Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Life of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela to be portrayed in opera

"Carmen, Tosca and Madam Butterfly have all received the treatment. So has Jerry Springer. Why not, then, the tragic heroine of South Africa in Winnie – the Opera?"

For the full story, please see The Guardian.

Video: Shaquille O'Neal conducts the Boston Pops

"He hasn't even played two months worth of basketball for the Celtics yet, but Shaquille O'Neal(notes) has already made himself a local hero to the Massachusetts community. On Monday, he even took over as guest conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra, after the renowned organization asked him to help lead their holiday get-together. O'Neal responded with a stirring take of the Christmas classic, 'Sleigh Bells.'"

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Amid Unrest, Juarez Symphony Orchestra Plays On

"It's been a rough couple of years in Juarez. Known as the murder capital of Mexico, Juarez is plagued by drug-related violence and organized crime. A quarter of the population is estimated to have fled, and thousands of businesses have closed. This year, the city even canceled its Independence Day celebration for the first time ever."

For the full story, please see

Does the digital age mean the end of the liner note on albums?

"It’s a bit early to pronounce the death-due-to-downloading of the liner note, but the situation is critical. So warns Rob Bowman, ethnomusicologist, professor of music at York University, and a Grammy-winning (and multiple-nominee) writer of album notes. Five or six years ago, he worked on about 20 projects a year. Last year, he was down to four."

For the full story, please see Globe and Mail.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Student DXARTS installation in Suzzallo Library/Tuesday

Check out the Computer Poetry Slam 2.0 today on the second floor of the Suzzallo Library in the PG1418-PG1616 range. It is an installation that features computer-generated poetry. For information see Vincent Hill's Portfolio.

Monday, December 13, 2010

SSO's Gerard Schwarz conducts flash 'Hallelujah Chorus' at downtown Seattle Nordstrom

"Seattle's version of a flash mob burst into Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus" Saturday afternoon at Nordstrom's flagship store downtown, becoming the latest joyful but not-so-spontaneous vocal performance in a big-city department store."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

'Messiah' give you chills? That's a clue to your personality

"Well, it turns out that getting chills upon hearing music is an actual thing, you know, like scientists study. And a new report in the journal Social Psychology and Personality Science says that who gets music-induced chills and who doesn’t might depend on personality."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Composers Find New Playgrounds In Video Games

"The object of Pac-Man was simple: have Pac-Man eat the dots and avoid getting eaten himself. The music of the game wasn't exactly complex either. But today, the video game's musical score is as essential to its success as the story and the graphics."

For the full story, please see

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Scholar Has Theory on Mozart the Debtor

"The documents of Mozart’s life — letters, memoirs of friends, portraits, bureaucratic files — have long been scrutinized at a microscopic level. So when his name was discovered two decades ago in a Viennese archive from 1791, it caused a stir."
For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Building from the bottom up

"The notes flow like water, each musical idea complementing the one that precedes it. Each performer listens intently to their peers, taking one simple motif and expanding upon it, evolving the composition into something even they hadn’t expected. This is the nature of improvised music: each member contributing a novel musical concept until something cohesive is achieved — all guided by a passion for creativity in music."

For the full story, please see The Daily.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Loft and found: have you got a Vivaldi lurking in your attic?

"Vivaldi. The world's most forgetful composer? Why on earth have so many of his manuscripts been turning up in obscure collections across the British Isles in the last couple of months? In October, it was a flute concerto called Il Gran Mogol ("The Great Mogul", if my Italian's up to snuff) discovered in the Marquesses of Lothian's family papers in Edinburgh, and this month, it's a couple of violin sonatas in a 180-page portfolio donated to the Foundling Museum in London, pieces that were probably originally written for amateurs, which could be heard for the first time in 270 years, played by La Serenissima in Liverpool on Sunday."

For the full story, please see The Guardian.

The Brave New World of Today’s Music Professional

"In 1995, Zoe Keating quit her day job so she could practice her cello for six solid months for her audition at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. She loved playing in orchestras, and thought that a master’s degree would get her a step closer to a coveted seat in a cello section."

For the full story, please see San Francisco Classical Voice.

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Story Behind 'Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas'

"Songwriters Hugh Martin and Ralph Blaine wrote the classic song "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" for Judy Garland's 1944 movie, Meet Me in St. Louis, along with dozens of other songs for MGM and Broadway musicals."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Before the Performance

"For audiences, the concert experience may seem magical, with performers demonstrating effortless mastery of challenging music. In reality, performances require months—or years—of intense preparation and planning. Here, three UW School of Music professors share what’s involved before they ever set foot on the stage."

For the full story, please see A&S Perspectives.

Research Commons Study Spaces

Looking for a space to study? The Research Commons in the Allen South Library has open complete with spaces that can be reserved for your convenience. Check out the array of study spaces and reserve them online today!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Gender and Opera (Muhst 497 A) – New Time!

New schedule: Mondays and Wednesdays 11:30-1:20

The course covers three operas in depth: Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, and Britten’s Peter Grimes. In these operas, we will discuss class, race, and homosexuality, examining the dance forms, affect, tonality, and dramaturgy. In addition, we will discuss the various forms of gender transgressions, from castrati to trouser roles, in Handel’s Giulio Cesare and Verdi and Pacini’s two versions of Il Corsaro, among others. You will have a chance to analyze operas in groups. There will be a short midterm paper and a longer final paper and presentation. Contact Judy Tsou ( if you have questions.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Buglers, Veterans And The Lonely Yet Comforting Sound Of Taps

"Today we know taps as the solemn melody played by buglers at our military funerals. But that's not how the simple, 24-note tune got its start."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

L.A. Phil to transmit performances to HD-equipped movie theaters

"In a bold venture that the Los Angeles Philharmonic hopes will boost its "national brand" recognition and help raise the profile of classical music from Manhattan to Orange County, the orchestra next year will transmit live performances of three of its concerts to more than 450 high-definition-equipped movie theaters throughout the United States and Canada."

For the full story, please see the LA Times.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Five Reasons to use the ResearchWorks Archive Service

* Quickly archive work and share with colleagues
* Software provides persistent URL
* Increase citation impact and visibility
* Meets some grant requirements for public access
* Relieve yourself and staff of maintenance chores

For more information on ResearchWorks, see ResearchWorks.

Monday, November 8, 2010

James M. BEALE January 20, 1924 - November 4, 2010

James M. BEALE January 20, 1924 ~ November 4, 2010, composer and long time professor of music at the University of Washington, has died at the age of 86.
For the full story, please see the Seattle Times or the School of Music website. Explore James Beale's compositions at the Music Library.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

We need a few good students...

We need a few good students to join the Music Library Student Advisory Committee! Time commitment is low with one meeting per quarter. Be part of the guiding force behind new library workshops, web presence, communications and more. For more information or to join the committee email

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Seattle Symphony Names New Executive Director

"The Seattle Symphony, suffering from a momentary leadership vacuum, has settled on a British orchestra official, Simon Woods, as its next executive director."

For the full story, please see New York Times.

Berea College Appalachian Sound Archives Fellowships 2010-2011

Berea College Appalachian Sound Archives Fellowships 2010-2011
The Fellowship program's purpose is to encourage scholarly use of Berea's non-commercial audio collections that document Appalachian history and culture, especially the areas of traditional music, religious expression, spoken lore, and radio programs. Awards in support of such research projects are =
made for a period of one to three months.

The fellowships must be taken up between July 2010 and June 2011. All Fellowship supported work must be finished by June 30, 2011. Fellows are expected to be in residence during the term of the fellowship and are encouraged to participate in campus and community activities. Stipend: $3,000/month.
The deadline for proposals is December 1, 2010 for January through June 2011.

Berea's recordings collections are especially strong in the areas of traditional music, religious expression, spoken lore and radio programs. They include extensive documentation of fiddle and banjo tunes; ballads and songs; Old Regular Baptist singing and preaching; folktales and legends; and related interviews with musicians, preachers, and storytellers, 1950 to the present. Radio material heard in the region for the years 1936 to the mid 1950s, documents a wide range of Kentucky, national, and world political figures and events. Entertainment programs include country music, soap operas, musical variety shows and sporting events.

