written by Danny Gouker 2018 GLFCAM John and Marie LaBarbera Fellow, Cycle 6
I went for a walk with my wife the other day. It was one of the first nice Sundays of the spring in New York and we wandered around Prospect Park for an hour or so. After chatting for a while about a few trivial things and commenting to each other about some of the people and activities inhabiting the park, we walked in silence for a while. As we continued walking, our pace slowed as I got a little deeper in thought. Finally, I broke the silence.
Wherein the author, an aging composer-of- sort, and not very successful 195-pound Mexican-American lawyer, recounts his insecurities, experienced while listening to talented young composers’ works-in-progress.
What is it about music that invites comparisons and collaborations with other art forms? Today, music is often paired with film, dance, visual art, literature, poetry, and various other media. We may even take for granted these unions as they have become ubiquitous in modern culture.
written by Iman Habibi 2018 GLFCAM Lucy and Jacob Frank Fellow, Cycle 4
It may have begun as a search, a quest to find or explore a familiar unknown. Unlike most other children who came to know music through nursery rhymes and dance, my childhood was filled with nationalistic music that celebrated the Islamic revolution and glorified the war.
It was the night before December 1st, 2017 and the deadline for the GLFCAM Bahlest Eeble Readings application loomed over me. I’d made my way through the majority of the application, much of which involved questions about musical/compositional process, training, and who and what I would bring to a proverbial desert island.
Around this time last year, amidst October’s leaves falling into the Charles River, my friend and I were driving back to our apartment. “How are you doing?” had quickly dived into deep musical questions – not unusual conversation between us, a pair of young and freelancing musicians.
These are just the top five words from a long list that describe dear Gabi, who with her work with the Creative Academy of Music shows us all how creating music is our way of making this the kind of world in which we want to live.
written by Noah Luna 2017 GLFCAM Albert Ginastera Fellow, Cycle 2
The spirit of collaboration is rooted in community, so it makes perfect sense that the most rewarding collaboration I have experienced was in Boonville, California. For those of you that haven't had the pleasure, Boonville is a small town in the Anderson Valley - home to wineries, hop gardens, and other quintessential California crops, including a favorite of mine: the Anderson Valley Brewing Company. But more than the commercial crops this sleepy town sows, Boonville is the quintessential western commune.
My husband and I have always loved music. When we lived in San Francisco, we had season tickets to the symphony and to a baroque orchestra. Those evenings were highlights of our life there. When we moved to the Anderson Valley there were other pleasures, but live music was not one of them! We attempted to compensate by having a wonderful audio system at home...in fact, for his retirement present my husband bought some high end speakers and set up a special listening area in our home.
written by Nina Shekhar 2017 GLFCAM Gerald Fischer Fellow, Cycle 1
Last year, I received an email from Gabriela Lena Frank asking me if I would be interested in participating in her inaugural Creative Academy of Music. The opportunity was so special and the chance to be mentored by someone as truly extraordinary as Gabi was too good to pass up, so of course I had to say yes. When I accepted, she thanked me for taking a chance on her – to which I replied, “I’m not taking a chance on you, your amazingness is guaranteed. I’m honored that you would take a chance on me.”
written by Garrett Schumann 2017 GLFCAM Arnold and Babette Salamon Fellow, Cycle 3
It is hard to believe it has been weeks. It is hard to feel time pass at all, after it seemed to stand still in the mountains of Boonville, California. I felt magic in my time at the Gabriela Lena Frank Creative Academy of Music – The magic of hearing the inchoate strands of a fledging composition woven into stunning musical life, and the magic of instant, unwavering trust in my new creative family.
This Academy, then… Why now? Bueno, I suppose it has to do with a confluence of middle age when I'm finally able to unself-consciously say “I am a composer,” the turbulent political times we are in as a nation, and having a partner to dream with, emboldening me to dare the chances. More and more, I feel that life is mercilessly short so let's just see what happens if I were to open my home to my younger colleagues and provide emerging composers a little hard-earned counsel ("Don't make that mistake I made!"), opportunities to work with my amazing performer friends ("She's a virtuoso... Go on, load up those triple stops."), and an über safe space to challenge one's creative habit ("This is a good first roll-out... Care to make your idea even more interesting?")