Could not be happier to be one of this year’s Artist Fellows at the Massachusetts Cultural Council. I’m thrilled to be on this list along with composers I truly admire. I hope to make the work ahead deserving.
Tiergarten is a setting of three poems by Rainer Marie Rilke that are about animals, the Swan, the Panther and the Unicorn. The work is for soprano and contrabass and was written for Nina Guo and Eddie Kass. They have been performing the work this season and this particular recording is from a concert in New York this past October.
I recently worked with artist / director Laine Rettmer on a short operetta called White Rush. The work is about a surreal meeting between Leda (from the myth Leda and the Swan) and Kurt Cobain. As they meet and sing together, they come to terms with issues surrounding how cultural mythologies propagate negative stereotypes around sexual assault and normalize it.
Leda was played by Aliana de la Guardia. I composed the score for electronics and electric guitar. The performance was part of a full multimedia installation by Laine Rettmer also called White Rush at AREA Gallery in Boston.
White Rush (2018) 30′
Concept by Laine Rettmer
Book by Laine Rettmer
Music by John Aylward
Premiere: AREA Gallery. Boston, MA. David Guerra, gallerist
American Academy Award
Grateful to be awarded the Walter Hinrichsen Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. An incredible honor to be counted among so many brilliant composers. I’m humbled and hope to make the award count toward more good music making ahead. I’ll send along pictures from the Academy Ceremony soon!
Pictures from Takefu
Last month I was a guest composer at the Takefu International Music Festival where I was teaching and coaching some performances of some new pieces. It was an honor to work alongside Toshio Hosokawa, the festival’s director, other guest teachers Isabel Mundry and Hitomi Kaneko, and a group of some very talented students.
Boston Musica Viva
Come check out Boston Musica Viva performing Ephemera on September 23rd and / or Mark Berger and Don Berman performing Images of Departure at Brandeis University on October 7th.
When I’m back from Japan, I’ll post more upcoming performances!
Photos from Angelus Premiere
Thanks to all who helped out on such an amazing premiere of Angelus Novus last week at Le Laboratoire. It was an incredible experience to work with many friends and collaborators on a piece that’s become very personal and important, both through the writing and through the collaborations and relationships it sparked. I hope if you find your way here, you’ll give the piece a listen / look.
The project was made very special by Roberta Michel, flutes; Hassan Anderson, oboe; Jennifer Choi, violin; Carlos Cordiero, clarinets; John Popham, cello; and Sam Budish, percussion. Also four special friends: Jean-Philippe Wurtz, conductor; Colin Gee, choreography and dance; Alex Posen, costumes; and Steven Taylor and Sam Okerstrom-Lang, visual / animation designers.
I’m speechless after receiving a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation. This is once-in-a-lifetime support and I hope to use the time wisely for upcoming projects — the first being an ongoing commission from the Fromm Foundation, which I hope to premiere in the spring of 2018 (more on that soon!) and the second being a new ballet, Angelus Novus.
I’ll workshop part of Angelus Novus this May 19th at Le Laboratoire, Cambridge. For more on that, you can check out the event page.
I’m grateful to receive this honor and am thankful to all who have been supportive.
Fromm Music Foundation Commission
Honored to be one of this year’s Fromm Music Foundation commissioned composers. In with some great company of very talented individuals and happy to considered among them. I’ll be using the grant to write a piece that culminates my recent body of work based on Ovid’s Metamorphoses.