to generate music notation, in real time, for instrumental musicians to sight-read in performance. Performances with that system are slated for the coming year with Sonic Generator and in Istanbul. Finally, I'm just beginning work on a new piece for solo saxophone with audience participation via smartphones.

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

I moved down to Atlanta from New York because of my faculty position at Georgia Tech. The transition was jarring at first (I often note that more contemporary music happens in New York each week than in Atlanta through the whole year), but I've come to enjoy being here. In New York, I settled into a micro-niche of new music and would only attend concerts within a narrow aesthetic scope. Here, I see a much greater variety of work. It's also a small scene here where all of the composers and musicians know each other, and everyone is friendly. And of course, the program in music technology at Georgia Tech is a great place for me to be, with amazing faculty colleagues and students.

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

I agree with what Nick wrote on the blog recently: it's rare for anything happening in Atlanta to be noticed by those who live outside of the city. I choose to do most of my work outside of the city in order to gain wider recognition for it. I also think that, although the scene here is small, it is nonetheless sometimes remarkably hard to figure out what's going on. There's no single, central source of information on events (though this blog does a good job moving towards that) and I often don't find out about things until the very last minute.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

I have tremendous admiration for Jan Berry Baker's playing (at GSU) -- she's helped me out with some things before but I've never written a piece for her. I'd love to do that.

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

I'd love to write for concert band or wind ensemble, which I haven't done since I was an undergraduate, and there are some great groups in town (including at Georgia Tech).

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

Technology is a major part of my work, but to me it is never the point, it is always a means to an end. I tend to use technology to help me rethink the relationships among performers, composers, and listeners, using novel interfaces and algorithms to redistribute creativity among these constituencies so that everyone can play a role in shaping each musical performance of the work.

8) When and where is your next performance?

Come to the Woodruff Arts Center on Saturday, June 25, 2011 to see SONICpalooza, a 10-hour long marathon concert (2 pm till midnight) by Sonic Generator and friends. We'll be doing music by Steve Reich, David Lang, John Luther Adams, Tristan Perich, and a number of local composers, including Mark Gresham, Alvin Singleton, and me. Jessica Peek Sherwood will be playing a solo flute piece of mine, Sonorescence, sometime between 3 and 4 pm. It's a free show, you can come and go as you please, you can walk outside for a minute to grab some food from Atlanta's finest street vendors, and it's generally a great way for us to wrap up our fifth anniversary season and celebrate with you. Hope to see you there! Full info, as always, at http://www.sonicgenerator.gatech.edu.

9) Where can we find you online?


Friday, June 10, 2011

Georgia Tech's Sonic Generator and The Woodruff Arts Center host SONICpalooza - a 10-hour festival of contemporary music

Saturday, June 25, 2011
2 pm - midnight

Woodruff Arts Center Galleria
1280 Peachtree Street

free and open to the public

Audience members are encouraged to come and go as they please and sample food and drink from Atlanta's finest street food vendors on Callaway Plaza.


Sonic Generator, in collaboration with the Woodruff Arts Center, is proud to present SONICpalooza – a festival of contemporary music. Featuring performances by Sonic Generator and friends, SONICpalooza will showcase works by the most unique American composers who are actively shaping contemporary music. SONICpalooza promises to be a celebration of contemporary music, local art and innovative cuisine, with a unique collection of works by local, up-and-coming, old school, downtown, uptown, minimalist, post-minimalist and post-modern composers including Steve Reich, David Lang, and George Crumb; multi-media film, light, and video design by Neil Fried; and food and drink from some of Atlanta’s finest street food vendors. SONICpalooza will be the first contemporary music festival of its kind in Atlanta and aims to be an engaging, entertaining, and inspiring good time.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Q&A with Composer Tim Jansa

1) Name five influences.

Bruckner, Mahler, Rachmaninov, R. Strauss, Vaughan Williams… yes, I freely admit to being a hopeless (neo-)romantic. And I must give sincere credit to my friend and music professor, Eric Culver, for making me reconsider everything I thought I knew about music composition, back in 2003/2004 – which made me a better composer in the process.

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

I’m currently mostly in the process of trying to get older works ready for publication, which means a lot of editing and ironing kinks and orchestration goofs out of the scores. (Not very glamorous or fun, I know.) Other than that, I’m still working on a larger suite for concert band that I’m hoping to finish by next spring, in time to get started on a couple of commissions for the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 concert seasons which are larger wind ensemble and orchestral pieces. But who knows what else will come along in-between…

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

My day job is really in adult foreign language education, which is what brought me to Atlanta in the first place. Music has always been my passion, but it’s only been in the last 5 or 6 years that it’s become a source of income and a little recognition.
What’s good about the Atlanta music scene? Well, I can really only speak about the classical scene: We do have decent number of good local orchestras – especially the ASO, of course – a great opera company (although still somewhat limited), several truly outstanding venues … but what really makes the difference for composers like myself who don’t (yet) have access to the big names are the many smaller and outstanding (chamber) ensembles that truly pack a punch and are mostly completely underappreciated, despite the tremendous talent they harvest.

