CrossSound 1999-2009

Senior composer in residence
Commissioned composer
Professor Hwang-Long Pan* (b. 1945, Taiwan)
  • "East and West V" for zheng and string quartet (world premiere)
  • "Labyrinth-Promenade" (1992~7) for zheng solo

Hwang-long PAN, two-time winner of the Taiwan National art award, was born in Taiwan in 1945 and graduated from National Taiwan Normal University in 1971 with a BA in Music. In 1974 Pan entered the Musikhochschule und Musikakademie in Zurich to study composition with Hans Ulrich Lehmann and theory and counterpoint with Robert Blum. After graduating in 1976, he studied composition with Helmut Lachenmann at the Staatliche Hochschule fuer Musik und Theater in Hannover and from 1978 to 1982, with Isang Yun at the Universitaet der Kuenste Berlin. In 1982 he returned to Taiwan and became associate professor at the National Institute of the Arts in Taipei. He became professor of composition in 1991, working as Director of the Research and Development Center from 1998 to 1999, and Dean of Student Affairs from 2000 to 2002. He was served as Dean of the School of Music from 2002 to 2008 at the Taipei National University of the Arts (TNUA).

Pan is active in several prestigious music associations. He has been a member of the Music Committee of the Council for Cultural Affair, which is the highest cultural policymaking organization in Taiwan. He is the founding president of the International Society for Contemporary Music-Taiwan Section and also is currently president of ISCM-Taiwan Section, juror on the Advisory Committee of the National Theater and Concert Hall in Taipei and art director of "Music Taipei Composition Competition". In 2007, He was elected to be Chairman of Taiwan Association of Composers’ and Asian Composers’ League-Taiwan National Committee.

Pan was the winner of the Foerderpreis des Juergen Ponto Kompositions-Wettbewerbs (1979), the Wu San-lien Award (1987) and Taiwan's National Arts Award (1992, 2003). His compositions have been performed by numerous ensembles including the Oesterr. Ensemble fuer Neue Musik (1980-), the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra (1982), the Ensemble InterContemporain /IRCAM (1983), Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra (1985), Ju Percussion Group (1986-), Taiwan National Symphony Orchestra (1987-) the Arditti String Quartet (1988), the New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra (1989) the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra (1990), Contemporary Chamber Orchestra Taipei (1995-), the Kroumata Ensemble (1996), Forum Music Group (1996-), China Found Music Workshop (1996-), Trio Staege-Grimmer-Holliger (1999), ALEA III (1999), Boston Modern Orchestra Project (2000), Klang Forum (2004), Taipei Percussion (2005) and International Gaudeamus Music Week (1980), ISCM/WMD (Hong Kong 1988,Warsaw 1992, Bucharest 1999, Luxembourg 2000, Yokohama 2001, Bern 2004, Hong Kong 2007), Presences (Paris 1996), Hoergaenge Wien (2000), Berliner Festspiele (2002, 2004), Warsaw Music Gardens Festival (2006), and Taiwan Philharmonia Malaysia-Kuala Lumpur tour (2007).

Composer in residence
Il-Ryun Chung* (b. 1964, Germany)
  • "KwangYa - Five Korean Dances" (1996/2003)
    Commissioned by SamulNori Hanullim, Kim Duk-Soo
    for Changgu and ampilified string quartet

Il-Ryun Chung was born in Frankfurt/M. in 1964. From 1967 to 1971 he lived in Seoul, Korea. Chung's musical development began rather late, at the age of 16, when he taught himself to play the guitar. In 1984 he went to Berlin, where he found his first teacher and supporter, Carlo Domeniconi. From 1989-1995 he completed his studies in composition at the Berlin University of Arts (HdK Berlin) with Prof. Jolyon Brettingham-Smith. A further encounter of great significance was his acquaintance with the Korean master drummer Kim Duk-Soo,who introduced Chung to Korean percussionmusic and thus made a lasting impression upon Chung's rhythmic perception.

