Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Location: Arts Building Music Rehearsal Hall, ARTS 157
Chris Cerrone, composer
Composer Chris Cerrone discusses the genesis and creation of his multimedia opera Invisible Cities. In this beautiful site specific production, the audience wanders through LA's historic Union Station while the opera is projected live into their ears via Sennheieser Wireless Technology. Adapted from Italo Calvino's novel of the same title, the story depicts a host of fantastical cities narrated by explorer Marco Polo: unreal cities of desire, of memory, of the imagination. Cerrone’s delicate musical setting explores sonic qualities of decay and lushness with a haunting simplicity.
Hailed as “a rising star” by The New Yorker and singled out as “the program’s highlight” by The New York Times, Christopher Cerrone (b. 1984, Huntington, NY) is a Brooklyn-based composer of works ranging from chamber music, orchestral works, and fully staged operas to multimedia projects, ambient electronic works and collaborations with visual artists. His diverse catalog synthesizes modernist and minimalist influences, sound design, and evocative orchestration into a lyrical and expressive whole.
Cerrone’s first opera, Invisible Cities, based on Italo Calvino’s classic novel receives its fully staged premiere in a fully staged, site-specific production in 19 performances at Los Angeles’ Union Station by the The Industry and LA Dance Project, directed by Yuval Sharon in Fall 2013. Previous versions of the opera have been heard at New York City Opera’s VOX Contemporary American Opera Lab, the Yale Institute for Music Theatre, the Virginia Arts Festival, and in a sold out semi-staged production by Red Light New Music and Columbia University’s Italian Academy.
Recent and upcoming projects include a new work for eighth blackbird; electro-acoustic scores for installations at the New Museum and the Time Warner Center by artist and filmmaker Marco Brambilla; a Chamber Music America-commissioned song cycle for the Color Field Ensemble; a new work for the Brooklyn Philharmonic; a joint commission from the Toomai String Quintet and the String Orchestra of Brooklyn; a violin concerto, Still Life, performed by Amadeus Leopold and the New York Youth Symphony at Carnegie Hall; Recovering, a Carnegie Hall commission for Ensemble ACJW; and Memory Palace, a solo work for custom-built percussion instruments and live electronics, commissioned by the American Composers Forum's JFund. This season Cerrone is a composer-in-residence at the Carlsbad Music Festival and the ConEdison/Exploring the Metropolis composer-in-residence at the Brooklyn Youth Chorus Academy.
2013 performances include Invisible Overture by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, as part of their Brooklyn Festival and a staged production of his opera All Wounds Bleed by the Tulsa Opera. Other highlights include featured performances at the Bang on a Can, MATA, TriBeCa and SONiC festivals, among others.
Cerrone has received awards and grants from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Chamber Music America, the Civitella Ranieri Foundation, OPERA America, the Jerome Foundation, ASCAP, and New Music USA. He was recently named to NPR’s 2011 crowd-sourced selection of young composers “100 Composers Under 40."
Cerrone was a founder and co-artistic director of Red Light New Music and is currently one-sixth of the Sleeping Giant composer collective, with whom he’ll serve as co-composer-in-residence at the Albany Symphony from 2014-2017, thanks to a Music Alive grant from New Music USA. He holds degrees from the Yale (M.M. And M.M.A.) and the Manhattan School of Music (B.M.). His works are published by Project Schott New York.