Ear Heart Music: Makers, Nils Vigeland
Nils Vigeland, composer
Ear Heart Music : Makers opens discussions about the art-music of now with the people who are creating it. Taking the work of interviewed composers as a starting point, the series aims to roam broadly over the cast surface of modern making in our world. The series is hosted by Nicholas deMaison, a freelance composer and conductor residing in New York City.
Nils Vigeland was born in Buffalo, New York, and made his professional debut as a pianist with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra at age 19 with Lukas Foss conducting. He later studied composition with Mr. Foss at Harvard College, graduating with a BA in 1972. Graduate studies were at the State University of New York at Buffalo in piano with Yvar Mikhashoff and composition with Morton Feldman.
For eight years Mr. Vigeland was the director of the Bowery Ensemble, which gave an annual series of concerts at the Cooper Union in New York City. The ensemble gave the first performance of over thirty works by composers including John Cage, Jo Kondo, Pauline Oliveros, and Dane Rudhyar. With Jan Williams, percussion, and Eberhard Blum, flute, Mr. Vigeland has recorded all the extended length works of Feldman for this ensemble on HAT ART. His own work appears on CD releases from Mode and Lovely Music and is published by Boosey and Hawkes.
In 1992 The English National Opera commissioned and gave the first performance at the Almeida Theatre in London of Mr. Vigeland's chamber opera, False Love True Love, based on two scenes from Charlotte Bront's Jane Eyre. In 1989 his orchestral work My Father's Song was a winner of the Rose Prize and given its first performance by the Brooklyn Philharmonic. He has been the recipient of grants from Harvard College, the Ford Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the MacDowell Colony, and the Mary Flagler Cary Trust.
Mr. Vigeland has taught at Manhattan School of Music since 1984 and is presently the chair of the composition department.
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