September 19, 2011

The Annapolis Symphony Orchestra is delighted to announce that Gabriela Frank, the well-known, young American composer of contemporary classical music, is joining the organization as composer-in-residence for the next two seasons.

The Latin Grammy award-winning composer comes courtesy of a $65,000 grant from Music Alive, the partnership program of the League of American Orchestras and Meet the Composer.

The ASO is just one of five orchestras nationwide selected to receive a Music Alive composer-in- residence grant.

Says Ms. Frank, “This collaboration with Maestro Novo and the ASO family is very dear to me. It is an honor to be part of this wonderful organization's 50th anniversary celebration: what an auspicious milestone! I hope that my new Concerto for Orchestra commissioned for the occasion is a worthy testament to the Symphony's venerated past and its exciting future.

“I am thrilled that my relationship with the Symphony goes beyond ‘simply’ composing beautiful music. It also draws on the composer as arts citizen. Equally important to my commission is that I will be getting to know the Annapolis community.

“The value of working in local schools and developing projects that place composition and creativity directly into the hands of young minds can't be overstated.  I appreciate the trust that the Annapolis Symphony has in me to help me develop a love of the arts in future generations.”

During her time in Annapolis, Ms. Frank will be working with 5th and 9th grade Key School students, music students in county public schools as well as composition students at the university level. She will also work on her commission, get to know the ASO musicians, and attend rehearsals.

Personal identity is at the center of Gabriela Frank’s music. Born in Berkeley, California to a mother of mixed Peruvian/Chinese ancestry and a father of Lithuanian/Jewish descent, Frank explores her multi-cultural heritage through her compositions.

Inspired by the works of Bela Bartók and Alberto Ginastera, Frank is a musical anthropologist. Her travels throughout South America are reflected in her work which incorporate poetry, mythology, and native musical styles. She is known for writing challenging parts for soloists and orchestras.

Ms. Frank is a 2009 recipient of a prestigious John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship to assist in research and artistic creation. A graduate of Rice University, she received a doctorate from the University of Michigan in 2001. Her music has been commissioned and performed by many of the country’s top orchestras.

Her upcoming premieres include a new work for the King’s Singers; works for guitarist Sharon Isbin, the Silk Road Ensemble with Yo-Yo Ma, the Chiara Quartet, and the San Francisco Chamber Orchestra. She is developing a number of projects with the Pulitzer Prize winning Cuban playwright Nilo Cruz. The ASO performed her Three Latin-American Dances as part of their Hispanic Heritage concert last year.  Ms. Frank currently resides in San Francisco.

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