Composer/keyboardist/producer Elodie Lauten creates operas, music for dance and theatre, orchestral, chamber and instrumental music. Not a household name, she is however widely recognized by historians as a leading figure of post-minimalism and a force on the new music scene, with 20 releases on a number of labels.

Her opera Waking in New York, Portrait of Allen Ginsberg was presented by the New York City Opera (2004 VOX and Friends) in May 2004, after being released on 4Tay, following three well-received productions. OrfReo, a new opera for Baroque ensemble was premiered at Merkin Hall by the Queen's Chamber Band, whose New Music Alive CD (released on Capstone in 2004) includes Lauten's The Architect. The Orfreo CD was released in December 2004 on Studio 21. In September 2004 Lauten was composer-in-residence at Hope College, MI. Lauten's Symphony 2001, was premiered in February 2003 by the SEM Orchestra in New York. In 1999, Lauten's Deus ex Machina Cycle for voices and Baroque ensemble (4Tay) received strong critical acclaim in the US and Europe. Lauten's Variations On The Orange Cycle (Lovely Music, 1998) was included in Chamber Music America's list of 100 best works of the 20th century.

Born in Paris, France, she was classically trained as a pianist since age 7. She received a Master's in composition from New York University where she studied Western composition with Dinu Ghezzo and Indian classical music with Ahkmal Parwez. Daughter of jazz pianist/drummer Errol Parker, she is also a fluent improviser. She became an American citizen in 1984 and has lived in New York since the early seventies

Visit Elodie Lauten's Web Site
Thursday, April 02, 2009
Women's History Month Ends

As March comes to a close, I wanted to mention a couple of events involving the New York Women Composers organization. On February 14, the Light and Sound ensemble, a new trio formed by violinist Julianne Klopotic with Jennifer DeVore on cello and Elaine Kwon on piano performing on a regular basis at the wonderful Old Stone House in Brooklyn, a quaint historic residence where the wood paneling and floors provide great acoustics and a "fireplace", warm atmosphere, presented works by Margarita Zelenaia from Russia, Beth Anderson, Rain Worthington, Svjetlana Bukvich-Nichols from Bosnia, Judith Zaimont and myself.

On March 25, at the Greenwich House, a program entitled Women's Work, curated by Beth Anderson and the New York Women Composers, was performed by Mimi Stern-Wolfe on piano, Andrew Bolotowsky on flute and Mary Hurlbut, soprano. It features pieces by Lucy F. Coolidge, Judith Sainte Croix, Sorrell Hays, Lenore Von Stein, Anne Tardos, Tamara Bliss and myself (for the living composers) as well as Tui St George Tucker and the interesting Cecile Chaminade, one of the few French female composers being rediscovered (1857-1944). The auditorium a Greenwich House Music School was packed. This location also boasts excellent acoustics.

I haven't seen much coverage of these well-organized and exciting events. It appears to me that the media have generally been somewhat reluctant to promote women in March this year... or maybe the whole idea of women's history month has lost its gloss - it is old news by now? I'll miss it. I used to think that women's events were reinforcing the ghettoization of women and therefore avoided them somewhat. I believed that women's music should be presented along with men's music without any discrimination based on gender, and that one should not have to go to a women's music event in order to hear music by women composers. Women still have to go a long way to be equally represented on the music scene. I once had an idea of a program entitled "Is there women's music" where pieces by men and women would be played and the audience would be invited to guess who wrote them. It would be an interesting expreriment. I don't believe that women's music is in essence different than music written by men: a composer, either female or male, has a developed a strong individuality through the "trenches" of the composing process.