Composition Weekend 2020

Composition Weekend Concert with Interference

Friday, November 19, 2020 | 7:30 PM


Petals (1988) – Kaija Saariaho (1952)
Nancy Jo Snider, cello
William Brent, computer musician

The Banshee (1925) – Henry Cowell (1897–1965)
Laurie Hudicek, piano
Eva Ulreich, video animation

MA (2016) video presentation – Steve Antosca (1955)
Nancy Jo Snider, cello
Steve Antosca, computer musician

About the Artists

INTERFERENCE/new music collective was formed in 2015 by composer Steve Antosca and American University faculty members William Brent, a computer music specialist, and cellist Nancy Jo Snider, and saxophonist Noah Getz.

INTERFERENCE was organized to showcase the talents of American University faculty, and to further the presence of new music at American University and in Washington, DC. The ensemble focuses on the use of technology in composition and performance and promotes the American University Museum as a significant presenter of new music and new media in the city. As an integral component of the concert series, lectures are presented on composition techniques, technology in music, the historical context of the concert works and the evolving language of music. These presentations aim to bridge the experience gap between the classroom and the performance environment, to inform AU students and the AU community about the concert programs.

INTERFERENCE/new music collective is the Ensemble-in-Residence at the American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center for the CONNECTED:MUSIC IN THE MUSEUM concert series.

About the Interference artists:
The music of composer Steve Antosca has been described as “spectacular, wonderfully provocative” “formidable” and “a fascinating dance between the human players and their electronic ghosts.” The Washington Post noted that “he has brought wildly imaginative concerts… to Washington.” From 2010 to 2016 Antosca was Artistic Director of the National Gallery of Art New Music Ensemble. He was Composer-in-Residence at the NGA for the Fall 2013. The American University Museum created the position Curator for New Music-in-Residence for Antosca. He was a co-director of the 2012 John Cage Centennial Festival Washington, DC.

Recognition of Antosca’s compositions include commissions and awards from the Bourges International, Chamber Music America, Fromm Music Foundation Harvard University, Georgetown University Orchestra, Kennedy Center, Maryland State Arts Council, McKim Fund in the Library of Congress, Meet the Composer, National Academy of Music International Music Prize for Excellence in Composition, National Endowment for the Arts, No EXIT Ensemble, Phillips Collection, Randy Hostetler Living Room Music Fund and US Department of Education. His music is archived by the Library of Congress.

Antosca has a Master’s degree in Computer Music Composition from Peabody Conservatory, Johns Hopkins University. Steve teaches and lives in the Washington, DC area with his wife Connie and their two doodles Willie and Luna.

William Brent is a computer musician and Assistant Professor of Audio Technology at American University in Washington DC. His creative work is spread across the areas of experimental music performance, sound art, and instrument design, and involves various combinations of human- robotic- and computer-realized sound. In collaboration with internationally recognized composers and performers, he develops and operates realtime audiovisual manipulation software for inter-media performance works, such as James Dillon’s Nine Rivers, and Philippe Manoury’s Jupiter, Pluton, and Neptune. In this capacity, he has presented work at venues such as SESC (São Paulo), Glasgow Concert Halls (Scotland), Miller Theatre (New York), and the National Gallery of Art (Washington, DC). As a programmer, Brent has developed open source software libraries for the Pure Data [Pd] programming environment that are used by an international community of artists and researchers. His current lines of research include new methods for physical control of synthesized audio, signal analysis techniques for quantifying timbre, and various aspects of human timbre perception.

Brent studied piano performance and composition at Wilfrid Laurier University and Mills College, earning Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees in Music. He holds a Ph.D in Music from the University of California, San Diego, where he studied in the computer music area with Miller Puckette, F.R. Moore, and Shlomo Dubnov. Centered on various understandings of timbre, his dissertation research examined signal processing techniques for automatic classification of percussion instruments, and the relationship between objective measurements and human judgments of percussive sounds.

In parallel with his dissertation work on timbre, Brent developed the timbreID software library – an open source suite of Pure Data objects for real-time and offline audio analysis and identification. He has authored various other tools for use in Pd, including DILib, which is geared toward facilitating the creation of novel digital musical instruments. Using these libraries, he recently developed the Open Shaper (a digital musical instrument controlled by shaping a virtual polygon with open-air fingertip movements), and the Gesturally Extended Piano, an extended instrument that exploits large-scale arm motions associated with standard piano technique in order to control real-time sound processing, spatialization, and synthesis. His work has been presented at major venues in the field of computer music, such as: the International Computer Music Conference, the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression, and the International Conference on Auditory Display.

Laurie Hudicek has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music from St. Mary’s College of Maryland (1995), a Master of Music Degree from The University of Maryland (1998), and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance from The University of Maryland (2002), where she studied contemporary piano with Bradford Gowen.

