Cooper was selected from a pool of 134 highly-qualified applicants from around the world. The selection panel included the four members of the Calder Quartet and Festival director Matt McBane. The aesthetic of many of Cooper’s compositions comes from his interest in recreating the sound of digitally slowed down music for live ensembles. The result is slow-motion music that the panel found to be unique and emotionally powerful.
As the winner of the competition, Jacob Cooper won a $3,000 co-commission from the Festival and ArtPower@UCSD to write a major new piece for the Calder Quartet. It will be premiered at the 2011 Festival and performed again at The Loft at UCSD on January 27, 2012.
Jacob Cooper commented: “I’m delighted to be the commissioned composer for this year’s festival. I had the opportunity to see the Calders play Christopher Rouse’s new quartet at Zankel Hall recently, and they totally nailed the harrowingly difficult piece. Many of my recent works have included amplification and live processing (through a laptop), and I expect that my Carlsbad piece will continue in this vein. Whatever notes end up on the page, I know they will be in good hands.”