American composer Alvin Singleton is turning 80 on 28 December. He has worked extensively with major orchestras worldwide and has written significant works for chamber and vocal ensembles, as well for the theater, and his set of Argoru pieces have been performed across the world.
His many awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, commissions from The Serge Koussevitzky Music Foundation and American Composers, the Kranichsteiner Musikpreis by the City of Darmstadt, the Musikprotokoll Kompositionspreis by the Austrian Radio, the Mayor’s Fellowship in the Arts Award by the City of Atlanta, and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2014, Singleton was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
We wish him a very happy birthday!
We remember Frank Zappa, one of the most iconic artist of the 20th century who would have been 80 on 21 December 2020. A biopic has been released recently which is available from many streaming services. But Zappa is perhaps best described in his own words, from The Real Frank Zappa Book where he elucidates his creative process:
‘In my compositions, I employ a system of weights, balances, measured tensions and releases. The similarities are best illustrated by comparison to a Calder mobile: a multicolored whatchamacallit, dangling in space, that has big blobs of metal connected to pieces of wire, balanced ingeniously against little metal dingleberries on the other end.’
At the age of only 53, Zappa died as a consequence of a cancer desease. The performance materials of his ensemble and orchestrals works are available from Schott New York.