Proposal Guidelines 2010-2011
There is no application form. Applicants are asked to submit a proposal that includes:

1. Identifying and contact information, applicant's background and interest in the particular subject area.
2. A summary of the proposed project.
3. Detailed description of the anticipated use of Berea collections. Please discuss specific collection material and their relevance to the project.
4. Anticipated research outcomes (e.g., print publications, audio / video documentaries, tune transcriptions, lesson plans, public performances, web-based resources).
5. The length of time needed for the project (one month minimum, three months maximum), and preferred dates of residence. The duration of award is requested by the candidate, but the final decision is made by the Fellowship Committee.
6. Three letters of recommendation from colleagues familiar with the applicant's work and who are qualified to judge the proposal. For graduate degree candidates, the recommendations must include those of the professor directing the applicant's research and the department chair. Applicants are responsible for contacting all persons providing recommendations.

For information about Berea's Sound Archives and other traditional music collections, see

For additional information about Berea's Appalachian Sound Archives Fellowships, see

Proposals or inquires should be sent to

Harry Rice
Special Collections & Archives
Berea College, Berea, KY 40404

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

How badly do YOU beat up your ears?

That's right -- your ears. They're the most valuable asset you have as a musician, and yet you just might be accidentally abusing them every time you practice, perform, or rehearse!

Come meet with experts for the Department of Speech & Hearing Services for a special event devoted to your musical ears! They'll discuss ear anatomy, dangers of high decibel levels for musicians, and steps you can take to protect your hearing. They'll even test of your instrument with their equipment just so you can see exactly how damaging it can be!

Wednesday, November 10
Room 114

Take care of your ears -- be there!

Hearing the Music, Honing the Mind

"Studies have shown that assiduous instrument training from an early age can help the brain to process sounds better, making it easier to stay focused when absorbing other subjects, from literature to tensor calculus. The musically adept are better able to concentrate on a biology lesson despite the racket in the classroom or, a few years later, to finish a call with a client when a colleague in the next cubicle starts screaming at an underling. They can attend to several things at once in the mental scratch pad called working memory, an essential skill in this era of multitasking."

For the full story, please see Scientic American.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Research Commons Grand Opening!

The University of Washington Libraries cordially invites you to celebrate the Grand Opening of the new Research Commons.

Date: Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Time: Remarks at 3:00 p.m.

* Interim President Phyllis Wise
* Dean of University Libraries Betsy Wilson
* Research Commons Librarian Lauren Ray
* Professor Albert Folch, Department of Bioengineering

Open House and Reception to follow until 5:00 p.m.

Place: Research Commons, Allen Library South ground floor, University of Washington

The UW Libraries Research Commons is intended to meet a new set of student and faculty needs that are emerging with the growth of data-driven research, digital scholarship and interdisciplinary studies. Learn more about the development of the space here:

The BringingArtIntoTechnology exhibit, created by Albert Folch and his students at the UW Bioengineering Department, will be unveiled during the Grand Opening.

Please RSVP by November 5, 2010 to

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Buy a Ticket for the Maestro or the Music?

"Reporting from an orchestra confab in Spain, Norman Lebrecht cites a new study from a London researcher that indicates that most people attend concerts because of a specific work or composer on the program, not necessarily out of loyalty to the maestro, orchestra or soloist. He calls these “negligible considerations at the point of purchase."
For the full story, please see Musical America.

Going Baroque in China

"The young musicians ended the first movement of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 and looked expectantly at the maestro. Christopher Hogwood weighed his words carefully then decided that honesty was the best policy."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Lustful Opera, Censored, Befuddles Chinese

"As any artist or performer in China knows, it is impossible to predict what will set off the mercurial culture censors who have sweeping power over the content of film, music, television and print."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Library Help for Music General Topics Exam

The Music Library is here to help you prepare for your Music General Topics Exam. We have arranged three workshop dates to cover locating books and articles on your topics and using RefWorks to manage your research citations and create bibliographies of your research. Please RSVP for one of the sessions below to In your message, please include some of your topics for demonstration during the workshop.

Session #1
Where: Suzzallo Instruction Lab
When: Monday, October 25 from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm

Session #2
Where: Government Publications Instruction Lab (Ground Floor Suzzallo Library)
When: Wednesday, October 27 from 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm

Session #3
Where: Suzzallo Instruction Lab
When: Friday, October 29 from 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

UW to Host CBDNA 2011

The College Band Directors National Association Conference will be meeting at the University of Washington March 23-26 2011. For more information please see the CBDNA Conference website.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Best of Brendel: the pianist on YouTube

"Since the 1950s, Alfred Brendel has been one of the most prolific recording and concert artists in the world. He has just been honoured with Gramophone's 2010 lifetime achievement award. These YouTube clips, chosen from some of the composers he is most closely associated with – and whom he discusses in his interview with me today – give a sense of the brilliance and clarity of his playing. He is also a published poet (One Finger Too Many and Cursing Bagels) and a prolific speaker and writer on music (Musical Thoughts and Afterthoughts and On Music, Collected Essays)."

For the full story, please see The Guardian.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Online orchestra to play Sydney Opera House

"Organisers have chosen the Sydney Opera House for the next stage of the project. Musicians selected from an online audition will travel to Sydney in March next year for a week of rehearsals ahead of a performance by the YouTube Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas."

For the full story, please see The

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Mark Your Calendars for Open Access Week

Issues for Authors: Copyright, Fair Use, Open Access and Archiving
Wednesday, October 20th 2-3:30 Odegaard Library Room 220

The panel will discuss the mechanics of copyright, authors’ rights, fair use of others’ works, open access and the UW's own depository for scholarly works, ResearchWorks. Other issues to be covered include how to copyright a work, when permissions are needed to use previously published works and how to maximize the audience for a work. Intended for all UW authors, this session should be especially helpful for those writing theses and dissertations.

Bring your questions - we will supply the experts.

Clark Shores, Assistant Attorney General, Attorney General's Office
Tim Jewell, Director, Information Resources & Scholarly Communication, UW Libraries
Ann Lally, Head, Digital Initiatives, UW Libraries

Open Access Journal Publishing – A UW Perspective
Thursday, October 21st 3-4:30 Odegaard Library Room 220

Open access (OA) journal publishing is promoted by some as a desirable alternative to high cost subscription-based journals. Although exhibiting a number of positives in comparison to traditional subscription-based publishing, OA publishing has its own issues. This panel will bring together editors and authors associated with UW-based open access journals to discuss issues, successes, challenges and potential solutions.

Felix Chew, Professor of Radiology, UW
Peter Lape, Associate Professor of Anthropology, UW
Michael Biggins, Head of Slavic Studies, UW Libraries
Kelsey Barrett, International Studies Undergraduate, UW

Libraries and Copyright in the Digital Age: Q & A with the Experts
Monday, October 25th 10-11:30 Odegaard Library Room 220

Do you have nagging questions about copyright? Ever wondered how the Google Books Settlement and the various lawsuits will affect your work as librarians or researchers? Then this session is for you. Using a question and answer format, this panel experts who discuss recent developments in copyright law as they relate to libraries and digital access.

Ask your question before the session at

Carrie Russell, American Library Association, Office of Information Technology Policy
Thom Deardorff, Coordinator for Access Services/Libraries Copyright Officer, UW Libraries
Clark Shores, Assistant Attorney General, Attorney General's Office

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Four French Horn Players Take On Lady Gaga, Queen and More

"The publicity photos make them look like either the Four Hornswomen of the Apocalypse or neon-colored aerobics instructors. They go by the stage names Freedom Barbie, Velvet Barbie, Jungle Barbie and Attila the Horn. They play arrangements of songs by Lady Gaga, Michael Jackson, Queen and other pop acts."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Joan Sutherland, Opera Soprano, Dies

"Joan Sutherland, one of the most acclaimed sopranos of the 20th century, died on Sunday at her home in Switzerland, near Montreux. She was 83."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.
To celebrate the career of Joan Sutherland, listen to Music Library recordings.

