New Music News Wire

Ed Harsh Selected as MTC President

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Ed Harsh

Ed Harsh, vice president of Meet The Composer, has been unanimously chosen by the board to become the organization’s new president beginning August 1, 2007. “As a composer with a long history in not-for-profit arts work, a passionate commitment to new music and its creators, and an inclusive, articulate management style, Ed brings to his new role as president a depth of skills which the board is confident will continue to lead us from success to success,” noted MTC’s Board President Frederick Peters in an official statement released earlier today. Harsh replaces Heather Hitchens, president of the organization for eight years, who is leaving to become executive director of the New York State Council on the Arts.

Harsh was appointed vice president of MTC in 2005 and previously served as managing editor of the Kurt Weill Edition, director of development at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, associate director of David Bury & Associates, and managing director of Sequitur new music ensemble. Harsh is also a composer and has had his works premiered by ensembles such as the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and New Millennium Ensemble.

2007 Pew Fellowships Awarded

Pew Fellowships in the Arts were awarded to composers King Britt, Gerald Levinson, Peter Paulsen, and Jamey Robinson. Established in 1991, PFA distributes twelve $50,000 fellowships per year to artists living in the five-county Philadelphia area. The funds may be used for any purpose, but they are meant to give artists the financial freedom to dedicate themselves to their artistic endeavors. The program aims to provide such support at moments in an artist’s career when a concentration on artistic growth and exploration is most likely to have the greatest impact on long-term professional development.

Pernambuco Bows OK for Travel

Negotiations at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species have resulted in an exemption for pernambuco bows related to a conservation measure requiring special permits and certification to transport the wood internationally. Most fine bows are made of pernambuco, also known as Brazilwood, so the exemption will allow musicians to tour internationally without facing restrictions. The endangered tree will be monitored over the next two years, when the convention will meet again. Musicians can learn more and assist in the conservation effort by visiting the International Pernambuco Conservation Initiative website.

2007 Chorus America Conference Awards

During the 2007 Chorus America Conference in Los Angeles, ASCAP recognized New York Sings, San Francisco-based Volti, and the Syracuse Children’s Choir for their adventurous programming during the 2006-2007 season. “These choruses not only preserve the great tradition of the ‘first art,’ choral music, but assure that their great tradition remains vibrant and relevant in the 21st century,” said ASCAP Vice President of Concert Music Frances Richard.

Furthermore, the Alice Parker Award, given to an ensemble that presents new and challenging repertoire to its audience, was presented to Madrigalia of Rochester, New York. The Durango Choral Society received an honorable mention. Also, The Michael Korn Founders Award for the Development of the Professional Choral Art was awarded to Joseph Jennings, musical director of Chanticleer. In 1996 the award was given to Louis Botto, who founded the ensemble in 1978.

Adventurous Programming Awards at the American Symphony Orchestra League Conference

Twenty-six orchestras received ASCAP/League Awards for Adventurous Programming at the American Symphony Orchestra League’s 62nd National Conference in Nashville, Tennessee. The awards are given to orchestras which have demonstrated a dedication to performing contemporary music in the previous concert year. Since the awards were established in 1959, more than $650,000 has been distributed to laud innovative repertoire. The awardees are:

John S. Edwards Award for Strongest Commitment to New American Music
Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Robert Spano, Music Director

Morton Gould Award for Innovative Programming
Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Bernard Haitink, Principal Conductor and
Pierre Boulez, Helen Regenstein Conductor Emeritus

Leonard Bernstein Award for Educational Programming
Minnesota Orchestra, Osmo Vänskä, Music Director

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses More Than $14.1 Million
First Place: Los Angeles Philharmonic, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Music Director
Second Place: The Cleveland Orchestra, Franz Welser-Möst, Music Director
Third Place: San Francisco Symphony, Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $5.7 – $14.1 Million
First Place: New World Symphony, Michael Tilson Thomas, Artistic Director
Second Place: Nashville Symphony, Leonard Slatkin, Music Advisor and Conductor
Third Place: Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Jeffrey Kahane, Music Director

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $1.8 – $5.7 Million
First Place: Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Jeffrey Kahane, Music Director
Second Place: Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Edward Cumming, Music Director
Third Place: New Mexico Symphony, Guillermo Figueroa, Music Director

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $470,000 – $1.8 Million
First Place: Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Gil Rose, Artistic Director
Second Place: Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, Kent Nagano, Music Director and Conductor
Third Place: South Dakota Symphony Orchestra, Delta David Gier, Music Director

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $470,000 or Less
First Place: Northwest Symphony Orchestra, Anthony Spain, Music Director
Second Place: Orchestra 2001, James Freeman, Artistic Director and Conductor
Third Place: Laredo Philharmonic Orchestra, Brendan Townsend, Music Director

Collegiate Orchestras
First Place: Portland State Unversity Symphony Orchestra, Ken Selden, Music Director
Second Place: Peabody Symphony and Concert Orchestra, Hajime Teri Murai, Director of Orchestral Activities
Third Place: Stanford Symphony Orchestra, Jindong Cai, Music Director and Conductor

Youth Orchestras
First Place; Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra, Allen Tinkham, Music Director
Second Place; Etowah Youth Orchestras, Michael R. Gagliardo, Music Director and Conductor
Third Place: Vermont Youth Orchestra, Troy Peters, Music Director

Festival Orchestras
First Place: Cabrillo Music Festival, Marin Alsop, Music Director and Conductor
Second Place: The Aspen Music Festival and School, David Zinman, Music Director

2007-08 Minnesota Composer Institute Participants Announced

The Minnesota Orchestra has invited eight composers to participate in the 2007-08 Composer Institute. Over 150 works were submitted from 36 states and were reviewed by a panel of composers. The program, co-chaired by Aaron Jay Kernis and Beth Cowart, will take place this October and include workshops covering aspects of composition and publication, as well as readings by the Minnesota Orchestra.

2007-8 Composer Institute Participants

Daniel Bradshaw—Chaconne
Jacob Cooper—Odradek
Trevor Gureckis—Very Large Array
Wes Matthews—Terraces
Elliott Miles McKinley—Moments for Grand Orchestra
Xi Wang—Above Light – a conversation with Toru Takemitsu
Stephen Wilcox—Cho – Han

Runners-Up/Alternates

Antonio Carlos DeFeo
Michael Djupstrom
Wei-Chieh Lin
Marcus Karl Maroney
Ryan Pratt
Timothy Stulman
Jay Wadley
Yiorgos Vassilandonakis
Roger Zare

Honorable Mentions

Andrew McPherson
Richard Edward Horner
Jacob Bancks
Randall Bauer
Michael Bratt
Devin Farney
David Kirkland Garner
Tarik Ghiradella
John Glover
Adam Greene
James Holt
Curtis K. Hughes
Chia-Yu Hsu
Igor Iachimciuc
Brooke Joyce
Ronald Keith Parks
Kristopher Maloy
Don Myera
Leanna Primiani
Jorge Sosa
Michael Sweeney

—Compiled by S.C. Birmaher