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News - Joan Tower Celebration

Joan Tower, photo by Bernie Mindich
Thursday, February 8, 2018
Her engrossing dramatic gestures are like small adventures around every corner.

Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times
 
 

Composer, performer, educator, and conductor for more than half-a-century, Joan Tower is one of the most recognized and performed American musicians today. Her composer-residencies with orchestras, festivals, and schools include a decade with the Orchestra of St. Luke's, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (Composer of the Year for their 2010-2011 season), as well as the St. Louis Symphony, the Deer Valley Music Festival, the Yale/Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, and the Albany Symphony's Mentor Composer partner.
 
She was the first woman to win the Grawemeyer Award in Music (for Silver Ladders) and she won a Grammy for Best Classical Contemporary Composition (for Made in America, a commission that included more than 65 orchestras and was informed by her childhood years in South America). Tower's tremendously popular Fanfares for the Uncommon Woman have been played by over 500 different ensembles. She was cofounder and pianist for the Naumburg Award-winning Da Capo Chamber Players, and is Asher Edelman Professor of Music at Bard College, where she has taught since 1972.
 
This week, her 80th-birthday year is marked in Boston with concerts and masterclasses by the Muir Quartet, the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, the Borromeo Quartet, and the New England Conservatory.
 
The Muir performed her string quartet Night Fields at Boston University on February 6. Tower is in residence at the New England Conservatory from February 8 through 13 with concerts, leadership conversation, and a seminar and masterclass. At NEC's Jordan Hall on February 9, Gil Rose leads the Boston Modern Orchestra Project in Red Maple, her bassoon concerto (co-commissioned by BMOP) with soloist Adrian Morejon, the Concerto for Flute and the orchestral version of Rising, both with flutist Carol Wincenc, as well as Chamber Dance and Made in America. Among the chamber works on her closing NEC concert are the premiere of the solo percussion work Small played by Alexander Garde and her fourth quartet, Angels, performed by the Borromeo Quartet.
 
This selection of spring performances is a glimpse of her orchestral, chamber, solo, and vocal music.
 
April 11, 2018
Albany Symphony: Joyce Yang, piano; David Alan Miller, conductor
Still/Rapids
SHIFT: A Festival of American Orchestras
Washington, DC
 
May 19, 2018
Tenri Cultural Institute: Meighan Stoops, clarinet; Marc Peloquin, piano
Ivory and Ebony
Or Like a…an Engine
Rain Waves
Steps
Wings
Portrait Concert
New York, NY
 
June 23, 2018
Round Top Music Festival: Brett Deubner, viola; Carol Wincenc, flute; Michelle Merrill, conductor
Black Topaz
Copperwave
Concerto for Flute
Made in America
Petroushskates
Purple Rhapsody
Rising
Portrait Concerts
Round Top, TX
 
June 29, 2018
Wigmore Hall: Lucy Schaufer, mezzo-soprano; Huw Watkins, piano
Up High UK premiere
Or Like a…an Engine
The Class of 1938
London, UK
 
 
View upcoming performances of Joan Tower's music. More performances will be announced as the 2018-19 season approaches.

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