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Paul Zukofsky

Paul Zukofsky

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Paul Zukofsky is an American violinist and conductor known for his work in the field of contemporary classical music
Contemporary classical music
Contemporary classical music can be understood as belonging to the period that started in the mid-1970s with the retreat of modernism. However, the term may also be employed in a broader sense to refer to all post-1945 modern musical forms.-Categorization:...

.

Career


Zukofsky was born to the Objectivist
Objectivist poets
The Objectivist poets were a loose-knit group of second-generation Modernists who emerged in the 1930s. They were mainly American and were influenced by, amongst others, Ezra Pound and William Carlos Williams...

 poet Louis Zukofsky
Louis Zukofsky
Louis Zukofsky was an American poet. He was one of the founders and the primary theorist of the Objectivist group of poets and thus an important influence on subsequent generations of poets in America and abroad.-Life:...

 and Celia Thaew Zukofsky, and is of Lithuanian Jewish
Lithuanian Jews
Lithuanian Jews or Litvaks are Jews with roots in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania:...

 heritage through his father. His mother, Celia, was a Jewish musician and composer.

Zukofsky studied violin with Ivan Galamian
Ivan Galamian
Ivan Alexander Galamian was an influential Armenian violin teacher of the twentieth century.He was born in Tabriz, Iran, but his family soon emigrated to Moscow, Russia. Galamian studied violin at the School of the Philharmonic Society there with Konstantin Mostras until his graduation in 1919...

. He won the Young Concert Artists International Auditions in 1965.

Performances


He has worked with, performed, and recorded the works of such 20th century composers as Milton Babbitt
Milton Babbitt
Milton Byron Babbitt was an American composer, music theorist, and teacher. He is particularly noted for his serial and electronic music.-Biography:...

, Arthur Berger
Arthur Berger
Arthur Victor Berger was an American composer who has been described as a New Mannerist.-Biography:Born in New York City, of Jewish descent, Berger studied as an undergraduate at New York University, during which time he joined the Young Composer's Group, as a graduate student under Walter Piston...

, Easley Blackwood
Easley Blackwood Jr.
Easley Blackwood, , is a professor of music, a concert pianist, a composer of music, some using unusual tunings, and the author of books on music theory, including his research into the properties of microtonal tunings and traditional harmony.Blackwood was born in Indianapolis, Indiana...

, Henry Brant
Henry Brant
Henry Dreyfuss Brant was a Canadian-born American composer. An expert orchestrator with a flair for experimentation, many of Brant's works featured spatialization techniques.- Biography :...

, John Cage
John Cage
John Milton Cage Jr. was an American composer, music theorist, writer, philosopher and artist. A pioneer of indeterminacy in music, electroacoustic music, and non-standard use of musical instruments, Cage was one of the leading figures of the post-war avant-garde...

, Elliott Carter
Elliott Carter
Elliott Cook Carter, Jr. is a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer born and living in New York City. He studied with Nadia Boulanger in Paris in the 1930s, and then returned to the United States. After a neoclassical phase, he went on to write atonal, rhythmically complex music...

, George Crumb
George Crumb
George Crumb is an American composer of contemporary classical music. He is noted as an explorer of unusual timbres, alternative forms of notation, and extended instrumental and vocal techniques. Examples include seagull effect for the cello , metallic vibrato for the piano George Crumb (born...

, Morton Feldman
Morton Feldman
Morton Feldman was an American composer, born in New York City.A major figure in 20th century music, Feldman was a pioneer of indeterminate music, a development associated with the experimental New York School of composers also including John Cage, Christian Wolff, and Earle Brown...

, Philip Glass
Philip Glass
Philip Glass is an American composer. He is considered to be one of the most influential composers of the late 20th century and is widely acknowledged as a composer who has brought art music to the public .His music is often described as minimalist, along with...

, Peter Mennin
Peter Mennin
Peter Mennin was an American composer and teacher. He directed the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, then for many years ran the Juilliard School, succeeding William Schuman in this role...

, Krzysztof Penderecki
Krzysztof Penderecki
Krzysztof Penderecki , born November 23, 1933 in Dębica) is a Polish composer and conductor. His 1960 avant-garde Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima for string orchestra brought him to international attention, and this success was followed by acclaim for his choral St. Luke Passion. Both these...

