Melissa Smey is Executive Director of the Arts Initiative and Miller Theatre at Columbia University, where she leads the campus’s pioneering venture to make the arts a vital part of every Columbian’s experience and the most acclaimed venue for new music in New York City. She has commissioned new works from composers Georges Aperghis, Julio Estrada, Hilda Paredes, and John Zorn; produced the United States premiere productions of Kaija Saariaho’s ballet Maa and James Dillon’s epic new music cycle Nine Rivers; and produced the urban outdoor premiere of John Luther Adams’s Inuksuit, featuring 99 musicians and 1,000 percussion instruments for an audience of over 2,500 in Harlem’s Morningside Park. Smey has held positions at the New York Public Library and the Metropolitan Opera, serves on the board of Early Music America, and has served as panelist and speaker for various New York City and national arts organizations including New York University, Philadelphia New Music Project, Works and Process at the Guggenheim, and Chamber Music America.
Six living composers have been deemed ready for their close-ups in next season’s vital Composer Portraits series.continue reading
“On Saturday, the deep dive into Mr. Staud displayed his talent for blazing contrasts, a flair for drama that a cursory listen might have you mistake for mere grabs at attention.”continue reading