Mourning the Loss of Longtime NYWC Member Hilary Tann
We are sad to share that longtime NYWC member and composer Hilary Tann passed away suddenly on Wednesday, February 8th, 2023. You can read her obituary, which was published in the Albany Times Union over the weekend, here: https://tinyurl.com/
Hilary’s work, “Moon Full, Tide Low,” was featuredlast month through our partnership with the Flute Examiner (https://tinyurl.com/2p8br2z6)
We encourage you to take some time to listen to and learn more about Hilary’s work by following the links above or exploring her member profile, which will remain on the NYWC website, here: https://
We are sending our deepest sympathy and condolences to Hilary’s family and all those who knew and loved her.
(Posted Monday, February 13, 2023)
NYWC Member Album Releases in 2022
1. Chen Yi: AMBIGUOUS TRACES––Chen Yi’s Woodwind Quintet #3 (Suite From China West) performed by Pan Pacific Ensemble on the album. Albany Records [Troy 1903] released on September 1, 2022. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/4sdfhd7d
DIGITAL MIST––Chen Yi’s From Old Peking Folklore, Fisherman’s Song, Romance and Dance for violin and piano performed by Patrick Yim and Kiu Tung Poon, featured on the album. Released on Naxos [8.559903], July 1, 2022. Purchase here: https://www.ebay.com/itm/295236822403
FIVE MINUTES FOR EARTH––Dark Mountains for harp solo performed by Yolanda Kondonassis as a part of her FIVE MINUTES for Earth Project, released on April 1, 2022 (Earth Day month) on Azica [ACD 71349] (Naxos distribution). Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/5cab3xbn
SEVEN WAYS TO SAY FAREWELL (Olga Dubossarskaya Kaler and Kathryn Brown)––Chen Yi’s Memory for violin solo performed by Olga Dubossarskaya Kaler in her CD Seven Ways to Say Farewell, released on July 15, 2022, Centaur Records [CRC 3942]. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/5xcaasav
2. Stefania de Kenessey: IN HER WORDS––This album is a breakthrough for me: it is all electronic, and it is all dance music. In recent years, I have turned increasingly to electronic music composition as a rich source of experimentation, of new sonorities – and of total control. Or something like that. The result is an eclectic combination of vernacular and classical influences: I refer, in equal parts, to the Bulgarian and Hungarian folk songs of my childhood; to the historically hallowed Western genres of my education; and to the American popular music of my adulthood. Above all, I search for glimmers of joy and beauty, even in situations (like our current predicament) that are often desperate and ugly.
This recording showcases four results of a four-year collaboration with choreographer Ariel Grossman, the founder and director of the all-female Ariel Rivka Dance company. Our work together has been steady, fruitful and happy. Ariel constantly asks me to traverse slightly unfamiliar terrain, and the results are eye-opening and refreshing.
The four pieces are diverse in sound, outlook, orientation. But they are unified in theme: they all confront the difficulties faced by women everywhere, of all backgrounds, of all stations in life – themes that live close to my heart. Released April 8, 2022.
Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/2scpdrct | Stream it: https://tinyurl.com/p56rp7xu (Also found on Bandcamp, Amazon, etc.)
3. Wendy Griffiths: VIEWS FROM THE KEYBOARD––Veteran pianist Elizabeth Rodgers performs several collections of piano works, including the ever-popular “Seven Places in America.” Released June 1, 2022. Stream it: https://tinyurl.com/458vpxz7
4. Debra Kaye: INVITING WORLDS, VOL. 2––With the string orchestra piece Rising Up, I hope to evoke the emotional and spiritual experience of picking yourself up from the darkest place to a feeling of joy. I wrote this 11-minute, one-movement work in 2020. Given the pandemic and the uncertainties of the upcoming U.S. election, composing Rising Up gave me an outlet for engaging the tensions of the time and asserting a feeling of hope.
