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Workshop with Sven-David Sandström

July 29—August 2, Indiana University Jacobs School of Music

A series of lectures and composition sessions intended for composers, recommended for conductors, and open to the public, on issues pertaining to the composition of works for voice in solo, choral and operatic genres. Sven-David Sandström will meet with composers in private and shared sessions (MA066), in combination with public lectures addressing aspects of the voice as an instrument, text setting, characterization, choral orchestration, and preparation of the score.

Tuesday July 29, 7:30-9:30 pm., Sweeney Hall
Introduction. Is the voice an instrument for our time? Writing for the voice in vocal, choral, and operatic works. What are the differences? What are the objectives? The voice as an instrument, whether solo or in an ensemble. Vocal traditions available to the postmodern composer: popular music, classical bel canto, and extended techniques in contemporary vocal composition. The voice types. The choral ensemble types.

Wednesday July 30, 7:30-9:30 pm., Sweeney Hall
Text-music interactions. Rhetoric in music history and current approaches. Choosing a text. Characterization and pacing — story and drama, poetry and mood. Composing the Art Song.

Thursday July 31, 4-6 pm., Sweeney Hall
The Choral Work. Choral compositional techniques in history (chant, heterophony, polyphony, fugues, multiple choruses, sound mass, aleatory, etc). The great genres of choral composition and their characteristics (mass, oratorio, cantata, motets, etc.). Contemporary choral composition. Choral orchestration (voicing, effects, correct handling). From composition to performance. Preparing the choral score.

Friday August 1, 2:30-4:30 pm., Sweeney Hall
Opera in history and opera today. What’s the point? Preparing a libretto. Classical, historical, or current subjects? Great opera scenes: characterization and pacing, story and drama. What creates dramatic tension in opera?

Saturday August 2, 2-4 pm., M267
The future of choral music and the future of opera. Are there new ways to address this? Enduring questions and new directions. Sharing works.

Application deadline for active fellows: July 21, 2008
Application deadline for auditors: none
Application fee: none
Application procedure: Please send curriculum vitae, best contact information, a representative sample of your work including voices in PDF format, and a recording in mp3
format to:

Tuition Fee: Thanks to support from New Frontiers for the Arts and the Humanities at Indiana University and from the Guillermo and Lucille Espinosa Fund, attendance to the private lessons is underwritten for 10 composer fellows, who will participate in private individual and shared sessions with Professor Sandström. Attendance in the general lectures is free and open to the public.

SandströmSven-David Sandström
Born in Sweden in 1942, Sven-David Sandström is one of the most important composers of our time, and certainly one of the most assured and distinguished in the field of vocal, choral, and operatic music. He is the author of dozens of choral compositions, including a high mass, several oratorios, and three operas. In recognition of his preeminence in the field, German conductor Helmuth Rilling has commissioned him to compose a new Messiah to commemorate the 250th anniversary of Handel’s death in 2009.

Sandström studied art history and musicology at the University of Stockholm from 1963 to 1967. He attended composition and classes with Ingvar Lidholm at the Stockholm Musikhögskolan from 1967 to 1972. He also took special courses in advanced techniques of composition with Gyorgy Ligeti and Per Nørgård. Soon he was the recipient of numerous awards and prizes, including the Christ Johnson Prize and Major Award, the Nordic Council Award and the Buxtehude Award.

In 1981 Sven-David Sandström joined the faculty of the Stockholm Musikhögskolan. In 1983 he served as chairman of the Swedish section of the ISCM. A former professor of composition and pro-Rektor of the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Sven-David Sandström is professor of composition in the Jacobs School of Music. This year will mark his retirement from teaching in the United States as he prepares to complete numerous commissions and devote his attention to training composers in the art of vocal and choral composition.

In his early works Sven-David Sandström made use of quarter-tone tuning. Later he turned to tonal and modal writing, and now he is recognized for a very personal and communicative style. His works have been performed throughout Scandinavia and Europe by the Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, the Kroumata Percussion Ensemble, the Hogersten Motet Choir and others. His catalogue of published and performed compositions includes more than ninety works in various genres.

Recent large-scale works include De ur alla minnen fallna - Missa da requiem, for soloists, chorus and orchestra; High Mass for soloists, chorus and orchestra; the oratorio Moses for the 300th anniversary of the Oslo Cathedral; and the full-length opera Staden (The City). He is published by Warner/Chappell, Nordiska Musikfrlaget and others; and recorded on BIS, MAP, CBS and other labels.

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