Author Archive

New York, NY —  Building on the success of their 2013-14 residency at Abrons Arts Center, Experiments in Opera returns to Abron’s Underground Theater from February 13-21, 2015 for the world premiere of Sisyphus, a reimagining of the complete Sisyphus story told by three composers. Experimenting with new collaborative processes and embracing the eclecticism of New York’s contemporary and DIY music scenes, EiO aims to expand their support of today’s composers looking to tell their stories through music.
There’s more to the myth of Sisyphus than a man pushing a boulder up a hill. In this new, collaboratively-composed evening-length opera, the famous story is twisted, pulled apart, and reassembled in a collage of characters, genres and questions. Sisyphus features texts and music by the three founders of Experiments in Opera: Jason Cady, Aaron Siegel, and Matthew Welch and is being developed in partnership with the director Ethan Heard and the designer Kristen Robinson.


Jason, Aaron and Matt decided that they wanted to write a piece together, each using their own unique musical languages but telling the same story. They chose Sisyphus as a way to continue the tradition of myths as mutable stories, changing with each telling depending on the background of the storyteller. In this new opera, Jason focuses primarily on the story of Sisyphus, whose legendary ego and excesses were the cause of his infamous punishment. Aaron tells the tragic story of Aegina, whose capture by Zeus is discovered and betrayed by Sisyphus. And Matt focuses on the never-ending hell that Sisyphus lives as a result of his transgressions. This version of Sisyphus will at turns be tragic, obsessive and hilarious, all in the course of a 60 minute, fully-staged production.
The opera is scored for 3 singers, soprano Lucy Dhegrae, mezzo-soprano Kate Maroney and tenor Vince B. Vincent.They will each embody a dizzying number of roles throughout the production and will be accompanied by Joe Bergen on vibraphone, Meaghan Burke on cello, Shawn Lovato on bass, Jason Cady on modular synthesizer and conducted by Matthew Welch.   Sisyphus will be directed by Ethan Heard, with stage designs by Kristen Robinson, lighting design by Masha Tsimring, and costume design by Maria Hooper.Production details:
February 13, 14, 20 & 21, 2015; 8pm
Abrons Arts Center | Underground Theater
466 Grand Street (at Pitt Street), New York, NY 10002
Tickets $20 at


Experiments in Opera presents STORY BINGE, seven new operas in a two-night operathon at Roulette in Brooklyn onApril 1 & 2, 2015. Over the course of this opera binge, you will hear the work of eight composers, whose arrival at opera couldn’t be more roundabout. The resulting pieces, one-act shorts and excerpts in concert and staged performances tell a range of absurd, abstract, historical and hilarious stories.

Production Details:
April 1-2, 2015, 8:00 PM
Roulette | Brooklyn, NY for tickets



Co-founded by composers Matthew Welch, Jason Cady, and Aaron Siegel, Experiments in Opera is a composer-driven initiative, featuring recent and new works with innovative answers to the traditional questions about how to connect words, story and music. Our activities respond to the pronounced need to nurture composers who are exploring musical work beyond a strictly concert setting, but furthermore into the hybrid genre of opera. Additionally Experiments in Opera builds supportive and informed audiences that are capable of contributing to its work.

Since 2011, Experiments in Opera has produced thirty new operas, collaborating with over one hundred performers, designers and directors from the New York City artist community. Experiments in Opera has presented the work of more than 20 composers including Jason Cady, Aaron Siegel, Matthew Welch, Georges Aperghis, John Zorn, Robert Ashley, Joe Diebes, Ruby Fulton, Gabrielle Herbst, Mary Kouyoumdjian, Justin Tierney, Leaha Maria Villarreal, the Cough Button collective, Jessica Pavone, Paul Pinto, Jonathan Mitchell, John King, Dave Ruder and Daniel Kushner. Venues have included Abrons Arts Center, Le Poisson Rouge, Roulette, and Issue Project Room.

All of the work developed with Experiments in Opera is documented extensively in videos, images and writings that are available in an online catalogue at  These insightful looks into the origins of artists’ ideas and their working habits help to support EIO’s mission of building a more robust conversation about how and why opera works the way it does.

