[ events ]

Yale School of Music to be featured in 2016 NY Phil Biennial

Martin Bresnick, composer

The Yale School of Music and its New Music New Haven series will be highlighted in the 2016 NY Phil Biennial, a wide-ranging exploration of today’s music by an array of contemporary and modern composers. YSM’s performance will take place on May 25, 2016 at The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space at WQXR, the performance will be streamed live via webcast on WQXR’s new-music channel, Q2 Music, and Q2 Music’s Helga Davis will host the performance.

The program represents the past, present, and future of the composition program of the Yale School of Music, established in 1894, whose composition faculty has included Paul Hindemith, Krzysztof Penderecki, and Jacob Druckman. The program opens with songs by Yale alumnus Charles Ives — “our historically most distinguished student,” according to Yale composition chair Martin Bresnick — and concludes with a song by “one of our very promising current students (and fellow New Englander)” Hilary Purrington. MORE

Published October 27, 2015
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[ concerts ]

Faculty Artist Series features Wendy Sharp Oct. 18

sharpThe Faculty Artist Series at the Yale School of Music presents award-winning violinist Wendy Sharp in recital on Sunday, October 18 at 4:00 pm. Ms. Sharp will be joined by pianist Joel Wizansky.

The recital will open with Dvořák’s Sonatina for violin and piano, followed by Prokofiev’s Violin Sonata No. 1 in F minor. Prokofiev described parts of this sonata as “wind passing through a graveyard,” and movements from the work were played at the composer’s funeral.

After intermission, the program’s mood will lighten with works by two YSM faculty composers. First is Aaron Jay Kernis’s Air, which the composer describes as “a love letter to the violin.” MORE

Published October 2, 2015
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[ concerts ]

New Music New Haven features three faculty composers Nov. 20

Christopher Theofanidis

Christopher Theofanidis

The Yale School of Music presents a New Music New Haven concert on Thursday, November 20, 2014 at 7:30 pm. The concert will feature three duets by faculty composers Martin Bresnick, Aaron Jay Kernis, and Christopher Theofanidis.

The featured composers comprise the second half of the program. Kaoru for two flutes, by Christopher Theofanidis, will be performed by Andrew Robson and Victor Wang. MORE

Published November 17, 2014
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[ in the press ]

New Music Box: “Which of these Aaron Jay Kernises am I?”

Aaron Jay KernisNew Music BoxBy Frank J. Oteri

When he was just 23, he was thrust into a kind of stardom that many dream of but few ever achieve. He reached one of the top levels of fame in a career which, at the time, rarely paid attention to someone so young—in fact, in a career that rarely paid attention to someone alive. He was aspiring to be a composer of orchestra music and it was the early 1980s. The name John Adams, whom he had recently studied with, had just barely started to register in the national consciousness. This was before the Meet The Composer Orchestra Residency Program was launched. Sure, Philip Glass and Steve Reich had already become familiar names, but it was certainly not due to orchestra concerts. But a major American orchestra played a piece by this young composer on a festival that was attended by critics from all over the country. The conductor of the orchestra attempted to show him who was the boss during an open rehearsal. He talked back. The audience ate it up and he became something of a cause célèbre. He was suddenly the next big thing, the person to watch. MORE

Published September 4, 2014
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[ faculty ]

Aaron Jay Kernis receives A.I. duPont Composer’s Award

Aaron Jay KernisFaculty composer Aaron Jay Kernis has recently received the 2014 A.I. duPont Composer’s Award from the Delaware Symphony Orchestra. He has also been selected for induction into the American Classical Music Hall of Fame.

The duPont Composer’s Award from the Delaware Symphony Orchestra recognizes a living American composer or conductor who has contributed significantly to contemporary classical music. Kernis, a Philadelphia native and 1998 Pulitzer Prize winner, will accept the prize at the DSO’s final chamber concert on April 1. The program will feature music by Kernis’s Musica Celestis alongside selections by Webern and Mendelssohn.

Kernis’ induction into the American Classical Music Hall of Fame, succeeds his induction into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. The American Classical Music Hall of Fame, located in Cincinnati, Ohio, seeks to build and sustain enthusiasm for classical music in contemporary America by celebrating diverse facts of classical music excellence. MORE

Published March 27, 2014
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[ in the press ]

Kernis concerto inspires student work on display at PSO exhibition


Princeton Symphony Orchestra is set to present an exhibition of art, poetry and prose by local middle school students called Listening to the Colored Field.

The works on display are the culmination of students’ participation in Listen Up!, a special music initiative offered through PSO’s BRAVO! education program designed to encourage creativity through active listening.

Students listened to composer Aaron Jay Kernis’ cello concerto Colored Field, written in response to a stirring tour of Auschwitz Holocaust sites, at PSO’s Nov. 3 Eternal Light concert. The students created their own responses to Kernis’ music and its reflection of the Holocaust, working independently and in groups. MORE

Published January 7, 2014
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[ in the press ]

Radio interview with Aaron Jay Kernis

Faculty composer Aaron Jay Kernis talks to David Alan Miller of the Albany Symphony Orchestra on WAMC Northeast Public Radio.

The Albany Symphony Orchestra will premiere Kernis’ piece Three Flavors for Piano & Orchestra on October 19th. In the interview, Kernis discusses diverse topics including teaching at Yale, his compositional process, and the genesis of Three Flavors.


Published October 14, 2013
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[ concerts ]

New Music New Haven presents music by Aaron Jay Kernis, Hannah Lash Oct. 3

lashThe Yale School of Music presents the first New Music New Haven concert of the season on Thursday, October 3, 2013. The featured faculty composers are Aaron Jay Kernis and Hannah Lash, whose music will be featured alongside new works by graduate students in the school’s composition program.

The program opens with Benjamin Wallace‘s Birthday Suite, a collection of seven short works for mixed ensemble written for friends on their respective birthdays. Brendon Randall-MyersFor Ronny is written in memory of the composer’s grandfather for the ensemble of piano, electric guitar, violin, viola, and cello. MORE

Published September 16, 2013
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New Music New Haven features faculty composer Aaron Jay Kernis in Apr. 30 concert


The Yale School of Music presents a New Music New Haven concert on Tuesday, April 30, 2013. The concert features faculty composer Aaron Jay Kernis and his 2011 piece da L’Arte della Danssar, written for the unusual combination of soprano, flute, viola, harp, and percussion.

The concert also features new music by graduate composers in the School of Music’s prestigious composition program: Stephen Feigenbaum,  William Gardiner,  Michael Holloway,  Bálint Karosi, and  Brendon Randall-Myers.

Kernis’s piece, translated in English as From the Art of Dance, is inspired by the music and dance of Renaissance Italy. Kernis said, “Over the course of my composing life I’ve been repeatedly drawn to dance, and my works are full of references to it. This most recent group of works draws upon my fascination with mid–15th-century texts and music of that time (and slightly later), which I very happily channeled.” MORE

Published April 12, 2013
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