From the very beginning, the collaboration between composer and interpreter has been central to the working out of Chung's compositions, which despite acute concern for idiomatic instrumental writing always place the highest technical demands upon the performers.Concertizing as solo guitarist, chamber musician and drummer for traditional Korean Music remains an integral part of Chung's musical life.

In 1992 he received a composition stipend from the the Berlin Senate, 1993 he received a composition commission. 1994 he was awarded at the Berlin Festival for Guitar an Chamber Music, for his "Movement in Circles II" for flute and Guitar. In 1994,1997, 2003 and 2007 the Berlin Senate again gave him composition commissions. In 1999, he wrore his first opera "An diesem Ort" for the opening ceremony of the redesigned Heckentheater of Rheinsberg 1999.

His works are performed world wide in festivals like "Festival de l'imaginaire" in Paris, "Taipei Festival", "Tokyo Summer Festival", "musica viva" in Munich and the "Tongyeong International Music Festival" through orchestras and ensembles like the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, KBS Orchestra, Nieuw Ensemble, Contempory Music Ensemble Seoul, Ensemble Phorminx, Kammerensemble Neue Musik, Modern Art Sextet ,UnitedBerlin, U3, IIIZ+ and the conductors and soloist Stefan Asbury, Roland Kluttig and Wu Wei.

Il-Ryun's CD's are published CDs by kreuzberg records

Scores published by: edition ex tempore, Edition Margaux, Verlag Neue Musik

More information at:

Composer in residence
Matthew Burtner* (b. 1970, Anchorage)
  • "Fragments from Cold" (2005)
    Cello and computer sound

Matthew Burtner(b.1970) grew up on the North Slope and in Naknek. He studied philosophy, composition, saxophone and computer music at St. Johns College, Tulane University (BFA Summa Cum Laude 1993), Iannis Xenakis's UPIC Studios (1993- 94), the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University (MM 1997), and Stanford University's CCRMA (DMA 2002). He has been composer-in-residence at the Banff Centre for the Arts, Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, and the IUA/ Phonos Institute in Barcelona. His original computer music research is presented regularly at international conferences, and has been published by journals such as "Organized Sound," the "Journal of New Music Research" and the "Leonardo Music Journal." Matthew Burtner's music has been described as "shimmering, pulsating and thunderous" by the Norwegian Fremover, and The Wire has called it "some of the most eerily effective electroacoustic music I've heard." His work regularly combines instrumental ensembles, computer technology, interactive acoustics and multimedia. First prize winner in the Musica Nova International Electroacoustic Music Competition, Burtner's music has also received honors and awards from Meet the Composer, ASCAP, the American Music Center, the Luigi Russolo International Computer Music Competition, the Gaudeamus International Young Composers Competition, the Hultgren International Cello Biennial, Darmstadt, Prix d'Ete, SCI, and others. His music has been commissioned for performers such as the Spectri Sonori Ensemble, Noise Ensemble, MiN Ensemble, Phyllis Bryn Julson and Mark Markham, the Peabody Trio, Ascolto, Ensemble Noise, CrossSound 2008 guest soprano Haleh Abghari and others. His commercial recordings include "Incantations" on the German DACO label (DACO 102), "Portals of Distortion," on Innova Records (Innova 526), and "Arctic Contrasts," on the Norwegian Euridice label (EUCD 012-2000). Matthew Burtner is currently Assistant Professor of composition and computer music at the University of Virginia where he is Associate Director of the VCCM Computer Music Center.

More information at:

Commissioned composer
Stefan Hakenberg (b. 1960, Germany)

  • "Moments in Human Life" (world premiere)
    for IIIZ+ and UnitedBerlin strings
    funded by the Jebidiah Foundation New Music Commissions

Composer Stefan Hakenberg was born in 1960 in Wuppertal, Germany. His work includes a wide variety of musical media. The integration of players of non-western classical background has particularly shaped Hakenberg's creative thought. Reviewers have praised his music as "highly original," "dramatic and memorable," "creating strong musical expressions in a densely contrapuntal style." Full of innovations his work is an ongoing reflection on the musical styles of today that he has encountered along an international career that has taken him from Cologne's experimental 80s New Music scene to Boston's 90s multicultural academic world, to the particularly Asian combination of influences in Seoul, Korea at the turn of the millennium.

