Event: “New Directions in Jewish Music”

New York Noise: Radical Jewish Music and the Downtown Scene by Tamar Barzel

A lecture by Dr. Tamar Barzel, Visiting Curator, Fales Library-Downtown Collection, New York University.

Live Performance by Grammy-nominated composer and pianist Uri Caine
Thursday, May 19, 2016 at 7pm.
Center for Jewish History
15 West 16th Street
New York, NY 10003

Admission is free. Please RSVP to [email protected]

Building on her research for New York Noise: Radical Jewish Music and the Downtown Scene (Indiana University Press, 2015), Dr. Barzel will address the most experimental currents in 20th/21st century Jewish art music in the United States. Even as this work stands outside the known history of Jewish music, it treats the central themes of Jewish expressive culture: memory and forgetting, individual and community, voice and language. Grammy award-nominated composer and pianist Uri Caine will give a live performance as well as discuss his recent work. A Q&A session featuring both participants will conclude the event.

Tamar Barzel (Visiting Curator, Fales Library-Downtown Collection, New York University) is an ethnomusicologist whose research focuses on 20th-century musical avant-gardes and undergrounds, particularly jazz, rock, and composition/improvisation. Her book, New York Noise: Radical Jewish Music and the Downtown Scene, delves into questions of musical meaning, heritage, and memory in the strange and compelling Jewish music that emerged from Manhattan’s downtown music scene in the 1990s. She has presented papers at many professional meetings, including the Society for Ethnomusicology, Society for American Music, and American Jewish Historical Society, and her articles appear in the Journal of the Society for American Music, Jazz/Not Jazz: The Music and Its Boundaries, and People Get Ready! The Future of Jazz is Now. She is currently conducting research for a new book project, Underground Collisions: Avant-Garde Jazz and Theater in Mexico City, 1970-1983, which investigates the intersections between radical theater and free improvisation in Mexico City in the 1960s and 1970s.

Uri Caine was born in Philadelphia and began studying piano with Bernard Peiffer and composition with George Rochberg. He attended the University of Pennsylvania and studied music composition with George Rochberg and George Crumb. He played in bands led by Philly Joe Jones, Hank Mobley,Johnny Coles, Mickey Roker, Odean Pope, Jymmie Merritt, Bootsie Barnes and Grover Washington. From 2006-2009, Caine was composer in residence for the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and premiered his Concerto for Two Pianos and Chamber Orchestra with Jeffrey Kahane in May 2006. In 2009, he was nominated for a Grammy Award for The Othello Syndrome. During the past several years, Caine has worked in groups led by Don Byron, Dave Douglas, John Zorn, Terry Gibbs and Buddy DeFranco, Clark Terry, Rashid Ali, Arto Lindsay, Sam Rivers and Barry Altschul, the Woody Herman Band, Annie Ross, the Enja Band, Global Theory and the Master Musicians of Jajouka. Caine has recorded 25 cds as a leader. His most recent cd is a solo cd, Callithump (Winter 2014)

Caine has received grants from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Pew Foundation. In December 2010, he was awarded a grant by the USA Artist Fellowships. Recent compositions include The Passion of Octavius Catto, written for the Philadelphia Orchestra and gospel choir and soloists and Sunburst, a piano concerto composed for the Naples Symphony Orchestra (both premiered in 2014). New projects in 2015 include a new piece for piano and orchestra for the American Composers Orchestra and new pieces for the Prism Saxophone Quartet and the Swedish Chamber Orchestra. Caine lives in New York City with his wife, Jan.

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