New York New Music Ensemble

IWU School of Music to Host Annual Symposium

March 29, 2006

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - The internationally renowned New York New Music Ensemble will be the featured performance group at Illinois Wesleyan University School of Music's annual Symposium of Contemporary Music.  The symposium will be sponsored by Illinois State University, Illinois Wesleyan, Millikin University and the IWU University Speakers Committee and will be held Wednesday, April 12 through Friday, April 14.

The annual Symposium of Contemporary Music, established in 1952, brings prominent guest composers or performers to campus for a two to three day residency.

All events will be free and open to the public and will take place in Westbrook Auditorium of Presser Hall (1210 North Park St.).

On Thursday, April 13, at 4 p.m. there will be a panel discussion titled "Life as a Performer of Music."  The panel will consist of all the members of the ensemble and will be moderated by David Vayo, IWU professor of composition and theory.

The ensemble will perform a concert titled "Five Premieres" on Friday, April 15, at 7:30 p.m.  The concert will present new works by faculty composers from the three sponsoring schools.  The program will include: "Bencharong" by Narong Prangcharoen, ISU; "Cycles" by Jeremy Brunk, Millikin; "Awakening of the Heart" by Vayo, IWU; Marimba and Pre-Recorded Tape by John Stafford, Millikin; and A Musical Narrative for Expanded "Pierrot Ensemble" by Mario J. Pelusi, IWU.

The New York New Music Ensemble has been performing, recording and teaching for 29 years and have released 20 recordings to date.  Members of the ensemble include: Jayn Rosenfeld, first flutist in the Princeton Symphony orchestra and professor at Juilliard and Princeton University; Jean Kopperud, clarinetist, faculty member at Juilliard and adjunct faculty at Sarah Lawrence College and Colombia University; Linda Quan, violinist, faculty at Vassar College; Christopher Finckel, cellist, guest artist with the Tokyo String Quartet and founding member of the North Country Chamber Players of New Hampshire; Stephen Gosling, pianist, graduate of Juilliard's bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs, and noted performer of contemporary music; Dominic Donato, percussionist, professor at Purchase College and regular performer with the Brooklyn Philharmonic; and James Baker, noted conductor of concert music and Broadway shows.

The group has toured throughout the United States, Europe, South America, China and Japan, and has been described as "player for player, perhaps the best new music group in the country." by The New York Times.  The group's interests range from music of emerging composers to pieces involving electronic techniques.  From a host of composers that have written specifically for the ensemble are Milton Babbitt, John Eaton and Joseph Schwantner.  The ensemble will be in residence at the State University of New York at Buffalo and IWU in addition to its usual New York performance season.

As part of the symposium each member of the group will give a master class on his or her instrument.  Students and faculty from ISU, IWU and Millikin University will participate in these classes.  Following is a list of the classes:

  • Cello in Westbrook Auditorium on Wednesday, April 12, from 2:30 to 4 p.m.
  • Flute in Presser Hall, room 308 on Wednesday, April 12, from 2:30 to 4 p.m.
  • Piano in Westbrook Auditorium on Thursday, April 13, from 2 to 3:30 p.m.
  • Violin in Presser Hall, room 308 on Thursday, April 13, from 2 to 3:30 p.m.
  • Percussion in Westbrook Auditorium on Friday, April 14, from 2:30 to 4 p.m.
  • Clarinet in Presser Hall, room 308 on Friday, April 14, from 2:30 to 4 p.m.

For more information, contact the Office of the School of Music at (309) 556-3061.

 Contact: Kay Mitchell, (309) 556-3181