Hakenberg attended the conservatories of Düsseldorf and Cologne where he studied composition with Hans Werner Henze. He received a Ph.D. from Harvard University where he studied with Bernard Rands and Mario Davidovsky. Other grants and fellowships brought him to the summer festivals in Tanglewood (where he studied with Oliver Knussen on a Leonard Bernstein Fellowship), Aspen (where he studied with John HARBISON), and Fontainebleau (where he studied with Betsy Jolas), to the artist colonies "The MacDowell Colony" in New Hampshire, "Yaddo" in Saratoga Springs, and the "Atelierhaus Worpswede" in Lower Saxony. MeetTheComposer, the Alaska State Council on the Arts, various Alaskan arts and humanities councils, and the Endowments for the Arts in North-Rhine Westfalia and Lower Saxony have directly sponsored his work repeatedly.Films by Theo Lipfert with scores by Stefan Hakenberg, "The Displacement Map" and "Taubman Sucks," won awards at festivals in Kansas City, Honolulu, at Portland's Northwest Film festival in Oregon, and three screenings at the Tribeca Film Festival among many more places. In 2007 HAKENBERG was credited with having written the first "climate opera" with his chamber work "The Egg Musher," libretto by Michael Kerstan.

Hakenberg is currently the director of the Public Music School division of the Darmstadt Academy for Musical Arts. Hakenberg's music is published by AUGEMUS Musikverlag, Bochum, Germany and TONOS Musikverlag, Darmstadt, Germany. Recordings are available on Capstone Records, Brooklyn, New York, VDM Records, Rome, Italy, and Horncastle Verlag, Munich, Germany.

Yukyung Lee (Korea)

  • "Texture Mapping" (2002) CrossSound 2002 Commission
    for kayagûm and string quartet

Yunkyung Lee's music takes various forms depending on the conception, site, and material of each work. Her sound installation work often focuses on the space itself as an important musical element. Yunkyung Lee studied composition at Yonsei University, (B.A), electro-acoustic music at the Manhattan School of Music in New York (M.A.), composition at the Hochschule der Kuenste Berlin, and movement at the Rubin Academy of Music and Dance in Jerusalem. She is also active as a performer, especially as a member of the experimental pianists group PIO (Piano Inside Out) with Reinhold Friedl and Michael Iber.

Claudia Esslinger (video) Ohio has taught at Kenyon since 1984, first as a printmaker and then transitioning into video art, digital imaging, new media and installation. Originally from Long Island, N.Y., Esslinger taught for two years at Denison University before coming to Kenyon. She holds an MFA from the University of Minnesota (1981) and BA from Bethel College, St. Paul (1976).

As a visual artist she brings to her film and video work an interest in visceral, sculptural props and experimental forms. Her recent digital film Breathing Lessons and her collaborations with composers have been seen internationally. Dance collaborations have included interactive software and video projection.

She is the recipient of six Ohio Arts Council Individual Artist Fellowships and a New Forms Regional Grant (NEA). Recent artist residencies include the Headlands Center for the Arts in Sausalito, CA (2007) and at the Grafikwerkstaadt in Dresden, Germany (1999).

Claudia received a Professional Development Grant from the Ohio Arts Council for travel to South Korea as part of the Crosssound 2002 "S.E. Singing Pictures" collaboration with Yunkyung Lee.

Shiaw Wen Chuang (b. 1965, Taiwan)

Born in Miaoli, Taiwan 1965, Shiaw Wen Chuang started studying music in his youth: piano, violin and qin, an 7-stringed traditional Chinese zither. He received a BFA in music theory and composition from Taipei National University of Arts in 1992, an MFA in Music Theory from National Chiaotung University in 1995, and than worked simultaneously as a director at Philharmonic Radio Taipei and as a music critic.

In 1997 he started as a lecturer in music theory and composition at National Taiwan Ocean University, and the following year, at National Taiwan University of the Arts. In 2005, he was invited to be a lecturer in the Department of Chinese Music, Tainan National University of the Arts.

