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Letters from Abroad: Derek Bermel Calls Home

Derek Bermel, always at home in New YorkPhoto by Tom LeGoff “It’s so beautiful,” composer Derek Bermel says when I ask how his Rome Prize residency is going at the American Academy. The thirty-four year old composer is spending his days—absent of the weight of routine commitments—composing (his Westchester commission, among other projects), learning Italian, […]

Gerald Cohen on Music, Religion, and the Bridge Between

Cohen at home in the studioPhoto by Susan Woog Wagner Westchester Prize-winning composer Gerald Cohen is a cantor at Temple Shaarei Tikvah in Scarsdale, New York, and when I spoke with him, I have to admit that I was most curious about what that means with regard to his music. What it is to be […]

Cohen and Bermel Win Westchester Prize for New Works

Cohen and Bermel awarded the Westchester Prize for New WorksPhotos by Susan Woog Wagner and Tom LeGoff Interview with Gerald Cohen Interview with Derek Bermel Three artists who have partnered with Westchester, New York, cultural organizations will share the Westchester Prize for New Works, a cash award intended to support the creation and premiere performance […]

The Matchmaker

recordstore

Creating ambiance is much more than adding a fish tank, some framed art, and a cool lamp or two. Therefore, I have taken it upon myself to add another dimension: music—so here are my spatial visions for the 36 new releases of American music this month.

Talking Shop with Kenneth Frazelle

North Carolina composer Kenneth FrazellePhoto courtesy Fine Arts Management “I’m not the contest winning-type,” composer Ken Frazelle protests when I reach him at his home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina to talk about his 2001 Barlow Prize. “The president of the Barlow Foundation called and I said, ‘You’re kidding,’ because I feel like something of an […]

Harrison Recognized as MA Composer of the Year

Photo by David Harsany Lou Harrison has been named Composer of the Year by Musical America. He was honored, along with the year’s other category winners, at a Carnegie Hall reception in December. The prestigious Musician of the Year went to British conductor Simon Rattle; Midori, Instrumentalist of the Year; René Pape, Vocalist of the […]

Kenneth Frazelle Awarded $10,000 Barlow Prize; Eight Others Receive Commissions

Barlow Endowment bestows $50,000 in commissions Interview with Kenneth Frazelle Nine commissions have been awarded by The Barlow Endowment for Music Composition at Brigham Young University. North Carolina composer Kenneth Frazelle has won the largest of these—the Barlow Prize. This year the $10,000 commission is for a sacred song cycle scheduled for premiere by Erie […]

Music America Needs Now

Do audiences need to be protected from provocative art?Picasso: Mère et Enfant, 1902. In the current social and political climate, what kind of art do audiences need? And what’s more, who should be deciding what they should see or what they can handle? That delicate question has been falling on presenters, conductors, and executive directors […]

Florida Philharmonic Throws New Music Overboard Trying to Save Ship

New music left in the wake of Florida Philharmonic revampPhoto by Ian Britton A program to present new music to Florida residents has become a casualty of the financial crunch facing the Florida Philharmonic. The orchestra has cancelled its Brief Encounters, a concept (credited to Music Director James Judd who has since resigned) that was […]