BUFFALO, N.Y. – The University at Buffalo will celebrate
the 60th birthday of David Felder, PhD, SUNY Distinguished
Professor and Birge-Cary Chair in Music Composition, with gala
birthday concert of his music on Nov. 8.
The concert, to be held from 8-10 p.m. in the Peter and
Elizabeth C. Tower Auditorium of the Burchfield Penney Art Center,
1300 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo, will be presented by UB’s Robert
and Carol Morris Center for 21st Century Music and “A Musical
Feast,” the resident musical ensemble at the Burchfield
Penney Art Center.
The concert will feature eight Felder compositions written
between 1986 and 2013 and performed by soloists and ensembles of
the highest rank, including faculty members of the UB Department of
Tickets are $10 for Burchfield Penney members
and students and $20 for non-members. Tickets are available online
Call 716-878-6011 during gallery
hours for further information.
The program will open with the world premiere of a new version
of Felder’s “Boxman” (1986, 2013), performed by
French hornist Adam Unswurth, associate professor of horn and chair
of winds and percussion at the University of Michigan School of
Music, Theatre and Dance, who has held horn seats with a number of
important American orchestras. The piece
originally was written for amplified solo trombone with
Virtuosic violinist Yuki Numata Resnick, assistant professor of
music at UB, will perform Felder’s 1987 composition
“Another Face” for solo violin.
It will be followed by the world premiere of
“TweenerB” (1991, 2013), a follow-up to the popular
Felder work first presented in 1991. Here it will feature
well-known percussionist Tom Kolor, highly in demand as a chamber
musician and a member of the UB percussion faculty.
“November Sky” (1992), a Felder composition for
flutist doubling piccolo, alto and bass flutes, and electronic
sounds will follow. The performance will feature flutist Emi
Ferguson, hailed by critics for her “tonal
bloom” and “hauntingly beautiful
performances.” She has performed with major composers,
conductors and performers, including the American Classical
Orchestra, and at Ground Zero for the 10th anniversary memorial of
9/11 with YoYo Ma, Paul Simon and James Taylor.
These four solo works comprise “Crossfire,” a series
designed for performance as a single set. This will be the
first time the four works have been presented as a set in
Ferguson will join Resnick, Kolor, bass vocalist Ethan
Herschenfeld, clarinetist Jean Kopperud, violist Virginia Barron,
cellist Lauren Radnofsky and conductor Dan Bassin for a preview
performance of “Two Songs from Three Watches” (2013):
“Insomnia,” from a poem by Dana Gioia, and
“Buffalo Evening,” a setting of the poem of the same
name by Robert Creeley, who was a member of the UB faculty from
1966 to 2003 and served as David Gray Professor of Poetry and
Letters and Samuel P. Capen Professor of Poetry and Humanities at
The concert will close with a haunting work, the beautiful,
intricately meditative “Shamayim” (the Hebrew word for
heaven) written between 2006 and 2008, with music by Felder and
images by Elliot Caplan.
David Felder, long recognized as a leader in his generation of
American composers, has seen his work celebrated and performed
throughout the world. It has been broadly characterized by its
highly energetic profile, its frequent employment of technological
extension, elaboration of musical materials and lyrical qualities.
Felder has served as major professor for nearly 70 PhD composers
since his arrival in Buffalo in 1985.
He is the director of the Center for 21st Century Music at UB
and has directed the June in Buffalo festival and conference for
eminent and emerging composers of new music since 1986, and also
serves as the artistic director of the Slee Sinfonietta Chamber