With a nod to Bach, I embedded the word “vote” into the musical structure at cadence points throughout the piece. How is this done? Repeat the 7-letter musical alphabet across our 26-letter alphabet, “V”=“A”, “O”=“A”, “T”=“F”, and then there’s “E.” Fortuitously, these tones happen to work well together. Released August 12, 2022. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/4d5y2krf
5. Jane Leslie: STARLIGHT REFLECTION––Starlight Reflection (arr. for piano and orchestra) is a Single release, performed by pianist Anna Sutyagina, collaborating with arranger Jeffrey Torres. This is an arrangement of my piano solo that I had recorded in 2015. The music is soft and reflective, and was inspired by the night sky. Released May 6, 2022. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/cfj3mpnb.
6. Catherine Neville: HOLD YOUR CENTER––This album explores themes of exploration and experimentation, chronicling the journey of a composer. Released May 1, 2022. Stream it on Spotify: https://tinyurl.com/muwvuzv2
7. Niloufar Nourbakhsh: LA FEMME (A JOURNEY OF FEMALE COMPOSERS)––The Window (Mezzo-soprano: Flaka Goranci). Music by Niloufar Nourbakhsh, text by Forugh Farrokhzad. Poem from Sin: Selected Poems of Forugh Farrokhzad, edited and translated by Sholeh Wolpé (University of Arkansas Press). Released November 7, 2022. © 2022 NAXOS Deutschland. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/54enatcw
8. Nina Siniakova: FROZEN REFLECTIONS features compositions written for various sets of instruments, including works for violin and harpsichord, three cellos and double bass, and a woodwind quintet alternate with compositions for solo piano performed by Nina Siniakova herself. Stylistically solid, yet diverse in its musical elements, Siniakova’s works present carefully thought-through, elegant, sophisticated music that inspires profound thoughts and desires to explore.
“I think of this album as a set of novels,” says composer Nina Siniakova. “Each of the novels is a unique take on beauty, since beauty is probably the quality I value in life the most. Beauty of the moment, of memory, of sadness, love or an emotion is what we want to keep.” Released October 10, 2022. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/3ttewnz7
THREE WISHES––Around the world in ninety days? Not necessarily! THREE WISHES is a jazz suite for flute and piano, that allows a listener to visit Paris, New York, and Buenos Aires in just twelve minutes! The suite gained wide popularity thanks to its refreshing, jazzy language combined with catchy tunes and memorable rhythmical patterns. This suite is a perfect piece to perform for any audience. Released January 20, 2022. Stream/Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/mpjcrub6
9. Hilary Tann: 2020 VISIONS––On Ear and Ear for piano and cello is based on Gerhard Manley Hopkins’ poem “The Sea and the Skylark.” The two instruments contrast the flow of the tides with the freedom of the bird. I’d like the listener to feel free to imagine a walk along the Welsh cliffs with the sea and the skylark being present. On Ear and Ear is a visual landscape. Released August 26, 2022. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/2bh8dzjz
BETWEEN EARTH AND SEA––From The Song of Amergin was composed for Lontano at the 1995 Criccieth Festival in North Wales. It is in five sections, played without a break. Three lines from Robert Graves’ restoration of the text from an ancient Celtic calendar-alphabet, the “Song of Amergin,” directly inspired the piece: “I am the wind: on a deep lake, I am a tear: the sun lets fall, I am a hawk: above the cliff.” The three inner sections are shaped by the lines of the poem (the harp is featured in wind/lake, the viola in tear/sun, and the flute in hawk/cliff) and the piece begins and ends with an evocation of “I am.” Released November 18, 2022. Purchase here: www.tycerddshop.com
UNBROKEN THREADS––First Light was conceived to take part in a three-concert cycle of the complete Beethoven violin and piano sonatas. For the “Beethoven in Wales” project I chose Beethoven’s last sonata as my “muse”. It was enjoyable for me to have this “dialog with Beethoven” as I paralleled the form, textures, and pacing of his Op. 96. Released September 5, 2022. Purchase here: www.tycerddshop.com
10. Rain Worthington: PASSAGES THROUGH TIME––A collection of orchestral and chamber works that explore the mystery of instrumental music’s ability to communicate the primal universality of human experiences. Released March 11, 2022. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/yc7zcbtk
THINGS IN PAIRS––Recorded by violinist Audrey Wright, with pianist Yundu Wang, these works span five centuries, contrasting the classical Joseph Bologne with modern minimalist Arvo Pärt, Baroque virtuoso Biber with the contemporary Rain Worthington, all under the watchful eye of Viennese Classical Beethoven. Released February 11, 2022. Purchase here: https://tinyurl.com/37ebcnmu
If you are interested in making a charitable donation to support the amazing work of New York Women Composers, please follow this link: https://www.paypal.com/us/fundraiser/charity/1758020
Tutti Thursday | Composing Geometry: Jinhee Han ft. Adam Von Housen on November 17 at 5PM!
