Marilyn Crispell is an American jazz pianist and composer. She studied classical piano and composition at the New England Conservatory of Music and she has been a resident of Woodstock, NY since 1977 when she came to study and teach at Karl Bergers Creative Music Studio. She discovered jazz through the music of John Coltrane, Cecil Taylor and other jazz players and composers as Paul Bley. For ten years she was a member of Anthony Braxtons Quartet and she has been a member of the Barry Guy New Orchestra as well as a member of the Henry Grimes Trio, the Europea Quartet Noir, and Anders Jormins Bortom Quintet. In 1981 she performed at the Woodstock Jazz Festival, held in celebration of the anniversary of the Creative Music Studio. Crispell has performed and recorded as a soloist and leader of her own groups and she has performed and recorded music by contemporary composers John Cage, Pauline Oliveros, Robert Cogan, Pozzi Escot, Manfred Niehaus and Anthony Davis. She received a 2005 Guggenheim Fellowship, official website Marilyn Crispell Interview at allaboutjazz.
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Darcy James Argue
Darcy James Argue is a jazz composer and bandleader known for his work with his 18-piece ensemble, Secret Society. Argue was born in Vancouver, British Columbia and he studied at McGill University in Montreal from 1993–1998, and in 2000 he moved to the U. S. to study composition at New England Conservatory of Music with jazz composer Bob Brookmeyer. Following his studies at New England Conservatory, Argue moved to Brooklyn in 2003, in 2005, Argue founded Darcy James Argues Secret Society, an eighteen-piece big band. In 2009, the released their first studio album, Infernal Machines, on New Amsterdam Records. The album received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album, the Societys second album, Brooklyn Babylon, was based on a multimedia performance co-created by visual artist Danijel Zezelj and premiered at the BAM Next Wave Festival in November 2011. The album received Grammy and Juno Award nominations and it won the top positions for Arranger and Big Band in the 2013 Down Beat Critics Poll.
It was named Best Album of 2013 by The New Republic, the Societys third album, Real Enemies, was released September 2016 by New Amsterdam. It received a Grammy nomination for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album and he is the recipient of grants and fellowships from New Music USA, the Aaron Copland Fund for Music, the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the MacDowell Colony
Charlie Albright is an American-born classical pianist and improviser. He is an official Steinway Artist,2014 Avery Fisher Career Grant Recipient,2010 Gilmore Young Artist and he graduated from the Juilliard School of Music with his post-graduate Artist Diploma in 2014. Albright is a frequent collaborator with Yo-Yo Ma, the New York Times has praised Albrights jaw-dropping technique and described his playing as virtuosity with a distinctive musicality throughout. The New York Concert Review wrote that Albrights playing is as good as it gets. The Washington Post declared that Albright is among the most gifted musicians of his generation, Albright lives in New York City. Albright was born in the U. S. Army hospital within Fort Lewis, near Tacoma, about a year after Albright was born the family moved to Centralia where he was raised. Albright has a sister named Lillian. Albright says he began to play the piano at age three-and-a-half, from the age of four he appeared on state and national television.
He began formal training in 1996, studying with Nancy Adsit of Olympia, during his years with Adsit, Albright was selected five times as an Olympia Chapter representative to the Washington State Music Teachers Convention and received a Beaux Arts Society scholarship. In 1998, he made his debut with the University of Puget Sound symphony. Other performances throughout Washington included solo debuts with the Olympia Symphony Orchestra, Albrights success continued as a prizewinner in the Northwest Chopin Festival on February 1,2003, and first prize winner in the 2003 Washington State MTNA Senior Piano Competition. Other concerts that included appearances on the Steinway Young Artists Series in Seattle. Albright attended Centralia High School, where he graduated in 2007 and he attended Centralia College as part of the Running Start Program, earning his Associate of Science Degree with Highest Honors in 2007. At age 15, Albright was selected as the youngest pianist in the Young Artist program of the 2004 TCU/Cliburn Piano Institute in Fort Worth, at age 16, Albright was among the five winners in the 14–16-year-old division at the Northwest Chopin Competition held in February 2005.
