Season 2018-2019

Our Mission

To engage our community in all phases of new music’s culture:

Our 2018-2019 Concert Season

ModernMedieval Trio of Voices

[RESCHEDULED from September 13, 2018 (Hurricane Florence)]

ModernMedieval is an all female ensemble created by Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, former member of the world renowned vocal quartet Anonymous 4. She is joined by Martha Cluver and Eliza Bagg from the celebrated ensemble Roomful of Teeth to present programs that combine medieval chant and polyphony with new commissions and music from later eras.

ModernMedieval takes the vocal techniques developed by Anonymous 4 for singing this repertoire, and combines them with a fresh approach to programming that introduces this wonderful music to new audiences.

The ensemble recently presented a program entitled The Living Word, which combines several of Hildegard of Bingen’s most celebrated chants with new commissions by some of today’s leading composers, including Joel Phillip Friedman, Daniel Thomas Davis, Caleb Burhans, and Pulitzer Prize winner Caroline Shaw. This past season,ModernMedieval presented concerts in New York, Washington D.C and Virginia, including a collaboration with Julianna Barwick as part of the Ecstatic Music Festival in NYC that was broadcast live on WNYCNewSoundsLive.

2018-2019 brings exciting collaborations with composers Ben Frost, Angelicia Negron and Juilanna Barwick as part of Liquid Music in MN, residences at Princeton and East Carolina Universities, and concerts in Florida, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and NYC, where the Trio will make its debut at The Cloisters as part of the MetArtsLive series.

Thursday, January 10
7:30pm (A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall): CONCERT 
program including works by Hildegard von Bingen, Daniel Thomas Davis, Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, Joel Phillip Friedman, Caroline Shaw, and Caleb Burhans
Friday, January 11
11am (Recital Hall): MM reads and records works-in-progress by student composers
3-5pm (Recital Hall): MM works with vocalists in a Master Class setting
[January 10, 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

Kristin Lee and Kwan Yi
KRISTIN LEE, violin & KWAN YI, piano [January 25, 2019]
KRISTIN LEE KRISTIN LEE is a recipient of the 2015 Avery Fisher Career Grant, as well as a top prizewinner of the 2012 Walter W. Naumburg Competition and the Astral Artists’ 2010 National Auditions She has appeared as soloist with leading orchestras including The Philadelphia Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, New Mexico Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, the Ural Philharmonic of Russia, the Korean Broadcasting Symphony, the Milwaukee Symphony, the Guiyang Symphony Orchestra of China, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and many others. She has performed on the world’s finest concert stages, including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, the Kennedy Center, Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Steinway Hall’s Salon de Virtuosi, the Louvre Museum in Paris, Washington, D.C.’s Phillips Collection, and Korea’s Kumho Art Gallery.  She has curated programs that premiered at Philadelphia’s World Cafe Live and New York’s (le) Poisson Rouge in which she commissioned five new works for the violin and various instruments. Lee has given recitals in New York’s Merkin Concert Hall and Florida’s Kravis Center, and presented concerts around the United States with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

Pianist KWAN YI has performed throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia in such venues as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Kimmel Center, Kennedy Center, Chicago Symphony Center, the Metropolitan and Isabella Stewart Gardner Museums, Jordan Hall, Jones Hall, Mann Performing Arts Center, Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts, Library of Congress, Kravis Center of the Arts, Großer Sendesaal des Hessischen Rundfunks, Auditorium du Louvre, Teatro Principal de Alicante, Suntory Hall, and Seoul Arts Center.

Mr. Yi is a graduate of the Curtis Institute, Juilliard School and the Peabody Institute where he worked with Leon Fleisher and Robert McDonald. He has also attended the Steans Institute at Ravinia Festival.

Friday, January 25
11am (Recital Hall): Ms. Lee and Mr. Kwan read/record works-in-progress by student composers
2-4pm (Rm 136): Ms. Lee works with violinists in a Master Class setting
[January 25, 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

Transient Canvas
[February 21, 2019]
Hailed as “superb” by the Boston Globe, and “nothing short of fabulous” by the Boston Musical Intelligencer, TRANSIENT CANVAS is elevating the roles of the bass clarinet and marimba by commissioning new repertoire that expands their limits and explores their seemingly limitless tapestries of color. Since 2011, the duo has commissioned over 75 works by emerging and well established composers from all over the United States. In August 2017, TC released their first album Sift on New Focus Recordings to rave reviews. KLANG New Music called it “one of the more refreshing things I’ve heard in recent years.”

