Evan Ziporyn

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Evan Ziporyn
composer

From Lincoln Center to Balinese temples, from loft spaces to international festivals, composer/performer Evan Ziporyn has traveled the globe in search of new musical possibilities. His work is informed by his 23-year involvement with Balinese gamelan, which has ranged from intensive study of traditional music to the creation of a series of groundbreaking works for gamelan and western instruments. His compositions have been performed by the Kronos Quartet, Bang On A Can, Nederlands Blazer Ensemble, master p'ipaist Wu Man, Gamelan Sekar Jaya, Maya Beiser and Steven Schick, Arden Trio, California EAR Unit, pianist Sarah Cahill, and Orkest de Volharding.

As a bass clarinetist, Ziporyn has developed a distinctive set of extended techniques which he has used in his own solo works, as well as new works by Martin Bresnick, Michael Gordon, and David Lang. His 2001 solo clarinet CD, This is not a clarinet (Cantaloupe) received critical acclaim on NPR's "All Thing's Considered," PRI's "The World," and on numerous critic's top ten lists at year's end.

He has been associated with the Bang On A Can Festival since its founding in 1987, appearing as composer, soloist, and ensemble leader. As a member of the Bang On A Can All-stars, he has toured over a dozen countries and worked with composers such as Louis Andriessen, Glenn Branca, Don Byron, Alvin Curran, Nick Didkovsky, Arnold Dreyblatt, Steve Martland, Meredith Monk, Ralph Shapey, Tan Dun, Cecil Taylor, and Henry Threadgill. In addition to writing for the group and co-producing their most recent recordings, he has arranged for the group works by Brian Eno, Hermeto Pascoal, and Kurt Cobain. He also regularly performs and records as a featured soloist with Steve Reich and Musicians, and shared in their 1999 Grammy for Music for 18 Musicians. As a conductor, he has toured Europe with Germany's acclaimed Ensemble Modern and has recorded Michael Gordon's Weather with Ensemble Resonanz for Nonesuch.

Born in Chicago in 1959, Ziporyn received degrees from Yale University and the University of California, Berkeley, where his teachers included John Blacking, Martin Bresnick, Gerard Grisey, and David Lewin. Upon completing a Fullbright Fellowship in Indonesia, he became Musical Coordinator of San Francisco's Gamelan Sekar Jaya in 1988. He collaborated with Balinese composer I Nyoman Windha on Kekembangan, a border-crossing work for full gamelan and saxophone quartet. Moving to Boston in 1990 to take a teaching position at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he founded Gamelan Galak Tika in 1993. His works for gamelan and western instruments have been released on two volumes for New World Records.

As a performer and recording artist, Ziporyn has worked with a range of master musicians from numerous musical cultures, including Paul Simon (with whom he toured throughout the fall of 2000), DJ Spooky, Matthew Shipp, Balinese dalang I Wayan Wija, Burmese pat waing master Kyaw Kyaw Naing, Darius Brubeck, Nobukazu Takemura, Todd Reynolds and Ethel, Sandhile Shange and Allen Kwela, Bob Moses, Andrea Parker, Trichy Sankaran, and Tony Scott. Venues have included New York's Lincoln Center, the Sydney Opera House (for the 2000 Olympic Arts Festival), Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, London's Southbank Centre, the Bali Arts Festival, and at least a dozen other countries.

As a player, Ziporyn has recorded for Sony Classical, Nonesuch, Gramavision, New Albion, and Point Music. He has received grants from the Rockefeller Multi-Arts Program, Meet the Composer, the New England Foundation for the Arts, NEA/Arts International, ASCAP, the Cambridge Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is Kenan Sahin Distinguished Professor of Music at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he is Head of Music and Theater Arts. His puppet opera, Shadow Bang, a collaboration with Balinese puppeteer I Wayan Wija, was recently released on Cantaloupe Music. Recent projects include a new work for the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, a concerto for pipa and gamelan, and music for the American Repertory Theater's production of Oedipus Rex.

more

Performances

Sangita: The Spirit of India
Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory | May 27, 2011
Bang Theory
Studzinski Recital Hall at Bowdoin College | April 17, 2011
Bang Theory
Distler Performance Hall at Tufts University | April 16, 2011
Bang Theory
Diana Chapman Walsh Alumnae Hall at Wellesley College | April 14, 2011
Dreamhouse
Sanders Theater | May 19, 2007
Trilogy of the Last Day
Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory | November 4, 2005
Next
Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory | May 21, 2004

News and Press

[News Coverage] Ears wide open
A couple of weeks ago, conductor Gil Rose was sitting in a local Indian restaurant, looking improbably relaxed. As music director of Opera Boston, he had the opening night of Osvaldo Golijov's flamenco opera Ainadamar looming over his head, and as founder of the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, he had four daunting contemporary scores waiting to be whipped into shape for a concert that takes place this Friday night at Jordan Hall.
The Boston Globe Full coverage
[Concert Review] Maestro, is that a DJ with your orchestra?
Anyone who caught the Ben Folds performance with the Boston Pops last week and was struck by the thinness of the meeting of musical worlds should have been there on Saturday night at Sanders Theatre to hear the Boston Modern Orchestra Project tee off on three bracingly imaginative works infused with rock 'n' roll and other popular styles.
The Boston Globe Full review
[News Coverage] Modern Orchesta blooms with Rose
Gil Rose and his Boston Modern Orchestra Project are nothing if not adventurous, playing all sorts of new music and bringing classical music to pubs and bars. Tonight they take that spirit even further by performing Anthony De Ritis' Devolution: A Concerto for DJ and Orchestra featuring DJ Spooky the Subliminal Kid; Steven Mackey's Dreamhouse featuring electric guitars and vocalists; and the world premiere of Evan Ziporyn's Hard Drive. The program, at Sanders Theatre, is part of the Celebrity Series Boston Marquee performances.
Full coverage
[News Coverage] Roll over, Beethoven
In the basement of the Masonic Hall in Porter Square, conductor Gil Rose is giving members of the Boston Modern Orchestra Project fair warning. "This is going to get pretty loud," he says.
The Boston Globe Full coverage
[Press Release] BMOP Premieres Rock-and-Roll Inspired Works by Evan Ziporyn, Steven Mackey, and Anthony DeRitis
Presented by the Bank of America Celebrity Series, and its President and Executive Director, Martha H. Jones, the Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP) celebrates the final concert of its 10th anniversary season with a Boston Marquee performance May 19th @ 8:00pm, at Harvard University's Sanders Theatre (45 Quincy Street, Cambridge). As the nation's only orchestra dedicated exclusively to performing, commissioning, and recording new music of the 21st century, BMOP turns its focus to American composers inspired by rock and roll.
Full release