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

One thing I had to learn quickly is that it’s all about networking, knowing the right people and building relationships, sometimes over the course of many years. On a larger scale, there seems to be such a tremendous disconnect between the “big boys” in town that have access to appropriate funding and the “little guys” like myself and many others who don’t. At least there are many smaller venues that are open to smaller groups to perform. Finally, I find it somewhat sad – albeit typical – that none of the members of Robert Spano’s “Atlanta School of Composers” are, in fact, from Atlanta.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

Since I’m on the newly-founded board of directors of the Atlanta Chamber Winds, I’m very much looking forward to working with that ensemble in the near future; also, I’d like to work more with the ensemble Il Brasso Magnifico beyond the performance in a couple of weeks. And finally, it would be great to get my foot more securely in the door with one or two of the local symphony orchestras.

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

Tough question, but I’d really like to write more for percussion ensemble down the road and experiment with more exotic percussion sounds.

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

I use Sibelius for notation and score/parts/demo creation, and honestly couldn’t survive without it. Other than that, I only do a little bit of sound and video editing of recordings with basic software like Audacity. So even though my technology needs are pretty simple, they’re still crucial in order to get my music out there.

8) When and where is your next performance?

Two of my works will be performed during the 2011 International Euphonium Institute conference at Emory University later in June: The Dekalb Symphony is going to play the 3rd movement of my Euphonium Concerto on June 21st, with Adam Frey as soloist, and Il Brasso Magnifico will be playing a piece for brass ensemble entitled “Meditation and Madness” on June 25, the former at First Baptist Church of Decatur, the latter at Emory’s Schwartz Center. In addition, a new composition for flute and piano titled “Twenty-One” that was commissioned by my good friends Robert and Sarah Ambrose is scheduled to be premiered by Sarah later this summer.
Other than that, most performances of my music over the next months are outside the Atlanta area.

9) Where can we find you online?


Thanks, Tim!

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Q&A with Composer Nickitas Demos

1) Name five influences.

First, in terms of composers who have had an important influence on me, I must begin with my mentor and teacher Donald Erb (1927-2008). Another important composer who taught me a lot is Roger Hannay (1930-2006), with whom I studied for several years at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Second, and outside of these direct influences, I am a great admirer of the work of Gyorgy Ligeti (having admired him so much that his work, "Melodien" was the subject of my doctoral dissertation and set me upon a lifelong interest and investigation of sonority in music - particularly acoustic music).

My third big influence is Greek music - both Greek folk music and Byzantine Chant.

A fourth important influence is jazz and rounding out my list of five would be rock/pop music.

All of these elements can be found in my compositions.

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

I've got a full plate this summer. I just completed a five movement work for narrator, clarinet and piano based upon several selected stories from "Aesop's Fables." This work was commissioned by former Atlanta performer, pianist Cary Lewis and will be premiered next month out in Portland, OR. For the remainder of the year, I will work on a duo for a trumpet and trombone (commissioned by Kevin Lyons and Tom Gibson), a solo work for euphonium ("Tonoi VIII") for Adam Frey, a chamber piece commissioned by the chamber ensemble "Ideé Fixe" based in Thessaloniki, Greece, a trumpet choir fanfare (commissioned by the GSU Brass Dept.), and a double concerto for clarinet, saxophone and wind ensemble commissioned by Jan Berry Baker and Ken Long. All of these works are scheduled for premieres in the Fall. I'm also working with a local film director on a score for an independent comedy. It's my first film score! Finally, another project that I hope will come together is a commission by the Atlanta Young Singers of Callonwolde for a new choral work. I've been approached by their director, Paige Mathis, about writing the work and hope to have all the details ironed out soon!

I've also been busy recording as well. There are three forthcoming discs that will feature my music. The first is an album entitled, "Odysseia" featuring music by George Tsontakis, Theodore Antoniou, Chrsitos Samaras and myself. A second disc, entitled "Rites of Passage" will feature clarinetist Ken Long and works by Donald Erb, Paul Osterfield and myself. Finally, saxophonist Jan Berry Baker will be recording a disc entitled "Citizens of Nowhere" featuring a work of mine by the same name for clarinet and sax duo. I'm also in the early stages of working on two additional recordings: a disc featuring the premiere recording of my Concerto for Violin, Piano and Orchestra as well as a recording of my wind music featuring my double concerto for clarinet, sax and winds as well as my double concerto for euphonium, trombone and winds entitled "Air, Metal & Roll."