Imagining the 1787 debut of ‘Don Giovanni’

"It is 6.30pm on a cloudy Monday evening and the audience is gathering outside the theatre. Although the opening night of this much-heralded new opera has been the talk of the town for weeks, nobody could have anticipated such a chaotic scene. The number of people wanting to get in has overwhelmed the box office, which has just shut down, and those who do have tickets cannot get to their seats in the scrum."

For the full story, please see Financial Times.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Vivaldi flute concerto discovered

"Andrew Woolley, a musicologist, stumbled upon the find of his career when he saw a reference to an unspecified Vivaldi score among papers belonging to the Marquesses of Lothian in the National Archives of Scotland in Edinburgh. The composition had lain unremarked for 20 years."

For the full story, please see the Guardian.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Media piracy here to stay

"The UW Student Guide states that students can’t use university bandwidth to “copy or use any software, images, music or other intellectual property (such as books or videos) unless you have the legal right to do so,” but despite that rule, I think we all see media piracy persist."

For the full story, please see The Daily.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Husky band coordinates flash mob, practice required

"Once upon a time, these were secretive gatherings that often had political undertones. Now when people talk about flash mobs, they're often talking about a quick, not-so-impromptu dance party."

For the full story, please see the Seattle PI.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

From Heaps of Junk, a Melodious Clang

"A tall, trim man in chinos and a green checked shirt strode quickly past broken car carcasses, Dumpsters and chunks of unidentified metal.

In his hand were mallets, and in his eye was a gleam for the right pieces of junk to transform into concert-worthy sounds. He stopped at a small pile of gas tanks, and unleashed a virtuoso solo performance of drumming."

For the full story, please see The New York Times.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Hear It, Feel It

"Who knew that the send-up documentary "This Is Spinal Tap" not only lampooned the business of rock and roll but illustrated deep philosophical conundrums? Recall the scene in which Nigel Tufnel, Spinal Tap's lead guitarist and sometime songwriter, sits noodling at the piano, plinking out a few doleful chords."

For the full story, please see The Wall Street Journal.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Western Washington University's Music Library Slated to Close

"By now you will have examined the proposed budget reductions that were posted this morning on the Planning and Budgeting web site. As part of that cut, the Libraries are proposing to consolidate its two branch libraries – the Music Library and Huxley Map Library. It was the Provost who ultimately made the decision regarding this reduction; a decision that was made very late in the game but which I very much support."

For the full story, please see Western Libraries.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Who Will Save America's Vanishing Songs?

"The 1951 recording of "How High the Moon" by Les Paul and Mary Ford — made on the then-new medium of reel-to-reel tape — has a better chance of being around and being heard in 2151 than this year's Hope for Haiti Now — an MP3-only release featuring performances by Stevie Wonder, Bruce Springsteen, and Beyonce, among many others.

That's just one of the troubling points made in a study released today by the Library of Congress' National Recording Preservation Board (NRPB)."

For the full story, please see

New at the Music Library

Welcome back to the UW Music Library! We're excited you're here. We had a busy summer preparing for Autumn quarter. Here are just a few new items new to Music Library:

*New computers in the listening center lab
*Music Library Digital Scores Collection: High quality scans of our music manuscripts
*Naxos Video Library: Stream opera, ballet, jazz, and documentaries video to your PC
*RISM: Same content, new look
*Citation Linker: Have a citation to a book or article and want to find the full text? Use the Citation Linker.

Of course if you have questions, ask us!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

5 Books To Ignite An Opera Obsession

"If you're dying to learn about opera, the best thing to do is go on a blind date with it— get tickets and go to one. Opera-going is quite self-explanatory: show your ticket at the door, sit down, and an arresting drama unfolds in front of our eyes. You don't have to do anything. They even tell you what's happening in the supertitle translations."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Rights Grab at The Royal Opera House

"So it has come as a shock to the entire theatrical design community to find that the Royal Opera House appears to have drawn up a new contract for any new commission which will attack this core principle, which is the basis of English and European copyright law. The ROH is demanding that its entire stable of creative talent – directors, set and costume designers, lighting and special effects designers, even composers, choreographers and librettists - sign over to the Royal Opera House all their copyright in their work there - in perpetuity."

For the full story, please see The Arts Desk.

Friday, September 17, 2010

5 Operas That Are Truly Bloodier Than 'True Blood'

"Hundreds of thousands — maybe gazillions — of fans of True Blood might be feeling a little anemic right about now, what with season three of the wildly popular HBO show having wrapped up last Sunday."

For the full story, please see

Monday, September 13, 2010

First 'Authentic' Klingon Opera By Terrans (That's You, Earthlings) Premieres

"Opera devotees and sci-fi fans are a match made in Valhalla: opinionated lovers of spectacle and fantasy whose temperaments can be as overblown as some of their favorite characters. If they ever hooked up (is there a profile trait on eHarmony for geekdom?), the perfect night out might involve tickets to see a Klingon opera."

For the full story, please see

Friday, September 10, 2010

Lincoln Center, Cuba Get Jazzy

"The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra will take its first trip to Cuba next month as part of a cultural exchange with the Cuban Institute of Music, the company will announce Thursday.

The visit comes at the invitation of the Havana-based institute and was facilitated by the Cuban pianist and bandleader Chucho Valdés."

For the full story, please see the Wall Street Journal.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Twitter power: how social networking is revolutionising the music business

"But with the number of independent record stores in terminal decline and the boundaries of the internet limitless, online music social networks have sprung up to meet the demands of gregarious music lovers who want to share ideas and loves."

For the full story, please see The Guardian.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Musician Nick Franglen creates bridge symphony

"Nick Franglen is using London Bridge and its human traffic to create a 24-hour piece of music - armed only with a theremin and an espresso machine."

For the full story, please see BBC News.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

iPod hits a sour note as apps take over

"The latest sales figures for the quarter to June showed 9m sold – the lowest quarterly number since 2006. In short, the iPod, launched in October 2001, looks to be in terminal decline. While Apple is unworried – sales of its iPhone and iPad are booming – the drooping figures for the digital music player market are a concern for another sector: the music companies."

For the full story, please see The Guardian.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Musicians Wanted

"Many people know how hard it is to land your dream job, let alone a solid, well-paying one. Unemployment is hovering at close to 10%. There is one highly-specialized field though that has hung out the "Help Wanted" sign - major orchestras."

Read more:

Friday, August 27, 2010

Alt-Rock Hub, Purring With Jazz

This New York Times article features the UW School of Music's Cuong Vu!
"THE atmosphere at Cafe Racer, a coffeehouse and bar in the University District here, skews distinctly postgrunge, with its scuffed floor and mismatched furniture, its thrift-store paintings on boldly colored walls. One Sunday evening this spring the place was packed mainly with teenagers and 20-somethings in T-shirts and sneakers, all listening intently to a band. Everything seemed of a piece except the music: sleek, dynamic large-group jazz, a whirl of dark-hued harmony and billowing rhythm."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Free That Tenor Sax

"For jazz fans, nothing could be more tantalizing than the excerpts made available by the National Jazz Museum in Harlem of newly discovered recordings from the 1930s and ’40s. Nearly 1,000 discs containing performances by masters like Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young, Billie Holiday and the long-neglected Herschel Evans suddenly re-emerged when the son of the audio engineer, William Savory, sold them to the museum."

For the full story, see the New York Times.

After Mozart’s Death, an Endless Coda

"Direct medical evidence? None. Autopsy? Not performed. Medical records? Nowhere to be found. Corpse? Disappeared.

Yet according to a recent article in an academic journal, researchers have posited at least 118 causes of death for Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Naxos founder Klaus Heymann on what lies ahead for classical recordings

"Gramophone met up with Klaus Heymann, founder of Naxos, to find out his views of the future of the classical recording business and the role Naxos will play in it."

For the full story, please see gramophone.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Seattle Symphony Plans 18 Premieres

"As tribute to Gerard Schwarz’s final season as music director, Seattle Symphony supporters Agnes Gund and Charles Simonyi have provided funding for 18 new works, all to be performed in the coming season. Given the quantity and the fact that none is titled in the announcement, they are probably short in duration; no specifics about the works are provided."

For the full story, please see Musical America.