Dedicated to spreading their repertoire, Transient Canvas has performed across the United States and Europe. They have been presented by the Alba Music Festival (Alba, Italy), SoundNOW Festival (Atlanta, GA), Music at the Forefront (Bowling Green, OH), New Music Gathering (San Francisco, CA), Moore Hall Recital Series (Pembroke, NC), New Music at the Short North Stage (Columbus, OH), Music on Madison (Evanston, IL), New Music Nights at Spectrum (New York, NY), Clocks in Motion (Madison, WI), First Fridays (Providence, RI), New Hampshire Music Festival (Plymouth, NH), Society of Composers, Inc.(Orono, ME), New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival (New York, NY), Guerrilla Composers Guild (San Francisco, CA), and the Percussive Arts Society International Convention (Indianapolis, IN). In Boston, they are regularly featured on the Equilibrium, Original Gravity, Open Sound, and New Gallery concert series.

Wednesday, February 20
7-9pm (Rm 110): Matt Sharrock, Percussion Master Class
Thursday, February 21
4-5pm (Rm 200): Amy Advocat Clarinet Master Class
7:30pm (Rec Hall): Concert
Friday, February 22
11-12:30 (Rec Hall): Transient Canvas records students composers’ music

2-4pm (Rec Hall):The Entrepreneurial Musician

3:15-4:15 (Rm 126):Making A Living As A Composer
[February 21, , 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

[February 26, 2019]
Frequencies is an ensemble created and directed entirely by students. These remarkable members of the ECU School of Music’s community make programming decisions, form ensembles, rehearse and prepare works for performance. Frequencies is music’s future blooming before our ears. Come hear what drives the next generation’s musical interests and passions!Featuring music by Leonard Bernstein, John Rutter, Frigyes Hidas, Caroline Shaw, and Danny Clay.If you can’t make it to Greenville, then download a program here, and tune in via livestream on YouTube.

[February 26, 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

Mindy Wagner
[March 22-23, 2019]

We’re thrilled to hear the ECU Opera Theater’s WORLD PREMIERE of MELINDA WAGNER‘s Tell It Slant, a new work featuring ECU’s exceptional student vocal soloists, choir, and instrumentalists, under the baton of Dr. William Staub; as well as Wagner’s Four Settings, featuring faculty soprano Catherine Gardner. [See the evening’s program.]

As the composer selected by ECU music students to receive a commission through the NewMusic Initiative’s unique Commissioning Program, Melinda Wagner visited campus twice during the 2017-2018 season to collaborate with our students and ensembles, teach, and to hear some of her sketches read by vocal students. Under the direction of William Staub, ECU Opera Theater Directors Daniel Shirley, John Kramar, we’re excited to premiere and record this new contribution to the literature!

Celebrated as an “…eloquent, poetic voice in contemporary music…” [American Record Guide], MELINDA WAGNER’s esteemed catalog of works embodies music of exceptional beauty, power, and intelligence. Wagner received widespread attention when her colorful Concerto for Flute, Strings and Percussion earned her the Pulitzer Prize in 1999.  Since then, major works have included Concerto for Trombone, for Joseph Alessi and the New York Philharmonic; a piano concerto, Extremity of Sky, commissioned by the Chicago Symphony for Emanuel Ax; and Little Moonhead, composed for the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, as part of its popular “New Brandenburgs” project.  Wagner’s most recent commission from the Chicago Symphony, Proceed, Moon, was premiered by them, under the baton of Susanna Mälkki in June, 2017.

A passionate and inspiring teacher, Melinda Wagner has given master classes across the United States, and has held faculty positions at Brandeis University and Smith College, and has served as a mentor at the Atlantic Center for the Arts, the Wellesley Composers Conference, and Yellow Barn. Dr. Wagner currently serves on the faculty of the Juilliard School of Music.

