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Yehudi Wyner Awarded Pulitzer Prize for Music

18/04/2006

New York's Columbia University announced on the 17th April 2006 that Yehudi Wyner has been awarded the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Music. Wyner received the prize for his piano concerto 'Chiavi in Mano' which was premiered by the Boston SO under Robert Levin in February 2005.

Other nominees for the prize, which recognizes a 'distinguished musical composition by an American that has had its first performance or recording in the United States during the year, included Peter Lieberson and Chen Yi. As well as the $10,000 main prize the Pulitzer board also awarded jazz composer and pianist Theolonius Monk a posthumous citation.

Opera Premiere Cancelled Due to Strikes

13/04/2006

A series of theatre worker strikes across Germany have affected the premiere of Gerard Pesson's new opera 'Pastorale'. The work, which was due to be premiered by Stuttgart's State Opera in May, will instead be presented in concert as the set will not be ready.

The workers are striking over regional government plans to change the working week from 40 to 38.5 hours with no extra pay and the reduction/abolishment of holiday and bonus payments. Around 120 staff are striking in both Stuttgart and Munich's Bavarian State Opera.

RPS Music Awards Shortlist Announced

07/04/2006

The UK's Royal Philharmonic Society have unveiled the shortlist for their annual Music Awards. Contemporary composers feature highly in these awards and this year is no exception. In the chamber-scale composition category Jonathan Cole (for Testament), James Dillon (for String Quartet No 4) and Joseph Phibbs (for Goodison Quartet No 3: The Canticle of the Rose) have all been nominated whilst in the large-scale composition Julian Anderson (for The Book of Hours), Richard Ayres (for The Cricket Recovers) and Henri Dutilleux (for Correspondances) have received nominatons.

Elsewhere the new music group the London Sinfonietta have been nominated in the Audience Development category for their 'connectors' series and the South Bank's 'Xenakis: Architect in Sound' has been put forward for the Concert Series and Festivals category.

The winners will be announced on the 9th May at the Dorchester Hotel, London.
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Composers Queue up to Compose for PLOrk

01/04/2006

The faculty of music at Princeton University have developed a 15 piece Laptop Orchestra falling under the baton of a virtual conductor. The orchestra uses instruments specially designed to interface with their laptops

The brainchild of Dan Trueman and Perry Cook grew from an instrument that is a hybrid of the violin and a theramin that reacted to his bowing movements across a spherical speaker. The instruments are played by a wide range of sources including conventional keyboards and motion sensors on the hands and feet.

The orchestra has already attracted a long list of composers wishing to write for it.


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Pierre Boulez Awarded ISM Distinguished Musician Award 2005

24/03/2006

Pierre Boulez has recently been named as the recipient of the Incorporated Society for Musicians 'Distinguished Musician Award 2005'. The award, which has been running since 1976, is given to musicians who are deemed to have made a substantial contribution to British musical life. M. Boulez, who joins an illustrious list of past recipients, was given the award largely for his work with the BBCSO in the 1970's during which time he is credited with revolutionising the concert hall.

M. Boulez responed to the award saying ‘This is an honour indeed, and I accept this award with the greatest pleasure. I can see from your list that there are not many foreigners among previous recipients. I appreciate your choice all the more!’

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Ringtones Auctioned for ACO Fundraiser

16/03/2006

Ringtones by composers including Philip Glass and Meredith Monk will be auctioned by the American Composers Orchestra in April as part of the orchestra's spring fundraiser.

The online auction will take place between April 10th and May 5th at www.ACOauction.cmarket.com. Other composing memorabilia will also be auctioned in aid of the ACO including a signed manuscript by John Adams.
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Saariaho Opera To Receive Run of Seven Performances

16/03/2006

The Paris based Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho is to have her second opera, 'Adriana Mater', premiered at L'Opera Bastille on 30th March. The opera, to a libretto by Amin Maalouf, will then be performed a further seven times during April before being taken to the US in the summer of 2008.

The opera, which will be conducted by fellow Finn Esa-Pekka Salonen, is descirbed by Maalouf as being 'set in a country at war. Although none is specified by name, one might think of any province in the Balkans during the last years of the 20th-century. Adriana, a jovial and passionate young woman, is the victim of a rape. Her aggressor is not an enemy combatant, but a man from her own community. The unborn child has inherited both the victim’s blood and the torturer’s, and Adriana anxiously wonders whether her son will be Abel or Cain. This anxiety haunts her throughout her pregnancy and during the childhood of her son, Yonas. The moment of truth comes when Yonas, grown into a young man, learns that his father — his mother’s aggressor, who had fled — is back now that the war is over."
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BBC NOW Commit to New Music

07/03/2006

The BBC National Orchestra of Wales (NOW) have renewed their commitment to performing and commisioning new music by appointing Welsh composer Guto Puw as their new Resident composer. This is a new role for the orchestra which compliments Michael Berkeley's position as Composer in Association.

Puw will write three new orchestral works for the orchestra in the period up to 2008. The first will be an oboe concerto followed by two more works, one of which will be premiered in the 2007 Proms season.
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New North American Operas awarded $241,000 Development Fund

28/02/2006

Selected new operatic projects in North America have been given a funding boost recently following the announcement that OPERA America and Opera.ca have awarded $241,000 to operatic composers, film composers, jazz and rock musicians and librettists. The funding will be dispersed among 14 opera companies across the US and Canada and will be used not only to commission new works but also to aide the rehearsal and presentation of as yet unheard operas. To see a full list of the 14 companies awarded funding see OPERA America's website.
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34yr old Adès to get a retrospective

27/02/2006

The Barbican in London is to host a retrospective of Thomas Adès's meteoric career. Despite being only 34, Adès has become what the Guardian calls "a colossus of the international music world."

The festival called Traced Overhead will feature a new orchestral work The Ark, performed by the Berlin Philharmonic and Sir Simon Rattle, as well as looking at works from Ades's 17 year career.

"It would be timid of us to wait another 10 years before doing this to see if he's really great," said Sir John Tusa, managing director of the Barbican.

via The Guardian
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News Archive - records 181-190 of 315
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