News and Media

George Lewis, composer-in-residence, returns

George Lewis

April 30, 2014

Continuing his year long residency, Oberlin is excited to welcome George Lewis to campus for another week, from May 1st to the 7th. As a preeminent composer and improvisor, Lewis has held teaching positions at the Art Institute of Chicago, Mills College, and UC San Diego, received a MacArthur Fellowship and USA Walker Fellow award, and had works 3resented by Ensemble Erik Satie and IRCAM. He currently teaches at Columbia University.

While here, George will give lectures, participate on a panel discussion, lead master classes, work with students privately, and play with OINC - look here for his schedule. Wednesday night, May 7th, Oberlin's Contemporary Music Ensemble will play his piece Anthem, for chamber ensemble and electronics at 8pm in Warner Concert Hall, don't miss it! - WJ

Sam Fisher ('14) premieres sound design at CPT

Sam Fisher

April 17, 2014

Congratulations to TIMARA senior Sam Fisher for winning one of Cleveland Public Theater's inaugural Kulas Composer Fellowships. As a fellow, Sam has created music for "The Drowning Girls," a play directed by Missy Crum. Based on actual events, "Drowning Girls" was written by Beth Graham, Charlie Tomlinson & Daniela Vlaskalic and premiered in 2008 at Alberta Theater Projects. The script tells the stories of three women who were murdered and the experience they share of the bathtubs in which they died. The Show will run in CPT's storefront studio from April 17th to May 3rd. Tickets can be purchased online at CPT's website. - WJ

TIMARA Launches SAW 2014

March 20, 2014

From June 22-29 this summer the TIMARA Department will host its annual Sonic Arts Workshop (SAW). Dedicated to high school students ages 15 years and older, the program provides great exposure to the world of electroacoustic music and offers a variety of technical and creative resources. Topics will include field recording, real time techniques, audio processing, and discussion of electronic music repertoire. The program is great for students headed towards conservatory studies, as well as those simply interested in experimenting with electronic and computer music. More information, including the application, is avaliable here.

When I attended as a high-school student the program provided gave me a direction and a passion. I couldn't recommend anything else if you are interested in exploring sound as a medium of creation. - WJ

TIMARA welcomes Fred Frith

Fred Frith

February 25, 2014

The TIMARA department is excited to welcome Fred Frith to Oberlin this week! A versatile composer, improviser, and multi-instrumentalist, Frith is best known for his innovative reinvention of the electric guitar going back to the 1970's. His training primarily comes from playing in rock bands and recording, most notably with Henry Cow. As a professor at Mills College, Fred has mentored several Obies during graduate school, including current professors Peter Swendsen (TIMARA) and Julia Christensen (Art). He will be giving a concert at 8pm Wednesday in Fairchild Chapel (free admission). For more info check out our new music calendar. - WJ

TIMARA majors present at N SEME


February 21, 2014

TIMARA sophomores Mitchell Hermann ('17) and Keenan DuBois ('16) are headed to Statesboro, GA for the third National Student Electronic Music Event. Mitchell will present an eight-channel piece entitled Kettledrum Organ and Keenan will show a live piece, Ucuelet Suite, for Flute and tape. Started by students and for students, this festival displays exclusively student works. Anyone in the area is welcome to attend for free, concerts will be ongoing throughout the day both February 21 and 22 on the campus of Georgia Southern University. For more information see N SEME's website. - WJ

Winter Term at the Banff Centre for the Arts

Banff Centre

February 12, 2014

For three weeks of Oberlin's 2014 Winter Term, seven Composition and TIMARA majors joined TIMARA faculty Lyn Goeringer and Peter Swendsen for a residency at the Banff Centre in the Canadian Rockies. While in Banff, the students worked intensively on a wide variety of projects, which they presented to the Banff Centre community at the end of the residency. In addition to personal projects, the students met and collaborated with other resident artists from around the world. Taking part were Sam Fisher ('14), Keenan DuBois ('16), John Burnett ('16), Mitchell Herrmann ('17), Judith Jackson ('17), Eli Stine ('14), and Noah Chevan ('15).

