Composer Anthony Cornicello (born in Brooklyn, New York, 1964) writes music that blurs distinctions between performers and electronics, timbre and harmony, composition and improvisation, and explores the boundaries of what may be considered post-classical concert music. His music is vibrant and visceral, full of rhythmic energy and harmonic sophistication, and his forays into live electronics have led to exciting combinations of instruments and processed sound. Cornicello’s background as a jazz pianist is evident not only in the rhythmic activity of his music, but also in his constant investigation of the rich sonorities available from a variety of instruments.

He has been commissioned to write music for the Scorchio Electric String Quartet, ModernWorks! (funding from Meet the Composer/ Commissioning Music USA), the Auros Group for New Music, the Prism Saxophone Quartet, the New York New Music Ensemble, David Holzman, the Group for Contemporary Music, and the InterEnsemble of Padova, Italy. His work has also been featured on the Guggenheim Museum’s “Works and Process” series. Cornicello’s works have also been performed by the Chicago Civic Symphony, Parnassus, ALEA III, Composers Concordance, Madeleine Shapiro, Robert Black, among many other outstanding groups and solo performers. His music has been presented as part of the Darmstadt International Festival of New Music as well as the June in Buffalo Festival.

Cornicello’s Second String Quartet has been recorded by the Atlantic String Quartet; the Second Sonata for Piano by David Holzman (Centaur). More recently, his Post-Modern Waltz was recorded by Eric Moe for Albany Records. A portrait CD of Cornicello’s works is scheduled for 2006 release on Albany Records.

As a performer, he has conducted or played piano in his own works on numerous occasions. While a graduate student at Rutgers, he formed and directed the Janus Ensemble, a group dedicated to contemporary music. More recently, Cornicello has begun performing on the laptop, using a variety of interfaces and the Max/MSP program. Those performances, mostly with EEE!, have had a notable impact on his music, as EEE!’s music ranges from hip-hop to experimental noise. EEE! is based at Eastern Connecticut State University, where Cornicello is an Associate Professor and Director of the Electronic Music Lab.

Cornicello received the Ph.D. from Brandeis University, where he studied with David Rakowski, Eric Chasalow, and Martin Boykan. His teachers also include Charles Wuorinen, Gérard Grisey, and Richard Beirach.

His current fields of interest include developing unusual interfaces for live computer music performances, as well as continuing to investigate resonance and spatialization. His recent and current projects (mostly for string instruments and electronics) have been exploring the latter two, and the series of experimental works ReZenant Garden, performed by EEE! have operated on all three areas of interest. Future projects will include works for instrumental groups or soloists and electronics, as well as turntablists.

Cornicello's works are published by C.F. Peters Corporation and APNM, and he is a member of BMI.

Friday, March 16, 2007
No review, but wine...

The concert on Tuesday night went quite well. You know the old adage about how a bad dress rehearsal often preceeds a good concert? Well, the dress rehearsal was awful - there was a handful of technical problems on almost all the pieces. I had a bizarre error that caused Max to repeatedly freeze. I later discovered that I had changed settings on a reverb unit that had put it into perpetual feedback. Computers don't like things like that. It was fixed, and the performance went really well. I must say, I truly love working with people like ModernWorks. I never for once doubted that my piece would receive a top-notch, caring performance - and I was right.

I should have known everything would turn out good. I got in to NYC early enough to get to Academy Records (on 18th Street), and found a few goodies. And, to top things off, I found a free, legal, and safe parking spot in the Village, right near our performance site.

Anyway, I looked today to see if there were any reviews, and it appears that there were none. I have this knack for having pieces on concerts that are not reviewed. I've been on concerts where the reviewer comes to the next concert in the series, but not mine. I'm sure it's nothing personal, just dumb luck.

But what I did find on my search today was this:

Apparently, someone has a wine company called "Vino Cornicello." You can see it here. I've written to the company, asking how I can order some. I'm hoping for a family discount....