Society of Composers at Berklee presents their fall semester concert. The concert celebrates and embraces diversity and inclusion at a time when people are becoming more divided than ever.
Compositions span a wide variety of themes and styles, and are performed by Berklee students with additional special guests from the community. All compositions are premieres, composed by Berklee students and recent alumni.
Yotam Ishay: Three Preludes for Piano
Life’s Little Moment: Jacquelyn Hazle
Caught up in the Snow: Tina Kayal (composer) and Sarah Chong (piano)
When Eyes Meet: Jan Vincent Huntenburg
Copley 6:49 – 8 Miniatures: David Lee (arr. w/ Matt Scutchfield)
Los Perros: Donovan Sierra, Sarah Chong (piano)
On a Rainy Night: Tianyi Zhang (composer/pianist)
Last Stage to a New World: Ben Delaney
A Year After: Pedro Osuna (Composer), Tania Mesa (Violin I), Lily Lyons (Violin II), Yeh-Van Chen (Sandy) (Viola) and Parker Ousley (Cello)
(Bye -) Escapade: Matt Scutchfield (Composer), Paul Meland (Saxophone), Matt Samolis (Flute), Lou Bunk (Viola), Ben Delaney (Violin) and Sarah Chong (Prepared Piano)
Concertino: Lou Bunk (composer and conductor) and almost everyone above
Bill Nace is one of the premiere avant-garde guitarists active today. He has one of the most personal and unique pallets of sound ever to be culled from an electric guitar.
Nace creates a distinct, mind-bending cacophony and focuses his textures with intense precision and control. He works under various guises (Body/Head with Kim Gordon, x.0.4 with Jake Meginsksy and John Truscinski, a trio with celebrated percussionist Chris Corsano & Steve Baczkowski, a duo with Paul Flaherty, Northampton Wools with Thurston Moore, and Ceylon Mange with Dylan Nyoukis and Karen Constance) and his own name.
Multi-wind instrumentalist Steve Baczkowski lives in Buffalo, N.Y. where he works as a conduit for creative music of any & every sort. Baczkowski began playing alto saxophone at age eight, switched to baritone by the time he was twelve, and has since developed a wide array of woodwind styles & formidable breathing techniques.
In addition to organizing the Buffalo Improvisers Orchestra, and the Buffalo Suicide Prevention Unit, Baczkowski also performs solo, in duo with Ravi Padmanabha, Bill Sack, Nola Ranallo, Omar Tamez & Bill Nace and in ensembles such as Genkin Philharmonic, 12/8 Path Band, Necrophonia, the William Parker Trance Quartet, and frequent collaborations with like-souled folks from around the world.
Aaron Zarzutzki is an improviser of various sorts. He works primarily with misuse and perversion of objects and systems. Virtuosity, volatility, futility, and capability are thought of. Zarzutzki currently lives, works, and plays in Chicago.
Richard Kamerman (New York)
Richard Kamerman has been breaking electronics and crashing computers while trying to coax interesting and unpredictable sounds out of them for over a decade. Occasionally, he has also presented himself as a more serious composer of re-performable written music. Keywords: amplification, magnification, obfuscation, systems design, game theory, patterns, human error, accident, failure. Although a firm believer in the axiom that “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” he ceased collecting his instruments from piles of junk left on the curb several years ago, fearing he might bring home bedbugs. He additionally runs the small-press music label Copy For Your Records.
Bhob Rainey (Philadelphia)
Bhob Rainey is an award-winning composer / performer, saxophonist, and sound designer. In 1998, with trumpeter Greg Kelley, he founded the duo Nmperign, which quickly became a model for a new phase of non-idiomatic improvisation often referred to as “lowercase” or “EAI” (Electroacoustic Improvisation). In 2000 he founded The BSC, an improvising large ensemble, in which he developed techniques for an improvisational discipline that were eventually outlined in his 2011 publication, Manual. Throughout the late 1990’s and early 2000’s he performed globally and collaborated with numerous improvisers of both the (then) current and previous generations, including Axel Dörner, Andrea Neumann, Günter Müller, Michel Doneda, Lê Quan Ninh, and many others.
By the mid-2000’s, while continuing to work in the realm of improvisation, Rainey began to produce electronic and algorithmic works. He spent five years collaborating with German composer Ralf Wehowsky (RLW) on the 2007 release, I don’t think I can see you tonight, which, along with Nmperign and Jason Lescalleet’s Love Me Two Times (2006), established him as a formidable electronic composer who synthesizes streams of Musique Concréte, computer music, and improvisation.
Throughout his career, Rainey has sought out cross-discipline collaborations, working with dancers, filmmakers, and theater companies. From 2012-2014 he worked with theater company New Paradise Labs to create The Adults, which premiered at the 2014 Philadelphia Fringe Festival to much acclaim. He created the soundtrack to Leah Ross’s 2013 film, Levitate, which premiered that year at the Rooftop Film Festival in New York City, and he performed live in Jungwoong Kim’s and Marion Ramirez’s site-specific dance work, Capsized, at the National Asian American Theater Festival in Philadelphia in 2014.
Jooklo Duo is the Italian duo of Virginia Genta and David Vanzan.
The duo performed a set of their improvisational music for the ecstatic “Fire Museum Presents” crowd at House Gallery 1816 in Fishtown.
The set included the following musicians:
Virginia Genta: tenor and soprano sax, clarinet
David Vanzan: drums
Brandon Lopez: bass
Keir Neuringer: saxophone
Jarrett Gilgore is just making his mark in the Philadelphia jazz scene. Originally from Philadelphia, Gilgore lives in Baltimore where he studied at the Peabody Conservatory. Down in Baltimore he can be seen performing with people like John Dierker, Will Redman, Anthony Pirog, and Dave Ballou.
Matt Engle has been an active member of the Philadelphia creative and improvised music scene for over 15 years. He is a member of the Dan Blacksberg Trio, Bobby Zankel small group, and Sonic Liberation Front.
Michael Szekely is a drummer currently based in Philadelphia who has recorded/performed with greats including Anthony Braxton, Dave Liebman, Bobby Zankel, and Jack Wright.
Scott Verrastro, Percussion
Julius Masri, Percussion
David Fishkin, Saxophone
Scott Verrastro is a Kohoutek drummer and percussionist, who has collaborated with Peter Brotzmann, John Dikeman, and Khan Jamal. Joining him is percussionist Julius Masri and saxophonist David Fishkin.
Julius Masri, born in Lebanon, started playing music state side in the early 90s. He attended Bard College where he studied composition with Joan Tower, percussion with Thurman Barker (AACM), and experimental sonic improvisation with Richard Teitelbaum (MEV). Aside from focusing on trap set and circuit bent electronics, Julius stays up late at night worrying about the gray space between the immediate transcending experience of sonic phenomenon, the immediate aural complacency when confronting idiomatic music, and the attempt to reconcile both worlds in the most uncomfortable fashion possible. He currently performs in Chakra Khan/Air Pirates, Electric Simcha, TinMouth, Q-1, as well as many pickup projects with creative people in any number of artistic denominations. Julius is an Aries, and loathes walks on the beach.
David Fishkin was not born so much as he shot out like a cannonball. He started playing saxophone at age 7. Later, he attended Oberlin College. In between semesters, he studied with the great Philadelphia-based saxophone player Odean Pope. Since then, David has worked as a musician and teacher.