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Composers get big nods from Gerbode and Hewlett Foundations

When the 2010 Composer Collaboration Awards call for proposals went out on May 10, 2010, music presenters, ensembles, and composers all over the San Francisco Bay Area called, paged, and emailed one another, then got together to put their dream projects down on paper in time for the deadline. Today the staff and Boards of […]

We return to Now, already in progress

I first heard about the Long Now Foundation a couple years ago from friend and former bandmate Daniel Magazin. I remember visiting their web site and thinking that San Francisco was the perfect place for such an entity.  “The Long Now Foundation hopes to provide counterpoint to today’s “faster/cheaper” mind set and promote “slower/better” thinking,” […]

Other Minds seeks Composer Fellows

If, like me, you’re a composer and you routinely ask yourself “What am I doing six months from now?  Can I get something on the calendar?”, Other Minds has a suggestion – especially if you have a piece on the shelf for flute, Bb clarinet or bass clarinet, violin, cello or some combo thereof.  Or […]

It’s that time of year again.

The beginning of June has taken on a certain meaning to the San Francisco Bay Area new music community, and every single one of us would erase that meaning if we could.  It’s once again time for the Matthew Sperry Memorial Festival, held every year around this time in memory of one of our own, […]

They really didn’t plan it this way…

A year ago at this time, Susan McMane, Artistic Director of the San Francisco Girls Chorus, had no idea what a hot-button issue immigration would be in June 2010.  For her, the works of immigrant composers formed a compelling programmatic mix for her five-time Grammy-winning ensemble’s concert series, which she’d entitled A New Land, A […]

Let’s Ask Gyan Riley

The 15th Other Minds Festival kicks off this evening, offering San Francisco a three-day immersion in contemporary music from around the world.  One of the locals headlining this year is Gyan Riley, who’ll premiere his new quartet work commissioned by Other Minds, entitled When Heron Sings Blue. Equally well known as a classical guitar virtuoso […]

Let’s Ask Lisa Bielawa

2009 Frederic A. Juilliard/Walter Damrosch Rome Prize winner Lisa Bielawa has returned to her hometown of San Francisco to take part in the 2010 Other Minds festival. Her piece, Kafka Songs, will close the first night of the festival on Thursday, March 4th.  Violinist, vocalist and rock star Carla Kihlstedt, for whom Kafka Songs was […]

Unwrapping Small Packages on a Saturday Night

I like to plan ahead.  But does that just mean I’m too old to decide where I’m going at the last minute, like the Generation Y and Z impulsives we hear so much about at arts participation conferences?  You know, the ones who don’t know where they’re going until somebody they’re following tweets their destination […]

Let’s Ask Matt Davignon

Experimental music impresario Matt Davignon is known all over the San Francisco Bay Area for organizing unusual music performances.  In addition to being responsible for such events as the San Francisco Found Objects Festival, he’s a member of the Outsound Presents Board of Directors and the San Francisco Electronic Music Festival Steering Committee.  This Thursday […]

The Noises of Art

Many of us can recall a time, back in the day, when we brought cups of strong coffee to class and heard a professor tell us about the distant early days of “new music”.  Long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away (Italy), Luigi Russolo created his hand-cranked noise intoners – the intonarumori – […]