American composer Nico Muhly will write a piece of music inspired by Southern Utah’s national parks and landscapes, to be premiered by the Utah Symphony during its 2015-16 season. The commission is part of the orchestra’s 75th-anniversary celebration.
"[Longtime music director] Maurice Abravanel started an amazing tradition of pursuing adventurous programming by introducing new music and composers to Utah’s audiences, and I am excited that this dynamic and creative young composer will be continuing this great legacy," Utah Symphony music director Thierry Fischer said in a news release.
Muhly, 32, has composed for the Chicago Symphony, Metropolitan Opera, New York Philharmonic, American Ballet Theatre, violinist Hilary Hahn and percussionist Colin Currie, among others. He has collaborated with alt-rock performers such as Björk, Grizzly Bear and Jónsi, and he worked for Philip Glass as a MIDI programmer and editor for six years. His film scores include the 2013 Sundance Film Festival selection "Kill Your Darlings."
"I’ve spent time in Utah and have an enormous affinity for the intensities of the landscape," Muhly said in the Utah Symphony news release. The composer will join the orchestra on its Mighty 5 tour of the state’s five national parks in August for further inspiration, as will video designer Joshua Higgason, who will create an installation to accompany the performance of Muhly’s composition.
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