University of Washington Libraries Music Library Digital Scores Collection Now Open

The Music Library Digital Scores Collection at the University of
Washington Libraries is now available online directly at or can be searched as a part of the UW Digital Collections.

The collection currently includes digital images of manuscript musical
scores dating from the 17th through 19th centuries, the majority of the
collection comprising 17th- and 18th- century operas, opera excerpts, and
other vocal music. The original manuscripts are held in the Music
Library's Rare Book Collection and are indexed in RISM A/II.

The project was funded by the University of Washington Libraries 21st
Century Awards. Co-PI's for the project are Deborah Pierce, UW Odegaard Undergraduate Library, and Anne Graham, UW Libraries Digital Initiatives.

The images were photographed using a Canon EOS 40 D camera with a Canon EF 50mm f1.4 Lens and a copystand. Metadata for the RISM A/II portion of the collection was provided by the International RISM Office and modified to meet the needs of the project. Metadata is available for full contents analytics/each of the individual pieces in the collective manuscripts in the collection.

For more information about the project, contact:

Deborah Pierce
Odegaard Undergraduate Library
University of Washington Libraries
Box 353080
Seattle, WA 98195

Friday, August 20, 2010

Sheet Music Piracy: You Can Get Everything For Free On The Internet

"Digital technology has made it possible for users to share perfect copies of audio and video files over the Internet, skirting copyright laws. And, as Tony Award-winning songwriter Jason Robert Brown discovered recently, even sheet music isn't immune. When he published correspondence about the issue between a teenage fan and himself on his blog, he unleashed what he has called a "firestorm" of responses."

For the full story, please see

More Brahms, Please. And Pass the Popcorn.

"The Philadelphia Orchestra could end up in pictures.

And sound. In a deal with SpectiCast and Bryn Mawr Film Institute, nine of the orchestra's 2010-11 concerts will be offered live starting this fall to North American movie houses with high-quality projection and audio systems."

For the full story, please see

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Muzzled Musicians, Meet Your Match

"'I hope one day I come to see you because, every day here, it's worse and worse." The young man's guarded, disconsolate voice comes distantly from Iran on a bad Skype line. He's a well-known figure in that country's burgeoning but relentlessly suppressed underground rock music scene. Supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei recently declared music to be "incompatible" with the values of the Islamic Republic—a declaration that effectively carries the force of a decree throughout the country. For the young Iranian caller, alias "Natch," the implications are clear, particularly for his kind of Western-style rock with lyrics in English. He has already been jailed for his musical enthusiasms and is looking to get out of Iran."

For the full story, please see the Wall Street Journal.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Mozart 'Tutte' made for Twitter Opera

"Can a 220-year-old opera be taught new tricks? That's the goal of operamission, which, starting tonight, will present Mozart's "Cosi Fan Tutte" in a format that's part miniseries, part town meeting and part jam session."

Read more:

Monday, August 16, 2010

It's playtime for Seattle trombonist-didjeriduist Stuart Dempster

"Oh, to be 74 years old and still starting, joining and sitting in with new bands.

That's what Seattle trombonist-didjeriduist Stuart Dempster has been up to lately. Not only is he performing with a variety of players in a variety of venues, but his recording career has continued apace. And he's been garnering some unusual awards recognition, too."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Friday, August 13, 2010

NY Philharmonic's First Brass Woman. Ever.

"The New York Philharmonic hired its first woman ever in the brass section last September, and The New York Times has profiled her in its New York section."

For the full story, please see Musical America.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Music-Copyright Enforcers

"Baker, 30, is a licensing executive with Broadcast Music Incorporated, otherwise known as BMI. The firm is a P.R.O., or performing rights organization; P.R.O.’s license the music of the songwriters and music publishers they represent, collecting royalties whenever that music is played in a public setting. Which means that if you buy a CD by, say, Ryan Adams, or download one of his songs from iTunes, and play it at your family reunion, even if 500 people come, you owe nothing. But if you play it at a restaurant you own, then you must pay for the right to harness Adams’s creativity to earn money for yourself. Which leaves you with three choices: you can track down Ryan Adams, make a deal with him and pay him directly; you can pay a licensing fee to the P.R.O. that represents him — in this case, BMI; or you can ignore the issue altogether and hope not to get caught."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Survey reveals what Seattleites really do at the library

"We are a city of readers. We're also a city in a budget crisis. To help set priorities, Seattle Public Library conducted a survey. The results may surprise you."

For the full story, please see Komo News.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Battle Ready: Seattle Opera

"On August 3, 2010, at Seattle Opera's annual meeting, I addressed the state of one of Seattle's leading cultural organizations in the wake of an economic crisis that has put many non-profit organizations out of business and seriously threatens many more. But economics isn't our only enemy. I share excerpts from my speech in honor of all the people who dedicate their lives to mission-driven organizations and continue to envision a future that is as bright as the fight we lend to the cause."

For the full story, please see

Monday, August 9, 2010

Bellevue Philharmonic fights through tough times with optimism, hard work

"Just last year, the Bellevue Philharmonic Orchestra's very survival appeared at risk.

The orchestra had barely made it through its 2008-09 season, which was marred by canceled concerts, unpaid debt and tension between orchestra members and its management."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Music fails to chime with Islamic values, says Iran's supreme leader

"Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said today that music is "not compatible" with the values of the Islamic republic, and should not be practised or taught in the country."

For the full story, please see The Guardian.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Long-running Experience Music Project pop music conference relocating from Seattle to Los Angeles

"The annual Experience Music Project Pop Conference, which gathers critics, journalists and academics for a weekend of presentations on the vast diaspora of music, is relocating from its longtime home at the Experience Music Project in Seattle to the UCLA campus, conference organizers announced this morning. The event, which issues a call each year for papers based around an organizing theme, will take place February 24-27, according to the press release, and will have as its theme, "Cash Rules Everything Around Me: Music and Money.""

For the full story, please see the Los Angeles Times.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

UW faculty members find passion in music outside academics

"Analyzing protein biochemistry and playing clarinet at local gigs — all in a day’s time — is easy as 1-2-3 if you’re Jesse Canterbury...Professor Emeritus Stuart Dempster focuses most of his energy on musical pursuits while continuing to teach part time at the UW."

For the full story, please see the UW Daily.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Seattle conductor killed in Methow Valley crash

"George Shangrow, a longtime Seattle classical-music conductor, teacher and radio host, was killed Saturday evening in a head-on collision outside of Winthrop, Okanogan County."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times. See also, The Gathering Note.

Mitch Miller Dies

"Mitch Miller, the goateed orchestra leader who asked Americans to "Sing Along With Mitch" on television and records and produced hits for Tony Bennett, Patti Page and other performers, has died at age 99."

For the full story, please see Musical America.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Selling Sex And Symphonies: The Image Of Women In Classical Music

"Our Hey Ladies: Being a Woman Musician Today series continues with NPR Music classical producer Tom Huizenga's new interview with classical violinist Lara St. John. St. John has been accused of using physically revealing album covers to help sell her music, but says she had full control over her representation and marketing strategies, although discussions about her body have often overwhelmed discussions of her body of work."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Why The Next Big Pop-Culture Wave After Cupcakes Might Be Libraries

"I realize we're picking the bones from the Old Spice campaign at this point, but when I saw that the Brigham Young University parody of the Old Spice ads had gotten more than 1.2 million views (Old Spicy himself — that's what I'm calling him — did a video for libraries), it got me thinking."

For the full story, please see

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Cloistered nuns cinch record deal

"A group of cloistered nuns in southern France have signed a major record deal with Decca Records.

The British label announced Sunday that the Benedictine nuns of the Abbaye de Notre Dame de l'Annonciation near Avignon were chosen after a worldwide search for female Gregorian chant performers."

Read more:

Monday, July 26, 2010

Overdue Debut for Composer and Exiled Prince

"When an opera company presents a world premiere by a living composer, the opera in question usually represents the composer’s current style and approach. This was not the case on Saturday night for the absurdly overdue premiere of Lewis Spratlan’s “Life Is a Dream” here at the Santa Fe Opera."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Skype Rehearsals and New Works: Maestro Cues Symphony to Evolve

"Since 1995, Michael Tilson Thomas has led the San Francisco Symphony as its music director. Under him, the symphony has brought in new audiences with innovative programming that mixes modern works, including his own, with fresh explorations of more familiar pieces by the likes of Beethoven and Mahler."