He played in the festivals Prizewinners Concert at the Community Concerts Series in Centralia, and he was one of seven competitors in the 2005 National MTNA Senior Piano Competition. When he was almost 17 years old, Albright was the First Prize winner in the 2005 International Institute for Young Musicians International Piano Competition in Lawrence, Albright won the 2005 Washington State MTNA Senior Piano Competition for the third time, in November. Albright won Second Prize in the 2006 Schimmel Senior International Piano Competition in Tempe, in June, he was the first pianist ever to win both the Solo and Ensemble Divisions of the 2006 New York Biennial National Piano Competition in New York, New York. In August, he won first prize and all other prizes in the 2006 Eastman Young Artists International Piano Competition at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. Other prizes included the Audience Prize, the Best Performance in a Master Class prize, Albright won the 2006 Washington State MTNA Senior Piano Competition for the fourth time, in November
Richard P. Condie
Richard P. Condie was the conductor of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in Salt Lake City, Utah from 1957 to 1974. Condie was a graduate of Brigham Young University in 1923 and the New England Conservatory of Music in 1928 and he became assistant conductor of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in 1937. He taught at the McCune School of Music in Salt Lake City, at BYU in Provo, Utah State University in Logan Utah, after he became director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir he formed a relationship with Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra. Their most famous collaboration was the production of the Battle Hymn of the Republic in 1958 which won a Grammy Award
Herbert Blomstedt is a conductor laureate of the San Francisco Symphony. Herbert Blomstedt was born in Springfield and two years after his birth, his Swedish parents moved the back to their country of origin. Blomstedt lived in Finland during his youth and he won the Koussevitzky Conducting Prize in 1953 and the Salzburg Conducting Competition in 1955. A devout Seventh-day Adventist, Blomstedt does not rehearse on Friday nights or Saturdays and he does, conduct concerts, since he considers actual performances to be an expression of his religious devotion rather than work. He has been Music Director or Principal Conductor of the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Danish Radio Symphony, Blomstedt was music director of the San Francisco Symphony from 1985 to 1995. After leaving San Francisco full-time, Blomstedt held principal conductorships with the North German Radio Symphony and Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra
Mary Cardwell Dawson
Mary Cardwell Dawson was an African-American musician and teacher and the founding director of the National Negro Opera Company. After presenting the opera Aida at the NANM convention of 1941, the star was La Julia Rhea, and other members included Minto Cato, Carol Brice, Robert McFerrin, and Lillian Evanti. NNOC mounted productions in Washington D. C, new York City and Pittsburgh. Pianist Ahmad Jamal began formal training at the age of seven with Ms. Dawson, whom he says greatly influenced him
Neal E. Boyd
Neal Evans Boyd is an American pop opera singer. He is best known as being the winner of the season of Americas Got Talent. Neal E. Boyd grew up in Sikeston, the son of an African American man and his brother were raised by their single mother in poverty. He discovered operatic music in high school when his older brother was doing a school project involving classical music. Boyd was so enamored by the passion and skill of the trio that he started learning to sing in Luciano Pavarottis. Boyd graduated from Sikeston High School in May 1994, where he was class president. Boyd was president of the Student Senate at Southeast Missouri State University, while in college, Boyd interned at the capitol in Jefferson City, Missouri. He was the winner of the Music Teachers National Association Vocal Collegiate Championship in 2000 while in the studio of Professor Ann Harrell of University of Missouri–Columbia. This national win led to his debut at New York Citys famed Carnegie Hall in March 2001. After teaching music for the 2001–2002 school year in his hometown of Sikeston, Missouri, in 2002 and this led to a role as the slave York in Michael Chings World Premier Opera Corps of Discovery, A Musical Journey, commissioned by University of Missouri–Columbia.
Boyd was the winner of Americas Got Talent in 2008, and was awarded the $1-million prize, Neal was awarded the $1-million prize and a headline show in Las Vegas hosted by Jerry Springer. On October 2008, Neals hometown declared the month of October Neal E. Boyd Month, Neal signed to Decca Records and released his debut album, My American Dream, on June 23,2009, the day of the fourth season premiere of Americas Got Talent. It debuted at #195 on the Billboard 200 and #3 on the Top Classical Albums Chart, on March 10,2010, Neal performed for the current U. S. President Barack Obama while visiting Missouri. Since 2000, Boyd has performed for Presidents George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton and he ran for a seat in the Missouri House of Representatives in 2012, but lost to Democrat Steve Hodges by 66 to 34%. On September 5,2013 Boyd announced that he would seek to be elected to the Missouri House of Representatives from the 149th district in 2014. He was defeated in the August 2014 Republican primary by Don Rone, in 2005, he sang the National Anthem at the inauguration of Missouri Governor Matt Blunt.
