June in Buffalo 2016 to bring important new faces to pioneering music festival

David Felder.

2016 marks the 31st year that David Felder has served as artistic director of June in Buffalo.

First-time performers add depth to four decades of tradition and musical expression

Release Date: May 25, 2016

“I feel our university continues to make an important contribution to the international new music scene through this festival. ”
David Felder, SUNY Distinguished Professor and Birge-Cary Professor of Music
University at Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y. – New performers fill the schedule of this year’s June in Buffalo, the region’s internationally celebrated new music festival to be held on the University at Buffalo’s North Campus from June 6-12.

SUNY Distinguished Professor David Felder, Birge-Cary Professor of Music, who is recognized as one of the most prominent composers of his generation, enters his 31st year as the festival’s artistic director, welcoming many first-time June in Buffalo composers and performers, as well as nearly 30 emerging composers chosen by a rigorous international selection process from the world of contemporary classical music.

“Their unique perspectives and creations are a small, personal window into the vast landscape of contemporary musical expression,” he says. “In this way, over time, a diverse group of invitees provides a wide landscape portrait of the field of artistic activity.”

June in Buffalo 2015 was a dual milestone, marking 40 years since its founder, composer and UB faculty member Morton Feldman, began the festival that helped establish the university as a creative center for classical music. The 2015 festival was also the 30th under Felder’s creative leadership.

“Last year was about inviting people who have contributed significantly to the development of the festival,” says Felder. “But this year we’re bringing in new people and these different musical personalities will make for a very different festival.”

This year’s June in Buffalo will focus on presenting several generations of composers on the forefront of contemporary music composition. Felder says each year, June in Buffalo reflects the musical personalities of the invited composers and musicians.

“We have groups coming from all over the world and from here at home,” says Felder. “Artistic excellence is June in Buffalo’s motivating factor and each festival has always presented and contrasted widely diverging yet superbly talented artists.”

This year’s June in Buffalo festival includes:

  • The Chicago-based Ensemble Dal Niente, the first ensemble to win the prestigious Kranichstein Music Prize at the 2012 International Summer Courses for New Music in Darmstadt, Germany.  Ensemble Dal Niente is a parameter-expanding collective with flexible instrumentation, engaging listeners in large ensemble, chamber music and solo performances from a range of avant-garde composers.
  • Helsinki, Finland’s Ensemble Uusinta, a versatile contemporary music ensemble that since 1998 has premiered more than 100 new works. Ensemble Uusinta is dedicated to bringing the work of the most exciting composers to their international audiences.
  • The Arditti Quartet, a venerable performance group that celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2014. The evolving membership of the Arditti Quartet has done more than any other group to enrich and expand the string quartet repertoire. Felder calls them “the best contemporary music string quartet in the world.”

A complete June in Buffalo concert schedule is available online.

The pioneering and now much imitated format combines conference and performance, bringing together senior and emerging composers, composition faculty, performance ensembles and individual artists for a weeklong program that is part concert, part conference.

“The senior composers have achieved an international reputation and have done innovative work, but they’re also committed to engaging and mentoring younger composers,” says Felder.

June in Buffalo is also an exchange of ideas and influences, he says. The music on stage is complemented by master classes and professional development opportunities for the emerging generation.

“For audiences, the best new music groups present evening concerts, but the emerging composers also learn from our senior composers and our renowned faculty,” says Felder. “I feel our university continues to make an important contribution to the international new music scene through this festival.

“I’m always very excited about bringing together these groups for June in Buffalo.”

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