ASCAP Foundation President Paul Williams has announces that Cory Brodack has been named the 2020 recipient of The ASCAP Foundation Rudolf Nissim Prize. The 40th annual Prize, which includes $5000 in cash, was awarded for Nodus Tollens, an approximately 13 minute work for orchestra. The jury also awarded Special Distinction to Ryan Lindveit of New York City for Close Up at a Distance, a 12-minute work for orchestra.
Brodack has stated that he was motivated to compose Nodus Tollens “by a word in John Koenig’s online work, The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows. Our socioeconomic and political climate is deeply divisive and partisan today, and suffers immensely from criminal injustice and strife. One can simply go online or turn on a television and learn of countless stories of death, war, hunger, natural disaster and any amount of unending turmoil. The continued self-imposed ignorance and lack of desperately needed change will eventually lead to disastrous consequences. We are all in the same car barreling down the highway at breakneck speeds, and it will only take one small bump to end in a fiery demise. If we cannot grasp onto what is important and work towards a common good, we will bury ourselves in the graves we have already begun to dig.”
Cory Brodack, a composer, orchestrator, arranger, hornist, copyist and educator from St. Peters, Missouri, is currently pursuing his Master’s degree in composition at Bowling Green State University with composer and Professor of Composition Mikel Kuehn. Prior to Bowling Green, Brodack earned his baccalaureate in music composition from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. According to the ASCAP announcement, “Brodack composes for both electronic and acoustic mediums, with an emphasis on timbre and the uncontrollable phenomena that arise in both human performance and electronic systems. His music is inspired by individual aspects of the human condition and the unique connection between performer, score and audience.”
The judges for the 2020 Nissim Prize were: Helen Cha-Pyo, Principal Conductor of the New Jersey Youth Symphony and Artistic Director of the Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts; Michael Repper, Music Director of the New York Youth Symphony, the Northern Neck Orchestra (VA) and Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Maryland; and Julius P. Williams, Music Director and Conductor of the Berklee Contemporary Symphony Orchestra and president of the Conductors Guild.