For the full story, please see The Wall Street Journal.

Monday, July 19, 2010

The future of the recording industry: is there one?

"The record label Naxos has gone from budget outsider to industry leader in its 20-plus years of existence. But what does the future hold for any record label at a time when CD sales are plummeting and dowloads are stagnant? Naxos’s founder and CEO, Klaus Heymann, is one of the most candid and straightforward executives in the business, and he’s tailored his long-term goals to the realities of today’s market; his goal, he says, is to be “the last man standing.” He spoke to me while in the States for marketing meetings about the Naxos’s future."

For the full story, please see The Washington Post.

Friday, July 16, 2010

That iPad iRecital: do you buy it?

"It had to happen. As the press release has it, "The first classical performance using an iPad in place of traditional paper music" – that's sheet music, to you and me – happened on Wednesday night. Venus went into eclipse with Saturn, Orion traversed Sagittarius. Almost. Pianist James Rhodes did play Chopin's E minor Prelude off of his iPad at the Parabola arts centre, a concert that was part of the Cheltenham festival."

For the full story, please see The Guardian.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Charles Mackerras, a Wide-Ranging Conductor, Dies

"Charles Mackerras, a conductor who championed the work of Czech composers, especially Janacek, and had associations with many of Britain’s major orchestras and opera houses, died Wednesday night, his management agency said. He was 84."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

New Opera Focuses on Bill Clinton's Life

"If any recent president's life is the stuff of operas, it's Bill Clinton's. There's been comedy, drama, back-stabbing, shouting, crying, death, and many miraculous comebacks. But that's real life. Now art will be imitating life in a project coming together in Little Rock and meant to show how his struggles as a kid raised by a fun-loving mother influenced the making of the 42nd president."

For the full story, please see U.S. News & World Report.

Monday, July 12, 2010

David Cope: 'You pushed the button and out came hundreds and thousands of sonatas'

"Where does music come from? If pressed on this question, many of us would say it comes from the "soul", or from the "heart" of the person who composed it. That music is the clearest expression of human emotion, one person to another; that certain chords, certain melodies seem to communicate a whole language of feeling. When we listen to a Beethoven symphony or a Chopin sonata, we are hearing, we might say, the authentic expression of the composer's inner harmonies and discords, carried magically across the centuries. Could we ever be so moved by a piece of music written by a computer? We'd probably like to think not. David Cope, emeritus professor of music at the University of California, Santa Cruz, would beg to differ. "The question," Cope tells me, "isn't if computers possess a soul, but if we possess one.""
For for the full story, please see The Guardian.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Rising French star Ludovic Morlot chosen to replace Schwarz at Seattle Symphony

"It's official: The Seattle Symphony Orchestra's baton will be passed to a 36-year-old French maestro, Ludovic Morlot, when Gerard Schwarz steps down from the music directorship a year from now."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Why are minor keys in music sad?

"New evidence for a musical phenomenon we've taken for granted for centuries: that the minor key is sadder than the major. Dido's Lament is audibly bleaker than Kylie's I Should Be So Lucky' – although neither are as sad as the doleful monotone of the vuvuzelas that blared out from Bloemfontein on Sunday. A scientist in Massachusetts thinks she's discovered a link between the interval of a minor third (C major to E flat, say) and expressions of sadness in human speech. Meagan Curtis found in her study that the speech-melodies of actors' voices (the movement of pitch in their intonation) happened to encompass a minor third when they were asked to communicate sadness. And when listeners were played the same speech-melodies, shorn of the words, they accurately interpreted the actors' emotion."

For the full story please see The Guardian.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

BBC Proms launches online archive

"The BBC has launched an online archive listing details of over 7,000 performances from the 115-year history of the BBC Proms."
For the full story, please see

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Movie Music

"Of all the many different film genres, the composer biopic is one of the scroungiest. The tones of these films range all over the map, from the show-bizzy extroversion of Yankee Doodle Dandy (George M. Cohan) to the hambone fruitiness of Two Loves Had I…Puccini to the many-layered high intellectualism of Harvest of Sorrow (Rachmaninoff and exile)."

For the full story, please see Opera News.

Friday, July 2, 2010

A new baton at the SSO, a marriage in early music

"Two bits of very encouraging musical news in Seattle this week. The Seattle Symphony has managed to snare a hot young property, the French-born, London- and Montreal-trained conductor Ludovic Morlot, to succeed the retiring Gerard Schwarz after next season. And there's good news on the early music front as well, with finalization of a smart merger of Seattle Baroque Orchestra with the Early Music Guild."

For the full story, please see

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Great Shift

The Music Library is currently shifting the score collection! Need help finding a score during the shift? Ask us! Follow our blog for shift updates!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

'The Golden Ticket' Is Finally Unwrapped

"The opera called The Golden Ticket seemed like just that — a natural way for opera companies to attract new audiences by bringing families into the opera house. But the world premiere underway now at Opera Theatre of St. Louis did not have a sweet ride from conception to opening night."

For the full story, please see

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Pianos as Public Art, and the Public’s Playthings

"Jerome Ware Jr. pressed his palm into a tray of orange paint. Then he found exactly the right spot for a handprint on the top of an upright piano he had just painted gold."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Compose Your Own, Part 2

"In a recent post on The Score, I invited readers to use an interactive Web site to create and share their own unique versions of four solo piano etudes, regardless of their background in music or in composition. The Web site presents each etude as a graphical “open-form” collection of short musical fragments that can be arranged in an almost infinite number of ways."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

2010 Tony Award Winners

"A complete list of winners at the 2010 Tony Awards (denoted in bold with a *), with links to the original New York Times reviews."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Soprano Renee Fleming Turns To Rock And Pop With 'Dark Hope'

"When you think of Renee Fleming, perhaps you don't think next of Death Cab For Cutie. Heck, if you frequently think of Renee Fleming, perhaps you don't even care about Death Cab For Cutie, and vice-versa."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Omar Hernández-Hidalgo, 1971-2010

"There’s a lot of shock and sadness in the Mexican classical community just now: last week one of the finest violists in Mexico and the world, Omar Hernández-Hidalgo, was found dead in his hometown of Tijuana, four days after apparently being kidnapped."

For the full story, please see Sequenza21.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

UW jazz program energized by 'The Vu Effect'

"Several flights underground in the bunkerlike rehearsal room of the Music Building at the University of Washington, nine students in the modern-jazz-ensemble class spent most of the spring practicing an 11-movement composition they wrote to musically convey the birth of the universe."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Sewage plant plays Mozart to stimulate microbes

"Mozart has been credited with everything from increasing the intelligence of unborn babies to boosting the milk yield of cows. Now the head of a German sewage plant has introduced piped Mozartian music to stimulate the activity of microbes that break down waste."

For the full story, see the Guardian.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The Iraqi National Symphony Comes Out Of Hiding

"The Iraqi National Symphony is slowly making a comeback, and the symphony's conductor, Karim Wasfi, is the driving force behind it. He says that as Iraqis wait for their leaders to form a new government, music is more important than ever."

For the full story, please see

Friday, June 4, 2010

UW's Erös leads final concert on June 4

"Friday, Peter Erös — the University of Washington School of Music's Morrison Endowed Professor of Conducting — will lead his final concert with the University Symphony. Erös, who came to the UW in 1989, is retiring from both his teaching and conducting posts. He was born in Budapest in 1932, migrated to the Netherlands in 1956 in the wake of the Hungarian Revolution and first came to the U.S. in 1965 when George Szell invited him to be a Kulas Foundation Fellow with the Cleveland Orchestra."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Scholars Scale Up Music Studies

"Finding patterns in music is nothing new. Scholars have studied rhythms, melodies, and harmonies for centuries. Now a project slated for completion in June 2011 wants to achieve something bigger."