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

I live and work in Atlanta because of my position as Professor of Music Composition at the Georgia State University School of Music. In this capacity as well as my position as Coordinator of the Composition Program at the School, I formed the neoPhonia New Music Ensemble which regularly gives four performances a year and will be celebrating its 17th Season in the fall of 2011. All of my family lives in Atlanta and most of my wife's family lives in nearby Charleston, SC so working here is a great situation for me personally as well. I'm fortunate that Atlanta has blossomed into a fairly vibrant music center for contemporary music. In addition to my group, neoPhonia, there is, of course, Bent Frequency (a group I co-founded and served as composer-in-residence from 2003-2008) and Sonic Generator. I'm also very happy to note the greater attention contemporary music is receiving by more traditional ensembles such as the Atlanta Chamber Players as well as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Because of the ASO, as well as many other fine groups, there are many outstanding performers working in the city. It's a great mix for a composer!

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

As vibrant as the city is - by comparison to the other bigger markets, we are still a relatively small place. It's much harder for a composer living and working here to be noticed on a national stage. I think the only real way to address this is for composers living in Atlanta to continue to do great work. More than that, however, we must all do an even better job of promoting ourselves and our colleagues to a wider audience. Social media and a strong web presence are good places to start.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

I would be honored to work with the ASO. I know many of the players personally and have watched the quality and reputation of the group steadily grow over the years. How could a composer not want to work with them? I'd also love to work with the Georgia Symphony Orchestra (formally the Cobb Symphony), the Atlanta Ballet and the Atlanta Opera. In terms of chamber music, I've been fortunate and honored to have worked with many of the top groups in the city. One group who I have not worked with yet is Fringe. I'd love to collaborate with them sometime. I love their performing concept!

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

I would love to write an opera! This is one of the few genres I have not had the opportunity to take on.

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

I tend to work exclusively with acoustic instruments. I do have a few pieces, however, that employ some use of electronics: a work for electric cello (that makes heavy use of effects processing), a piece for clarinet violin and live DJ that was commissioned by Sonic Generator and a work using electric guitar, electric bass and synthesizer commissioned by Bent Frequency.

8) When and where is your next performance?

June 18 - Portland, Oregon - my work "Mythoi" for narrator, clarinet and piano will be premiered as part of the Astoria Music Festival.

9) Where can we find you online? (Please list your websites and social media channels.)

My website: http://nickitasdemos.com

My blog, "Greek & Composing": http://greekandcomposing.blogspot.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/nickitasdemos

Twitter: http://twitter.com/nickitasdemos

LinkedIn: http://linkedin.com/in/nickitasdemos

My Greek Band: http://www.greekislanders.com

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Atlanta Composers and Classical Revolution on Friday

Classical Revolution brings classical music to the community by performing in non traditional venues such as bars, cafes, etc. The group was founded in San Francisco, but has spread to other cities throughout the United States. This Friday, June 3rd, at 8pm the Atlanta group will hold a performance at a the TahCha Teahouse in Atlanta. Featured on this program will be works by Atlanta composers Michael Kurth and Nicole Chamberlain.

Michael Kurth will have two pieces performed by Andy Zaplatynsky (former concertmaster for Syracuse), Ronda Respess (ASO violin), William Johnston (viola), and Jennifer Humphreys (ASO cello). The string quartet will perform "Mean Old Pony Tango", a fun latin tango, and "Torcedura Azul", a rhythmically driven piece with some blues influence. Michael Kurth's music has been recently performed by the Riverside Chamber Players and he was commissioned to write a fanfare ,"May Cause Dizziness", for ASO's Robert Spano's 10th anniversary which was performed in March. When Kurth is not writing, you can hear him perform bass with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.

Nicole Chamberlain will have her flute and guitar piece, "Valentine", performed by the Chamberlain Duo. The piece was written for her husband, and this will be a world premiere performance. You can hear the composer's next premiere by the Atlanta Opera on October 29 at the Wren's Nest where she has been commissioned to write an children's opera based on the Br'er Rabbit stories.

Classical Revolution events are a great place to meet some of Atlanta's professional classical musicians. Unlike the traditional concert setting, there is no backstage for the musicians to run to after a performance. So many of the musicians will be lingering to listen to peers or to converse about the performance. Don't miss a fantastic networking opportunity to introduce performers to your music!