[See the evening’s program.; Livestream via YouTube]

[March 22 & 23, 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

The Machine is Neither
[March 23 & 25, 2019]

THE MACHINE IS NEITHER… is an interactive electroacoustic collaboration formed in 2013 between Emma Hospelhorn, flutes and gestural control, and Ben Sutherland, composer and designer/ programmer. The Machine itself is a set of software/hardware tools, including live input from microphone and an Xbox Kinect game controller, that combine to become a sort of hyper-instrument, where sounds and loops can be molded and transformed by simple gestures and movements. Sometimes we collaborate with dancers, who provide us with bodies and gestural control. Sometimes we provide the bodies ourselves.

In a unique collaboration between several programs within ECU’s College of Fine Arts & Communication, The Machine Is Neither… will create a new work to be danced by students in the School of Theater and Dance. This newly commissioned work incorporates motion capture hardware and software, as well as other applications, in designing the relationship between sound and gesture. This new work will be heard twice:

  • Saturday, March 23, 2019, in McGinnis Theatre, on a single night of “Dance 2019” (Tickets required, via online box office, or by calling 1-800-ECU-ARTS)
  • Monday, March 25, 2019, @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, along with more work by The Machine Is Neither… [see the evening’s program here.]    

[March 25, 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

columns and lantern
[March 26, 2019]
ECU School of Music performers focus their talents on the music of ECU composers in these first ever public performances–world premiere performances.  The second of three concerts each year dedicated to the newest ideas of these developing young composers.

Featuring the music of
Eileen Snyder, Andrew Howell,
Dominic Mrakovcich, Jordan Cartrette,
Shupeng Cao, and Tyler Holt.

Can’t get here? Access a live stream.

[March 26, 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

symphony students
[April 6, 2019]

ECU SYMPHONY [April 6, 2019]

Jorge Richter, Director, in a program featuring Ting-Ting Yang’s Portal, the winner of our 14th Annual Orchestral Composition Competition; sharing a program with Mahler’s Symphony No. 4, featuring soprano Nicole Franklin!

[April 6, 2019 @ Wright Auditorium,
7:30pm, free admission.]

columns and lantern
[April 16, 2019]

Featuring the music of
Braden Flarity, Jay Dudding,
Eileen Snyder, Dominic Mrakovcich,
Nick Bellardini, Alice Rosario,
Shupeng Cao, and John Hale.

Can’t get here? Access a live stream.

[April 16, 2019 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]

Lei Liang
LEI LIANG, composer
[September 6-7, 2018]

Chinese-born American composer LEI LIANG (梁雷,b. Nov. 28, 1972, Tianjin) is Associate Professor of Music at the University of California, San Diego. He received his first piano lessons at the age of four, and began composing at age six. His piano teacher Zhou Guang-ren encouraged him to composer without formal training. He received several awards in China for composition and piano performance during childhood, including three honors in the Xinghai National Piano Music Competition (special distinction, 1984; Third Prize, 1987; Second Prize, 1988), where his early piano music has been in the mandatory repertoire since 1984, and Second Prize for piano performance in the Jing-Jin-Sui competition (1988). In 1989, Beijing Qingnianbao–Beijing Youth Daily–named him one of its ten “Persons of the Year.”

In 1990, Liang left his family for the USA as a high school student. He studied piano with William Race in Austin, Texas before shifting his focus to composition. He received degrees from the New England Conservatory of Music (BM & MM, both with academic honors and distinction in performance) and Harvard University (PhD). His composition teachers include Sir Harrison Birtwistle, Robert Cogan, Chaya Czernowin, Mario Davidovsky, Joshua Fineberg, Elliot Gyger, Lee Hyla, and Bernard Rands. In addition, he had masterclasses with Magnus Lindberg, James Tenney, and Chinary Ung at Harvard, and with Georg Friedrich Haas, Toshio Hosokawa, and Wolfgang Mitterer at the International Fereinkurse fur Neue Musik at Darmstadt.
As the composer selected by ECU music students for through the NewMusic Initiative’s unique Commissioning Program, Lei Liang visits us in September to begin the collaborative phase of his commission.  Mr. Liang will compose a work for multiple instruments to be delivered December, 2019, and premiered/recorded in the spring, 2020.
This September, 2018 visit will be an opportunity for us to welcome Mr. Liang into our community, for him to meet our students, conductors, teach classes, and work with student composers.

