CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: March 17, 2000
UI Center for New Music will feature music of Shulamit Ran April 2
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa Center for New Music will present
a concert of music by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Shulamit Ran, the William
H. Colvin Professor in the department of music at the University of Chicago,
at 8 p.m. Sunday, April 2.
A composer of prominence and a high reputation in the concert world, Ran
will be on the UI campus for several days before the concert as a guest of
the Center for New Music. During that time she will give master classes for
UI composition students. The concert of her works, featuring performers from
the UI School of Music, will be free and open to the public.
Five of Ran's works will be performed on the concert: "Soliloquy"
for violin, cello and piano; "For an Actor: Monologue for Clarinet,"
for clarinet solo; "Private Game" for clarinet and cello; "East
Wind" for solo flute; and "Concerto da Camera II" for clarinet,
string quartet and piano.
Ran has attracted attention as a composer who combines the intellectual
trends in music characteristic of the mid-20th century with a desire for personal
expression that became more prominent toward the end of the century. As she
expressed to writer Allan Kozinn of the New York Times, "I want my music
to challenge both the mind and the heart, and to do so in equal fashion."
Critic C.B. White believes that she has succeeded, for he writes: "The
frequently applied labels 'freely atonal' and 'expressionistic' fail to describe
her music, which is lush and emotional, yet tightly constructed; each note
seems perfectly placed."
Ran is deeply committed to her work as a composer. "I would like to
hope that in some way I'm contributing to bettering this world," she
has said, "but at the same time, I wonder what any one person can do
to change things. . . . I do what I do because I love it, because I believe
passionately in it, and as to the impact that it's making, I can't be the
Born in Tel Aviv, Israel, Shulamit Ran came to the United States at the
age of 14 to study, having received scholarships from the Mannes College of
Music in New York and the America Israel Cultural Foundation. She has performed
extensively as a pianist in the U.S., Europe, Israel and elsewhere and has
taught at the University of Chicago since 1973.
In 1990 Ran was appointed composer-in-residence with the Chicago Symphony
Orchestra as part of the Meet the Composer Orchestra Residencies Program,
a position she held for seven seasons. From 1994 to 1997, Ran also served
as the fifth Brena and Lee Freeman Sr. composer-in-residence with the Lyric
Opera of Chicago.
Among her numerous awards, fellowships and commissions are those from the
Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund, the Ford Foundation, the National Endowment
for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Fromm Music Foundation, WFMT,
Chamber Music America, Eastman School of Music, the American Composers Orchestra
(Concerto for Orchestra), the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (Concerto
da Camera II), the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, the
Philadelphia Orchestra (Symphony, first performed in 1990, Pulitzer Prize
1991, first place Kennedy Center Friedheim Award, 1992), the Chicago Symphony
Orchestra ("Legends"), the Baltimore Symphony ("Vessels of
Courage and Hope") and the Koussevitzky Music Foundation.
Recordings of her music are available on Bridge, CRI, Erato, JMC (Jerusalem
Music Center), Koch International Classics and Vox labels, including several
all-Ran discs, with recording projects with Teldec (Chicago Symphony Orchestra),
New World Records (Peabody Trio), and Gasparo (clarinetist Arthur Campbell)
A flexible organization devoted to the performance of music composed in
the 20th century, the Center for New Music is directed by David Gompper, a
faculty member in the theory and composition area of the UI School of Music.
The center was founded in 1966 with a seed grant from the Rockefeller Foundation.
Its programming has included world premieres as well as acknowledged contemporary
masterworks. Today, the Center for New Music is supported by the UI School
In November, 1998, an east-coast tour by the Center included a performance
at Merkin Hall in New York City and by invitation at the final performance
of the Region I Conference of Society of Composers, Inc., at Connecticut College
in New London. Critic Paul Griffiths opened his New York Times review of the
Merkin Hall concert by observing that "an ensemble of faculty and graduate
students from the University of Iowa performed strongly Tuesday night,"
and he praised Gompper for "the concert's clarity and directness."
For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/~uiowacr on
the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at http://www.uiowa.edu/~music/.
The Center for New Music is on the web at http://www.uiowa.edu/~music/CNMhome.html.
And you can find more information about Shulamit Ran at http://presser.com/ran.html.
(NOTE TO BROADCASTERS: Shulamit Ran is pronounced Shoo-lah-MEET Rahn.)
(NOTE TO EDITORS: Photos of Shulamit Ran, as well as extensive additional
information about her, may be found on the World Wide Web at <http://presser.com/ran.html>