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.

Performances

Moonshine Room at Club Café | April 30, 2012
Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory | May 27, 2011
Studzinski Recital Hall at Bowdoin College | April 17, 2011
Distler Performance Hall at Tufts University | April 16, 2011
Jewett Auditorium at Wellesley College | April 14, 2011
Sanders Theatre | May 19, 2007
Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory | November 4, 2005
Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory | May 21, 2004

News and Press

[Concert Review] BMOP on Indian Inspired Music

Indian music in the classical world seems somehow out of place. With some exceptions, notably Philip Glass’s opera Satyagraha or John Harbison’s Mirabai Songs, and after Ravi Shankar and George Harrison, the advent of Bollywood and — most recently — the huge success of Slumdog Millionaire (Jai Ho seems to be on infinite repeat at almost every wedding I’ve been to, Indian and non-), India seems to have pervaded pop culture more than anything else. So the Boston Modern Orchestra Project concert at NEC’s Jordan Hall on the evening of May 27 raised intrigue.

Boston Musical Intelligencer Full review
[Concert Review] BMOP channels India in season-ending show

"Sangita: The Spirit of India’’ was the title of the Boston Modern Orchestra Project’s season-ending concert Friday night at Jordan Hall. And the program was as dense as the hot, humid, subcontinent-like weather outside, with world premieres by three New England-based composers and a North American premiere by early-20th-century English composer John Foulds.

The Boston Globe Full review
[News Coverage] Projecting the 'Spirit of India'
Tonight’s concert “Sangita: The Spirit of India’’ marks the end of the Boston Modern Orchestra Project’s season, and it’s been a busier one than usual. Until fairly recently, BMOP’s season consisted of a sequence of Jordan Hall concerts. Now that series is merely one part of a flood of activity that includes a series of chamber concerts at clubs, opera productions, and, this season, concerts at Tufts University and Wellesley and Bowdoin colleges.
The Boston Globe Full review
[Concert Review] Boston Modern Orchestra Project: Ziporyn, Foulds, Child, Shende

I had been looking forward to this concert ever since I saw an earlier misprint last September claiming Sangita would be performed in November. The BMOP site finally posted the right date. Ever since I heard the Modern Jazz Quartet's “Music From the Third Stream” album, I've always held my breath, anticipating the performance of the next composition embracing cultural or aesthetic fusion. Would I be treated to a work of great beauty, depth and complexity, or assaulted by a failed attempt that crashed on the shoals, maybe near something deep, but drowning nonetheless?

Fine Arts Full review
[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 review
[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 review
[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 review
[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 review
[Press Release] BMOP announces 10th anniversary season

BMOP announces that its 10th anniversary season will open on November 3, 2006 at Jordan Hall. For 10 years BMOP has been Boston's only orchestra dedicated exclusively to performing and recording new music. Led by founding Artistic Director Gil Rose, BMOP is considered to be the premier orchestra for new music in the country.

Full review
[News Coverage] New Orleans benefit kicks off new Celebrity Series season

The 68th season of Bank of America Celebrity Series opens with ‘‘A Cajun Celebration” Oct. 15, featuring the Preservation Hall Jazz Band in a benefit performance for the New Orleans Musicians Hurricane Relief Fund and the Celebrity Series Arts, Education and Community Program.

The season brings 74 performances in 11 venues by performers including major dance companies, orchestras, pianists, singers, chamber music ensembles, and world music, jazz, popular, and folk artists.

The Boston Globe Full review
[Concert Review] Project brings death to life in "Trilogy"

This season may bring no more important event than the American premiere of Louis Andriessen’s Trilogy of the Last Day, which was at the center of last night’s concert by the Boston Modern Orchestra Project. This terrifying hourlong work gathers texts from an almost impossibly wide variety of cultures and eras to ask a daringly simple question: How do we represent death to ourselves?

The Boston Globe Full review
[Press Release] BMOP performs North American premiere of Louis Andriessen's Trilogy of the Last Day

The Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP), under artistic director and conductor Gil Rose, begins its 2005-2006 concert season with the North American premiere of Louis Andriessen's Trilogy of the Last Day. BMOP is one of the few professional orchestras in the United States dedicated exclusively to performing and recording music of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Since its founding in 1996, BMOP has programmed 46 concerts of contemporary orchestral music, released ten world premiere recordings, and won eight ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming.

Full review
[Press Release] BMOP opens its season with the North American premiere of Louis Andriessen's Trilogy of the Last Day

The Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP), under artistic director and conductor Gil Rose, is one of the few professional orchestras in the United States dedicated exclusively to performing and recording music of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Since its founding in 1996, BMOP has programmed 46 concerts of contemporary orchestral music, released ten world premiere recordings, and won eight ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming.

Full review
[Concert Review] BMOP soars through graceful season finale

“A dazzling world premiere by Evan Ziporyn and the appearance of not one but two celebrated guest soloists distinguished the final concert of this year’s Boston Modern Orchestra Project season at Jordan Hall on Friday.

Renowned “new music” pianist Ursula Oppens applied her unfailingly insightful curiosity and sublime graciousness of touch to Augusta Read Thomas’s 2000 intermittently appealing Aurora. And master clarinetist Richard Stoltzman’s playing impressed as usual in Stephen Hartke’s 2001 Clarinet Concerto....

The Boston Globe Full review