Karen Keyhani (b.1979) belongs to the new movement of contemporary music in Iran: a movement that has its roots equally the same in Persian classical, in music of the region, and in Western Contemporary Classical Music. As a composer and santour virtuoso he is inspired by contemporary and classical poetry as well as traditional music.
He received his B.A degree in traditional music from Tehran Azad University and took a master’s degree in contemporary music composition from Art University of Tehran (His master’s dissertation was titled Requiem for Symphonic Orchestra, which was awarded the best dissertation from Ministry of Science, Research and Technology in 2009). He is a lecturer on Analysis and Composition in the composition department of Art University of Tehran and The Music School for Girls, Tehran, since 2011.
Karen's music covers a wide range of contemporary classical, Persian traditional, collaborative improvisation, new age, and music for film, theatre, performance art, and children's musical theatre. His music is performed by several ensembles such as Divertimento (Milan), Mise-en (New York City), Matka (Geneva), Maroon Trio (Kansas City), London New Wind Festival ensemble, Tehran Chamber Orchestra, Scheherazade Quartet, and Talalyan Quartet, among others. Thus far, he released four solo and collaborative albums in Iran and the United States, and his scores have been published by Part publications in Tehran during recent years.
As a Santour player, Karen has performed in several prominent musical projects from 1996, with Mehraein ensemble (founded by Karen Keyhani), Mowlana ensemble, Traditional ensemble of ministry of culture, Tehran chamber orchestra, etc.
Karen Keyhani was selected in 2013 by République et canton de Genève and EOFA (Embassy of Foreign Artists, Geneva) as composer in residence for a joint project with MATKA ensemble of contemporary music, where he composed As Far As Possible for Santour and Ensemble.
Robert A. Baker
Robert A. Baker is a composer, theorist, and conductor of new music. His compositions have been performed at festivals and conferences in North America and Europe including: the St. Magnus Festival (UK); Jihlava International Choral Festival (Czech Republic); Festival "Giuseppe Rosetta" (Italy); New Music North (Canada); Miami New Music ISCM and ensemble mise-en Festivals (USA). Recent premieres include a violin concerto, … and wondrous strange snow (commissioned by SONAR New Music Ensemble of Baltimore, 2014) and a work for soprano, choir, and orchestra, Lunam –Stellam – Rorate caeli, (premiered by The Catholic University of America Choirs and Orchestra, at the National Basilica, Washington, DC, 2015).
His research focuses on 20th-Century analysis, with an emphasis on issues of temporality and the perception of musical form. Recent writings include analyses of music by Wolfgang Rihm, Pierre Boulez, and Henri Dutilleux, and he has presented his research at numerous conferences across North America such as the Music Theory Society of the Mid-Atlantic, the West Coast Conference for Music Theory and Analysis, College Music Society, The Canadian University Music Society, and he has been published in Circuit musique contemporaines. Baker received a Ph.D. in Composition from McGill University in 2009, and is currently Assistant Professor of Theory and Composition at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
Nolan Stolz is a composer, music theorist, and drummer currently living in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Stolz has an individual compositional voice: one that is clearly influenced by his performance background in jazz fusion and progressive rock, yet firmly rooted in the contemporary classical tradition. His compositions have been performed throughout the United States, Canada, South America, and across Europe, including several national and international festivals and conferences. Stolz has been commissioned by the Alturas Duo, CCSU Chamber Players, Synchronix, LVA Jazz Ensemble, Las Vegas Music Festival Orchestra, SUNY-Stony Brook, and several solo performers. Stolz’s works may be heard on releases from Ablaze, ESM, Six Strings Sounds, and Tributary Music. In 2014, his flute piece Princess Ka‘iulani was published in SCI Journal of Scores (51).
Stolz has won several awards, including the Max DiJulio Composition Prize for Haystacks for orchestra, and was the winner of the Composers Voice Dance Collaboration Competition for Remnants of Bullfrog, Nevada for fixed electronic media and dance. Stolz has published articles and given papers on his own compositions, progressive rock, microtonal music, theory-composition pedagogy, and jazz improvisation pedagogy at several regional, national, and international conferences. He is currently writing a book about Black Sabbath’s music for Scarecrow Press. Dr. Stolz holds degrees from The Hartt School, University of Oregon, and University of Nevada-Las Vegas. Stolz is currently Assistant Professor and Coordinator of the music program at University of South Carolina Upstate. Previously, he taught at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, Southeast Missouri State University, University of South Dakota, and at two community colleges in Connecticut.
A man whose music has been described as “rapturous, argumentative, and prickly” (Gramophone Magazine), and “fascinatingly strange” (BBC Music Magazine), award-winning composer Arthur Gottschalk is Professor of Music Composition and Theory at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. He founded the university’s electronic and computer music laboratories, and was its Director until 2002. Active in his community, he is a sponsor member of the Texas Freedom Network and of Planned Parenthood, a Board Member for the American Diabetes Association (and for whom he co-sponsors an annual charity golf tournament), and a member of the Campaign Advisory Board for The University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theater, and Dance. Among many awards, his Concerto for Violin and Symphonic Winds won First Prize in the XXV Concorso Internazionale di Composizione Originale (Corciano, Italy), and in 2011 he was awarded the prestigious Bogliasco Fellowship for further work in Italy. Other awards include the Charles Ives Prize of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Gold Medal in Music Composition (for his Sonata for Cello: In Memoriam), and Gold Medal/Best of Show (for his Requiem: For the Living), from the Global Music Awards, as well as composer residencies at the famed Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center and at the Piccolo Spoleto Festival. He is recorded on Navona, New Ariel, Crystal, Summit, Capstone, Beauport Classical, ERMMedia, Ablaze, AURecordings, Golden Crest, MSR Classics, and Amirani (Italy), and published by Subito, Shawnee Press, Potenza, Alea Publishing, TrevCo Music, The Spectrum Press, and Delage Musique (France).