The Banff Centre is the largest arts and creativity incubator on the planet. Its mission is inspiring creativity. Over 8,000 artists, leaders, and researchers from across Canada and around the world participate in programs at The Banff Centre every year. Through its multidisciplinary programming, The Banff Centre provides them with the support they need to create, to develop solutions, and to make the impossible possible.

Morton Subotnick, Guest Composer

Morton Subotnick

November 14, 2013

Morton Subotnick, a pioneering developer of electronic music, will present a free lecture in the Kohl Building's Clonick Hall from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday, November 15. Subotnick's northeast Ohio visit is made possible by a collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) Cleveland. MOCA will present a solo concert tonight, at 8pm, see the MOCA website for ticket information.

Stephen Montague, Guest Composer

Stephen Montague

November 5, 2013

The TIMARA department welcomes composer Stephen Montague to campus this Friday. Montague has been commissioned by a wide variety of organizations including the BBC Proms and the International Computer Music Association. He has been a featured composer at both Oxford and Cambridge. In addition to his compositional accolades, Montague helped found the Sonic Arts Network (now known as Sound and Music)and is an actively performing pianist.

While at Oberlin, Montague will be offering a lecture, masterclass, and concert, the details for which are posted on the new music events calendar. The concert, at 8pm in Finney Chapel, will feature the Oberlin Percussion Group, and pieces for toy piano, electronics, and organ! All are free and open to the public. - KD

George Lewis, Composer in Residence

George Lewis

October 7, 2013

Oberlin Conservatory and the Division of Contemporary Music are honored to host renowned composer, George Lewis, for the week of October 3-10. Lewis is currently Professor of American Music at Columbia University. A much-abridged list of past achievements includes a MacArthur Fellowship and USA Walker Fellow award; teaching positions at the Art Institute of Chicago, Mills College, and UC San Diego; and works presented by Ensemble Erik Satie and IRCAM, to name but a few. Lewis has been a constant supporter of new music through his work with the AACM, as well as an active participant in the exploration of new improvisational and compositional techniques.

During his stay on campus, Lewis will hosting a number of events - including seminars, masterclasses, and rehearsals - look here for his schedule. We look forward to a second week with George Lewis in May, 2014, details will be posted closer to his return to campus. - KD

Conrad Cummings and Paul Lansky visit Oberlin


September 29, 2013

Conrad Cummings and Paul Lansky will present their music at Oberlin Conservatory this week. Tonight at 8pm in Warner Concert Hall (free admission) the TIMARA Department will showcase two works by Cummings in addition to pieces by Peter Flint '92 and faculty members Peter Swendsen and Tom Lopez. The diverse program features Tom Rosenkranz '99 performing two works for piano and electronics by Flint and Lopez, amplified harpsichord duet, and Peter Swendsen's work for sax, bassoon, electronics, and video.

On Saturday, October 5, at 8pm in Warner Concert Hall (free admission) please join us for a new piece by Lansky for the Hammer/Klavier ensemble. The performance will be preceded by a lecture by Lansky - don't be late!

Aurie Hsu '97 with belly dancing and robots


September 25, 2013

Aurie Hsu and Steven Kemper will present "Re-imagining Electroacoustic Performance: Integrating Music and Physical Computing." This lecture-demonstration will introduce the Remote electroAcoustic Kinesthetic Sensing (RAKS) system for belly dance and TAPI, the Transportable Automatic Percussion Instrument, a musical robot!

This event will be free and open to the public: 4:00pm on Friday, September 27 in TIMARA Studio 2. Aurie will be on campus to oversee the recording of her new piece, Lullaby for Morning, for an album of works for piano and electronics, featuring Tom Rosenkranz '99 on piano. Special thanks to the Alumni Association for their support of this lecture.

