EmilyMoran_Brightness_Album_2017 Brightness is the first Aurora Birch record.
Emily Moran (b. July 14, 1994) is a songwriter, arranger, producer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, and performer. Born and raised in Chicago, Emily spent her early adulthood in Boston, MA studying at Berklee College of Music. While a student of the school's rigorous Contemporary Writing & Production program, Emily supplemented her studies in arranging, orchestration, and production with additional focus on songwriting and old-time music, thanks to Berklee's American Roots Music program. With an eye to both the eternal lineage of song and the unsung tradition of arrangers, Emily developed Aurora Birch, her singer/songwriter act. Through Aurora Birch, Emily became a fixture in Boston's thriving folk community, performing frequently at venues in town (Club Passim, Juliet, Lizard Lounge) while still immersed in her schoolwork. Shortly after graduating in December 2016, Emily was awarded an Iguana Grant to fund the creation of Brightness, her first record as Aurora Birch. Brightness, recorded in March 2017 and released December of the same year, is a stunning display of Emily's skill as a writer and performer, and features a formidable co-production between her and Dan Cardinal (The Western Den, Lula Wiles, Darlingside). Emily lives in southwestern Michigan, where she teaches and creates music & art on her family's farm. In October 2019 Emily will be an artist in residence at the Marble House Project, where she will be completing arrangements and pre-production for her second Aurora Birch record.
Installation in September 2012 with my piece Bell Arc, on the Federation Bells in Melbourne, Australia.
Kala Pierson is an American composer and sound artist. Vivid, boldly expressive, and rooted in meditative and sensory/sensual practice, her music has been performed in 35 countries on six continents, widely awarded and commissioned, and published by Universal Edition. Her music's "seductive textures and angular harmonies" (Washington Post) build into "massive chords throwing out a wall of sound, like a modern-day Gabrieli" (San Francisco Classical Voice), and her focus on documentary and culturally resonant subject matter leads to works of "marvellous political power" (Louis Andriessen). She's held season-long composer residencies with American Opera Projects, Tribeca Performing Arts Center, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, and San Francisco Choral Artists. Recently, she's been the featured guest composer of Truman State University's New Horizons Festival; a resident at Yaddo, MacDowell, I-Park, Hambidge, and the Britten-Pears Foundation; and a Big Sky Composer Fellow with The Crossing. Her awards include those from the Mauricio Kagel International Composition Competition; New Music USA; American Composers Forum; ASCAP; and the Austrian, German, Serbian, and Swedish ministries of culture. Born in 1977 and trained at Eastman School of Music, she lives in Philadelphia with her spouses and son. Connect with her at kalapierson.com.
Kyle Sanna & Dana Lyn, "The Coral Suite" performance at the Irish Arts Center, NYC, 2019.
Kyle Sanna has been active as a composer, producer, guitarist, and improviser in New York City since 2000. His compositions have been performed at the Bach House in Eisenach, Germany, the Oregon Bach Festival, Art Basel Miami Beach, the International Symposium on Electronic Art, and Carnegie’s Zankel Hall. His “ruminative and shape-shifting” (San Francisco Chronicle) work for string quartet, Sequence for Minor White, won First Prize in the 2018 Charlotte New Music Festival Composition Competition. WNYC’s New Sounds and Sound Check host John Schaefer called his music “unconventionally beautiful”. Kyle Sanna has arranged music for banjo pioneer Bela Fleck, cellist Jan Vogler, mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie Von Otter, Irish fiddler Martin Hayes, Brooklyn Rider, The Knights orchestra, and for Yo-Yo Ma on two Grammy Award-winning albums. His arrangements have appeared on The Colbert Report, NPR’s Performance Today, and on the Sony and Naïve labels. In addition to his composing and arranging, Kyle Sanna is an active improviser on guitar, synths, and samplers, performing solo and collaborating with instrumentalists, dancers, and theater companies. Kyle lives in Brooklyn and is a member of Kinan Azmeh’s CityBand, Peter Apfelbaum’s Sparkler, The Seamus Egan Project, Ground Patrol, and a duo with violinist Dana Lyn.
Sugar Vendil_Islander_Performance_2018_Work in progress showing at Dixon Place
Sugar Vendil is a composer, pianist, and interdisciplinary artist. Her artistic practice is strongly rooted in rigorous discipline as a musician and gradually expanded into performance that integrates music, movement, and unconventional approaches to the piano. As a collaborative artist, Vendil has been commissioned for a variety of projects by visual artists, fashion designers, and choreographers. She is a proud second generation Filipinx American. Vendil has performed at a variety of venues, ranging from arts spaces such as BAM Fisher, Dixon Place, Knockdown Center’s Ready Room, National Sawdust, the New School’s Glassbox Theater, and Roulette; to galleries and spaces such as The Development Gallery, Milk Studios, Spring Studios, and others. She was a 2017 Summer Labs Artist in Residence at National Sawdust and a 2016 Fellow in the Target Margin Institute for Collaborative Theater Making. Other residencies include Avaloch Farm, Earthdance (E|MERGE Multidisciplinary Residency), the A-Z West Wagon Station Encampment, Arts Letters & Numbers, and Yaddo. She is the founder of a contemporary music ensemble, The Nouveau Classical Project. Vendil is a 2019 resident artist at Mabou Mines and has a residency at Target Margin in February 2019.