Dr. Hudicek focuses on the performance of 20th- and 21st-Century Music, specifically the works of American composers. Her performances and lectures have been regarded as “engaging” and “remarkable for thoughtfulness and expression” (21st Century Music), and she has also been described as a “vivid” and “virtuoso” performer (The Washington Post). She has premiered works by Dary John Mizelle, Sean Hickey, Frances McKay, and Steve Antosca.

Dr. Hudicek can be heard on the Furious Artisans label. Her debut recording of George Crumb’s Makroksomos volumes I and II, hailed by 21st Century Music as a “brilliant, commanding, and virtuosic new recording,” has been highly praised by the composer as “superb” and “effectively and sensitively interpreted.” Her recording was also featured on National Public Radio’s Composer’s Datebook. She recently collaborated with her daughter, Eva Ulreich, and Steve Antosca on an award-winning film featuring her recording of Henry Cowell’s The Banshee.

Dr. Hudicek has been on the piano faculty at St. Mary’s College of Maryland and Levine Music in Washington D.C. where she held the positions of Associate Piano Department Chair and Suzuki Piano Department Chair. She has given pre-performance lectures and talks for Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at Strathmore, City Dance, and multiple universities and colleges. She is a Registered Suzuki Piano Instructor, a Certified Royal Conservatory of Music theory and piano instructor, and has been published in both The New Music Connoisseur and 21st Century Music.

Dr. Hudicek is currently the Director of Music Education for Loudoun Symphony Youth Orchestras in Loudoun County, VA.

Cellist and educator Nancy Jo Snider performs regularly in a variety of chamber and period instrument ensembles in venues ranging from The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Rose Theatre and L’Opèra Royal de Versailles, to experimental stages and living rooms. Performance highlights have included collaborations with Trisha Yearwood, Miřenka Čechová (Spitfire Company, Czech Republic), Modern Musick, Shakespeare Theatre, Folger Consort (notably a performance featuring Sir Derek Jacobi), Washington Ballet, Washington Bach Consort and VERGE. She is a passionate advocate for new music and co-founded the new music collective INTERFERENCE with Steve Antosca and William Brent in 2015.

Ms. Snider was Director of the AU Music Program for many years and is now proud to be the Director of the Applied Music Program at American University. She received the Outstanding Teacher of the Year in an Adjunct Appointment Award early in her career and currently serves on the full-time music faculty oin the position of Hurst Senior Professorial Lecturer. She is a dedicated and enthusiastic teacher who derives much joy from sharing what she loves with others.

Ms. Snider performed in South Africa with the Spitfire Company at the 2013 National Arts Festival where the production was awarded “Best Overseas Production.” She has enjoyed continued performing opportunities in New York, France, South Africa and Russia and, as a Fellow of the Likhachev Foundation in 2016, delivered a lecture at St. Petersburg State University about music in the 21st century. Her lecture at the Hirschhorn Museum, Music in the work of Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartensson was also a notable highlight

Summer 2019 found her with INTERFERENCE new music collective performing “Ma” (co-created with composer Steve Antosca) at the Zero Point Festival in Prague.

She lived in Nairobi, Kenya from May-December 2019 and served as a Visiting Lecturer at US International University-Africa to work on curriculum development and performance. While in Kenya, she taught outstanding young musicians in the Kibera informal settlement (slum) and is eager to return to that amazing work.

During the pandemic months, in addition to a rigorous online teaching schedule, she has given a couple of live, outdoor, socially distanced concerts for her neighbors, co-presented and performed at the New Music DC conference and done a number of online music shares for various audiences.

Eva Ulreich is a young award-winning animator and artist. Her films have been screened locally and internationally. “The Banshee” has earned Ms. Ulreich the title of “Best Emerging Director” from Loudoun Arts Film Festival as well as recognition in the International Best Shorts Awards and IndyX Shorts.

Her film “Anxiety”, a film she made at age 12, won the “New Talent Award” by The National Film Festival for Talented Youth for 2020, a festival that is considered to be the young filmmaker’s Cannes. “Anxiety” has also earned Ms. Ulreich a scholarship to the Film and New Media program at Interlochen Arts Acedemy as well as a scholarship to study animation in the Interlochen Summer program.

Ms. Ulreich lives with her family, three cats and her dog, Hendrix. She enjoys playing violin with the local youth orchestras and is also is an award-winning young singer.

The Composition Department of Levine Music gratefully acknowledges the generosity of The ASCAP Foundation Irvin Caesar Fund and The Randy Hostetler Living Room Music Fund.

2020 Composition Weekend Master Class

Saturday, November 21, 2020 | 10 AM

Join the Composition Department for the 2020 Composition Weekend Master Class. Levine composition students will present their works to members of INTERFERENCE new music collective.