The Abrons Arts Center, located at 466 Grand Street, New York, NY, is the performing and visual arts program of Henry Street Settlement. The Abrons supports the presentation of innovative, multi-disciplinary work; cultivates artists in all stages of their creative development through educational programs, commissions, and residencies; and serves as an intersection of cultural engagement for local, national, and international audiences and arts-workers. For more information, call (212) 598-0400 or visit





Comments Comments Off

92Y presents internationally acclaimed harpist Yolanda Kondonassis and virtuoso classical guitarist Jason Vieaux in recital. The concert is part of 92Y’s Art of the Guitar series and will include works off the duo’s recent release on Azica Records, Together, which highlight the interplay and blended sonorities of harp and guitar. Kondonassis and Vieaux will also each play a solo piece, with Vieaux performing an arrangement Antonio Carlos Jobim’s A Felicidade and Kondonassis performing Carlos Salzedo’s Chanson dans la nuit. The concert will mark the New York debut of the duo.

Comments Comments Off

Jeffrey Kahane

Jeffrey Kahane

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra Music Director Jeffrey Kahane serves as musical “tour guide” for LACO’s annual “Discover” program, which this season features a special one-night-only exploration of Mozart’s incomparable and deeply moving Requiem in D minor with special guests Alison King, soprano; Emily Fons, alto; Nicholas Phan, tenor; Aubrey Allicock, bass; and the Los Angeles Master Chorale, on Thursday, February 19, 2015, 8 pm, at Pasadena’s Ambassador Auditorium. The evening is designed to lead patrons to a greater understanding of Mozart’s musical capstone and to appreciate the work with “new ears.” Kahane, lauded for his “eloquence” (The New York Times), explores a different work each year for LACO’s annual Discover concert. According to LA Opening Nights, “Some conductors are born educators, and Jeffrey Kahane is one of them.” Adding a special flourish to Kahane’s introduction to the work are Antaeus Company actors John Sloan (Mozart) and JD Cullum (Salieri).

After Mozart left his final work—a Requiem mass—in a tantalizing state of incompleteness at his death, his widow, Constanze, desperate for the full commission fee, turned to Franz Süssmayr, the composer’s friend, who delivered a completed score. Noted fortepianist and Mozart scholar Robert Levin published a new edition of the Requiem in the 1990s, about which The New York Times proclaimed, “Where Süssmayr was timid, Mr. Levin is bold. [His] daring approach makes Mozart’s Requiem sound more convincing structurally and more vibrant musically.” Kahane explores the chilling legend and score of the masterpiece Mozart wrote on his deathbed. After intermission, Kahane conducts Levin’s innovative completion of this heart-wrenching work, followed by a question and answer segment with the audience.

Tickets (starting at $25) are on sale now and may be purchased online at, by calling LACO at 213 622 7001, or at the venue box office on the night of the concert, if tickets remain. Student rush tickets ($12), based on availability, may be purchased at the box office the day of the concert.

Comments Comments Off

Matthew Halls

Matthew Halls

Oregon Bach Festival Music Director/harpsichordist Matthew Halls, hailed as “a fresh and forceful talent” whose “music-making is strongly and clearly sculpted” (The Times, London), makes his debut on Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra’s popular Baroque Conversations series following his critically acclaimed conducting debut on its orchestral series last season, on Thursday, February 12, 2015, 7 pm, at Zipper Hall in downtown Los Angeles. From the harpsichord, Halls leads Rebel’s Les Élémens, Telemann’s Don Quixote Suite
and Bach’s Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D major, BWV 1068. A complimentary wine reception for all ticket holders begins at 6 pm.

Halls first came to prominence as a keyboard player and early music conductor, but he is now, in his thirties, better known for his dynamic and intelligent work with major symphony orches¬tras and opera companies, as well as for his probing and vibrant inter¬pretations of music of all periods. His numerous international engage¬ments have included appearances with the Cleveland and Salzburg Mozarteum orchestras, BBC Scottish and Frankfurt Radio symphonies, and the Seattle and Melbourne symphony orchestras, among others. 2014 marked his first season as artistic director of the prestigious Oregon Bach Festival.