TahCha Teahouse
3352-c Chamblee Tucker Rd
Atlanta, GA 30341

Suggested donation: $5

This month's ticket drawing: winner receives a pass for 4 tickets to an Atlanta Symphony Orchestra concert of choice at Verizon Ampitheater.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Q&A with Composer Adam Scott Neal

1) Name five influences

The Beatles, John Cage, Claude Debussy, Pink Floyd, and Anton Webern. There are so many others, but these are definitely in the top 10.

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

I am working on a lot of things this summer. I am gradually switching to Linux (Ubuntu mainly), so I am learning how to use some great open source programs such as Ardour and MuseScore. I just got The SuperCollider book and am delving further into that. Music-wise, I am revising some pieces, including a generative spectralist piece in SuperCollider featuring synthesized bells and a piece for quarter-tone alto flute and fixed media. If I have time I want to revise a sax
quartet I wrote last fall as well.

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

The best parts about the Atlanta music scene is that it's small enough to break in and that it's very friendly. After living in the New York City area for two years, I can say that it's nice that our city doesn't really have the cliques and barriers that other cities have.

I am a native, but basically (for four years) expat Atlantan. However, I really believe that Atlanta is ripe for an active alt-classical scene and do what I can to help promote it. There are a few venues that focus on other genres but are friendly to the idea of classical and experimental music, and in my experience, people are more receptive to different genres than one might expect. We have a small core group of people who play out often, and I hope this will
grow. Even though I live in Florida, I like to come up and put on shows in Atlanta. There is an audience here; we just need more musicians to be active about promoting their music, and alt-classical music in general.

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

The biggest challenge is putting on shows and maintaining an audience. As I said, there are a handful of venues friendly to alt-classical/experimental music, but I understand that they have to pay the bills and won't be as friendly if turnouts are small. Atlanta's size makes for a strange dynamic – small enough to make things happen, but large enough that there can sometimes be too many entertainment/cultural options for your audience. Since playing classical music in bars (as I like to do) is a fairly new idea for a lot of people, they may not think of it as an option for their evening.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

Of course, any musicians who are interested in playing my music! But I am also very keen on collaborating with artists in other fields – visual arts, film, dance. I'd love to work on an experimental show of some sort with the Center for Puppetry Arts.

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

I recently saw two calls for toy piano compositions, so I listened to some contemporary toy piano works and really loved the sound. Yet another piece for the summer may be for toy piano!

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

It plays many roles. I have written a lot of fixed media works, as well as some live electronic pieces. My Master's thesis included five pieces for laptop quartet (Max/MSP pieces). This year I started an improv group – FLIP – and so far we've been primarily improvising with our laptops. I have made a few pieces involving the Arduino circuit board and plan to explore that further.

I also use technology in my acoustic pieces. A few pieces have used some probabilistic processes to generate material. For the piece I just finished, Etude in Metal for solo percussion, I analyzed the frequency spectrum of my percussionist's gongs, and used the harmonics of his gongs to create the pitch material for the glockenspiel part.

8) When and where is your next performance?

My next performance will be on Saturday, June 11 in Gainesville, FL. I will be doing a solo improv set as part of Hal McGee's Apartment Music series. It will be streaming online here:

9) Where can we find you online?

My website is www.adamscottneal.com. I am also on Twitter, Blogspot, ReverbNation, SoundCloud, CDBaby, and YouTube under "adamscottneal."

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Q&A with Composer Curtis Bryant

1) Name five influences.

Bartók, Brahms, Beethoven, Bach, Beatles come to mind under the letter B.... But, then there's C.... I recognize many mentors, and I can wear many musical hats.

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

This summer I'm doing the orchestration of my opera "The Anarchist," in anticipation of a 2013 premiere with Atlanta's Capitol City Opera. I also have a recent piano quartet and a new song cycle that are awaiting premieres. Stay tuned....

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

I am an Atlanta native with roots that go back to the city's founding, but mostly, I like it here, and I have a cool place in the woods on a private lake that makes for an ideal place to compose.

4) What is the biggest challenge you face as an Atlanta composer and how do you address it?

The music scene here offers a great amount of variety, and there are some good opportunities for performances of new works. But I have to say that the city's major music organizations, such as the Atlanta Symphony and the Atlanta Opera have shown not the slightest interest in the work or talent of Atlanta composers. Another major problem working as a composer in Atlanta and in the South in general is the lack of funding for commissioning new works and the lack of funding for the arts in general.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

I am open to collaboration with any group performing chamber music, orchestral music, opera, art song, or liturgical music.

6) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

Never composed anything for the Wagner tuba, Heckelphone or the Theremin. Beyond that, there are several genres that I haven't had the opportunity to write for. Most glaringly absent in my catalog is a concerto. I'd be happy to tackle one for piano or any other major solo instrument, given the promise of a performance. That could include any of the above instruments, as well.

7) How does technology play a role in your work?

I got tired of producing hand-written scores and instrumental parts years ago. I currently use Finale for most of my concert music. I use Logic Pro for most commercial work, including film scores and video game music.

8) When and where is your next performance?

Still waiting for exact dates, but at least 3 premieres are in the wings. The major one with Capitol City Opera is slated for the 2012-13 season.

9) Where can we find you online?

My website is http://www.curtisbryantmusic.com. You can go to the "news" page for updates on performances. I also maintain a group on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=79336280906. Anyone can join my group.

Thanks, Curtis!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Q&A with Composer Nicole Chamberlain

1) Name five influences.

Samuel Barber, Aaron Copland, William Davis (composition teacher at UGA), Osvaldo Golijov, and Brian Chamberlain (husband/composer/guitarist)

2) What are you currently working on? What can we expect to hear from you?

I have been commissioned by the Atlanta Opera to write a small ensemble 45-60 minute children's opera based on the Tales of Br'er Rabbit. The piece is for soprano, mezzo, tenor, baritone, and piano with libretto provided by Madeleine St. Romain. Based on the cultural history of the tales, the music will also get inspiration from blues, jazz, americana, and native american music. The end result, I hope, will be playful and fun music with substance that young and old will enjoy.

3) What's good about the Atlanta music scene? Or, why do you live and/or work here?

Growing up in Savannah there were not many opportunities for musicians. The city has been plagued with trying to support even a part-time orchestra. I knew early on I would not be able to make a living in Savannah as a musician. I happened to move to Atlanta for a day job, but stayed because of the music opportunities. I have been able to establish a network of music friends and colleagues so I have never felt the need to leave. Geographically, Atlanta is a good spot to be as well. With a major airport you can fly anywhere. I am also the middle point between my parents and sister in Savannah to my eldest sister in Clarksville, TN. I can visit all of any of my immediate family with in 4-5 hours.

4) What instrument(s) haven't you written for that you would like to write for?

I have never written for saxophone, and that has been a big regret of mine. At UGA, where I went to school, there was an outstanding saxophone quartet who repeatedly asked me I needed to write for them. What a missed opportunity! Sometimes you just need to make time to write for musicians when they ask you. I cringe when I think of how fabulous a performance and recording I could have from my undergrad years had I just written a saxophone quartet.

5) Who in the local scene would you like to collaborate with and why?

I've had such a fabulous time collaborating with the Atlanta Opera I hope I get to do it again. They've been incredibly supportive and trusting. Of course I would like to get the chance to write and have another orchestral work performed, but who wouldn't? I would love to work with Atlanta Symphony, but I think a highly underrated orchestra that I would love to write for is the Cobb Symphony (now Georgia Symphony). I had the pleasure of performing with the group this past season and throughly enjoyed working with some fabulous and talented musicians. I hope I get the chance to collaborate with them gain either as composer or flutist.

6) When and where is your next performance?

There are a few performance on the horizon. The Walker School Band directed by Erik Kofoed in Marietta, GA is performing my band piece "Hopewell" on May 20th that was commissioned by Hopewell Middle School band directed by Audrey Murphy. In September, the Dahlia Flute Duo is premiering my flute duet "Chatter" at the International Alliance of Women in Music World Congress at the University of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff, AZ. Then on October 29, the Atlanta Opera will give the public premiere of "Rabbit Tales" at the Wren's Nest here in Atlanta in conjunction with National Opera Week.

7) Where can we find you online?

and you can sign up for a newsletter here: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/nicolechamberlain

Thanks, Nicole!

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

The Atlanta Opera Commissions Children Opera

Libretto Based on Br’er Rabbit Stories by Joel Chandler Harris

The Atlanta Opera has commissioned a one-hour children’s opera for its 2011-2012 season. The libretto, written by Atlanta-based librettist and playwright, Madeleine St. Romain, will be based on the antics of Br’er Rabbit, a central figure in the Uncle Remus stories popularized by Southern author Joel Chandler Harris in the late 19th Century. The Br’er Rabbit stories can be traced back to “trickster” figures in African folklore, particularly the hare, a character that is prominent in the storytelling traditions of Western, Central and Southern Africa. This production will be a contemporary, light-hearted rendering of several story lines from Native American, African, and Cajun Folklore. The score, composed by Atlanta-based flutist and composer Nicole Chamberlain, will be written for four voice types, and will incorporate melodies and rhythms from African, Native American and Cajun music, as well as the blues. The work, currently entitled Rabbit Tales, will be performed by The Atlanta Opera Studio in elementary schools October 24 through November 18, 2011 and again February 13 through March 30, 2012. There will be a premiere open to the public on October 29, 2011 at the Wren’s Nest, in conjunction with National Opera Week. Further details will be announced at a later date. This is the first opera commission in the company’s history.

