Ziporyn, Evan (Averill)

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Ziporyn, Evan (Averill)

Ziporyn, Evan (Averill), American composer, clarinetist /bass clarinetist, and conductor; b. Chicago, Dec. 14, 1959. His father is a forensic psychiatrist who has concertized as a violinist and his mother is an attorney. Evan studied violin, piano, and clarinet in his early childhood, and by the age of 15 was proficient on all single-reed instruments. He began composing at the age of 14 under the tutelage of Betty Jacobsen and Don Owens. After attending the Eastman School of Music (1977-78), he studied at Yale Univ. (B.A. in music, 1981) and the Univ. of Calif, at Berkeley (M.A. in composition, 1986; Ph.D. in composition, 1990), where his principal mentors were Martin Bresnick, Andrew Imbrie, Michael Senturia, and John Blacking. Upon completion of a Fulbright fellowship in Indonesia, he became musical coordinator of San Francisco’s Gamelan Sekar Jaya in 1988. In 1990 he joined the faculty at the Mass. Inst. of Technology as an asst. prof., becoming a full prof, in 1999. In 1993 he founded in Boston the Gamelan Galak Tika. Ziporyn’s work is greatly influenced by his 20-year involvement with Balinese Gamelan. His innovative compositions frequently commingle Western and Gamelan instruments, such as in his collaboration with the noted Balinese composer I Nyoman Windha on Kekembagan (1990), a border-crossing work for Balinese Gamelan and Saxophone Quartet. Ziporyn is also a notable clarinetist/bass clarinetist who has enjoyed a long association with N.Y.’s Bang On A Can since its founding in 1987; he is currently a member of its select Bang On A Can All-Stars and also regularly performs and records as a featured soloist with Steve Reich and Musicians. His distinctive set of extended performance techniques are put to fine use in his own compositions as well as in new works by Bresnick, Michael Gordon, and David Lang. As a conductor, he has toured Europe with Germany’s Ensemble Modern and also recorded Gordon’s Weather with Ensemble Resonanz. He has received grants and awards from ASCAP (1990-92; 1993), the Rockefeller Foundation (1991-92; 1995-96; 1997-98), the New England Foundation for the Arts (1992), NEA/Arts International (1993), and Meet the Composer (1994, 2000).


orch: Pleasureville, Pain City (1985); Filling Station (1986); Houtman’s Men in Buleleng for 17-piece Wind Ensemble (1994); Kebyar Maya for Cello and Orch. of Cellos (1995); Tsmindao Ghmerto for Bass Clarinet and Wind Ensemble (1998). GAMELAN: Night Bus for Sundanese Gamelan (1990); Kekembangan for Balinese Gamelan and Saxophone Quartet (1990; in collaboration with I Nyoman Windha); Tire Fire for Guitar Quartet and Balinese Gamelan (1993); Amok! for Balinese Gamelan, Processed Double Bass, and Sampler (1996). Chamber Ensemble: Luv Time for Chamber Ensemble (1984); Twine for Chamber Ensemble (1985); Tree Frog for Chamber Ensemble (1990); Dog Dream for Chamber Ensemble (1990); Bossa Nova for Brass Quintet (1991); Aneh Tapi Nyata for Chamber Ensemble and Balinese Percussion (1992); Eel Bone for String Quartet (1996); Dreams of a Dominant Culture for Flute, Clarinet, Percussion, Electric Piano, Violin, and Cello (1997); Serenity Now for Wind Nonet (1998); Melody Competition for Percussion Sextet (1999). SOLO INSTRUMENTS: C l a r i n e t : 33 Vortices for 5 Clarinets (1980); Waiting By The Phone for Clarinet (1986); What She Saw There for Bass Clarinet or Cello and 2 Marimbas (1988); Walk the Dog for Bass Clarinet and Tape (1991); Tsmindao Ghmerto for Bass Clarinet (1992); Partial Truths for Bass Clarinet (1997); Four Impersonations for Clarinet (1999). OTHER: China Spring for Oboe and Piano (1991); The Motions for Viola with Optional Chamber Accompaniment (1991); Studies in Normative Behaviour, Vol. I for Percussionist (1991); Current Rate for Pipa Duo (1998). P i -ano: Weltscenen (1981); The Water’s Fine (1983); Some Coal (1985); Fractal Head (1987).

—/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire