The music of Vincent Calianno (b. 1979, Buffalo, NY) is inspired by the renegade eloquence and radical temperament of the American vernacular. His works often combine a unique confluence of disparate musical colors, muscular rhythms and complex, virtuosic textures. Calianno's diverse musical corpus includes opera, musicals, large and small ensemble works, electro-acoustica and music for film.
Calianno’s chamber music has been presented across the globe by the International Contemporary Ensemble, Alarm Will Sound, the JACK Quartet, Ensemble Mise-En, the Nouveau Classical Project, Ensemble 39, Tactus, Ossia, Artifact and The New York Miniaturist Ensemble. His orchestral music has been performed by the NYU Symphony, Illinois Symphony Orchestra, and the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra.
Recent commissions include new works for the International Contemporary Ensemble (Notes on The Deliverance Machine) scored for cello trio and electronics, and a new work for ensemble and video for Ensemble Mise-En (How I Fell In Love with W)—an encomium on George W. Bush. Other recent projects include Sororatorio—a setting of the rather infamous 2013 ‘deranged sorority girl’ email/meme. Also in 2016, his orchestra piece The Facts and Dreams of the World According to Michael Jackson was selected as the winner of the 2016 ASCAP Rudolf Nissim Prize.
In 2017, Calianno looks forward to a new commission (The History of the String Quartet in its Natural Habitat) for string quartet, electronics and video for the San Francisco based Thalea Quartet to be premiered later in the year in New York. Currently, he is working on a new trombone quartet (Down and Out in the Days of Low t) for The Guidonian Hand Ensemble.
In addition to concert music, Calianno is an active composer for short and feature length films, commercials and multimedia projects. His interest in silent cinema has led him to compose scores for both classic and recent silent films. His score for Carl Dreyer’s 1927 film La Passion de Jeanne d’Arc for viola and electronics has been performed live with the film throughout the U.S. and Canada including a portrait concert in 2009 at Le Poisson Rouge in New York.
Calianno holds degrees from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, the Eastman School of Music, the University of Illinois and New York University. His principal teachers have included John Luther Adams, Lewis Nielson, Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon, Zack Browning, Mark Suozzo and Livingston Gearhart. He is currently on the composition faculty at Hofstra University.
More Information is available at www.droplid.com
[current as of October 2016]
I believe in actually creating new music, not lumping together an array of extended techniques and passé effects and calling it new music;
I believe in creating art that experiments and investigates with acumen and with naïveté; in creating art that, above all things, aspires to transcend and illuminate – art where the spirit works with the hand, not against it;
In creating music that is free from the elitist, inaccessible, self-absorbed and self-righteous attitude of certain sects of American new music composers and their parasites, whose crabby, cliché-ridden, irrelevant and solipsistic music touches no hearts and inspires no souls.
I believe that my music should find an aesthetic that balances my conservatory upbringings with my American ‘maverick’ sensibilities;
I believe in creating art that is at once rich with musical metaphor and allusion but also accesses fresh and truly current trends in the visual and all other aural arts;
In creating art that is vernacular, polystylistic, self-referential and ironic which can be accessible to the listener and performer without feeling that the music is plastic or an iconic bastard;
In creating art that has a luminous, attractive and comprehensible surface but also has a stable, rich and compositional core;
MASTER OF ARTS in Composition, 2006
Eastman School of Music. Rochester, New York
• The Path to Resonance: Heterophonic Diffusion in
Boulez’s Memoriale and Ligeti’s Requiem
BACHELOR OF MUSIC in Composition, 2002
Oberlin Conservatory of Music. Oberlin, Ohio
DOCTOR OF MUSICAL ARTS in Composition-Theory, 2012
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Urbana, Illinois
A. Mus. D. Thesis:
• Generating Resonance and Illusions of Polyphony Using
Methods of Heterophonic Diffusion
MASTER OF MUSIC in Film Scoring and Multimedia, 2015
New York University. New York, New York
PRIVATE COMPOSITION INSTRUCTOR - UIUC
September 2009 - June 2012
PRIVATE PIANO INSTRUCTOR -
Buffalo Music School, Buffalo New York
March - August 2005
COMPUTER MUSIC INSTRUCTOR & TEACHING ASSISTANT -
Eastman School of Music
AURAL SKILLS IV INSTRUCTOR -
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)
January 2010 - May 2011
THEORY & AURAL SKILLS III INSTRUCTOR
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)
August - December 2010
THEORY IV INSTRUCTOR (Graduate Teaching Assistant) - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)
August - December 2009