Our next installment of the Tutti Thursday virtual event series will be held on Thursday, November 17th at 5pm!
Follow this link to learn more about this Tutti Thursday event and to RSVP: https://newyorkwomencomposers.org/events/tutti-thursdays-jinhee-han-ft-adam-von-housen-composing-geometry/
New York Women Composers 2022 Gala: Scoring Connections! October 16, 2022
Scoring Connections! New York Women Composers 2022 Gala
Join us to celebrate and connect. We look forward to gathering IN PERSON after waving to each other through our electronic devices.
This festive salon-style gala will feature music by NYWC composers performed by seed money grant recipients, an auction, a celebration of our new website & logo design, and some bubbly beverages & light refreshments. We encourage you to invite friends, family, colleagues, and anyone who may be interested in helping NYWC grow and thrive.
Purchase your tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/scoring-connections-tickets-422166941687
The Opera Center
330 7th Avenue
New York, NY 10001
Sunday, October 16, 4 – 6 PM
Alexander Wu and Millenium Chamber Players Seed Money Grant Concert – October 2, 2022 at 2PM
Sunday, October 2nd, 2022 at 2:00 PM at Bethpage Public Library in Nassau County’s Town of Oyster Bay, Alexander A. Wu and the Millennium Chamber Players will be performing one of a series of concerts partially funded by the NYWC Seed Money Disseminated Grant that he has received.
The diverse “Made in America” program includes music by NYWC composers Debra Kaye, Nailah Nombeko, Dina Pruzhansky & Chen Yi along with several composers from North and South America.
Full details and reservation info for this free event are here:
About the NEW YORK WOMEN COMPOSERS
NEW YORK WOMEN COMPOSERS, INC. was founded by composers Elizabeth Bell, Lucy Coolidge, Ann Callaway, and Robert Friou, Esq., in 1984. It is a New York 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, under the direction of its members. Membership is open to residents of New York State and the greater New York City metropolitan region who are women composers of serious concert music and to those in musical occupations who support the recognition of women composers.
A diverse range of projects has been initiated and supported by New York Women Composers over the years, including many concerts not only in New York but also in Russia, Bulgaria, Canada, and New Mexico, and an exchange concert with the Cincinnati Composers Guild. Early projects included video interviews with member composers broadcast on local-access channels and radio appearances on WNYC radio with host Tim Page.
Several recordings have come about either through partnerships between NYWC composer and performer members or because of grants given to performers by NYWC. Among these are the pianist Elena Ivanina’s recording American Music from the Moscow Autumn Festival (North/South Recordings 1017), including works by Marilyn Bliss, Binnette Lipper, and others (an outgrowth of her live festival performance); Songs by Women (Leonarda Records LE352), performed by Susan Gonzalez, soprano, and Marcia Eckert, pianist, featuring the music of NYWC members Joyce Hope Suskind, Ruth Schonthal, Elizabeth Austin, and Elisenda Fábregas; and the Laurels Project recordings of Nina Assimakopoulos, flutist, the first volume of which, Points of Entry (Capstone Records CPS-8759) includes works by NYWC members Margaret Fairlie-Kennedy, Mary Ann Joyce-Walter, Marilyn Bliss, Beth Anderson, as well as other women composers.
