Ola Gjeilo to Compose 2016 Brock Commission
Date: May 8, 2014
The American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) is proud to announce Ola Gjeilo as their 2016 Brock Composer. Gjeilo will compose a choral work to be featured at all seven of the 2016 ACDA Division Conferences throughout the United States by selected performing ensembles.
The Raymond W. Brock Memorial Choral Series was established in 1991 to honor the life and contributions of Raymond W. Brock, who served as Administrative Assistant for ACDA from 1987 until his untimely death in 1991. Annually, the ACDA Executive Committee will commission a recognized composer to write a choral composition in an effort to perpetuate quality choral repertoire and advance ACDA’s mission of inspiring excellence in choral music education, performance, advocacy, and composition. Tim Sharp, Executive Director of the American Choral Directors Association, said upon the occasion of this public announcement, “We are proud to add the create work of Ola Gjeilo to the distinguished list of past Brock Commission composers, including Morten Lauridsen, Dominick Argento, Stephen Stucky, Eric Whitacre, Gian-Carlo Menotti, and a long list of other great choral composers. Ola is quickly becoming a household name due to his imaginative choral compositions.”
The album Northern Lights: Choral Works by Ola Gjeilo recorded by the Phoenix Chorale became Chandos' bestselling album for 2012. This month Manhattan Concert Productions will present the World Premiere of Gjeilo’s latest large-scale work Dreamweaver at Carnegie Hall on Sunday, May 18, 2014. Dreamweaver is scored for choir, string orchestra and piano, the work is a new setting of a well-known Norwegian medieval ballad, Draumkvedet; an epic text that has more than a few things in common with Dante’s infinitely longer Divine Comedy. Draumkvedet has for this piece been adapted into a playful English text penned by Gjeilo’s regular collaborator, poet Charles Anthony Silvestri. The performance will also feature Gjeilo’s exquisite Sunrise Mass – this lush, cinematic-sounding piece has gained immense popularity around the world.
Ola Gjeilo (pronounced Yay-lo) was born in Norway in 1978, and moved to theUnited States in 2001 to begin his composition studies at the Juilliard School inNew York City. Ola’s concert works are performed all over the world, and his debut recording as a pianist-composer, the lyrical crossover album Stone Rose, was followed by its 2012 sequel, Piano Improvisations. Many of Ola’s choral works are featured onPhoenix Chorale’s bestselling Northern Lights album, which is devoted entirelyto his music for choir.
Presently a full-time composer based in New York City, Ola is also very interested in film, and his music often draws inspiration from movies and cinematic music. He is currently composer-in-residence with Manhattan Chorale, a professional New York based chamber choir led by Craig Arnold. Ola’s choral works are published by Walton Music/Edition Peters, wind band works by Boosey & Hawkes/Hal Leonard, and piano pieces by Edition Peters.