For the full story, please see the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

For dogs only: near-silent recital at Sydney Opera House

"Legendary rocker Lou Reed and artist wife Laurie Anderson will next month bring one of the most bizarre performances to Sydney's Opera House -- a recital for dogs, largely inaudible to human ears."

For the full story, please see Google News.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Anneliese Rothenberger, German Opera Singer, Dies

"Anneliese Rothenberger, an internationally known German soprano who sang with the Metropolitan Opera in New York in the 1960s, died on Monday in Switzerland. As befits a diva, her exact age had long been shrouded in obscurity; she was believed to have been either 83 or 85."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Apple Is Said to Face Inquiry About Online Music

"The Justice Department is examining Apple’s tactics in the market for digital music, and its staff members have talked to major music labels and Internet music companies, according to several people briefed on the conversations."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Films From the Vault

Lazy woodcutters being mocked. Potential marriage partners being evaluated. Olympic marmots being introduced. Czechoslovakia being historicized. Snow being metamorphized.

Experience a postmodern pastiche of educational flicks at our FREE and daylong Films from the Vault fest. Media Center technicians will be on hand, rolling out wizened 16mm film from our Educational Media Collection bunker and then projecting them in all of their deteriorating analog glory. While we project we will simultaneously digitize all the films for preservation at the UW Libraries.

Wednesday May 26 from 9AM to 5PM in Odegaard Library Room 220. See you then and there.

Music programming includes:


Noon, 8 min.

Illustrates an informal performance by Lightnin' Sam Hopkins, one of the best-known country blues guitar players alive today. He sings "Baby, Please Don't Go," "Mojo Hand" and "Take Me Back." (Release of University of Washington Press)


4:05 pm, 22 min.

The history of jazz is traced from its roots in 19th century Black America. The Black American added rhythmic and melodic freedom to the harmony and structure of European music and contributed such techniques as note bending and call and response. Jazz soon became popular throughout the country. Its form progressed from Dixieland and blues through such styles as swing, bop, cool jazz, funky and free improvisation. Old styles of jazz never fade out yet jazz itself keeps changing as new groups contribute their ideas to this uniquely American art form.

For a full schedule, please see the UW Libraries Media Center Blog.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Search for Gerard Schwarz's successor at SSO is a broad-ranging and discreet one

"They're not looking for an exact replica of Gerard Schwarz — and they're not not looking for one.

The search committee charged with finding a new music director for the Seattle Symphony is trying to stay open to every possibility, as they scrutinize the busy roster of guest conductors in town this season and next."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Professor turns tables on classical style

"STEPHEN Webber has news for those who believe classical music and hip-hop could never meet. The professor from Berklee College of Music in the US has composed The Stylus Symphony, a full-length piece for turntable and orchestra."

For the full story, please see the

Thursday, May 20, 2010

A computer program is writing great, original works of classical music. Will human composers soon be obsolete?

"Composer David Cope has a knack for describing music in the least romantic terms possible. Whenever Mozart heard something, Cope says, "He was able to digest it and store it in his database. He could recombine it with other things so that the output would be hardly recognizable." Mozart has been called many things—plagiarist, potty-mouth, politician—but rarely do you hear him accused of being a computer scientist."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Yvonne Loriod, Pianist and Messiaen Muse, Dies at 86

"Yvonne Loriod, the French pianist whose musical exactitude and intensity inspired numerous masterpieces by her husband, the composer Olivier Messiaen, died on Monday at a retirement home in Saint-Denis, on the edge of Paris. She was 86."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Piano moving requires balance, patience

"Tom Hutchinson started moving pianos when he was just out of college. He's climbed rotting staircases, suffered bruises and bashed fingers, and delivered everything from beat-up boxes to Baldwins, Steinways and a gilt-trimmed 1840s Erard."

Read more:

Monday, May 17, 2010

"Jazz Loft" Making History

"An exhibit commemorating a little-known part of the New York Jazz scene will soon begin a nationwide tour. Randall Pinkston shows us the second home to some jazz legends."

Watch CBS News Videos Online

Friday, May 14, 2010

Priceless musical instruments are silent victims of Nashville flooding

"As symbolically devastating as the recent flooding in Nashville was to the home of the historic Grand Ole Opry House, the toll on another building little known outside the city's music community may well have a broader, more lasting impact."

For the full story, please see the Los Angeles Times.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Garfield High jazz band takes first place at Essentially Ellington

"Performing in perhaps the strongest field of bands in the event's history, Garfield won the Essentially Ellington high-school jazz-band competition for an unprecedented fourth time Monday night at New York's Lincoln Center."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

'Amelia' is a profoundly personal, American story

"The waiting is over, Daron Aric Hagen's "Amelia" has achieved liftoff, and it's time for a critic to offer some impressions of the world premiere."

For the full story, please see the Seattle Times.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Will the Internet Kill Traditional Car Radio?

"THE Internet’s tentacles seem to have no limit, reaching out and strangling CDs, bookstores, newspapers and magazines. Now it has its sights set on the car radio."

For the full article, please see the New York Times.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Gustavo Dudamel: Making Classical Cool In L.A.

"Meet a young man who's managed to make classical music cool in Los Angeles: Gustavo Dudamel. The 29-year-old maestro, also known as "the Dude" and "Gustavo the Great," even has his own iPhone app since taking over as music director at the L.A. Philharmonic."

For the full story, please see

Thursday, May 6, 2010

At Italy’s Operas, Fat Ladies Are Quiet

"Opera houses across Italy are canceling performances because of sputtering strikes over efforts by the government to reorganize their administration. Musicians, fearful that a result will be cuts in pay, are organizing free concerts in support of themselves and other opera house workers."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Fairbanks composer Adams wins $100,000 national award

"Alaska composer John Luther Adams has been named the 2010 winner of the $100,000 Michael Ludwig Nemmers Prize in Music Composition. The announcement was made today by the Northwestern University Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music in Evanston, Ill."

Read more:

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Composer Huck Hodge, a musician since childhood, never considered another career

"Assistant Professor of Music Huck Hodge has been out of graduate school less than two years, but already he's received two prestigious honors and is an alternate for a third. Most recently, he was awarded the Rome Prize in Music Composition given by the American Academy in Rome, a center that sustains independent artistic pursuits and humanistic studies."

For the full story, please see

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Philadelphia Orchestra: Is Anyone Listening?

"Philadelphia's was the first American orchestra to perform in Communist China, back in 1973, and it's still considered one of the top ensembles in the country. But lately, the Philadelphia Orchestra is having a tough time filling seats. At some recent concerts, the hall has been just two-thirds full."

For the full story, please see

Monday, April 26, 2010

Lang Lang wraps up a concert with Flight of the Bumblebee on the iPad

"Matt and I have been chronicling our daily use of the iPad. Most recently I’ve been trying out some different piano apps, since I used to play piano and found that the versions for the iPhone were nice, but were a bit too hard to use on the limited screen size. With the iPad now offering a larger screen, it’s ripe for some serious piano planning."

For the full story, please see ZDNet.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Library Research Award for Undergraduates


Have you completed a research project between Spring 2009 and Spring 2010? Great! Here's a chance to win $1,000.

The deadline for the Library Research Award for Undergraduates is approaching.

- *Deadline*: Monday, May 17, 2010.
- Win $1,000
- Categories: Senior Thesis/Honors Thesis, Senior Non-Thesis, and Non-Senior
- Any media (project format) accepted.

Application information and selection criteria:

Become a Fan on Facebook:

Questions? Email

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Wolf at Our Heels:The centuries-old struggle to play in tune.

"The gods are laughing at their little joke on musicians. When it comes to the tuning of instruments, especially keyboards and fretted instruments, nature drops a giant hairball in our path. Here's a short course on the arcana of tuning. It will take us to the meaning of a celebrated collection of keyboard pieces: J. S. Bach's The Well-Tempered Clavier, humankind's greatest musical riposte to the laughter of the gods."

