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Information Regarding COVID-19:
Our New York City office remains closed to protect the health and safety of all of our employees. During this time, we are doing everything possible to minimize disruptions to our daily operations. All employees are working remotely from home and remain fully contactable. If you have had to cancel or postpone a performance of a work from our catalogue, or are considering live streaming performances or streaming archival material, we are prepared to assist you in facilitating changes. Please direct all questions or concerns to rental@eamdc.com.

Please note:

  • All materials from canceled or completed performances should be returned to our Verona, New Jersey library only.
  • Please do not return materials to our New York office. Unfortunately, we cannot be responsible for lost materials that are returned to our New York office while it is closed. If materials are lost, we will have to charge the full replacement value.

In observance of Blackout Tuesday, we will not be conducting regular business on June 2. We stand in solidarity with the Black American community and our colleagues across the music industry and will add our efforts to bring justice and peace in our country. 

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Weekly Playlists: Christopher Cerrone

Life during COVID-19 has fundamentally changed the landscape of new music: at least for the time being, concerts, rehearsals, recordings, and composing have all been transformed into solitary activities, connected through technology. But in the spirit of connection and collaboration, PSNY wll be publishing weekly playlists of our composers' works, especially those that can be a source of healing, contemplation, and inspiration. 

To kick off our series, we begin with none other than Christopher Cerrone, whose music evokes an unparalelled poetic lyricism, both in his settings of poetry and his instrumental works. 

1. "Swept Up Whole," from The Pieces that Fall To EarthCerrone's 2015 song cycle commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and recently recorded by Wild Up for New Amsterdam Records:

2. Goldbeater's Skin, for mezzo-soprano and percussion quartet, from 2017:

3. Meander, Spiral, Explode, Cerrone's 2019 Concerto for Percussion Quartet and Orchestra, commissioned and premeired by Third Coast Percussion, with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago:

4. Breaks and Breaks, Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, commissioned and premiered by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in 2018: 

Karen Tanaka at the Academy Awards

Karen Tanaka's hauntingly beautiful score sets a reflective and playful tone for the short animation Sister, which was recently nominated for the 92nd Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film. Tanaka's score, which combines the simplicity of solo piano with electronics, is one of several scores by female composers to be recognized by the Academy in the 2020 season; as Variety notes, this is a new record for the Oscars. 

Tanaka has also recently composed a new commission for the Left Coast Chamber EnsembleWind Wisperer, which was premeired in October, 2019. Written for the same instrumental ensemble as Debussy's Sonata for Flute, Viola, and Harp, which also appeared on the program, Tanaka's Wind Wisperer echoes Debussy's harmonic innovations while expanding its own exploration of time and timelessness. Tanaka draws inspiration from the Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi, whose work inspired her to create an "out-of-time" experience while listening to the piece, suspended in harmonic animation by the harp; the melodic figurations of the flute produce almost improvisational gestures, playing within suspended harmonic fields. 

Tanaka's choral work Sleep Deeply—available in arrangements for mezzo-soprano/two tenors/baritone, SATB, and TTBB chorus—was also recently performed by the Irish vocal ensemble ANÚNA in Belgium. This work, commissioned in 2018 by the Louth Contemporary Music Society in Ireland, sets lyrics by ANÚNA's Artistic Director Michael McGlynn, based on medieval Irish Poetry. 

Joan La Barbara Premieres New Work for NY Philharmonic's "Project 19"

On February 10th, the New York Philharmonic premiered Joan La Barbara's Ears of an Eagle; Eyes of a Hawk: In the Vortex, which was commissioned by the orchestra for their Project 19 commissioning initiative: "a multi-season initiative to commission and premiere 19 new works by 19 women composers," commemorating the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution. That amendment granted suffrage to over twenty-six million women in the United States, enfranchising them with the right to vote, which marked a pivotal moment in American history.

In Ears of an Eagle; Eyes of a Hawk: In the Vortex, La Barbara meditates on the political legacies of the 19th Amendment: at the same time as it enfranchised millions of white women, it also left millions of women without the right to vote, including African American, Native American, Hispanic American, and Asian American women—many of whom had been enslaved or had been subjects of violent American colonial expansion. La Barbara built her composition around the names of twenty-one women of color, in addition to one man—Frederick Douglass, the only African American who attended the Seneca Falls Convention—who, to La Barbara, "are only now being recognized for the enormous contributions they made to the suffrage movement as well as abolitionist efforts."

In addition to the cello, piano, percussion, and vocalist on stage, two antiphonal brass instruments call out from either side of the audience, which is also encircled by loudspeakers. La Barbara creates a vortex of sound, beginning with the breath—"a swirling continuum embodying a force that once begun could not be stopped." The whirlwind of breath is joined by sounds of cascading sand, denoting the passage of time, and the tearing of paper, denoting the erasure of women of color from the history of the suffrage movement, as well as fragments of the phrase "shall not be denied"—language from the 19th amendment. La Barbara uses the human voice as an instrument, adding color to her instrumental ensemble, and meditating on the role of the individual in the group. This creates what La Barbara calls "a rising line of power that denies resolution," reflecting the ongoing struggle for women's freedom and equality. 

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