Alex Christie '09 brings explosive sounds back to campus!


September 10, 2013

Alex Christie is a San Francisco Bay Area composer, performer, improviser, and educator working in the worlds of both acoustic and electronic music. His work is the hybridization of hyper-intellectualized contemporary music theory and a childish obsession with explosive sound and bright, flashing lights. Alex holds a BM from the Oberlin Conservatory in Composition and TIMARA (Technology In Music And Related Arts) and an MFA from Mills College in Electronic Music and Recording Media. Alex performs as a laptopist in several veins of music, ranging from experimental improvisatory noise to electronic dance. He performs free jazz and freely improvised music as a saxophonist and is always striving to find new ways in which the world of electronic music and free improvisation intersect. As an educator, Alex currently teaches composition, electronic music, and music theory at Santa Clara University and spends his summers teaching similar material to a group of talented 10-18 year-olds at the Walden School's Young Musicians Program.

Alex will present a talk and performance demo (with Dana Jessen) on electroacoustic improvisation. The lecture is free and open to the public: 3:00pm on Wednesday, September 11 in TIMARA Studio 2. In addition to his lecture, Alex will be on campus to oversee the recording of a new piece for an album of works for piano and electronics, featuring Tom Rosenkranz '99 on piano. Special thanks to the Alumni Association for their support of this lecture.

Michael Klingbeil '96 to record "Vers la courbe"


September 4, 2013

Michael Klingbeil is a composer and software designer/developer. He is a 1996 graduate of Oberlin with degrees in Computer Science and TIMARA, and he currently teaches composition, orchestration, and music technology in the Department of Music at Yale. His compositions and research have been presented throughout the US and Europe. Michael will present a talk called "Spectral Design," which will be an equal mix of topics from computer science and music. He will focus on both music and technical examples using the Scheme programming language and referencing his own software, SPEAR, which is a unique tool for sound-based spectral analysis and editing. The lecture is free and open to the public: 4:30pm on Thursday, September 5 in TIMARA Studio 2. Special thanks to the Alumni Association for their support of this lecture.

In addition to his lecture, Michael will be on campus to oversee the recording of his new piece, "Vers la courbe." Michael's piece is one of eight to be recorded this month for an album of new works for piano and electronics, featuring Tom Rosenkranz '99 on piano.

Eli Stine premiere with the Akropolis Reed Quintet


May 16, 2013

This Friday, May 17, 2013 at 8 PM, the Akropolis Reed Quintet will perform on the Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings' Nightnotes Series. Included on the program will be a reed quintet and tape piece composed by TIMARA fourth-year Eli Stine, which features pre-recorded interviews and poems read by Alzheimer's and dementia sufferers.

Eli on the collaboration: "Through an ongoing collaboration between Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings and the University of Michigan, I was asked by the Akropolis Quintet to compose a piece for electronics and reed quintet (the first piece with electronics that they have performed) on the theme of "Unraveling." I chose to center the piece around the loss of communication and memory caused by Alzheimer's Disease and dementia. The piece is in 5 movements, each movement roughly corresponding to one of the five stages of grief. The content of the instrumental parts is motivic, and development occurs from these different motives being transformed, lost, suddenly remembered, and, ultimately, forgotten. The electro-acoustic playback portion of the piece is made from dozens of recordings from around 20 people reading the writings of caretakers of people suffering Dementia/Alzheimer's disease, caretakers themselves, and Alzheimer's patients. The title of the piece, "Forget," refers both to the act of actively losing one's memories and also passively, tragically, forgetting a loved one's personality after they are affected by Alzheimer's. The piece is being premiered May 17th in Detroit and will be recorded in June."

Friday's concert will be held at the Hagopian World of Rugs on 850 S. Old Woodward Ave., Birmingham, MI 48009. There will be a reception at 7:30, with the concert following shortly after at 8 PM. Learn more about composer Eli Stine. - MC