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Triumphs and Tribulations

Triumphs and Tribulations

Big Commissions, Big Risks, Big Rewards (1995–2001)

Chapter:
(p.100) 6 Triumphs and Tribulations
Source:
Aaron Jay Kernis
Author(s):
Leta E. Miller
Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252038532.003.0006

This chapter focuses on Kernis's music in the years 1995–2001. In 1995, the American Academy of Arts and Letters honored Kernis with a $7,500 prize to facilitate a recording. During the following five years, Kernis would continue down the “road of excess,” churning out new works at a prodigious rate. In the summer of 1995, Kernis appeared for the first time as one of the featured composers at the Cabrillo Music Festival in Santa Cruz, California—a two-week contemporary music extravaganza held annually since 1963. Commissions also added to Kernis's increasing renown—he received one in August 1995 from the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra for an arrangement of piano music, another in September from the Birmingham Bach Choir for a short choral work, and a third in October from the Chicago Symphony for a choral symphony. Meanwhile, Kernis was frantically working on the Double Concerto for Violin and Guitar, which continued to give him trouble.

Keywords:   American Academy of Arts and Letters, Cabrillo Music Festival, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, piano music, Birmingham Bach Choir, choral work, Chicago Symphony, choral symphony, Double Concerto

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