LACO’s highly regarded five-concert “Baroque Conversations” series, now in its ninth year, explores the genesis of orchestral repertoire from early Baroque schools through the pre-classical period. In signature LACO style, each concert host shares insights into the music and invites questions from the audience, providing an in-depth look at the music being presented as well as an opportunity to get to know LACO artists on a more personal level.

Subscriptions to all five “Baroque Conversations” concerts ($250) are available by calling LACO at 213 622 7001. Tickets for individual concerts (beginning at $56) are available online at, by calling LACO at 213 622 7001, or at the venue box office on the night of the concert, if tickets remain. Discounted tickets are also available by phone for groups of 12 or more. College students may purchase student rush tickets ($12), based on availability, at the box office the day of the concert.

Comments Comments Off

Percussive Flyer (web)

Percussive will feature new music performed by the percussion quartet, Free the Birds, at Mimoda. Join us for great coffee at Paper or Plastik Cafe in front before stepping into the world of beautiful clanging.

Works by:

Matthew Allen
Jon Brenner
Derek Dobbs
Gregory Lenczycki
Ryan Lester
Linda Rife
Danielle Rosaria

Free the Birds:

Matthew Allen
Brian Cannady
Nikolaus Keelaghan
Sam Webster

March 7, 2015, 8pm

Mimoda Studio
5774 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90019

Get tickets


Comments Comments Off

Brooklyn, NY: Roulette presents The Renga Ensemble playing music from their recently released recording “The Room Is”, Wednesday, March 4, 8pm. This presentation will also feature several premiere of new compositions leader James Falzone has created especially for their nine-city US tour. Tickets can be purchased at:

Featuring James Falzone: Bb and Eb clarinets, Ned Rothenberg: Bb clarinet, alto saxophone, Ken Vandermark: Bb clarinet, bass clarinet, baritone saxophone, Keefe Jackson: tenor saxophone, bass clarinet, contra Bb bass clarinet, Jason Stein: bass clarinet, Ben Goldberg: Bb clarinet, contra Eb alto clarinet, The Renga Ensemble’s inspiration was derived from a brazenly clear haiku by American poet Anita Virgil. The ensemble, a gathering of six of the most adventurous and diverse clarinetists/saxophonists working in jazz and improvised music today, is named after a centuries old Japanese poetic practice where two or three poets blend their words into a single meditative work, is rooted in the personal voice of each member and the fertile ground that grows between the composed and the improvised.

James Falzone: Bb and Eb clarinets
Ned Rothenberg: Bb clarinet, alto saxophone
Ken Vandermark: Bb clarinet, bass clarinet, baritone saxophone
Keefe Jackson: tenor saxophone, bass clarinet, contra Bb bass clarinet
Jason Stein: bass clarinet
Ben Goldberg: Bb clarinet, contra Eb alto clarinet

About James Falzone
Multi-faceted clarinetist/composer James Falzone is an acclaimed member of Chicago’s jazz and creative improvised music scene, a veteran contemporary music lecturer and clinician and an award-winning composer who has been commissioned by chamber ensembles, choirs and symphony orchestras around the globe. He leads The Renga Ensemble and Allos Musica and has released nine highly regarded recordings on Allos Documents, a label he founded in 2000. James has performed in recital halls, festivals and jazz venues throughout North America and Europe, appears regularly on Downbeat magazine’s Critics’ and Readers’ Polls, and was nominated as the 2011 Clarinetist of the Year by the Jazz Journalist Association. His work has been featured in the New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, New Music Box, Point of Departure, and many other publications. Educated at New England Conservatory, James is a respected educator himself and is currently a Senior Lecturer at Columbia College Chicago and a research fellow at The Center For Black Music Research. Learn more at

About Roulette
Roulette – one of New York City’s premiere venues for experimental music for over 33 years – has reopened bigger and better than ever. Located in a newly renovated 1920s Art Deco concert hall in Downtown Brooklyn, the new Roulette features two levels of seating for up to 400 people (600 standing), an expanded multi-channel sound system, projection screen for film and multi-media events, state-of-the-art lighting system, modular stage, and a specially designed floor to accommodate dance. Teamed with bold new programming, the new Roulette promises to be one of the most exciting places in New York City – if not the country – to experience adventurous music and art.


