Southeastern music composer's piece reviewed by New York Times
Contact: Tonya Lowentritt
HAMMOND – Southeastern Music and Dramatic Arts Assistant Professor Jeremy Sagala recently received praise via “The New York Times” for a composition presented in a New York City concert.
“Tenebrae” received its premiere performance at Merkin Hall, one of the city’s most coveted performance venues. The piece was performed by members of the New York New Music Ensemble, one of the country’s most well-known groups of its kind.
The concert was reviewed by The Times’ principal reviewer, Allan Kozinn, who made special mention of Sagala’s work.
“Jeremy Sagala freighted his ‘Tenebrae’ with a program note that described … how he used FM synthesis to produce some of his harmonies and spectral analysis of various bell tones and instrumental notes to suggest particular timbres,” Kozinn wrote.
“Mr. Sagala’s language is rugged but not harsh, and the timbres and gestures he used here – bent pitches, quarter tones, juxtapositions of introspection and explosiveness – yielded an undeniably dramatic sound world,” the review continued.
Sagala, who resides in the town of Livingston, attended the concert with two of his graduate composition students. “It is a wonderful experience to hear a group like the New York New Music Ensemble breathe life into the complexities of a work like this. Working with them is truly a pleasure, he said.”
“The ‘New York Times’ reviewer put his finger on the salient aspect of Dr. Sagala’s music that we have all noticed – no matter how avant-garde his musical language, the expressive gesture is immediately apparent to audiences,” said David Evenson, head of the Department of Music and Dramatic Arts. “His composition thus has broad appeal.”