, Walter Piston
Walter Piston
Walter Hamor Piston Jr., , was an American composer of classical music, music theorist and professor of music at Harvard University whose students included Leroy Anderson, Leonard Bernstein, and Elliott Carter....

, Wallingford Riegger
Wallingford Riegger
Wallingford Constantine Riegger was a prolific American music composer, well known for orchestral and modern dance music, and film scores...

, Giacinto Scelsi
Giacinto Scelsi
Giacinto Scelsi , Count of Ayala Valva was an Italian composer who also wrote surrealist poetry in French....

, Artur Schnabel
Artur Schnabel
Artur Schnabel was an Austrian classical pianist, who also composed and taught. Schnabel was known for his intellectual seriousness as a musician, avoiding pure technical bravura...

, Roger Sessions
Roger Sessions
Roger Huntington Sessions was an American composer, critic, and teacher of music.-Life:Sessions was born in Brooklyn, New York, to a family that could trace its roots back to the American revolution. His mother, Ruth Huntington Sessions, was a direct descendent of Samuel Huntington, a signer of...

, Ralph Shapey
Ralph Shapey
Ralph Shapey was an American composer and conductor. He is well-known for his work as a composition professor at the University of Chicago, where he founded and directed the Contemporary Chamber Players...

, Harvey Sollberger
Harvey Sollberger
Harvey Sollberger is an American composer, flutist, and conductor specializing in contemporary classical music.-Life:...

, Stefan Wolpe
Stefan Wolpe
Stefan Wolpe was a German-born composer.-Life:Wolpe was born in Berlin. He attended the Klindworth-Scharwenka Conservatory from the age of fourteen, and the Berlin Hochschule für Musik in 1920-1921. He studied composition under Franz Schreker and was also a pupil of Ferruccio Busoni...

, Charles Wuorinen
Charles Wuorinen
Charles Peter Wuorinen is a prolific Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer born and living in New York City. His catalog of more than 250 compositions includes works for orchestra, opera, chamber music, as well as solo instrumental and vocal works...

, and Iannis Xenakis
Iannis Xenakis
Iannis Xenakis was a Romanian-born Greek ethnic, naturalized French composer, music theorist, and architect-engineer. He is commonly recognized as one of the most important post-war avant-garde composers...

.

He appeared as the character of Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein was a German-born theoretical physicist who developed the theory of general relativity, effecting a revolution in physics. For this achievement, Einstein is often regarded as the father of modern physics and one of the most prolific intellects in human history...

 in the 1976 recording of Glass's opera Einstein On the Beach
Einstein on the Beach
Einstein on the Beach is an opera that premiered on July 25, 1976 at the Avignon Festival in France, scored and written by Philip Glass and designed and directed by theatrical producer Robert Wilson. It also contains writings by Christopher Knowles, Samuel M. Johnson and Lucinda Childs...

(1976) and gave the premiere of Glass's Violin Concerto (1987).

John Cage composed his Freeman Etudes
Freeman Etudes
Freeman Etudes are a set of etudes for solo violin composed by John Cage. Like the earlier Etudes Australes for piano, these works are incredibly complex, nearly impossible to perform, and represented for Cage the "practicality of the impossible" as an answer to the notion that resolving the...

 - Books I and II
(Etudes I-XVII, 1977–1980) for Zukofsky.

He has released 60 recordings on the Sony, Camerata, CRI, and CP2 labels.

Academia


Zukosfky headed the Arnold Schoenberg Institute at the University of California at Los Angeles from 1992 to 1996.

He has also worked as a professor of violin.

Recording


Zukofsky formed a recording label, Musical Observations, Inc., of which he is president and for which he has recorded, conducted, and edited.

Executor


Zukofsky is the copyright contact for his parents, Louis and Celia Zufoksky. He maintains tight control of his parents' archive. It has been pointed out that the claims Paul Zukofsky makes for having this control appear, however, to be in conflict with the "Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Poetry"

He is also known for his involvement in the removal of Arnold Schoenberg
Arnold Schoenberg
Arnold Schoenberg was an Austrian composer, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School...

's archive from the University of Southern California. As of 1998, this archive resides in the Arnold Schönberg Center
Arnold Schönberg Center
The Arnold Schönberg Center, established in 1998 in Vienna, is a unique repository of Arnold Schönberg's archival legacy and a cultural center that is open to the public.-Activities:...

 in Vienna, Austria.

Writings

  • Zukofsky, Paul (1976). "On Violin Harmonics." In Perspectives on Notation and Performance ed. Benjamin Boretz and Edward T. Cone (New York: Norton, 1976). Essays reprinted from issues of Perspectives of New Music. The Perspectives of New Music series. ISBN 0393021904. ISBN 9780393021905. ISBN 0393008096. ISBN 9780393008098.

Recordings


The Library Congress shows Zukofsky has partaken in more than 50 recordings over the past four decades. The following list is a sample -- and only his first-time recordings of composers appear here, for brevity:
  • Music for a 20th century violinist (anthology of three decades of American music, 1940-1950-1960) [undated]
  • Roger Reynolds
    Roger Reynolds
    Roger Reynolds is an American composer born July 18, 1934 in Detroit, Michigan. He is a professor at the University of California at San Diego. He received an undergraduate degree in engineering physics from the University of Michigan where he later studied composition with Ross Lee Finney...

    : Roger Reynolds collection 1964-present (1964)
  • Charles Ives
    Charles Ives
    Charles Edward Ives was an American modernist composer. He is one of the first American composers of international renown, though Ives' music was largely ignored during his life, and many of his works went unperformed for many years. Over time, Ives came to be regarded as an "American Original"...

    : Sonatas for violin and piano, volumes 1 and 2 (1965)
  • Iannis Xenakis
    Iannis Xenakis
    Iannis Xenakis was a Romanian-born Greek ethnic, naturalized French composer, music theorist, and architect-engineer. He is commonly recognized as one of the most important post-war avant-garde composers...

    : Akrata ; Pithoprakta / Iannis Xanakis. Capriccio for violin & orchestra ; De natura sonoris / Krzysztof Penderecki (1968)
  • Richard Hoffmann
    Richard Hoffmann (composer)
    Richard Hoffmann was a United States pianist and composer.-Biography:He came to New York City in his 16th year. He received early instruction from Anton Rubinstein, Franz Liszt, Sigismond Thalberg, Döbler and Meyer...

    : String trio (1969)
  • Michael Sahl: Mitzvah for the dead, for violin and tape (1969)
  • Roger Sessions
    Roger Sessions
    Roger Huntington Sessions was an American composer, critic, and teacher of music.-Life:Sessions was born in Brooklyn, New York, to a family that could trace its roots back to the American revolution. His mother, Ruth Huntington Sessions, was a direct descendent of Samuel Huntington, a signer of...

    , Piano sonata no. 3 - Charles Wuorinen
    Charles Wuorinen
    Charles Peter Wuorinen is a prolific Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer born and living in New York City. His catalog of more than 250 compositions includes works for orchestra, opera, chamber music, as well as solo instrumental and vocal works...

    : Duo for violin and piano (1971)
  • Paul Zukofsky: New music for chamber orchestra (1972)
  • George Crumb
    George Crumb
    George Crumb is an American composer of contemporary classical music. He is noted as an explorer of unusual timbres, alternative forms of notation, and extended instrumental and vocal techniques. Examples include seagull effect for the cello , metallic vibrato for the piano George Crumb (born...

    : Black angels - Charles Jones: String quartet no. 6 (1972)
  • Elliott Carter
    Elliott Carter
    Elliott Cook Carter, Jr. is a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer born and living in New York City. He studied with Nadia Boulanger in Paris in the 1930s, and then returned to the United States. After a neoclassical phase, he went on to write atonal, rhythmically complex music...

    : Double concerto for harpsichord and piano with two chamber orchestras; Duo for violin and piano (1975)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Library of Congress Music Division concert, 1975-10-31, 3:00 p.m. (1975)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Library of Congress Music Division concert, 1976-02-27 (1976)
  • John Cage
    John Cage
    John Milton Cage Jr. was an American composer, music theorist, writer, philosopher and artist. A pioneer of indeterminacy in music, electroacoustic music, and non-standard use of musical instruments, Cage was one of the leading figures of the post-war avant-garde...

    : Cheap imitation (1977)
  • Georg Philipp Telemann
    Georg Philipp Telemann
    Georg Philipp Telemann was a German Baroque composer and multi-instrumentalist. Almost completely self-taught in music, he became a composer against his family's wishes. After studying in Magdeburg, Zellerfeld, and Hildesheim, Telemann entered the University of Leipzig to study law, but eventually...

    : Trio sonata in A minor no. 5 from Essercizii musici (1978)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Library of Congress Music Division concert, 1979-05-10 (1979)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Colonial Symphony Orchestra (1980)
  • Morton Feldman
    Morton Feldman
    Morton Feldman was an American composer, born in New York City.A major figure in 20th century music, Feldman was a pioneer of indeterminate music, a development associated with the experimental New York School of composers also including John Cage, Christian Wolff, and Earle Brown...

    : Spring of Chosroes - Artur Schnabel
    Artur Schnabel
    Artur Schnabel was an Austrian classical pianist, who also composed and taught. Schnabel was known for his intellectual seriousness as a musician, avoiding pure technical bravura...

    : Sonata for violin and piano (1981)
  • Edward Steuermann: Dialogues (1981)
  • Paul Zukofsky: New music from the University of Iowa (1983)
  • Philip Glass
    Philip Glass
    Philip Glass is an American composer. He is considered to be one of the most influential composers of the late 20th century and is widely acknowledged as a composer who has brought art music to the public .His music is often described as minimalist, along with...

    : Photographer (1983)
  • Dane Rudhyar
    Dane Rudhyar
    Dane Rudhyar , born Daniel Chennevière, was an author, modernist composer and humanistic astrologer. He was the pioneer of modern transpersonal astrology.-Biography:...

    : Five stanzas ; Epic poem (1983)
  • Charles Wuorinen
    Charles Wuorinen
    Charles Peter Wuorinen is a prolific Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer born and living in New York City. His catalog of more than 250 compositions includes works for orchestra, opera, chamber music, as well as solo instrumental and vocal works...

    : Tuba concerto - Glenn Lieberman: Dialectic (1983)
  • Joel Krosnick
    Joel Krosnick
    Joel Krosnick is an American soloist, cellist, recitalist, and chamber musician who has performed all over the world for over thirty-five years...

     - Library of Congress Music Division concert, 1984-11-07 (1984)
  • Artur Schnabel: Sonata for solo violin (1985)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Sinfóniúhljómsveit íslands (Íslensk hljómsveitarkvert - Icelandic orchestral music (1986)
  • William Schuman
    William Schuman
    William Howard Schuman was an American composer and music administrator.-Life:Born in Manhattan in New York City to Samuel and Rachel Schuman, Schuman was named after the twenty-seventh U.S. president, William Howard Taft, although his family preferred to call him Bill...

    : In praise of Shahn - Aaron Copland
    Aaron Copland
    Aaron Copland was an American composer, composition teacher, writer, and later in his career a conductor of his own and other American music. He was instrumental in forging a distinctly American style of composition, and is often referred to as "the Dean of American Composers"...

    : Connotations - Roger Sessions: Suite from The black maskers (1988)
  • Tōru Takemitsu
    Toru Takemitsu
    was a Japanese composer and writer on aesthetics and music theory. Largely self-taught, Takemitsu possessed consummate skill in the subtle manipulation of instrumental and orchestral timbre...

    : Piano-distance (1988)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Juilliard Orchestra (1990)
  • Jón Leifs
    Jón Leifs
    Jón Leifs , was an Icelandic composer.Jón was born in Sólheimar. He left Iceland in 1916 to study in Germany at the Leipzig Conservatory. He graduated in 1921 having studied piano, and then devoted his time to conducting and composing. He became successful as a conductor, and also as a writer.He...

    : Visions and images sound recording (1991)
  • Jón Nordal: Portrait (1991)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Min-On Contemporary Music Festival '83 (1993)
  • Benjamin Boretz
    Benjamin Boretz
    Benjamin Boretz is an American composer and music theorist.-Life and work:Boretz was born in Brooklyn, New York and graduated with a degree in music from Brooklyn College...

    : Group variations II for computer - J. K. Randall: Lyric variations for violin and computer (1993)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Sessions, Mennin, Blackwood (2002)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Shapey, Riegger, Piston, Crumb, Sollberger, Berger (2002)
  • Milton Babbitt
    Milton Babbitt
    Milton Byron Babbitt was an American composer, music theorist, and teacher. He is particularly noted for his serial and electronic music.-Biography:...

    : Septet but equal, Fourplay (2003)
  • Johann Sebastian Bach
    Johann Sebastian Bach
    Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought it to its ultimate maturity...

    : Three sonatas and three partitas (2005)
  • Nicolò Paganini: 24 caprices (2005)
  • Paul Zukofsky: Third Inter-American Music Festival [1965-05-10] (2007)

External links