Adam Unsworth and Catherine Likhuta
[October 25, 2018]

Hornist ADAM UNSWORTH has appeared at many universities throughout the United States as a recitalist and clinician. He has made several solo and chamber appearances at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall. Mr. Unsworth received his formal training at Northwestern University, where he studied with former Chicago Symphony Orchestra members Gail Williams and Norman Schweikert. He continued with graduate work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison with Douglas Hill. He later recorded Jazz Set for Solo Horn, released in 2001 as part of Thoughtful Wanderings, a compilation of Hill’s works for horn. In 2000, the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music named him their Distinguished Alumnus of the Year. In 2006 Adam released his first jazz CD entitled Excerpt This!, which features five of his original compositions for jazz sextet and three unaccompanied works.

Before joining the faculty at the University of Michigan, Adam Unsworth served as Fourth Horn of The Philadelphia Orchestra from 1998 to 2007, and taught at Temple University. Prior to his appointment in Philadelphia, he spent three years as Second Horn of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. He also served as a guest Principal horn with the St. Louis Symphony as well as Principal horn of the Colorado Music Festival.

CATHERINE LIKHUTA is an Australian-based composer, pianist and recording artist. Her music exhibits high emotional charge, programmatic nature and rhythmic complexity. Catherine’s works have been played throughout the United States, Europe and Australia, as well as in Canada, Mexico and Brazil. Her music has enjoyed performances by many prominent soloists (such as Griffin Campbell, Ronald Caravan, Paul Dean, Peter Luff, Trish O’Brien and Adam Unsworth), chamber ensembles (such as HD Duo, Collusion, Atlantic Brass Quintet, Western Brass Quintet, Queensland Symphony Orchestra Horns and U.S. Army Field Band Horns) and large ensembles (such as The Australian Voices, University of Georgia Hodgson Singers, University of Georgia Hodgson Wind Ensemble, Queensland Conservatorium Wind Orchestra, Orchestra of the National Radio of Ukraine and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra). Catherine’s pieces have been played at several international events, including three International Horn Symposiums and World Saxophone Congress. In recent years, she was the winner of the International Horn Society Composition Contest (virtuoso division) and the recipient of several awards, including two grants from the Australia Council for the Arts. Her music can be heard on Cala, Albany and Equilibrium Records.

Catherine holds a Bachelor’s degree in jazz piano from Kyiv Glière Music College and a five-year post- graduate degree in composition from the Tchaikovsky National Music Academy of Ukraine (Kyiv Conservatory). She is currently pursuing a PhD in composition at the University of Queensland. She has delivered presentations on her work at a number of institutions, including Queensland Conservatorium, Cornell University, Ithaca College, Arizona State University, Syracuse University, Butler University and Bowling Green State University.

Wednesday, October 24
5pm, rm 136: Master Class with Adam Unsworth, horn
5pm, rm 200: Catherine Likhuta on Career Matters for composers
Thursday, October 25
7:30pm (A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall): CONCERT 
program including works by Catherine Likhuta, Dave Ballou, David Sampson, Kevin Ernste, and Dana Wilson
Friday, October 26
11am, Recital Hall: Reading/recording works-in-progress by student composers
3-5pm, Rm 200: Catherine Likhuta presents her music
5pm, Rm 200: Workshop on improvisation with Adam Unsworth

columns and lantern
[November 19, 2018]
ECU School of Music performers focus their talents on the music of ECU composers in these first ever public performances–world premiere performances.  The first of three concerts each year dedicated to the newest ideas of these developing young composers. [See the concert program here.]

Music by Dominic Mrakovcich, Koby Gallman,
J. Cameron Stephenson, Joshua Poyner,
Alice Rosario, Evan Martschenko,
Austin Hart, Nick Bellardini, Shupeng Cao,
Tyler J. Holt, and John Hale.

Can’t get here? Access a live stream.

[November 19, 2018 @ A.J. Fletcher Recital Hall, 7:30pm, free admission.]


Come hear how new ideas are initiated, and celebrate our 19th ANNUAL EXPLORATION OF THE SOUNDS OF OUR TIME
There are concerts, Master Classes with visiting performers and composers, readings of student composers’ works, receptions, discussions and more!

Follow this link to make a secure donation.

For additional information or to become a sponsor, contact:

East Carolina University School of Music, 252-328-6851, or
Edward Jacobs, Founder/Director of the NC NewMusic Initiative, at 252-328-4280