Announcing the Composers for the 2015-16 EtM Con Edison Composers’ Residency

David Johnston

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We are thrilled to announce the recipients of the 2015-16 EtM Con Edison Composers’ Residency! This was our most competitive round ever, with 94 applicants, more than twice the number we have received in the past.  This year’s panel picked an eclectic and exciting group of New York-based composers, covering a wide and diverse range of styles.

Each composer will be awarded a six-month residency in one of our host facilities in addition to a $2,500 stipend. The list of the winning composers is below.

2015 marks the seventh year of the Residency Program and it is a pivotal one. With this cycle we have extended the residency period from three months to six and doubled the stipend as well. We hope this leads to greater community engagement. It will also enable the composers to more fully immerse themselves in their process.

Watch our Home Page and Blog for news about these composers, their progress in the residency, and their upcoming public programs in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens.

Thanks to all who applied this year.


Skip La Plante (Flushing Town Hall) 

Skip La Plante invents, builds, composes for, performs on and teaches with musical instruments built from trash and found objects. With his extensive and unique collection of all-acoustic musical tools he has explored a variety of ways to organize music, particularly using microtonal tunings and integrating elements of numerous world music traditions, most particularly with Music For Homemade Instruments (1975-2005), a composers’ collective he co-founded.  Current projects include Gamelan Son of Lion, Bash The Trash, Wendy Osserman Dance Company and The American Festival of Microtonal Music.  Past projects include composing over 100 scores for modern dance and theater with extensive collaborations with the Mel Wong Dance Company, Bali-Java Dance Theater/Arts Indonesia, and several productions with theater visionary Joseph Chaikin.  He lived in Java in 1989-90 studying music performance and instrument construction.  His favorite food is wild raspberries.


Jeffrey Dennis Smith (Turtle Bay Music School) 

Jeffrey Dennis Smith is a composer, percussionist and conductor focusing primarily on music for the stage. He’s been a Resident Artist with American Lyric Theater since 2011, and he participated in the 2015 Composer-Librettist Studio at New Dramatists/Nautilus Music-Theater. His music has been heard at Le Poisson Rouge, Ars Nova, DanceNOW [NYC] Festival, Joyce Soho, Dance Theatre Workshop, INTERFILM Festival Berlin, New York International Fringe Festival, Williamsburg International Film Festival, Percussive Arts Society International Convention and other venues throughout the world. He holds degrees from Tisch School of the Arts, Northwestern University and the University of Northern Iowa.


Leaha Maria Villarreal (Bloomingdale School of Music) 

Leaha Maria Villarreal has worked with organizations such as Wild Rumpus, JACK Quartet, Experiments in Opera, W4, Ear Heart Music, Boston New Music Initiative, BODYART, The Box is Empty, and PUBLIQuartet. Villarreal holds a B.A. from the University of California, San Diego where she worked with Pulitzer Prize winner Roger Reynolds, and studied at New York University with Pulitzer Prize winner Julia Wolfe and Michael Gordon.  She is a co-founder and artistic director of contemporary music ensemble Hotel Elefant and a Teaching Artist Associate for the New York Philharmonic’s Very Young Composers Bridge Program.


Anthony Vine (The Filomen M. D’Agostino Greenberg Music School at Lighthouse Guild) 

Anthony Vine is a composer, guitarist, and executive director of the Columbus // NYC New Music Exchange [CNX]. He lives in Brooklyn, NY. Recent and upcoming collaborations include performances by the Minnesota Orchestra, Ensemble SurPlus, Pascal Gallois, Bearthoven, and the Illinois Modern Ensemble. His music has been programmed at the Akademie Schloss Solitude, Internationales Musikinstitut Darmstadt, Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute, Composit New Music Festival, and the World Saxophone Congress. Vine studied composition with Huck Hodge at the University of Washington (MM), and with Thomas Wells at The Ohio State University (BM).


Conrad Winslow (Brooklyn Youth Chorus) 

Conrad Winslow’s buoyant, hard-edged, and deeply architectural music,“remains tautly controlled and coherent, but bursts with variety both harmonic and gestural” (Music in American Life: An Encyclopedia…). Raised in Homer, Alaska, Conrad began making things from scratch by watching his parents chop down trees and build a log cabin home in the woods. His instrumental music has been commissioned by Carnegie Hall, the American Composers Orchestra, Alarm Will Sound, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, the New York Youth Symphony, New York City Ballet’s Choreographic Institute, the New Juilliard Ensemble, The International Double Reed Society, and Gaudete Brass, among many others.


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