Chuang is currently a lecturer in the Department of Music, National Sun Yat Sen University, and a Ph.D Candidate in Musicology, Taipei National University of the Arts. His topic is contemporary Taiwanese music compositions in the context of globalization, modernism/postmodernism, and diaspora.

Solo | Sound | Series Composers

Astor Piazzola (1921-1992)

Astor Piazzolla was born in Mar del Plata, Argentina in 1921 to Italian parents. Piazzolla spent most of his childhood with his family in New York City, where he was exposed to both jazz and the music of J.S. Bach at an early age. While there, he acquired fluency in four languages: Spanish, English, French, and Italian. He began to play the bandoneon after his father, nostalgic for his homeland, spotted one in a New York pawn shop.

Piazzolla returned to Argentina in 1937 and played in night clubs with a series of groups. The pianist Arthur Rubinstein—then living in Buenos Aires—advised him to study with the Argentine composer Alberto Ginastera. Delving into scores of Stravinsky, Bartók, Ravel, and others, he rose early each morning to hear the Teatro Colón orchestra rehearse while continuing a gruelling performing schedule in the tango clubs at night.

At Ginastera's urging, in 1953 Piazzolla entered his Buenos Aires Symphony in a composition contest, and won a grant from the French government to study in Paris with the legendary French composition teacher Nadia Boulanger. The insightful Boulanger turned his life around in a day, as Piazzolla related in his own words:[1]

When I met her, I showed her my kilos of symphonies and sonatas. She started to read them and suddenly came out with a horrible sentence: "It's very well written." And stopped, with a big period, round like a soccer ball. After a long while, she said: "Here you are like Stravinsky, like Bartók, like Ravel, but you know what happens? I can't find Piazzolla in this." ... She kept asking: "You say that you are not pianist. What instrument do you play, then?" And I didn't want to tell her that I was a bandoneon player, because I thought, "Then she will throw me from the fourth floor." Finally, I confessed and she asked me to play some bars of a tango of my own. She suddenly opened her eyes, took my hand and told me: "You idiot, that's Piazzolla!" And I took all the music I composed, ten years of my life, and sent it to hell in two seconds. —Astor Piazzolla, A Memoir

Piazzolla returned from New York to Argentina in 1955, formed the Octeto Buenos Aires to play tangos, and never looked back.

Upon introducing his new approach to the tango (nuevo tango), he became a controversial figure among Argentines both musically and politically. The Argentine saying "in Argentina everything may change — except the tango" suggests some of the resistance he found in his native land. However, his reworking of the tango was embraced by some liberal segments of Argentine society, who were pushing for political changes in parallel to his musical revolution.

During the period of Argentine military dictatorship from 1976 to 1983, Piazzolla lived in Italy, but returned many times to Argentina, recorded there.
In 1990 he suffered thrombosis in Paris, and died two years later in Buenos Aires. —Excerpted from Wikipedia

George Crumb (b. 1929, PA)

George Henry Crumb was born in Charleston, West Virginia on 24 October 1929. He studied music first at the Mason College of Music in Charleston where he received his Bachelor's degree in 1950. He obtained his Master's degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and then briefly studied in Berlin before returning to the United States to study at the University of Michigan, from which he received his D.M.A. in 1959.

Although his scores and recordings sell steadily, Crumb has earned his living primarily from teaching. His first teaching job was at a college in Virginia, before he became professor of piano and composition at the University of Colorado in 1958. In 1965 he began a long association with the University of Pennsylvania, becoming Annenberg Professor of the Humanities in 1983.

Crumb retired from teaching in 1997, though in early 2002 was appointed with David Burge to a joint residency at Arizona State University. He has continued to compose.

George Crumb's reputation as a composer of hauntingly beautiful scores has made him one of the most frequently performed composers in today's musical world. From Los Angeles to Moscow, and from Scandinavia to South America, festivals devoted to the music of George Crumb have sprung up like wildflowers. Crumb, the winner of a 2001 Grammy Award and the 1968 Pulitzer Prize in Music, continues to compose new scores that enrich the musical lives of those who come in contact with his profoundly humanistic art.