Comments Comments Off

Frank Gehry

Frank Gehry

Frank Gehry and the world premiere of Frank’s House by LACO Composer-in-Residence Andrew Norman inspired by the celebrated architect’s extraordinary Santa Monica home are spotlighted at Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra’s (LACO) Westside Connections concert on Thursday, February, 5, 2015, 7:30 pm, at the Moss Theater, Santa Monica. Gehry is joined by Los Angeles Times Architecture Critic Christopher Hawthorne, The Juilliard School’s Ara Guzelimian, LACO Music Director Jeffrey Kahane and LACO Concertmaster Margaret Batjer for an unprecedented evening exploring compelling connections between music and architecture. The Westside Connections series concert, curated and hosted by Batjer, includes conversations with the special guests as well as musical offerings connecting form, structure and line featuring Kahane, LACO Principal Timpani/Percussion Wade Culbreath, percussionist Ted Atkatz and pianist Joanne Pearce Martin. On the program are Bartók’s Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion (1937) and two works by Bach, transcribed by Kurtág for piano four hands, Chorale Prelude, “O Lamb of God most holy” (VIII), and Sonatina from Actus tragicus, “God’s time is the best time,” BWV 106, as well as the world premiere by Norman, whose music has been hailed by The New York Times for its “daring juxtapositions and dazzling col¬ors.”

Gehry, one of the most acclaimed architects of our time, is renowned for his bold, iconic postmodern designs including architectural masterworks such as Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, Dancing House in Prague and the Louis Vuitton Foundation in Paris, which opened in late 2014 to great acclaim. Based in Los Angeles, he received the prestigious Pritzker Prize in 1986, was the subject of a documentary film by director Sydney Pollack, and has become a leading figure in mainstream culture, appearing in an Apple commercial and playing himself in an episode of the hit television show “The Simpsons.” He compares architecture to music, saying, “It’s like jazz. You improvise, you work together, you play off each other, you make something.”

Norman is considered among the most intriguing musical voices of his generation. As a lifelong enthusiast for all things architectural, he draws on an eclectic mix of instrumental sounds and notational practices and writes music that is often inspired by forms and textures he encounters in the visual world. He is the recipient of the ASCAP Nissim Prize, Rome Prize and Berlin Prize, and his The Companion Guide to Rome was named a finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Norman teaches at the USC Thornton School of Music.

The three-part Westside Connections series, now in its seventh season, continues on March 19, 2015, with special guest award-winning architect Frederick Fisher, who approaches architecture as a collaborative process, and Brahms’s breathtaking String Quintet as well as Kevin Puts’s Arches for solo violin, featuring Batjer. It concludes April 30, 2015, with Los Angeles Times Architecture Critic Christopher Hawthorne as special guest and the West Coast premiere of Gabriel Kahane’s Bradbury Studies, inspired by downtown LA’s historic Bradbury Building.

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra is considered one of the world’s premier chamber orchestras as well as a leader in presenting wide-ranging repertoire and adventurous commissions. Its 2014-15 season, the Orchestra’s 46th, features a compelling mix of beloved masterpieces and genre-defying premieres from firmly established as well as notable up-and-coming composers programmed by Jeffrey Kahane, one of the world’s foremost conductors and pianists, who marks his 18th season as LACO’s music director.

Tickets (beginning at $60) are available online at, by calling LACO at 213 622 7001, or at the venue box office on the night of the concert, if tickets remain. Subscriptions to all three Westside Connections concerts are available for $135. Student rush tickets ($12), based on availability, may be purchased at the box office one hour before the concert. Also available for college students is the $30 “Campus to Concert Hall All Access Pass” – good for LACO’s three Westside Connections concerts at the Moss Theater, seven Orchestral Series concerts at either the Alex Theatre or UCLA’s Royce Hall and Discover Mozart’s Requiem at Ambassador Auditorium. Discounted tickets are also available by phone for groups of 12 or more. The Moss Theater at New Roads School is located at 3131 Olympic Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA, 90404.