Among other highlights, a full-day conference on women and music in New York, cosponsored by Barnard College, took place in 1997, including lectures and panel discussions by distinguished musicologists and a wealth of performances of music by women composers past and present. New York Women Composers has sponsored or produced many concerts over the years, featuring such well-known artists as Joanne Polk (a recent Grammy nominee), Evelyn Luest, Françoise Vanhecke, Anna Stoytcheva, Elena Ivanina, Eleanor Elkins, and Ana Milosavljevic, as well as two portrait concerts at Merkin Concert Hall celebrating the works of Ursula Mamlok and Elizabeth Bell. In 2006, two memorial tribute concerts to long-time member Ann Silsbee, who was also a published poet, featured music written by NYWC members to her texts, as well as some of Silsbee’s own compositions. Several NYWC concerts have been co-produced by other organizations such as The Aviva Players and the Greenwich House Music School. Those of our members who were born in Russia, eastern Europe, the Far East, and other regions have given New York Women Composers an international stature exceeding its modest size.
Recently, New York Women Composers has offered Seed-Money Grants to individuals or ensembles to perform the works of its members either in concert or on recordings. Please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org to be put on our mailing list for the most recent application and rules. Seed-Money Grant winners from previous years are listed on our Links page. New York Women Composers looks forward to a bright future, enlarging its membership and exploring new opportunities to present and disseminate the music of its members and to support the music of all women composers.
— Marilyn Bliss, President, New York Women Composers, Inc.
2021 Seed Money Grant Recipients
RESULTS OF THE NYWC 2021 SEED MONEY GRANTS
Presenting the winners of our 2021 Seed Money Grants! We have awarded seven grants, two foreign and five domestic. One grant is in a disseminated format, and the rest are focused grants.
1) Jeremy Huw Williams, baritone , with Paula Fan, accompanist (disseminated format). Mr. Williams is a well-known Welsh baritone whose thirty-year career has featured performances both in concert and on CDs of many women composers. He has toured widely throughout the world, including Europe, Asia, and North America and will be undertaking a new tour this fall starting in the US and Canada. http://jeremyhuwwilliams.com
2) Quintocracy Wind Quintet, (focused concert): Quintocracy is an established wind quintet based in the Capital District of New York State that presents concerts throughout that area and beyond. It is comprised of flutist Melanie Chirignan, oboist Kelly Lockwood, clarinetist Michael Dee, hornist Kathryn Svatek, and a bassoonist who is currently a guest. https://www.quintocracy.com/.
3) Canta Libre Chamber Ensemble (focused concert) Canta Libre, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization, was founded in 2002 by flutist Sally Shorrock to foster the performance and enjoyment of musical literature specifically written for flute, strings and harp. Canta Libre’s members are Sally Shorrock, flute, Bradley Bosenbeck, violin, Veronica Salas, viola, Bernard Tamosaitis, cello and Karen Lindquist, harp. https://www.cantalibre.org
4) Joel Braun, double bassist (focused concert): Joel Braun is Associate Professor of Double Bass at the University of Texas at Austin. As an orchestral musician he has performed with many of the world’s leading orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic. http://www.joelbraunbass.com/
5) Aram Tchobanian, tenor (focused concert with additional performances): Tenor Aram Tchobanian, in an ensemble including Adam Kent, pianist, Anna Tonna, mezzo-soprano, and the 2Flutes ensemble, plans to present “The Faucon,” a vocal and chamber music concert that intends to be a tribute to mid-20th century and contemporary composers, by showcasing works inspired by “mystical” poems as well as texts from the Middle English and Elizabethan poets. https://www.conbrioensemble.org/aram-tchobanian-tenor
6) Hypercube Ensemble (focused concert): A quartet of saxophone, guitar, piano and percussion, HYPERCUBE embraces the boundaries of chamber music, at home in both electric and acoustic worlds. This group of gritty NYC musicians formed with the goal of performing high quality, cutting-edge, challenging repertoire that is often underperformed. The members of HYPERCUBE are Erin Rogers (saxophones), Jay Sorce (classical and electric guitar), Andrea Lodge (piano and accordion), and Chris Graham (percussion). http://www.hypercubemusic.org/
7) Marsyas Trio (focused concert): The Marsyas Trio is the UK’s leading flute, cello, and piano ensemble. They have several CDs to their credit and a long history of performing music by women. In the past year they have established a successful online series with an audience of over 5000 views. http://www.marsyastrio.com/