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Society for New Music Presents Perspectives on Sounds from East and West

Zhou Tian’s commissioned work, “Morning after the Deluge,” will be premiered

Oct 31, 2014 | Article by: Renée K. Gadoua

Photo of Zhou Tian

Zhou Tian


The Society for New Music presents “Sound Perspectives East and West” at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 2, at Syracuse University’s Hendricks Chapel. The program features a variety of sounds, from different places in the chapel that will allow audience members to consider their own perspectives on sound and silence. The concert offers another perspective by comparing composers early in their career with internationally renowned composers

The event is part of Syracuse University’s Syracuse Symposium 2014™ on the theme of “Perspective.” Admission is $15 per person; $12 for seniors and students; and $30 per family. Admission is free for SU students and faculty with valid ID. Tickets are available at the door. A reception in the Noble Room follows the concert.

“This is certain to be an enjoyable and educational event,” says Gerry Greenberg, senior associate dean in the College of Arts and Sciences and interim director of the Syracuse University Humanities Center.  “The experience is perfect for our Symposium’s topic this year.” 

During the program, Dr. Zhou Tian’s “Morning after the Deluge,” commissioned by the Society for New Music, will be premiered. Zhou’s 13-minute piece for clarinet, piano, and string quartet will be played again later in the program, accompanied by responsive artwork by Lorne Covington and Douglas Quin projected on the chapel’s walls.  

Zhou, a Colgate University music professor, was born in 1981. “I came of age in a new China marked by economic reforms and was in the U.S. by my 20th birthday,” he says. “This sextet will be a true musical reflection of who I am and today’s globalization.

Photo of Zhou Long

Zhou Long

The program will also feature music by Zhou Long, a Chinese-American composer who won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for his opera “Madame White Snake”; the American composer Daniel Asia; the Chinese composer Guo Wenjing, who has been honored as one of the Top 100 Living Artists of China; and the American composer Rob Deemer. Deemer’s “Cantos,” commissioned in 2012 by the Society of New Music, will be performed with video by Syracuse filmmaker Courtney Rile, Class of 2004.

“Because of increasing globalization and the many Chinese living in America, we thought it would be interesting to present Chinese composers and American composers,” says Neva Pilgrim, program advisor for the Society for New Music. “We have composers who are very distinguished and well-known, and composers who are younger and at the start of their careers.”

Daniel AsiaDaniel Asia
The theme “Perspective” works on several levels, she adds. “The composers are presenting a perspective in that they are combining the music of their heritage and mixing it with Western music. The audience comes with their perspective. We’ve tried to juxtapose the music in such a way that they’ll hear one kind of sound and then another kind of sound and that will be part of their perspective also.”

The Society for New Music is in its 43rd year. It is the only year-round new music organization in New York outside Manhattan.

Syracuse Symposium™ is organized and presented by the Syracuse University Humanities Center for Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences and the entire Syracuse community. Co-sponsors are the Departments of Art & Music Histories and Religion and the Jewish Studies Program in the College of Arts and Sciences; the Composer’s Seminar in the Department of Music Composition and the Theory and History Department in the Setnor School of Music in the College of Visual and Performing Arts. For more information, call the SU Humanities Center at 315-443-5708 or visit http://syracusehumanities.org.


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Contact Information

Rob Enslin
315-443-3403
rmenslin@syr.edu