For the full story, please see

Monday, April 19, 2010

DXARTS Spring Concert April 28 7:30 p.m. Meany Hall for the Performing Arts

The Center for Digital Arts and Experimental Media (DXARTS) at the University of Washington, Seattle presents an evening of new electronic and computer music. Featuring Swedish guitar virtuoso Stefan Östersjö.
Wednesday, April 28th 2010 at 7:30 PM
Meany Hall, University of Washington, Seattle

Concert Program:
Love Mangs: Viken (2005) for guitar, banjo and computer Daniel Peterson - Mindless Collusion (2010) for computer realized sound Richard Karpen - Strand Lines (2007) for amplified guitar and live computer ineteraction Juan Pampin - UOM (2000) for computer realized sound Paul Dolden - Who Has the Biggest Noise? (2009) for electric guitar and computer realized sound

Love Mangs: Viken (2005) for guitar, banjo and computer Commissioned by the Swedish arts council for Stefan Östersjö

The bay (viken in Swedish). This is where it all begins. The birthplace of innumerable fish, sunrises and dreams. The safe haven and starting point for expeditions further and further out among the islands on the raft we built.
To new shores balancing on the boundaries of soil, sea and heavens. Each islet a new microcosm of personality and memories to explore. Always to return to the bay. Fishing for pikes at dawn with a morning breeze whispering through the reed. Carried by the thin surface, watching the silver shoals below. At dusk lying in the tent listening to the stock doves call. There under the radiant sky, behind the drifting haze - the silent black lake that calls for ports unknown.

Viken was initiated as a collaboration between me as a composer and the acclaimed Swedish guitarist Stefan Östersjö, commissioned by the Swedish arts council. The idea was a rich sounding live-piece where the soloist would be fairly free to shape the breath of the piece within the framework of the form. It was also to hold improvised parts and preferably no pre-recorded soundfiles. Some guitar parts though would be recorded during performance to return in the background a few minutes later. It?s a good thing to work together with a soloist whose skill and ingenuity bring new opportunities to the composition. It is for example highly unlikely that I as a music maker and hobby-guitarist would have come up with the excellent idea to use e-bow on a banjo for one specific treatment in the patch. In the end we had to give up on the ascetic approach and due to limitations of computational power, for the good of the piece, add some soundfiles.
Love Mangs

Richard Karpen - Strand Lines (2007) for amplified guitar and live computer ineteraction

Strand Lines, created in 2007, continues my exploration of collaboration processes for music composition. There is no musical score for Strand Lines.
Instead the composition was worked out over an extended time of collaborative exploration and rehearsal with guitarist Stefan Östersjö, for and with whom the work was realized. While this kind of experientially developed music has existed in many cultures, I'm drawn to the kinds of techniques that film director Mike Leigh uses for character development in his films. Leigh works with his actors to create their characters through an organic and rigorous series of directed improvisation and reiteration until the actors fully embody their characters, their utterances, and the relationships between all of the interacting characters and situations within the environment of the work. Through this process the film becomes its own screenplay. In the case of my own explorations in this mode of composing, the piece of music will itself also be the score. The piece is documented using video recordings of a performance along with instructions and demonstrations showing how to play it. This video document takes the place of a musical score so that the integrity of the work can be maintained over time and the work can be performed by other performers as well.

Strand Lines also explores the extension of musical instruments and performance through live computer enhancement and processing. It is a work not so much for guitar as for guitarist. The merging of person and instrument interests me greatly. Each player is one manifestation of the current state of a continuing history of their instrument and of performance generally. The history is physical, existing as a kind of "body knowledge" which I believe is real and substantive. Along with Stefan Östersjö's integral role in the development of guitar material for Strand Lines another key contributor was Joshua Parmenter who developed much of the key underlying control code for sound processing and synthesis in Supercollider.

Richard Karpen (b. 1957) is one of the leading international figures in Computer Music. He is known not only for his pioneering compositions, but also for developing computer applications for composition, live/interactive performance and sound design.

Karpen is Founding Director of the Center for Digital Arts and Experimental Media (DXARTS) at the University of Washington and also currently serves as Director of the School of Music where he is Professor of Music Composition and Theory. He has been the recipient of many awards, grants and prizes including those from the National Endowment for the Arts, the ASCAP Foundation, the Bourges Contest in France, and the Luigi Russolo Foundation in Italy. Fellowships and grants for work outside of the U.S. include a Fulbright to Italy, a residency at IRCAM in France, and a Leverhulme Visiting Fellowship to the United Kingdom. He received his doctorate in composition from Stanford University, where he also worked at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA). Karpen is a native of New York, where he studied composition with Charles Dodge, Gheorghe Costinescu, and Morton Subotnick.

Karpen's works are widely performed in the U.S. and internationally. While he is primarily known for his work in electronic media, Karpen has also composed symphonic and chamber works for a wide variety of ensembles.
Furthermore, he has composed works for many leading international solists such as soprano Judith Bettina, violist Garth Knox, trombonist Stuart Dempster, flutists Laura Chislett and Jos Zwaanenberg, and oboist Alex Klein. Along with numerous concert and radio performances, his works have been set to dance by groups such as the Royal Danish Ballet and the Guandong Dance Company of China. Karpen's compositions have been recorded on a variety of labels including Wergo, Centaur, Neuma, Le Chant du Monde, and DIFFUSION i MeDIA.

Juan Pampin - UOM (2000) for computer realized sound

In Memoriam Rodolfo Walsh
In 2000, I was invited to compose a piece for an unusual venue in Buenos Aires called "La Fábrica" (The Factory). This place is in fact a metallurgic factory which becomes an alternative cultural center after business hours. I decided then to create a piece that would politically reflect on that space, both in terms of sound and program. UOM is the acronym of the Argentine metal workers' union (Unión Obrera Metalúrgica), well known for the lack of representation of its corrupted leaders and their gangster-like approach to politics. The piece explores the sound of metal in an allegorical way, using digital samples deployed in space as a representation of the "metallic"
without mass, as the sonic essence of metal. The distance between what is represented and its representation, somewhat similar to the one between the metal workers and their union, constitutes the dialectic core of the work.
The text used for the piece is quoted from "ÀQuién Mató a Rosendo?" (Who Killed Rosendo?), a book by writer Rodolfo Walsh, a central figure of Argentine culture, disappeared during the 1976-83 military dictatorship. In his book Walsh investigated one of the darker chapters in the history of Argentine unions: the murder of UOM leader Rosendo García in 1966, perpetrated by gunmen of his own union.

"UOM" was composed using ambisonics, many layers of sound were generated and processed to create the illusion of a single mass of sound changing organically over time. For this purpose, a combination of granualar and additive sythesis was used to sculpt sound spectrally. Except for a few sounds recorded with a soundfield (ambisonic) microphone, most sounds were generated synthetically form a brief analysis of a metallic sound (the analysis and resynthesis process was done with ATS). Each stream of sound was individually processed to have a particular spatial location and spread, using ambisonic imaging tranformations to achieve different polar distributions; this way some of them could sometimes have an omnidirectional distribution (all around the audience) or a cardioid distribution (with some sort of focal point in a particular direction). Spatial transformations occur gradually throughout the piece and function as important structural elements. The piece was composed in three dimensions, and performed using a cubic array of eight speakers. Recently, a new mix of the piece was done for twenty four speakers, specially tailored to SARC's Sonic Lab 3D sound auditorium.

Juan Pampin has been teaching at the University of Washington since 1999. He was appointed Assistant Professor of Music (Computer Music Composition) in 2002. Pampin received an MA in Composition from Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Lyon, France and a DMA in Composition from Stanford University. Juan Pampin?s research has focused on Spectral Modeling of sound.

He has also undertaken research in the areas of Perceptual Audio Coding and Sound Spatialization. His compositions, including works for instrumental, digital, and mixed media, have been performed around the world by soloists and ensembles such as Arditi Quartet, Les Percussions de Strasbourg, and Sinfonia 21. Recent commissions include those from GRAME in France and La FÂábrica in Argentina. He has been Artist in Residence at LIEM-CDMC in Madrid, and IMEB in Bourges, France. His signal processing research has been presented at major international conferences, particularly his Analysis Synthesis Transformation (ATS) software project. He has taught at Stanford University's Center for Computer Research in Music and often lectures and gives master classes in a number of South American countries.

Paul Dolden - Who Has the Biggest Noise?