Terry Riley (b. 1935, CA)

California Composer Terry Riley launched what is now known as the Minimalist movement with his revolutionary classic IN C in 1964. This seminal work provided a new concept in musical form based on interlocking repetitive patterns. It's impact was to change the course of 20th Century music and it's influence has been heard in the works of prominent composers such as Steve Reich, Philip Glass and John Adams and in the music of Rock Groups such as The Who, The Soft Machine, Tangerine Dream, Curved Air and many others. Terry's hypnotic, multi-layered, polymetric, brightly orchestrated eastern flavored improvisations and compositions set the stage for the prevailing interest in a New Tonality.

In 1970, Terry became a disciple of the revered North Indian Raga Vocalist, Pandit Pran Nath and made the first of his numerous trips to India to study with the Master. He appeared frequently in concert with the legendary singer as tampura, tabla and vocal accompanist over the next 26 years until Pran Naths passing in 1996.

While teaching at Mills College in Oakland in the 1970's he met David Harrington, founder and leader of the Kronos Quartet that began the long association that has so far produced 13 string quartets, a quintet, Crows Rosary and a concerto for string quartet, The Sands which was the Salzburg Festival's first ever new music commission and the 2003 SUN RINGS, the multi media piece for choir, visuals and Space sounds, commissioned by NASA. Most recently he has completed THE CUSP OF MAGIC, for string quartet and pipa. Cadenza on the Night Plain was selected by both Time and Newsweek as one of the 10 best Classical albums of the year. The epic 5 quartet cycle, Salome Dances for Peace was selected as the #1 Classical album of the year by USA Today and was nominated for a Grammy.

Riley's innovative first orchestral piece Jade Palace was commissioned by Carnegie Hall for the Centennial celebration 1990/91. It was premiered there by Leonard Slatkin and the Saint Louis Symphony. June Buddha's, for Chorus and Orchestra, based on Jack Kerouac's Mexico City Blues was commissioned by the Koussevitsky foundation in 1991. The Rova Saxophone Quartet, the Arte saxophone quartet, Array Music, Zeitgeist, the Steven Scott Bowed Piano Ensemble, The California E.A.R. unit, Guitarist's David Tanenbaum, the Assad brothers. Cello Conjunto, the Abel Steinberg-Winant Trio, Pianist Werner Bartschi and the Amati Quartet are some of the performers and ensembles who have commissioned and performed his works.

WANG Changyuan (b. 1945, NYC)

One of the most important zheng players of China today, Wang Changyuan is currently the director of the Overseas Chinese Instrumentalists' Orchestra and the Wang Changyuan Zheng Art Center in New York City.  She was born into a musical family in Hangzhou.  At the age of nine she began studying guzheng with her father, the famous scholar and musician Wang Xunzhi, and already at the age of twelve began her solo career with the concert entitled Spring in Shanghai.  From 1960 on she began to appear as a child-prodigy in front of such well-known Chinese government officials as Li Xiannian, Jiao Ziyang, Zhou Enlai, etc. . . , as well as such foreign leaders as President Nixon, Henry Kissinger, Alexander Haig, George Bush, etc. . . .  She graduated Summa cum laude from Shanghai Conservatory of Music, and subsequently appeared as a soloist with  the Performing Arts Troupe of China, the Shanghai Opera House Orchestra, the Shanghai Ballet Theater Orchestra, etc. . . .  Her style of performance is characterized by her endeavor to develop new techniques by drawing lessons from the old and absorbing experiences from different schools.  Her imaginative fingering and orchestration of the Yuan Dynasty pipa piece Vulture Snatches Crane, which she turned into a concerto piece in which two zhengs with different tunings were played at once for the first time, cemented her fame as one of the greatest musicians in China.  Wang Changyuan is also known as a composer and has written more than twenty pieces for guzheng.  Her solo piece Fighting the Typhoon gained her international recognition when it was orchestrated and included in a film score.  Her best-known compositions include her musical interpretation of the poem Pipa-xing, The Moon on High, and the zheng piece New Song of Dong Ting Lake, as well as her realizations of two famous guqin pieces Lofty Mountains, Flowing Water, and Guangling San.  In 1984 Wang Changyuan came to the United States to study World Music.  Since then she has toured the United States giving lectures and concerts including her 1988 performance at Carnegie Hall.