Benjamin D. Whiting
Benjamin D. Whiting received his BM in Music Composition and his MM in Music Theory and Composition from Florida State University, and is now pursuing his DMA at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is an internationally award-winning, active composer of both acoustic and electroacoustic music, and his works have been performed in festivals such as TUTTI, N_SEME, SEAMUS, NYCEMF, TIES, EMUFest, eviMus, the College Music Society’s regional and national conferences, Sonorities Festival of Contemporary Music, and concerts put on by the organizations Soundiff and Pas-e. Most recently, his piece for chamber orchestra, Tempus Imperfectum, was awarded Third Prize in the Busan Maru International Music Festival Composition Competition, and Honorable Mention in the American Prize: Orchestra (Student Division). Never satisfied by simply composing alone, Whiting is fascinated with and constantly seeks out interdisciplinary collaboration and cooperation, often working with artists and performers from many different fields on several projects. During the second annual Sound of Science event hosted at the University of Illinois, one of his most ambitious collaborative efforts came to fruition as his eight-channel fixed media composition Illumina! Arabidopsis thaliana, in which Whiting uses several different methods of data sonification to artfully render photosynthetic data provided by genomic biologist Aleel K. Grennan. Whiting is also currently at work with flautist Melody Chua on developing an open-source, hybridized electroacoustic flute. Over the years, Whiting has studied composition with Scott Wyatt, Sever Tipei, Erik Lund, Erin Gee, and Ladislav Kubik. Recordings of his work can be found on the ABLAZE Records and the University of Illinois Experimental Music Studios labels.
Yip Ho Kwen Austin
Born in Hong Kong, Austin Yip’s works have been performed worldwide. Places like the United States, Argentina, Scotland, Italy, Slovenia, Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Singapore, China, and Australia have seen traces of his performance records. His musical creations are very diverse, ranging from orchestral pieces to electroacoustic works, from Western orchestral to folk instruments. All the above shows his knowledge and creativity upon different styles of music.
Yip has participated in numerous music festivals, including ISCM, International Rostrum of Composers, and ACL Festival, in which he has worked closely with world-renowned performers. Yip received his PhD and Master of Philosophy degrees at the University of Hong Kong under the supervision of Dr. Joshua Chan, with support from the University Postgraduate Fellowship and University Postgraduate Studentship. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts (Music) degree from the University of California, Berkeley with a “high distinction in general scholarship,” and a FTCL in composition. Yip is the holder of James Kitagawa Memorial Music Scholarship, Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholarship, Henry Holbrook Scholarship, James King Scholarship, Eisner Prize, Milton C. Witzel Memorial Prize, Rayson Huang Scholarship, and CASH Best Commissioned Piece Award. He is also the winner of the 1st Singapore Asian Composers Festival.
Yip’s works are published by ABRSM (UK), BabelScores (France), Ablaze Records (US), and Hong Kong Composers Guild. He has taught at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and Hong Kong Institute of Education. He is currently a lecturer at the Hong Kong Baptist University.
Chin Ting Chan
The music of Chin Ting (Patrick) Chan (b. 1986) stems from an interest in representing his impressions of the visual world with sonic images. It is often inspired by patterns and shapes he discovers in daily objects, as well as imaginary landscapes he sometimes encounters. Chan has been a fellow and guest composer at the International Computer Music Conference, the International Rostrum of Composers, IRCAM’s ManiFeste, the ISCM World Music Days, June in Buffalo, and the Wellesley Composers Conference, and has held residencies with the Charlotte Street Foundation and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. He has received commissions from the Hong Kong Composers' Guild and the Music Teachers National Association, as well as performances by Ensemble Signal, the Nouveau Classical Project, and the S.E.M. Ensemble, in venues such as the Darmstadt State Theatre and the Seoul Arts Center, among many others. Awards and other recognition include those from the Interdisciplinary Festival for Music and Sound Art, the Soli fan tutti Composition Prize, the American Prize, ASCAP, Association for the Promotion of New Music, the Cortona Sessions for New Music, Foundation Destellos, Foundation for Modern Music, the MidAmerican Center for Contemporary Music, newEar, the New-Music Consortium, the Portland Chamber Music Festival, the RED NOTE New Music Festival, and others.
Raised in Hong Kong, Chan has held faculty positions at the University of Missouri–Kansas City and Kansas City Kansas Community College. He holds degrees from San José State University (B.M.), Bowling Green State University (M.M.), and the University of Missouri–Kansas City (D.M.A.). His works are published with ABLAZE Records, Darling’s Acoustical Delight, Melos Music, Music from SEAMUS, the SCI Journal of Music Scores, and Unfolding Music Publishing (ASCAP).
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