Composition at Columbia University

COMPOSITION LINKS


Composition Faculty

Assistant Professor of Music
 
Joseph Dubiel
Professor of Music
 
Professor of Music
Director, Computer Music Center
 
Georg Friedrich Haas
MacDowell Professor of Music

Alfred W. Lerdahl
Fritz Reiner Professor of Musical Composition
Director, Fritz Reiner Center
 
George E. Lewis
Edwin H. Case Professor of American Music
Chair of the Composition Area Committee, 2014-15
 
Emeritus Composition Faculty
 
Francis Goelet Professor of Composition

POST-DOCTORAL FELLOWS:

PROGRAMS OFFERED

MA, DMA, undergraduate courses, MFA in Sound Arts, through the School of the Arts and the Computer Music Center

ONLINE RESOURCES

 

News & Events in Composition

DMA Alumnus Carl Christian Bettendorf Awarded Commission by the Ralph Kaminsky Fund

The Ralph Kaminsky Fund for New Music announced that it will award $15,000 to composer and conductor Carl Christian Bettendorf, who will write a new work for the Mivos Quartet.

Bettendorf, born in Germany and now based in New York, received his doctorate (DMA) from Columbia University, where he studied with composer Tristan Murail.

The Mivos Quartet, formed in 2008, is one of the country's most adventurous new music groups, and is dedicated to working closely with composers to expand the string quartet repertoire.

The Fund is pleased to announce the winning commission during the week of what would have been Ralph Kaminsky's 88th birthday, on March 26, 2014. After his retirement from a career in the academic world, Kaminsky (1926-2012) dedicated the last twenty years of his life to his passion for contemporary classical music.

Columbia DMA Alums Wang Lu and Arthur Kampela Win Guggenheim Fellowships!

The Department of Music congratulates our DMA alumni Arthur Kampela and Wang Lu, each of whom has been awarded a 2014 John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship!

See here for further details:  http://www.gf.org/news-events/2014-Fellows-in-the-United-States-and-Canada/

Artist Websites:

Wang Lu: http://www.instantencore.com/wanglu

Arthur Kampela: http://www.kampela.com/
 

Biographies:

"Varied Pitches to Fill Empty Spaces:" Prof. Georg Haas Profiled in The New York Times

Prof. Georg F. Haas, recently appointed as Professor of Music Composition at Columbia, is featured in a Feb. 20, 2014 profle in the New York Times, entitled Varied Pitches to Fill Empty Spaces: Georg Friedrich Haas's Works Are Rooted in Microtonality.  The article was written by Vivien Schweitzer.  


Read the profile here!

An excerpt:

Mr. Haas's works are rooted in microtonality -- a system that divides the conventional scale of Western classical music into many more than its usual 12 semitone pitches. (His opera "Thomas" incorporates some 1,600 different pitches.) In Europe, composers like Ligeti and Penderecki used microtones; American composers including Charles Ives, Harry Partch and La Monte Young have also breached the standard division of the octave.

In Mr. Haas's scores, these microtones result in opulent and otherworldly harmonies that at times seem impossible to have been produced by acoustic instruments. On the two occasions I heard the excellent Argento Chamber Ensemble perform his "In Vain," a masterpiece of glistening sonorities that unfurls in hypnotic waves of sound, I had the sense of hearing something unique.

 

Congratulations to Columbia DMA Composition Students!

Fall 2013 News and announcements from the Composition Program 

The Department of Music extends congratulations to DMA students from the Composition Program for their many accomplishments in Fall 2013!
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Yoshiaki Onishi

Yoshiaki Onishi's Gaudeamus-commissioned work "Tramespace, diptych for large ensemble, Part I” (2012~13) was performed by Asko|Schönberg Ensemble in September 2013 in Utrecht, The Netherlands.

 

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Taylor Brook

 

Taylor Brook received an honorable mention from the Jules Leger prize for the second year in a row as well as MIVOS prize for El jardin de senderos que se bifurcan, a string quartet composed for a CC concert.

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Zosha Di Castri

 

Zosha di Castri's music received numerous performances.  This past September, there were three performances of "Lineage" by the San Francisco Symphony, directed by Michael Tilson Thomas.  "The Animal After Whom Other Animals Are Named", commissioned by Ekmeles, received its premiere with the help of the Canada Council for the Arts. She has received a commission for Esprit Orchestra for May 2014.  The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, conducted by John Adams, will perform her "Lineage" in March 2014.

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Alec Hall

Alec Hall was elected for the Ensemble Contemporain de Montreal’s “Generation 2014” project. The award consists of a workshop in Montreal this March, followed by a week in Banff in November, then an 8-city/concert cross-Canada tour.

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Ashkan Behzadi

 

Ashkan Behzadi received Second Prize in the SOCAN young composer competition for 2013. He also won the Sir Ernest MacMillan Awards for "Urban Trilogy" for chamber orchestra, the Fontainebleau Prix de Composition  for "Az hoosh mi.." for soprano and violin, and was named the winner of the APNM competition/call for scores for "Az hoosh mi.." for soprano and violin.

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Sky Macklay

 

Sky MacKlay's orchestra piece Dissolving Bands was awarded the Leo Kaplan Award, the top prize in the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Awards.

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Bryan Jacobs

 

Bryan Jacobs' Dis Un Il Im Ir received Honorable Mention in the Conlon Music 2013 competition (Amsterdam). Le La en Le received First Prize in the Presque Rien 2013 competition (Paris).

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Christopher Trapani

 

Christopher Trapani was named the winner of the Third Ježek Prize in Composition, 2013.

