Samuel Fibich Yulsman

DMA student in Composition
Photo: Peter Gannushkin / DOWNTOWNMUSIC.NET

Sam Yulsman (b. 1990) is a composer, pianist and multimedia artist whose work spans a wide range of musical idioms.  As a pianist he has collaborated closely with composers as an interpreter of new works, and with improvisers in contexts where the boundaries between composed and improvised music are porous and easily traversed.  Yulsman has performed and/or recorded in the United States and Europe with artists including Ingrid Laubrock, Pheeroan akLaff, Joe Morris, Ryan Muncy, Carla Bozulich, Bill Frisell, Biliana Voutchkova, Tyshawn Sorey, Peter Evans, Cyrus McGoldrick (aka The Raskol Khan), CJ Camerieri, Art Lande, John Colpitts (aka Kid Millions), Chris Corsano, Nicola Hein, Brandon Lopez, Chris Heenan, Mark Miller and Weston Olencki.  Recent and performances of new works include premieres of Kenji Sakai’s Fanfare Towards the Dusk at the Music From Japan Festival 2017, and Chris Pitsiokos’ Working from Postcards is Good Enough If You Are Francis Picabia at Art for Art’s 2017 festival, Justice is Compassion/Not a Police State. 

As a composer, Yulsman’s work has been performed by ensembles including Ensemble Korea, the New York New Music Ensemble, Rage Thormbones, JACK Quartet, Wet Ink Ensemble, Mivos Quartet and loadbang, counter)induction and the Westerlies Brass Quartet.  His work has been performed at Ostrava Days (2017), the Pacific Rim Music Festival (2017), the 2016 Wet Ink Large Ensemble Readings, and the Columbia Composers and Columbia Sound Arts Electroacoustic Concert (2015 and 2017).

Yulsman also performs and composes with electronics. In 2017, he worked with George Lewis and the S.E.M. Ensemble, performing the electronics for Lewis’ Emergent and Seismologic with Claire Chase and Dana Jessen at Bohemian National Hall. This was followed by performances of the electronics for Lewis' "Anthem", and Miroslav Srnka's opera "Make No Noise" at the 2017 Ostrava Days Festival in the Czech Republic. Other important work with electronics includes an interactive jacket of wireless speakers designed for a dance installation co-produced and directed by Yulsman, dancer Justin Cabrillos and poet Gabrielle DaCosta. Entitled Land Before Time III, the project was presented by Paris Sciences et Lettres and Columbia University as part of "Music and Sound Studies" workshop at Columbia University in September 2017, and has since appeared at both Qubit's "Liminal" series in Brooklyn, New York, and the 2018 Ammerman Center for Arts and Technology's 16th Biennial Symposium at Connecticut College.

Yulsman is currently pursuing a DMA in composition at Columbia University where he studies with George Lewis.  He completed a B.A. in anthropology at Columbia University in 2014, where he received the Ella Deloria Fellowship for his work in 2011-2012 recording and documenting the work of musicians from Siwa, Egypt.  In 2014 he was also nominated for the Louis Sudler Prize in the Arts by the Columbia University Music Department, and is currently a recipient of the Victor Barnouw Fellowship Fund.