John Luther Adams (b. 1953, Alaska)

Did Alaska create John Luther Adams' music or did the music create his Alaska?

In his 16' x 24' cabin-studio outside Fairbanks, where Adams has worked for over two decades, the vastness of Alaska has swept through the distant reaches of his imagination and every corner of his compositions.

In turn, the NEA and Rockefeller Foundation grantee - whose music Village Voice critic and composer Kyle Gann describes as "beautiful, shimmering, vast, luminous, ecstatic" - has used any means necessary to communicate the power of the elemental forces he experiences daily.

Adams' methods have included percussion ensembles, Alaska Native voices, orchestral residencies, sound and light installations, and elegant prose writing collected in his book Winter Music. His music has been performed by Bang on a Can, the California E.A.R. Unit, and Percussion Group Cincinnati, among others.

Where Strange and Sacred Noise calls from chaos, other compositions evoke stillness and imperceptible movement. The Light That Fills the World is uncompromisingly gorgeous, rolling beds of tone crystallizing into atmosphere.

The site-specific The Place Where We Go To Listen creates music from data streams measuring the rhythms of night and day, the phases and positions of the moon, the changing sky conditions, seismic readings, and disturbances in the Earth's magnetic field.

In describing it as "an imaginary world that is connected directly to the real world, the larger world," Adams could be describing all of his work. Inside, one will discover that - just as much as Alaska - John Luther Adams' music is a real place, his evocations as unique as the Arctic sun.

Did Alaska create the music, or does the music create Alaska? Not even John Luther Adams knows for sure.

— Jesse Jarnow
More information at:

Composer in residence
Owen Underhill* (b. 1954, B.C., Canada)

Owen Underhill lives in Vancouver, B.C., where he is active as a composer, conductor, and teacher. As a composer, Underhill has amassed a substantial catalogue of more than sixty works, including an opera, large-scale works for dance, several works for orchestra, choral music, and a large body of chamber music for diverse groups. His most recent compositions include World of Light (2007) for tenor and symphony orchestra, Sakalaka (commissioned and premiered at the 2007 CrossSound Festival), and A Middle English Songbook (2006) for choir and ensemble. His Canzone di Petra (2004), a piece for flute and harp, won the 2007 Western Canadian Music Outstanding Composition Award. As a conductor, Underhill has appeared with the Turning Point Ensemble, CBC Radio Orchestra, Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, the Victoria Symphony, the Vancouver Symphony, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, and the Vancouver New Music Ensemble. He is Artistic Co-Director of the Turning Point Ensemble, a large chamber ensemble of outstanding Vancouver musicians dedicated to the celebration of twentieth century music and new music. Underhill is Vice-President of the Canadian Music Centre, and serves on the faculty of the School for the Contemporary Arts at Simon Fraser University.
More information at:

CHANG Li-Chiung (Taiwan)

Chang Li-Chiung received her Bachelor's Degree in the Department of Chinese Music at Chinese Culture University in 1989, and a Master's Degree in Ethnomusicology at UCLA in 1991. She started her music career as a kongho (Chinese harp) performer in the National Chinese Orchestra in Taiwan in 1991. From 2006 to 2009, Chang took over the Department Chair of the Chinese Music Department at National Taiwan University of Arts. Currently she serves as a Professor at National Taiwan University of Arts and is a member of the Chinese Musical Instrument Association. Prizes include the First Prize “Golden Instrument Award” hosted by the Chinese Orchestra Organization in 1985 and 1989. She also received a Category A Research Award from the National Science Council in 2000. She devotes herself in diverse aspects of zheng music including composition, performance, education and academic research. The composition we will hear at CrossSound, Jasmine in June Capriccio, adds contemporary features to Taiwanese folk songs contemporary features. Chang's published academic work includes a number of articles on various aspects of zheng and qin music from Taiwan and China.