To book a performance of Rabbit Tales and to find out more information, contact Emmalee Iden at (404)881-8883 or eiden@atlantaopera.org.

Read full press release here: http://www.atlantaopera.org/media/pdf/Childrens_Opera_050411.pdf

Sunday, May 01, 2011

FREE Bent Frequency show TODAY

Sorry we neglected to post this!

Today, Sunday May 1st
3:00 PM
Ivy Hall, Savannah College of Art and Design (Atlanta campus, natch)
179 Ponce de Leon Ave

Featuring works by Erickson, Rzewski, Mansurian, Thornock, Mellits, and Cage.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

GSU Student Chapter of SCI in CONCERT

Come check out great music by talented student composers!

DATE: Friday, April 15
PLACE: Kopleff Recital Hall


Works by Rachael Alexander, Taylor Helms, Emiliano Nieto-Montiel and more!!!

For directions to the Kopleff Recital Hall click HERE 
Need more info? Call the GSU School of Music Concert Information Line at 404-413-5901

Hope to see you there!

Sunday, April 03, 2011

California EAR Unit 4/17

Hi all - this is a VERY important show that you all need to attend. The California EAR Unit is one of the top new music ensembles in the country. I'll be stuck in FL, so I'm quite jealous!

Guest Artist - California E.A.R. Unit
Sunday, April 17, 2011 - 7:30 PM
Venue: Kopleff Recital Hall, GSU
Cost: FREE

The EAR Unit, Los Angeles' fearless new music ensemble, performs David Dvorin's haunting multimedia As Alice with live electro-acoustic manipulations of tea cups/saucers, playing cards, pocket watches and child song along with interactive video (degraded 1903 version of Alice in Wonderland); Montana native Vicki Ray's Jugg(ular)ling, which follows the ever-increasing complexity of juggling feats captured on video; Spill Out/Fish Tank by Canadian Linda Bouchard with images created by Kim Turos and the electronics-savvy Belgo II, Amy Knoles's clever confounding of violin, piano, sampled text and bird song.

Friday, April 01, 2011

GSU Percussion Ensemble - Tuesday 4/5

GSU Percussion Ensemble
Rialto Center
Tuesday, April 05, 2011 - 7:30 PM
Stuart Gerber, director

Featuring works by Michael Colgrass, Daniel Levitan, Adam Scott Neal, Dorothy Hindman, James Romig, Steve Reich, John Cage and Nigel Westlake, as well as a "Middle Eastern Groove Medley" guest directed by Emrah Kotan.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Discounted tickets for eighth blackbird concert

The Bailey Center at Kennesaw State University would like to offer discounted tickets for the April 2, 2011 eighth blackbird concert to AtlantaComposers.com visitors.

To purchase $10 tickets, visit
http://ticketing.kennesaw.edu or call 770-423-6650 and use this promotion code:

eighth blackbird
Saturday, April 2, 2011 | 8 p.m. | Bailey Center Performance Hall | $30
Grammy Award®-winning sextet eighth blackbird returns to the Bailey Center displaying their
uniquely provocative and engaging performance style. The program will include the world premiere
of How Soon?, a new work by Nico Muhly, featuring the KSU Womenʼs Chorus. The work was co-commissioned
by eighth blackbird, the KSU School of Music, and the Anima-Young Singers of
Greater Chicago.

The KSU Festival of New Music continues this evening with a free Faculty Composers Concert at 8 p.m., on Friday with residency activities by eighth blackbird and Nico Muhly, and on Saturday with an Analysis Symposium. A complete schedule is at:

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

neoPhonia New Music Ensemble: APRIL 6, 2011

To All Our Friends,

The fourth and final concert of the 2010/11 neoPhonia New Music Ensemble season takes place on Wednesday, April 6. If you find yourself in or around the Atlanta area, please join us as we present a concert entitled Odysseia
The evening will feature music composed by Greek and Greek-American composers and is made possible, in part, through funding by the Center for Hellenic Studies, College of Arts & Sciences, Georgia State University. We are honored to welcome special guest faculty artists from Thessaloniki, Greece Nevart-Veron Galileas (flute) and Theofilos Sotiriadis (saxophone) as well as GSU faculty artists W. Dwight Coleman (baritone), Christos Galileas, (violin), Ken Long (clarinet) and Brandt Fredriksen (piano). 