On August 28,2012, Boyd performed Lee Greenwoods God Bless the USA at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, various Missouri state and local officials nicknamed Boyd The Voice of Missouri due to his appearances at many prominent statewide events. Paul Potts Neal E. Boyds official website Neal E. Boyds political website NBC Show Profile Appearances on C-SPAN
Mohammed Fairouz is an American composer. He is one of the most frequently performed composers of his generation and has described as an important new artistic voice. Fairouz began composing at an age and studied at the New England Conservatory of Music. His teachers included Gunther Schuller, Halim El-Dabh, and John Heiss, Fairouz lives in New York City. Fairouz says that he first set the poem The True Knowledge by Oscar Wilde to music at the age of 7 and has gone on to hundreds of art songs. In Poets & Writers Magazine, he described himself as being obsessed with text, three Fragments of Ibn Khafājah was commissioned by the Cygnus Ensemble and sets poetry by Arab Andalucian poet Ibn Khafaja. Musicians for Harmony commissioned the song cycle Furia for baritone Randall Scarlata together with the Imani Winds, jeder Mensch, was written for Kate Lindsey with texts set from the diaries of Alma Mahler. Lindsey is the soloist in a 2014 recording of Fairouzs 2012 cycle, with the LPR Ensemble conducted by Evan Rogister, the disc features Fairouzs 2013 instrumental work, Sadat.
Fairouz has collaborated extensively with living poets, bonsai Journal, on texts by Judson Evans, was released on Albany Records. Fairouzs theatrical song cycle, written with Wayne Koestenbaum, titled Pierrot was commissioned by the Da Capo Chamber Players, the Pierrot ensemble, Lunatics at Large commissioned the cycle Unwritten on texts by David Shapiro. Fairouz has written an oratorio entitled Zabur, which was premiered by the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir, staying true to his focus on text, the work sets a libretto by Najla Said and features text in both Arabic and English. Zabur is scored for an orchestra, mixed choir, childrens mixed choir, tenor soloist. The opera clearly depicts the consequences of this pioneering energy. The opera is recorded on Bridge Records, like children, are lovable when young, and they become much less lovable as they age. The second lesson Machiavelli tells us is about obsession, among leaders. And the final chapter is basically is the story of Dick Cheney bin Laden, Fairouz is currently at work on a new opera about the lives and deaths of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto.
The opera features Nathan Gunn and Kate Lindsey in the lead roles and his Third Symphony and Prayers was commissioned by Northeastern Universitys Middle East Center for Peace and Development and is cast for solo voices, mixed chorus and orchestra. The Symphony sets the texts of Arab poets such as Fadwa Tuqan and Mahmoud Darwish, Fairouzs Fourth Symphony In the Shadow of No Towers is scored for wind ensemble and is inspired by Art Spiegelmans graphic novel of the same title
Ralph Burns was an American jazz pianist and arranger. Burns was born in Newton, Massachusetts where he playing the piano as a child. In 1938, he attended the New England Conservatory of Music and he admitted that he learned the most about jazz by transcribing the works of Count Basie, Benny Goodman and Duke Ellington. While a student, Burns lived in Frances Waynes home, wayne was already a well-known big band singer and her brother Nick Jerret was a bandleader who began working with Burns. He found himself in the company of famous performers as Nat King Cole. After Burns moved to New York in the early 1940s, he met Charlie Barnet, in 1944, he joined the Woody Herman band with members Neal Hefti, Bill Harris, Flip Phillips, Chubby Jackson and Dave Tough. Together, the group developed a powerful and distinctive sound, for 15 years, Burns wrote or arranged many of the bands major hits including Bijou, Northwest Passage and Apple Honey, and on the longer work Lady McGowans Dream and the three-part Summer Sequence.
Burns worked with other musicians. Stan Getz was featured as a tenor saxophone soloist on Early Autumn, a hit for the band. Burns worked in a band with soloists including Bill Harris. The success of the Herman band provided Burns the ability to record under his own name in the 1950s, in the 1950s Burns played nightly from 5pm -9pm in The Baroque Room at Oscars Delmonico restaurant in Downtown Manhattan. He collaborated with Billy Strayhorn, Lee Konitz and Ben Webster to create both jazz and classical recordings and he wrote compositions for Tony Bennett and Johnny Mathis and Aretha Franklin and Natalie Cole. Burns was responsible for the arrangement and introduction of an orchestra on two of Ray Charless biggest hits, Come Rain or Come Shine and Georgia on My Mind. In the 1960s, Burns was freed from touring as a band pianist, and began arranging/orchestrating for Broadway including the major show Chicago, Funny Girl, No, No, Nanette, in 1971, Burns first film assignment was for Woody Allens Bananas.
Burns worked with film-director Bob Fosse and in 1972 won the Academy Award as music supervisor for Cabaret and he composed the film scores for Lenny and Martin Scorseses jazz-themed New York, New York. Fosse again employed Burns to create the soundtrack for All That Jazz for which he won an Academy Award in 1979. He worked on Urban Cowboy and in 1982, Burns received another Academy Award nomination for his work in Annie and his work for the stage was notable. Baryshnikov on Broadway in 1980 earned Burns an Emmy Award for his work, in the 1990s, Burns arranged music for Mel Tormé, John Pizzarelli and Michael Feinstein