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New Music New Haven features guest composer Paul Dresher Oct. 2

Dresher “is a maverick in the very best sense of the word.”
— John Adams
September 30, 2014

Paul DresherThe first New Music New Haven concert of the 2014–2015 season will take place on Thursday, October 2 at 7:30 pm, featuring guest composer Paul Dresher with a performance of his piece Glimpsed from Afar.

Glimpsed from Afar is written for an instrument that Dresher invented: the Quadrachord. The instrument has a total string length of over thirteen feet, four strings of differing gauges but of equal length and an electric-bass pickup next to each of the two bridges. A truly unique creation, it can be bowed, plucked, prepared or hammered and emits a curious world of sounds. Dresher and Joel Davel will perform Glimpsed from Afar on this concert.

Joshua Kosman of the San Francisco Chronicle writes that Dresher has “an omnivorous sensibility that combines rock’n’roll, minimalism, Indian music and ambient sounds into a pungent and wonderfully elusive hybrid.”

The New Music New Haven series, which is directed by Hannah Lash and Christopher Theofanidis, also presents new works by YSM student composers. Student works on this program will include William Gardiner’s Hebbian Theory, a multi-movement work for an amplified trio of violin, clarinet and prepared piano; Michael Laurello’s Big Things, a quintet for electric guitar and bass, two percussionists, and piano; and Jesse Limbacher’s shadowed for string quartet.

The concert takes place in Morse Recital Hall (within Sprague Hall), located at 470 College Street (corner of College and Wall Streets), New Haven. Admission is free. For more information, visit music.yale.edu or contact the Yale School of Music concert office at 203 432-4158.


About the Guest Composer

Paul Dresher is an internationally active composer noted for his ability to integrate diverse musical influences into his own coherent and unique personal style. He pursues many forms of musical expression including experimental opera and music theater, chamber and orchestral composition, live instrumental electro-acoustic music performances, musical instrument invention, and scores for theater, dance, and film. FULL BIO

“Paul Dresher exemplifies the spirit of West Coast music both in the richness of his sound world as well as the inventiveness of his mind.… Paul has invented new instruments, both mechanical and electronic, each of which has expanded his musical thinking. To that he adds a background in North Indian and Balinese traditions, all of which results in music of exceptional individuality and beauty. He’s a maverick in the very best sense of the word.”
— John Adams, interview, 2004

“The music [in Dresher’s Tyrant] embraces pungent and delicate modernism even as it teases deftly with anxious waltz figures, menacing marches, and expansive lyricism.”
— Donald Rosenberg, The Plain Dealer (Cleveland), 2006