Archive for July 20th, 2012

Summer Festival Spotlight: Charlie Piper

Completing the international contingent at this year’s Mizzou New Music Summer Festival is resident composer Charlie Piper, who’s from London, England. Born in 1982, Piper (pictured) completed his master’s degree with distinction at the Royal College of Music and currently is doing doctoral research at the Royal Academy of Music.

His awards include the 2006 Royal Philharmonic Society Composition Prize and the 2007 prize at the 13th International Young Composers Meeting in Apeldoorn. Piper also was a New Music Associate at Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge from 2008 to 2010.

Piper’s music has been has been broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and performed at the Cheltenham, Huddersfield, Gaudeamus, Bang-On-A-Can and Aix-en-Provence Festivals, the Barbican Hall, the South Bank Centre, the Roundhouse, The Wigmore Hall, King’s Place and Le Grand Théâtre de Provence. Performers have included the London Symphony Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia, the London Sinfonietta, Sentieri Selvaggi, The Esbjerg Ensemble, the Orkest ‘de ereprijs’, CHROMA, the English National Ballet and individuals such as Rolf Hind, Brindley Sherratt, Xian Zhang, Laurence Cummings, François-Xavier Roth, Martyn Brabbins, Yan Pascal Tortelier and Pierre-André Valade.

His recent work has included premieres in New York and Milan; a short residency in Gotland, Sweden; three performances of The Twittering Machine by L’orchestre des jeunes de la Méditerranée; and the premieres of Insomniac, commissioned by the London Sinfonietta, and Borderland, commissioned by Britten Sinfonia and taken on tour to Brighton, Cambridge, Norwich and The Wigmore Hall.

Earlier this year, Piper was appointed associate composer for Music in the Round in Sheffield, for which he will work closely with the organization’s resident musicians Ensemble 360, composing at least one 12-15 minute piece per year, plus additional short works. Piper’s first composition for Music in the Round will premiere this fall, and as he continues with the organization, he also will give talks, participate in question and answer sessions, and run workshops and open rehearsals.

You can read a short interview with Charlie Piper about his recent work Insomniac here, and hear the piece in the embedded audio player below. Also, there are more samples of Piper’s music on his website.

Charlie Piper’s Insomniac, performed by the London Sinfonietta with conductor Martyn Brabbins

Summer Festival Spotlight: Stylianos Dimou

A native of Greece, resident composer Stylianos Dimou is helping to bring a bit of international perspective to the 2012 Mizzou New Music Summer Festival.

Dimou (pictured) has been studying music in the USA since last year, working toward an MA in composition with Professor Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. He also was the recipient of a Fulbright scholarship for the 2011-12 academic year.

Born in Thessaloniki, Greece, Dimou started his music studies at the Municipal Conservatory of Thessaloniki, where he earned degrees in music harmony in May, 2005 and counterpoint in May, 2008, plus a diploma in accordion in June, 2010. He began studying composition in 2006 at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki’s department of music studies, and graduated in 2011 with a Master of Music degree in composition.

Most of his works to date have been presented in workshops and competitions in Greece and elsewhere abroad. He has collaborated with Greek musical organizations such as the dissonArt ensemble, the Greek Ensemble of Contemporary Music, Idee Fixe, and Orpheus Soloists (GR), as well as with ALEA III here in the USA, and others.

In April, Dimou’s piece Réflexions de nuages was performed by the Jenaer Philharmonic Orchestra and flute player Carin Levine at the Weimarer Spring Festival for Contemporary Music in Germany. Earlier this year, he also was one of the co-creators of “Room For Five,” a joint work devised with three other Eastman composers and visual artist Anna Schuleit for the 2012 Benson Forum on Creativity.

Dimou will have company from some fellow Eastmanites at the Mizzou New Music Summer Festival, as resident composer David Crowell, MU’s Stefan Freund, and many of the members of resident ensemble Alarm Will Sound are Eastman alums, and resident composer Ted Goldman is an assistant professor there. It will also give him a chance to renew his acquaintance with guest composer Steven Stucky, with whom he took a master class in composition last year.

You can hear samples of Stylianos Dimou’s music in the embedded player below.