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Menotti's castle is crumbling03/10/2005
An intriguing story from today's Herald newspaper relating to 93 year old composer Carlos Menotti, best-known for his popular Christmas opera Amahl and the Night Visitors. Mr Menotti apparently owns the historic Scottish castle Yester Castle, near Gifford, East Lothian.
But according to Historic Scotland, the castle walls are crumbling and the site is overgrown with trees. Mr Menotti has not responding to a series of letters urging him to allow workmen onto the site to repair the castle.
Oscar Bianchi wins Gaudeamus Prize 200523/09/2005
Italian-born composer, Oscar Bianchi has won this year's €4550 Gaudeamus Prize , for his composition Primordia Rerum.
Bianchi is currently a doctorial student at Columbia University, New York. The prize money is intended as a commission for a new work to be performed at the 2006 edition of the International Gaudeamus Music Week.
There were two Honorable Mentions: Andrea Agostini (Italy, 1975) received an honorable mention for Funus for tape, played on September 4; Dai Fujikura (Japan, 1977) received an honorable mention for Fifth Station, performed by the Asko Ensemble on September 5, conducted by Ilan Volkov. Both are invited to propose a new or recent work for performance during the following Gaudeamus Music Week.
Standing ovation for Glass's new opera13/09/2005
The audience at Germany's Erfurt Theatre treated Philip Glass to a 15 minute standing ovation at the premiere of his new opera "Waiting for the Barbarians".
The opera explores the way modern day white society is coming to terms with its exploitative and repressive past.
Glass previously said he saw the opera as a critique of President Bush's administration and its war against Iraq.
The opera is scheduled for Amsterdam next spring and Austin Texas in 2007.
Mikis Theodorakis wins MC UNESCO International Music Prize08/09/2005
Greek composer Mikis Theodorakis, 80, has been awartded the IMC UNESCO International Music Prize for 2005.
In a career that spanned nearly all of Greece’s troubled post-war history, throughout which Theodorakis played a prominent role and was repeatedly incarcerated for his political beliefs, he also managed to transform and redefine popular Greek music with works like Epitaph, Axion Esti and Romiosyni.
The prize was set up in 1975 by Lord Yehudi Menuhin and past recipients have included Dimitri Shostakovich, Leonard Bernstein, and Herbert von Karajan. Its goal is to recognise musicians of international standing who have also severd peace and understanding between peoples.
New post for C:T interviewee Augusta Read Thomas27/08/2005
Augusta Read Thomas, composer-in-residence at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for the last nine years, has begun a three-year term as chair of the American Music Center's board of directors.
Thomas, whose CSO residency ends next year, is the first woman to head the center's board. The center, founded in 1939 by a consortium led by composer Aaron Copland, was the nation's first information and support center for new music.
Founded in 1939 by composer Aaron Copland and others, the American Music Center distributes grants, publishes a newsletter and the web magazine NewMusicBox.org, and maintains an online music library and a collection of 20th-century music at the New York Public Library.
KAGEL awarded Rolf Schock Prize 200518/08/2005
Mauricio Kagel has been awarded the prestigious 2005 Rolf Schock Prize for Music. Awarded annually, the Schock Prizes honour figures from the fields of philosophy, mathematics, visual arts and music. The awards are made by the The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the Royal Swedish Academy of Fine Arts and the Royal Swedish Academy of Music, and are each worth SEK 400,000.
In the citation, the judges described Kagel's contribution to music:
for six decades [he] has created a unique musical universe in which a variety of sources of sound have been investigated and incorporated into scenic action, film and radio plays. In Kagel’s work playful candour is combined with strict artistic discipline, bold new creations with in-depth historical perspective.
Princess Christina, Mrs Magnuson, is to award the prizes at a ceremony at the Royal Swedish Academy of Music on 27 October 2005.
Score for a Hole in the Ground Wins the first New Music Award12/08/2005
Jem Finer’s project proposes a 20ft brass horn with bowls and pivots, which are the instruments, and water is the performer.
Jem is winner of the UKs Performing Rights Society's Foundation’s very first New Music Award was won for his "Score for a Hole in the Ground", an innovative large sound installation project that takes inspiration from the water chimes in Kyoto, Japan.
Composer James Wilson dies aged 8107/08/2005
UK-born, but resident in Ireland since 1948, composer James Wilson has died, aged 81.
He was professor of composition in the Royal Irish Academy of Music and was also for many years a course director of the Ennis/IMRO Composition Summer School.
His large output included seven operas and over 150 works . He was still in full creative flow, having recently started work on an eighth opera.
Stuart MacRae's Edinburgh appointment29/07/2005
Young Scottish composer Stuart MacRae has been appointed Edinburgh Festival Creative Fellow for 2005/06. He will take up the post on 1st April and will be working on a commission for the Edinburgh International Festival 2006.
The post was created by the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Edinburgh and MacRae is the first composer to have won the post.
Brian McMaster, Festival Director, said: "The Festival Fellowship is a unique opportunity to involve artists in a cross disciplinary group of creative minds. It gives an artist space to work on a new project. We look forward to hearing the results".
Susanna Malkki joins Ensemble Intercontemporain17/07/2005
Finnish conductor Susanna Malkki is to become the new music director of Ensemble Intercontemporain, the leading French new music ensemble, founded by Pierre Boulez.
Malkki studied at the Sibelius Academy with Jorma Panula, and has recently worked extensively in the UK, with the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and others. She succeeds British conductor Jonathan Nott.
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