Comments Comments Off

What: Jason Kao Hwang’s Sing House & Amygdala
When: Friday, February 6 , 8pm
Where: Roulette, 509 Atlantic Ave Brooklyn, 2/3/4/5/A/C/G/D/M/N/R/B/Q trains & the LIRR
Cost: Tickets $20, Members/Students/Seniors: $15, Series Members – $10, FREE for All Access Members
Info: / 917.267.0368

Brooklyn, NY: Roulette is excited to present Jason Kao Hwang’s Sing House & Amygdala, Friday, February 6, 2015 at 8pm. Hwang, a celebrated and seasoned composer, violin and viola artist has and continues to create works ranging from jazz, new and world music. In 2012 the Downbeat Critics’ Poll voted him “Rising Star for Violin.” Both his Sing House and Amygdala ensembles bring together some of the premier players of jazz active today.

Tickets can be purchased at:

About the Program
Sing House
Within Sing House, the score’s quintessential melodies, rhythms, harmonies and textures offer rooms in which musicians extemporaneously sing. In this dramatic architecture, the unique voice of each musician is empowered to individually interpret and also, transcend interpretation to become an originating spirit that is inextricably unified to the composition’s destiny. This is how music grows greater than the imagination of one to become a meta-language of memories, dreams and hope. This is how the compositions of Jason Kao Hwang house imagination, identity, and greater purpose. This is the jazz of Sing House.

Sing House
Andrew Drury – drum set
Ken Filiano – string bass
Chris Forbes – piano
Steve Swell – trombone
Jason Kao Hwang – composer/violin/viola

Amygdala explores cross-cultural language, timbre, and space within expressions focused within while projected outwards. The ensemble is named after the brain’s amgydala, which is a mass of nuclei that governs our emotional responses and memories faster and prior to intellectual interventions. The amygdala is where our survival instincts reside.

Rami Seo – gayageum
Michael Wimberly – djembe, percussion
Jason Kao Hwang – composer/violin/viola

About Roulette
Roulette – one of New York City’s premiere venues for experimental music for over 33 years – has reopened bigger and better than ever. Located in a newly renovated 1920s Art Deco concert hall in Downtown Brooklyn, the new Roulette features two levels of seating for up to 400 people (600 standing), an expanded multi-channel sound system, projection screen for film and multi-media events, state-of-the-art lighting system, modular stage, and a specially designed floor to accommodate dance. Teamed with bold new programming, the new Roulette promises to be one of the most exciting places in New York City – if not the country – to experience adventurous music and art.


Comments Comments Off

Jon Nakamatsu and Jon ManasseCONTRASTS

From Ragtime to Romantic Riches

Friday, February 6 at 8:15 pm
Christ & St. Stephen’s Church
129 West 69th Street
New York, NY

Among the most celebrated musicians of our day, pianist Jon Nakamatsu and clarinetist Jon Manasse join violinist Stephanie Chase in a concert program inspired by Bartok’s chamber work for an unusual combination of instruments.

Don’t miss this exploration of diverse musical styles- including jazz, popular, contemporary, Romantic, gypsy, and ragtime – with these “outstanding” (New York Times) musicians!

Leonard Bernstein – Sonata for clarinet and piano (1941-42)
Johannes Brahms – Sonata for violin and piano, Op. 78 (1878-79)
Béla Bartók – Contrasts (1938)
John Novacek – Four Rags for Two Jons (2006)

Tickets: Advance tickets are available at  Admission also at the door: $30 adult, $20 senior/student, cash or check only. Doors open at 7:15 pm.

Stephanie Chase is recognized as “one of the violin greats of our era” (Newhouse Newspapers) through appearances with eminent orchestras that have included the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, Dallas Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Hanover Band, and London Symphony.  Her performances are acclaimed for their “elegance, dexterity, rhythmic vitality and great imagination” (Boston Globe) as well as “stunning power” (Louisville Courier-Journal) and “matchless technique” (BBC Music Magazine).

