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Robert Carl


Hartford, CT   

Robert Carl (b.1954) studied composition with Jonathan Kramer, George Rochberg, Ralph Shapey, and Iannis Xenakis. His music is performed throughout the US and Europe, and is published by American Composers' Alliance, Boosey&Hawkes, and Northeastern. His grants, prizes and residencies have come from such sources as the National Endowment for the Arts, Tanglewood, Connecticut Commission on the Arts, Camargo Foundation, MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, Ucross, Ragdale, Millay Colony, Bogliasco Foundation, Djerassi Foundation, the Aaron Copland House, Youkobo ArtSpace and the Tokyo Wonder Site, and the Rockefeller Foundation (Bellagio). He was awarded a 2005 Chamber Music America commission for a string quintet written for the Miami String Quartet and Robert Black. An excerpt from his opera-in-progress Harmony (with novelist Russell Banks) was presented in May 2006 in the New York City Opera’s VOX Showcase series. He received the 1998 Charles Ives Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. New World Records released a CD of three large string chamber works in March 2006, and in July 2012 his second disc on the label was released, featuring electroacoustic works based on Japanese materials. In June 2013 Innova Records released a CD of three large piano works. In 2007 he received a fellowship from the Asian Cultural Council for travel to Japan to research contemporary Japanese composers, and his book on Terry Riley’s In C (Oxford University Press) was released in summer 2009. In 2010 he was the featured composer for the Festival of Contemporary Art Music at Washington State University, in 2011 he was resident composer for performances and masterclasses at Hacettepe University National Conservatory, Ankara, Turkey, and in July 2013 he was composer-in-residence at the Wintergreen Music Festival in the Virginia Blue Ridge.Other CD releases of his work are found on Innova, Cedille, Neuma, Koch International, Centaur, Lotus, Capstone, Vienna Modern Masters, E.R.M., and The Aerial. For fifteen years he was a co-director of the Extension Works new music ensemble in Boston; he is chair of the composition department at the Hartt School of Music, University of Hartford, and writes extensively on new music for Fanfare Magazine.


Articles by Robert Carl:

Articles August 24 2016 | By Robert Carl
Jonathan Kramer’s Gift

Jonathan Kramer's Postmodern Music shows how our contemporary experience colors and reshapes our audition of everything, from Beethoven to new pieces he never could have encountered. And so his last...

Articles August 27 2015 | By Robert Carl
Music After Life: Guiding Lights

One side of the survivability equation is the caution-to-the-wind embrace of a personal vision, fearless of the consequences, no matter how impractical. The other side thinks outside of the individual...

Articles August 20 2015 | By Robert Carl
Music After Life: Twists of Fate

The reputations of certain composers seem to be actually growing with time, even though conventional wisdom earlier on would have predicted just the opposite. They present one possible answer to...

Articles August 13 2015 | By Robert Carl
Music After Life: Posthumous Lessons

By now it’s more than a decade since Jonathan Kramer, George Rochberg, Ralph Shapey, and Iannis Xenakis have passed, so there is some time to assess where their art stands...

Articles August 6 2015 | By Robert Carl
Music After Life: Searching for Survival

What's the fate of our work after we’ve left the stage? Robert Carl explores making our music “survivable.”

Articles June 1 2013 | By Robert Carl
Eight Waves a Composer Will Ride in This Century

I am strangely optimistic right now, at least for art, despite the enormous challenges we face as a species. Part of the reason is that I feel the forces that...

Articles January 14 2010 | By Robert Carl
Terry Riley’s In C

Terry Riley's In C seems to stand the whole idea of musical "progress" on its head.