 

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Courtney Bryan

 

Courtney Bryan's New Work for orchestra and recorded sound was commissioned by American Composers Orchestra Underground Ensemble, for a Carnegie Hall, New York, NY, 2015-16 premiere. Walking with ‘Trane, a collaboration, was commissioned by Urban Bush Women, New York, NY, for 2014 premiere. And New Work for String Quartet was commissioned by Spektral String Quartet for Mobile Miniatures Project, for a Chicago, IL, 2014 premiere.

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Nina C. Young

 

Nina C. Young's Remnants received the Audience Choice Award at the ACO's 2013 Underwood New Music Readings. Tanglewood Music Center has also commissioned new work from Ms. Young  for the 2014 TMC Brass Ensemble.

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Stylianos Dimou

 

 

Stylianos Dimou participated in the Royaumont Voix nouvelles composition course 2013, and the 5th Composers’ Forum [’tactus 2013] with the Brussels Philharmonic; Mr. Dimou's L'allégorie de la caverne, for orchestra (2011-2012) was selected as the winning piece to be performed again by the Brussels Philharmonic in 2014.

Prof. Jeffrey Milarsky Wins The Ditson Conductor’s Award

The Department of Music congratulates Professor Jeffrey Milarsky, conductor of the Columbia University Orchestra, on the occasion of his being awarded The Ditson Conductor's Award.  

The Ditson Conductor's Award is awarded for distinguished contributions to American music, and given annually by Columbia University. It was presented to Prof. Milarsky at Alice Tully Hall on November 15, during a concert by the Juilliard Orchestra conducted by Prof. Milarsky. The $5,000 award, which was established in 1945, was presented by the pianist Gilbert Kalish, the head of the Ditson advisory committee.

Read more at The New York Times. 

Hear the CU Orchestra perform music of Debussy, Strauss, and Prokofiev, under the direction of Maestro Milarsky, on Sunday, December 1st (8PM, Roone Arledge Auditorium) and again on Sunday December 8, 2013 (8PM, Miller Theater). Both concerts are free and open to the public!

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Columbia Libraries Acquire Prokofiev Archives

Read about Columbia Libraries' acquisition of the Sergei Prokofiev Archive in the New York Times

NEW YORK, October 17, 2013 - Columbia University Libraries/Information Services' Rare Book & Manuscript Library (RBML) is pleased to announce the acquisition of the collection of Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953).  The Serge Prokofiev Foundation has chosen the RBML as the repository for the archival material under its control from Prokofiev's 18 years in the West.

The Foundation was established in 1983 by Lina Prokofiev, the composer's widow, to enrich public awareness of Prokofiev's life and work and to encourage research. (The organization uses a variant spelling of the composer's first name).  After her death in 1989 at age 91, and the death of her sons Sviatoslav and Oleg, the work of the Foundation has been carried on by their descendants.

The collection includes Prokofiev's private and business papers from 1919 through May 1936, after which he returned to the Soviet Union with his family. Correspondents include conductors such as Sir Henry Wood and Sergei Koussevitzky; soloists such as Joseph Szigeti and Pablo Casals; composers such as Igor Stravinsky and Maurice Ravel; and chess grandmaster Jose Capablanca.

Columbia Welcomes Professor Georg Friedrich Haas!

Georg Friedrich Haas joined Columbia University's composition faculty as a full-time tenured professor in September, 2013. This appointment promises to sustain and enhance our composition program's reputation as one of the strongest, most progressive, and most international such programs in the United States.

Haas has emerged as one of the major European composers of his generation. His music synthesizes in a highly original way the Austrian tradition of grand orchestral statement with forward-looking interests in harmonic color and microtonal tuning that stem from both French spectralism and a strand of American experimentalism. The result is an exploratory, uncompromising music that is also sensuously attractive. His music appeals to unusually diverse constituencies, from avant-garde composers for its microtonal investigations to casual listeners for its spacious forms and euphonious harmony.

Sound Arts MFA and Computer Music Center Featured in Columbia Spectator

Columbia's Computer Music Center and the new School of the Arts MFA Program in Sound Arts are featured in an article in the Feb. 7, 2013 Columbia Spectator.  The article, by Derek Arthur, is entitled:  "Computer Music Center combines technology, music in experimental setting."

An accompanying video clip, featuring Prof. Brad Garton and Douglas Repetto, can be viewed below or on YouTube.

 

Announcing a New MFA Program in Sound Arts at Columbia!

New Program Announcement!

SOUND ARTS

A new Interdepartmental MFA Program offered by the Columbia University School of the Arts in association with the Department of Music and the Computer Music Center.

Applications for Fall 2013 Now Being Accepted (Deadline Feb. 20, 2013)
 
Columbia University has been at the helm of sound-technology innovation for over fifty years with faculty specializing in composition, improvisation, sound installation, computer music, digital sound synthesis, acoustics, music cognition and software development.  Columbia's Computer Music Center in the Department of Music has a long history of creative excellence; its primary mission is to operate at the intersection of musical expression and technological development. The Center has state-of-the-art facilities for working in electro-acoustic music.  Faculty of the Center for Computer Music led the development of the new interdisciplinary area in Sound Arts that leads to the Master of Fine Arts degree awarded by the School of the Arts.

 
The Sound Arts area is currently accepting applications for Fall 2013. The program is highly selective. Each year only three to four students will be offered admission to the two-year program. Prospective students with a deep engagement with sound as medium, a familiarity with contemporary audio tools and techniques, and a demonstrated use of those tools in different contexts (sculptural or video installations, creation of performance interfaces, circuit-bending productions, innovative fusion of digital audio with digital graphics, imaginative use of network technologies) are encouraged to apply. While the Visual Arts Program in the School of the Arts currently accommodates students working in digital media, sculpture, installation, performance, film and video art, applicants who wish to base their research and studio practice primarily in the area of sonic or sound arts are to apply to the area of Sound Arts.