DATE: Wednesday, April 6
TIME: 7:30 PM
LOCATION: Kopleff Recital Hall 


Theodore ANTONIOU / Celebration XV for flute, alto sax, violin & piano 
George TSONTAKIS / Three Sighs, Three Variations for violin & piano
Elainie LILLIOS / Veiled Resonance for solo soprano saxophone and electronics
Nickitas DEMOS / An Empty Blouse for baritone, flute, clarinet, violin & piano

As always, you can meet and greet some of the composers and all the performers at a reception following the concert sponsored by the GSU Student Chapter of the Society of Composers, Inc. (SCI) !

For directions to the Kopleff Recital Hall visit: http://www.music.gsu.edu/locations.aspx. For more information, visit www.music.gsu.edu  or call 404.413.5901

Hope to see you there!!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

KSU Festival of New Music

Student Composers Recital
Monday, March 28, 2011 | 8 p.m. | Bailey Center Performance Hall | Free
New works by students from Kennesaw State University, Georgia State University, and the Georgia Institute of Technology will be featured.

Faculty Composers Recital
Wednesday, March 30, 2011 | 8 p.m. | Bailey Center Performance Hall | Free
Featuring compositions from the faculties of Kennesaw State, Georgia State, and Georgia Tech, including Robert Cronin, Nickitas Demos, Drew Dolan, Jason Freeman, Jen Mitchell, and Laurence Sherr.

Residency with eighth blackbird and Nico Muhly
Friday, April 1, 2011

Chamber Ensemble Coaching
11 a.m. – 1 p.m. | Bailey Center Performance Hall
Members of eighth blackbird will coach KSU students in chamber music performance.

Panel Discussion and Q&A Session
2 – 3:30 p.m. | Wilson Building, Room 103
Member of eighth blackbird and Nico Muhly will discuss topics related to modern chamber music performance.

Discussion Session with Composers
4 – 5:30 p.m. | Wilson Building, Room 103
Composer Nico Muhly hosts a discussion session aimed at composers
and composition.

Analysis Symposium
Saturday, April 2, 2011 | 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. | Wilson Building, Room 103
Music theorists Benjamin Wadsworth, Yayoi Everett, and Mark McFarland present their research on modern music.

eighth blackbird
Saturday, April 2, 2011 | 8 p.m. | Bailey Center Performance Hall
Grammy Award®-winning sextet eighth blackbird returns to the Bailey Center displaying their uniquely provocative and engaging performance style. The program will include the world premiere of “How Soon?”, a new work Nico Muhly, featuring the combined KSU Women’s Chorus and Georgia Youth Symphony Orchestra Chorus. The work was co-commissioned by eighth blackbird, the KSU School of Music, and the Anima-Young Singers of Greater Chicago.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Bent Frequency Presents "Art Imitates Life Imitates Art"

Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Kopleff Recital Hall, GSU


David CRUMB - "Awakening"
Josh LEVINE - "Transparency I"
John DRUMHELLER - "The View from Dead Horse Point"
Ben STONAKER - "Back Jump"
Hubert HO - "A Dangerous Game of Hide and Seek"

Sarah Kruser Ambrose, flute
Jan Berry Baker, saxophone
Tania Maxwell Clements, viola
Amanda Pepping, trumpet
Stuart Gerber, percussion
Peter Marshall, piano
Robert J. Ambrose, conductor

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Adam Scott Neal & Friends - CD Release Show - 3/19/11

I am releasing a short album/EP titled FULL CIRCLE, which features my hip-hop/electronic tracks overlayed with solos written by Atlanta composer-performers Nicole Randall Chamberlain, Margie Deeb, Darren Nelsen, Jason Passmore, and Jason Pellett. This event will feature an eclectic mix of performances culminating with the first public listening of this genre-bending experiment. I hope you all can join us!

707 E Lake Dr, Decatur
Saturday, March 19, 2011 - 9PM

on the bill:

Stuart Gerber and Craig Dongoski will present a portion of their new multidisciplinary collaboration "Surface Resonance"

Morningside Chamber Musicians will play a few pieces for woodwind trio, including Tim Jansa's "Morning Sides"

Darren Nelsen will be rocking out with his prog/fusion band GRAVITY MACHINE

These will be brief 20ish-minute sets before the listening party (album clocks in just under 30 minutes).

Bring your homies!