Paul Dolden begins his career at age 16 as a professional electric guitarist, violinist and cellist. Excited by the possibilities offered by recording technologies, Paul Dolden turns to contemporary modes of production and dissemination in the creation of his music. At age 29, he wins the first of a string of European awards that establish him as a composer. Now the winner of over twenty international awards, Paul Dolden's music is performed in Europe and North America to wildly enthusiastic audiences.

In a career spanning over twenty five years, Paul Dolden has perfected his unique approach to audio technology, using it as a platform from which to launch or capture otherwise impossible musical performances. In this way, he makes his computer behave like a new, virtual orchestra and manipulates it with as much sensitivity as he would a traditional one. His compositions are characterised by a maximalist aesthetic in which hundreds of digitally recorded instrumental and vocal performances are combined in multiple layers.

Paul Dolden's music has been described as the missing link between jazz and rock and the high-brow concert tradition. Critics have called it music for the information age, enlisting noise, complexity and beauty in its quest for excess, and characterised it as apocalyptic hyper-modernism.

The early works employ a unified approach to timbral and harmonic variation.
Under the influence of post-modernism, Paul Dolden's concerns have shifted to include the juxtaposition and superimposition of disparate musical styles evident throughout the Resonance Cycle of works (1992-96). Always working to surpass himself, with the Twilight Cycle of recent years Paul Dolden boldly investigates the forbidden fruit of contemporary new music?melody and dance rhythms.

Daniel Peterson - Mindless Collusion (2010)

Mindless Collusion began as an exploration of the sonic possibilities of guitar recordings and expanded into an experiment of wavelet analysis and synthesis. Wavelets were used to track time and frequency data in the guitar recordings, enabling time-accurate synthesis. The frequency data was mapped to energy bands of noise, which were ring modulated with the time data. This data was then manipulated to create new sounds with different yet proportional timing as compared to the original soundfile. The composition was inspired by The Storyteller by Mario Vargas Llosa. This project was completed in part with the support of the Center for Digital Arts and Experimental Media (DXARTS) at the University of Washington.

Daniel Peterson was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. He currently attends the University of Washington studying music composition under Juan Pampin. His interests include spectral analysis, ambisonics and the exploration of the connections between literature, philosophy and music.

Europe’s Cloud of Ash Casts Pall Over World of Music

"Ticket holders worldwide, beware. That violinist onstage this weekend may be addled by a 14-hour drive. That pianist may not be the one you expected to see. The concert hall doors may even be locked because of a cancellation."

For the full story, please see the New York Times.

Friday, April 16, 2010

UW Professor Huck Hodge awarded 2010 Rome Prize

"The 2010-2011 Rome Prize winners are Seth G. Bernard, M. Shane Bjornlie, Dike Blair, Casey Lance Brown, Thomas J. Campanella, Felipe Dulzaides, Holly Flora, Fritz Haeg, Huck Hodge, Stephanie Malia Hom, Jay Hopler, Lauren M. Kinnee, Ersela Kripa, John Matteo, Heather McGowan, Jeremy Mende, Kathryn Blair Moore, Stephen Mueller, Stephanie Nadalo, Barbara Naddeo, Sarah Oppenheimer, Mark Rabinowitz, Andrew M. Riggsby, Elizabeth C. Robinson, Paul Rudy, Laurie W. Rush, Jennifer Scappettone, Joshua G. Stein, Carly Jane Steinborn, Tyler T. Travillian, Adrian Van Allen, Michael J. Waters, and Karen Yasinsky."

For the full story please see the American Academy in Rome.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Pop Culture Crackdown: Record Store Day

"April 17 is the Fourth-annual Record Store Day. It’s not national or anything. It’s just a day. But it’s a pretty big deal in the music community. It’s a day when all of the independently-owned record stores in the United States, and internationally, join with aural artists to celebrate music."

For the full story, please see the UW Daily.

Engaging J.S. Bach

"This is the city where Johann Sebastian Bach spent his final 27 years and composed many of his major works, including the St. Matthew and St. John Passions, the Mass in B Minor, the "Art of the Fugue" and nearly 200 cantatas. And this year, amid the predictable Easter-season concert programming, Leipzig marked the composer's 325th birthday with the opening of a renovated and greatly expanded Bach Museum, part of the Bach-Archiv Leipzig. Founded in 1950 (the 200th anniversary of the composer's death), the Archiv is one of the finest Bach research institutes on earth, largely thanks to its important collection of Bach manuscripts."

For the full story please see the Wall Street Journal.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

New Database--Naxos Video Library

The UW Music Library is pleased to announce a new subscription to Naxos Video Library! Naxos Video Library is a performing arts video library with over 300 operas, ballets, documentaries, live concerts, and musical tours of historic places. It includes the Naxos DVD label, Opus Arte, Arthaus, Dacapo, EuroArts, among others and is continuously updated to offer the best selection of performing arts videos. This database is available on the Music Library Homepage under Streaming Audio & Video. For more information on Naxos Video Library, please see the online FAQ.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Jennifer Higdon Awarded 2010 Pulitzer Prize in Music

"Jennifer Higdon has been awarded the 2010 Pulitzer Prize in Music for her Violin Concerto, which received its premiere performance by Hilary Hahn and the Indianapolis Symphony conducted by Mario Venzago on February 6, 2009, in Indianapolis, Indiana."

For the full story, please see NewMusicBox.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Distinguished Faculty

The UW Music Library congratulates our faculty on their distinguished achievements!

  • Huck Hodge received the Rome Prize for 2010-2011.

  • Cuong Vu received the Distinguished Teaching Award

  • Melia Watras and Cuong Vu received the Peterson Awards. The awards are a 3-year term effective April 1,2010. Funds are to be used for research, research-related travel, support grad & undergrad students as research assistants, etc.

New Books, Scores and Recordings

Check out our list of new books, scores and recordings added to the collection during March. Here is a sample of what you will find:

You may view past, present and future new materials lists at our About Us webpage.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Ravi Shankar At 90: The Man And His Music

"Ravi Shankar turns 90 Wednesday. For more than 50 years, Shankar has been the man responsible for bringing Indian classical music to the West. He's collaborated with a stunning array of musicians, from The Beatles' George Harrison to jazz saxophonist Bud Shank; from violinist Yehudi Menuhin to composer Philip Glass."

For the full story, please see

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Classical Cutups For April Fools' Day

"It's that time of year again, when practical jokers have a field day. Good-humored horseplay seems prevalent in cultures everywhere, even — according to Morning Edition commentator Miles Hoffman — within the hallowed halls of classical music."

For the full story, please see

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Pierre Boulez a work in progress at 85

"Having just turned 85 on Friday, he is no longer feared but feted as one of the great men of music, present and past, in a town that knows what that means. Boulez celebrated his birthday by conducting the Vienna Philharmonic in its ornate, historic home, the Austrian capital's Musikverein. Future musicologists will no doubt mark the splendid occasion."

For the full story, please see the Los Angeles Times.

For a sample of Boulez's music, please see the Library Catalog.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Appalachian Sound Archives Fellowship 2010-2011

The Berea College Appalachian Sound Archives Fellowship Program is made possible by a grant from the Anne Ray Charitable Trust.

The fellowship program's purpose is to encourage scholarly use of Berea’s non-commercial audio collections that document Appalachian history and culture, especially the areas of traditional music, religious expression, spoken lore, and radio programs. Awards in support of such research projects are made for a period of one to three months.

For more information, please see Berea College.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Composing Software for Students

"Notating a composition for one instrument or a vocalist on a page can be tedious, Michelle McKenzie, a senior in Music Composition and Music Education, explained as she demonstrated a MIDI (musical instrument digital interface) keyboard and a software program, Finale, on a computer workstation in the Music Library."
For the full story, please see the University of Washington Libraries.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Who Needs Labels When You've Got ASCAP?

"The indie music scene has gone beyond record labels now," Porter says. "We don't need Sony giving us $200 million to make an album. We can cut an album fairly cheaply and the quality's still there, and you can play in so many places online. You can get online like CD Baby and all that, and you're distributing to all those places. You don't need a label anymore."

For the full story, please see