Saturday, June 23, 2012   8:00 PM

Symphony Space
Sharp Theatre
2537 Broadway at 95th St.
New York, NY 10025

Box office: 212.864.5400, (Open Tues - Sun from 1-6pm)






George Edwards (1943-2011)George Edwards (1943-2011)


Miriam Gideon (1906-1996)Miriam Gideon (1906-1996)photo courtesy of ACA ArchivesDorothy Rudd Moore (b.1940)Dorothy Rudd Moore (b.1940)Elliott Schwartz (b.1936)Elliott Schwartz


Ben Weber (1916-1979)Ben Weber (1916-1979)



George Edwards, Parallel Convergences (1988) for eleven players
Miriam Gideon, Bömischer Krystall (1990) for Soprano, and Pierrot Ensemble  (fl, cl, vln,  vcl, piano)
Dorothy Rudd Moore, TRANSCENSION ("I have been to the mountaintop") for chamber orchestra (1986) (*this performance for fl, ob, cl, and string quintet)
Elliott Schwartz, Chamber Concerto VI: Mr. Jefferson (2007) New York Premiere; for solo violin and chamber orchestra
Ben Weber, Concerto, Op. 32 (1950) for piano solo, cello obbligato, and woodwind quintet

Guest conductor:  Oliver Hagen


Jo Ellen Miller, SopranoJo Ellen Miller, SopranoFred Sherry, celloFred Sherry, celloPeter Sheppard Skaerved, violinPeter Sheppard Skaerved, violinOrion Weiss, pianoOrion Weiss, piano



Louis Karchin, music directorOrchestra of the League of ComposersLouis Karchin, music director


Oliver HagenOliver Hagen


To celebrate its 75th anniversary, the American Composers Alliance presents a concert of significant works by American composers that represent milestones in the history of the organization. The Orchestra of the League of Composers, with special guest conductor, Oliver Hagen, will be joined by world-renowned solo artists in this once-in-a lifetime ACA event.

ACA will also present the Laurel Leaf Certificate of Appreciation to INNOVA RECORDINGS, in recognition of its excellent and steady support of the full range of contemporary American music. 

Brief video segments throughout the evening will highlight some of the ACA’s history, composers, and their works to illustrate highlights from more than seven decades and the people who have shaped and given purpose to this unique organization.

Join us for a celebration of American concert music, to honor the composers who established and created one of the most important collections of American music in the world. This is an evening not to be missed!

ACA and BMI members, as well as Society for American Music members - contact ACA for discount ticket code: [email protected]


ACA's 75th -  Concert Planning Committee:

Ross Bauer
Hayes Biggs
Louis Karchin
Marilyn Shrude
Joel Suben
Yehudi Wyner

Official Press Release:

American Composers Alliance
802 W. 190th St. 1st floor
New York, NY 10040
Contact: Gina Genova, (212) 925-0458
[email protected]



American Composer’s Alliance
75th Anniversary Concert
Sat, Jun 23 at 8 pm
Peter Jay Sharp Theatre at Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway at 95th St, New York NY
Subway directions: 1, 2 or 3 to 96th St.
$25 Advance-General Admission; $20 Symphony Space and ACA Members, Seniors;  $15 Students, and those 18 and under;
Tickets available at www.symphonyspace.org

The American Composer’s Alliance, founded in 1937 by Aaron Copland and others, celebrates seventy-five years of service to new American music with a concert of notable chamber orchestra works by ACA composers, including George Edwards’ Parallel Convergences (1988), Miriam Gideon’s Bömischer Krystall (1990), Dorothy Rudd Moore’s Transcension (1986), Elliott Schwartz’s Chamber Concerto VI: Mr. Jefferson (2007) and Ben Weber’s Concerto, Op. 32 (1950).  ACA is a non-profit music publisher (BMI-affiliated), service organization and concert presenter devoted to contemporary American music. Its summer concert series at Symphony Space was called a “lively, dogma-free celebration of mostly recent works by composers old and young” by Allan Kozinn of The New York Times.

For this special anniversary concert, ACA is proud to feature established master performers as well as blazing young talents. Peter Sheppard Skærved is the dedicatee of well over 200 works for solo violin, by composers such as George Rochberg, Judith Weir, Michael Finnissy, and Hans Werner Henze. He regularly appears as soloists in over 30 countries. 

Dallas Magazine calls Orion Weiss, “a pianist with remarkable sensitivity and a beautiful, appropriately controlled tone” in a recent performance of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21. Weiss is an exciting young artist making an impact on the national concert circuit.

Cellist Fred Sherry is one of the leading cellists in the world today. Of his recent premiere of John Zorn’s A Rebours, composed for Sherry, Musical America said “Sherry was particularly impressive, riding a rollercoaster of shifting perspectives and muscular arpeggios with élan.”

Soprano Jo Ellen Miller was called “an American artist at home in many vocabularies” by the Chicago Sun-Times for her thrilling performances, and Gramophone Magazine said violinist Peter Sheppard Skærved’s playing is “so compelling that interest never wavers.” 


Conductor/Pianist Oliver Hagen was born in New York City in 1986. At the age of 24 he was named Assistant Conductor of the Ensemble Intercontemporain in Paris. This past season, Oliver appeared in two concerts with the Ensemble Intercontemporain—once at IRCAM and once at Cité de la Musique in Paris. In April and May, Oliver conducted staging rehearsals at the Paris Opéra Comique for a world premiere opera by Marco Stroppa, Re Orso.  In March, Oliver conducted the East Coast Contemporary Ensemble at the Tenri Cultural Institute in New York City. Oliver has also served as Assistant Conductor to Pierre Boulez at the Lucerne Festival Academy in Switzerland; last summer he appeared at the Kulture- und Kongresszentrum (KKL) in Lucerne conducting Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Kreuzspiel and Kontra-punkte with the Lucerne Festival Academy Ensemble.  Oliver has been invited to conduct Arnold Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire with musicians of the Orchestre National de Lyon in February 2013; in March 2013, he will conduct a new mass by Philippe Bodin for radio broadcast with the Choir of Radio France.