American pianist Jon Nakamatsu continues to draw unanimous praise as a true aristocrat of the keyboard, whose playing combines elegance, clarity, and electrifying power. A native of California, Mr. Nakamatsu came to international attention in 1997 when he was named Gold Medalist of the Tenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, the only American to have achieved this distinction since 1981. Mr. Nakamatsu has performed widely in North and South America, Europe, and the Far East, collaborating with such conductors as James Conlon, Marek Janowski, Raymond Leppard, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Osmo Vänskä and Hans Vonk. He also performed at a White House concert hosted by President and Mrs. Clinton.

Clarinetist Jon Manasse is internationally acclaimed for his inspiring artistry, uniquely glorious sound and charismatic performing style. His solo appearances include performances at the major venues of New York City and fourteen tours of Japan and Southeast Asia with the New York Symphonic Ensemble, concerts in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, and Osaka, and acclaimed concerto performances with Gerard Schwarz and the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra in New York and Tokyo.

Pre-concert talk at 7:30, included in concert admission: “Music and Early Childhood” by Dr. Yeou-Cheng Ma.

Yeou-Cheng MaDr. Yeou-Cheng Ma is a Developmental Pediatrician and a musician. A graduate of Radcliffe College and Harvard Medical School, she works with children with developmental disorders in the Bronx and Queens. A former child prodigy who at age five became a pupil of violinist Arthur Grumiaux, she is the Executive Director of The Children’s Orchestra Society – which was founded by her father – and performs as a chamber musician in addition to teaching violin, viola, and chamber music for COS. Informally known as the “Music Doctor,” Dr. Ma’s recent interests include optimizing communication in all children, exploring the relationship of music to young children’s temperament, and using music as a means to find the “inner language” of children who have difficulties in verbal communication.

Inspired by the Neo-Platonic academies of 16th and 17th-century Italy, which combined discourse with musical presentations, the Music of the Spheres Society was founded in 2001 by its artistic director, Stephanie Chase, and Ann Ellsworth.  Its mission is to promote classical music through innovative chamber music concerts and pre-concert lectures which illuminate music’s historical, philosophical and scientific foundations, in order to give greater context for music to the average audience member.

For more information, visit the Music of the Spheres Society website or call (212) 877-4402.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments Comments Off

Los Angeles Master Chorale

Los Angeles Master Chorale

The Los Angeles Master Chorale (LAMC), in one of the most highly anticipated collaborations of the season, joins forces with the renowned period instrument ensemble Musica Angelica Baroque Orchestra and the acclaimed Los Angeles Children’s Chorus to present two historically informed performances of Bach’s towering masterwork St. Matthew Passion, conducted by LAMC Artistic Director Grant Gershon, on Saturday, January 31, 2 pm, and Sunday, February 1, 2015, 7 pm, at Walt Disney Concert Hall. Soloists include Pablo Corá, tenor; Janelle DeStefano, mezzo soprano; Arnold Livingston Geis, tenor; Callista Hoffman-Campbell, mezzo soprano; Elissa Johnston, soprano; Jon Lee Keenan, tenor (Evangelist); Chung Uk Lee, bass (Jesus); Steve Pence, bass/baritone; Vincent Robles, baritone; Zanaida Robles, soprano; Anna Schubert, soprano; Laura Smith, mezzo soprano; and Niké St. Clair, mezzo soprano.

Bach’s musical interpretation of the biblical Passion story written nearly 300 years ago and considered “one of the pillars of Western sacred music” (National Public Radio) continues to deeply touch and inspire audiences around the globe with its message of humanity. This marks the sixth collaboration between the Chorale and Musica Angelica, hailed for its commanding performances “stylishly played” (Los Angeles Times). The Los Angeles Children’s Chorus, under the direction of Anne Tomlinson, which frequently performs with the Chorale, has been called “one of the world’s foremost children’s choirs” (Pasadena Star News), and described by critics as “hauntingly beautiful” (Los Angeles Times) and “astonishingly polished” (Performances Magazine).

The concert is sponsored in part by The Blue Ribbon; Carol and Warner Henry; and the E. Nakamichi Foundation.
Tickets range from $29 – $129. Group rates are available. For tickets and information, please call (213) 972-7282, or visit (Tickets cannot be purchased at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office except on concert days starting 2 hours prior to the performance.) The Walt Disney Concert Hall is located at 111 South Grand Avenue at First Street in downtown Los Angeles.

Comments Comments Off