Friday, March 04, 2011

Hopewell Middle School Symphonic Band Premieres New Work

Hopewell Middle School Symphonic Band under the direction of Audrey Murphy commissioned Nicole Chamberlain to write a piece to be performed at the Music for All National Festival in Indianapolis later this month. They will be giving a preview concert and premiering the work in Alpharetta, GA this Tuesday.

Tuesday, March 8 at 7pm
Alpharetta First United Methodist Church
69 N Main St
Alpharetta, GA 30009

Here are the program notes written by my sister Joell Greco, who is an author soon to be published:

"Hopewell" was commissioned by Hopewell Middle School's Symphonic Band directed by Audrey Murphy located in Milton, Georgia. The connotations of the school's namesake gave an opportunity to convey a realization that a generation of young people is growing up in an age of uncertainty and that hope is often a seed that is rarely planted. Like most developing minds of today’s era, a situation where the possible positive ending to a seemingly dramatic and life changing problem is all but possible to them. Most do not see that hope is a ray of brilliant light that often breaks the most foreboding thundering clouds of life even at the last moments of a crossroads. The movements of rhythm and volume weaved within this piece reflect that the very mindset of those who only see the darkness of a situation can often find the glimmer of hope to hold onto at the very end for to have the hope of peace, the hope of cures, and the hope of a better life is something that all children deserve the right to have.

Sonic Generator Concert

Sonic Generator Presents “Something Old, Something New…”

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Rich Theatre, Woodruff Arts Center
1280 Peachtree Street.

Concert begins at 8 p.m.
Reception to follow

free admission

Georgia Tech’s chamber music ensemble-in-residence, Sonic Generator, features music by Philip Glass, Gil Weinberg, Milton Babbitt, Randall Woolf, Daniel Wohl, and Charles Amirkhanian in a free performance in partnership with the Woodruff Arts Center. The concert explores the power of words and images to reframe musical experiences and performances.

More info at http://www.sonicgenerator.gatech.edu/upcoming_concerts/wednesday-march-16-2011.html.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Classic Goes Contemporary: F.W. Murnau’s silent movie "Faust" (1926) set to new music by Toby Chappell

Saturday, March 5 @ 6 pm
Goethe-Zentrum Auditorium


The 1926 film "Faust", directed by F.W. Murnau of "Nosferatu" fame,
will be shown in its entirety on March 5 with a live performance of
a new soundtrack (electronics and guitar) for the film.

"Faust" was backed by the biggest film budget in German film history
up to that point, and features the most intricate special effects
possible in the era, as well as a superb cast anchored by Emil
Jannings as Mephisto and Swedish stage legend Gösta Ekman as Faust.

Previous sections of the soundtrack have been performed at
Georgia State University, and a house concert hosted by Darren Nelsen.
This event will mark the premiere of the full soundtrack.

CDs will be available featuring excerpts from the soundtrack.

Please RSVP for this event by March 4 at 404-892-2388 or info@german-institute.org.

Toby Chappell is a composer, guitarist, and sound sculptor currently
residing in the Atlanta, GA area. He has studied and/or collaborated
with such diverse artists and collectives as the Pythagoras Society,
Robert Scott Thompson, Eyes of Ligeia, and the Black Muse Element.
Currently, Toby is focusing on film soundtrack and guitar-based
ambient music, all of which he releases pseudonymously as Saturnin
Sektor (electroacoustic and film music), or Misdreamt (guitar+electronics).
Contact: motiondemon@emailengine.net

Two new releases from Toby Chappell

Two new releases are now available from Atlanta-area electronic and
electro-acoustic composer Toby Chappell. The releases are available
in both physical and digital formats.

The latest release from SATURNIN SEKTOR ("Unreal City") is the culmination
of two years' work collecting field recordings from such places as
Savannah, New York City, and sacred sites in Ireland.

The first release from MISDREAMT ("The Motion Demon") is also now available.
MISDREAMT features found percussion and looped/layered guitar parts, with
unsettling electro-acoustic ambience always lurking beneath the surface.
Live performances of the MISDREAMT material will include video components
from the composer and other collaborators.

More information (samples, artwork downloads, ordering info) can be found at:


Toby Chappell is a composer, guitarist, and sound sculptor currently
residing in the Atlanta, GA area. He has studied and/or collaborated
with such diverse artists and collectives as the Pythagoras Society,
Robert Scott Thompson, Eyes of Ligeia, and the Black Muse Element.
Currently, Toby is focusing on film soundtrack and guitar-based
ambient music, all of which he releases pseudonymously as Saturnin
Sektor (electroacoustic and film music), or Misdreamt (guitar+electronics).
Contact: motiondemon@emailengine.net