As a pianist, Oliver has a strong association with the Lucerne Festival Academy, which he attended between 2005 and 2009. In September of 2009, Oliver appeared as one of the solo pianists in Pierre Boulez’s Répons, under the direction of the composer at the KKL in Lucerne. The 2007-08 Season brought an international tour, also under the direction of Pierre Boulez, in which Oliver performed Boulez’s sur Incises, which was heard at venues including the Philharmonie in Essen, Germany and Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall. The touring ensemble also performed sur Incises in Japan at the Art Tower Mito under the direction of Jean Deroyer.

As pianist of the New York City based new music ensemble Signal, which performs under the direction of Brad Lubman, Oliver has appeared at venues ranging from The Ojai Music Festival and the Festival of Contemporary Music at Tanglewood to the Bang on a Can Marathon and Le Poisson Rouge in NYC. As a member of Signal, Oliver has worked closely with composers Steve Reich, Helmut Lachenmann, and Charles Wuorinen. Oliver can be heard on two upcoming Signal releases: a CD/surround-sound DVD of music by Lachenmann, with the composer as soloist in “…Zwei Gefühle…”  (Mode); Michael Gordon, David Lang, and Julia Wolfe’s Shelter (Canteloupe). Next season Oliver will participate in composer portrait concerts: music of Oliver Knussen and Jonathan Harvey, both at Miller Theatre in NYC.

These artists will appear with the Orchestra of the League of Composers, hailed at its debut as "sounding terrific in this varied and demanding program" by Anthony Tommasini of The New York Times.  Since its founding in 2009, the orchestra has presented twelve New York or world premieres and five commissioned works, and will present three concerts in this current season with its Music Director, Louis Karchin.

In addition, ACA will present the Laurel Leaf Certificate of Appreciation to Innova Recordings, in recognition of its excellent and steady support of the full range of contemporary American music. We’ll also honor the wonderful Rosalie Calabrese for her longtime service (1962-1994) to ACA.  A short video will highlight some of the ACA’s milestones, illustrating through documents and images the rich tapestry of American music that has been collected, preserved, and published by the organization. It will be a singularly memorable event!

Featured Composers of the 75th anniversary concert:

George Edwards (1943 –2011) was a composer of thoughtfully crafted orchestral and chamber music that expanded on the tradition of Schoenberg and Webern, as well as a distinguished educator. His Parallel Convergences for chamber orchestra was first performed in 1989 by Speculum Musicae, and is a brilliant example not only of his great technical prowess, but also of his passion for lyricism and counterpoint. Noting how the wilder qualities of his personality were not often represented in his music, Fred Lerdahl, in a memoriam for Edwards published in New Music Box, said that “Music was his refuge, his inner sanctum of order, beauty, and refined expression.”

Miriam Gideon (1906–1996) was born in Greeley, Colorado, where her father was a Reform rabbi. Her interest in composition —begun in childhood as an ancillary, experimental, and almost private activity—soon became the primary focus of her creative energies. Gideon remained always connected to the emotional impulse of her music.  “As far as I am concerned," she said, "I must see whether what I am writing comes from a musical impulse, and whether I am responding to it. What I write has to mean something to me.... It has to seem new. I have to be surprised by it, and it must register as feeling."

Dorothy Rudd Moore (1940- ) was born in New Castle, Delaware and was inspired at an early age to become a composer even though there were few women of color involved in classical music at the time. Moore was one of the founding members of the League of Black Composers, and through this organization did much to help fellow African-American composers and performers. Her chamber and vocal music is performed frequently throughout the world. Transcension for chamber orchestra is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King.

Elliott Schwartz (1936- ) a native New Yorker taught at Bowdoin College from 1964 to 2007, including twelve years as department chair. The Chamber Concerto VI was written in 2007, during his resident fellowship at Robinson College, Cambridge University, and is dedicated to violinist Peter Sheppard Skærved, who first stimulated the composer’s curiosity about Thomas Jefferson’s relation to the violin.

Ben Weber (1916-1979) was a largely self-taught composer who created a polished and highly romantic style using 12-tone technique. His music came to be recognized late in his lifetime, but he was given several major commissions, including two Guggenheim Fellowships. Frank O’Hara, the poet, playwright and fellow gay artist, wrote of Weber in the 1955 ACA Bulletin that “his approach to creating art is one of attempting an ever more truthful, and thus more difficult, simplicity.”

Join us for an unforgettable evening of American music, to honor the composers who established and created one of the most important collections of American music in the world.

*All music on this concert licensed through  Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI®), a global leader in rights management, an American performing rights organization that represents more than 500,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers in all genres of music and more than 7.5 million musical works. BMI has represented the most popular and beloved music from around the world for more than 70 years. The company provides licenses for businesses that perform music, and distributes the fees it generates as royalties to the musical creators and copyright owners it represents. Find out more at www.bmi.com.


This concert supported and funded in part through New Music USA's MetLife Creative Connections program, the Cary New Music Performance Fund, BMI, the Aaron Copland Fund, and the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University. ACA is a BMI-affiliated music publisher.