Highlights of Maya Beiser's recent US tours include performances at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Royce Hall in Los Angeles, Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, Mondavi Performing Arts Center, Ravinia Festival in Chicago, Celebrity Series in Boston and International Festival of Arts and Ideas in New Haven. Other recent performances include major venues and festivals in Barcelona, Paris, Tokyo, Shanghai, and Athens. She has appeared with many of the world's top orchestras performing new works for the cello including the St. Paul Camber Orchestra, Montreal Symphony, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Sydney Symphony, China Philharmonic, and many others.
Maya's latest recording, Provenance, has been a top selling classical and world music CD since its release in 2010. Her performance of Steve Reich's Cello Counterpoint, a piece written for her, is featured on the Nonesuch disc You Are, which was chosen by The New York Times as one of the top albums of the year. She is also the soloist on the Sony Classical CD release of Tan Dun's Water Passion, and has performed his Academy Award-winning score Crouching Tiger Concerto with orchestras around the globe. She has released four solo CDs on Koch (now E1) including Oblivion, Kinship, World To Come, and Almost Human.
Maya has been a featured soloist on several film soundtracks. Collaborating with renowned film composer James Newton Howard, she is the featured soloist on M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening, Denzel Washington's The Great Debaters, Edward Zwick's Blood Diamond, and Rupert Sanders' Snow White and the Huntsman.
Raised on a kibbutz in Israel by her French mother and Argentinean father, Maya Beiser is a graduate of Yale University. Her major teachers were Aldo Parisot, Uzi Weizel, Alexander Schneider, and Isaac Stern. Maya was the founding cellist of the new music ensemble, the Bang on a Can All-Stars. Maya can be found on Twitter, tweeting as @cellogoddess, a moniker bestowed upon her by The New Yorker.
About Michael Harrison: Michael Harrison, composer and pianist, has been called "an American Maverick" by Philip Glass. Through his expertise in "just intonation" tunings, Indian ragas and rhythmic cycles, he has created "a new harmonic world…of vibrant sound" (The New York Times). With a uniquely personal style that transcends the ages, his music is both forward looking and deeply rooted in different forms of traditional music. This unique perspective alongside a simple and elegant gift for melody, makes him a composer that can reach audiences of many kinds.
Revelation, Michael's first recording for the Cantaloupe Music label (a multi-year project), was chosen by The New York Times, The Boston Globe and Time Out New York as one of the Best Classical Recordings of the year, and received awards from the Classical Recording Foundation and IBLA Foundation. Music critic and scholar Tim Page wrote, "Say it plainly - Michael Harrison's 'Revelation: Music in Pure Intonation' is probably the most brilliant and original extended composition for solo piano since the early works of Frederic Rzewski three decades ago (and no, I am not forgetting Elliott Carter). What could have been a mere glossary of unfamiliar sonorities made possible by Harrison's unconventional tuning of a grand piano turned instead into a virtuosic tour-de-force that would have done credit to the hypothetical team of Franz Liszt and Claude Debussy working overtime."
During his time at the University of Oregon, Michael traveled to New York City where he worked closely with La Monte Young preparing all of the specialized tunings and scores for Young's 6½-hour work, The Well-Tuned Piano. In 1987, Michael became the only other person besides the composer to perform this extended work. In 1986, Michael designed and created the "harmonic piano," an extensively modified grand piano with the ability to play 24 notes per octave. Kyle Gann from The Village Voice hailed the harmonic piano as "an indisputable landmark in the history of Western tuning," and the instrument is described in detail in the second edition of the Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments.
Michael is the president of the American Academy of Indian Classical Music. He is a disciple of the late Pandit Pran Nath, with whom he studied since 1979, and has performed solo and with Terry Riley as a vocalist, pianist, and on tamboura in numerous concerts and trips to India. Since 1999, he has continued his studies and performances with master Indian vocalist Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan. His recordings have been released on Cantaloupe Music, New Albion Records, Important Records, and Fortuna Records.
Time Loops - Maya Beiser & Michael Harrison
Music by Michael Harrison, J. S. Bach/Gounod and Harrison, Arvo Pärt
Maya Beiser, cello; Michael Harrison, just intonation piano; Young People's Chorus of New York City, Francisco J. Núñez, conductor; Payton MacDonald, tabla & percussion
Produced by Adam Abeshouse and Michael Harrison
Cantaloupe Music: October 30, 2012
Just Ancient Loops by Michael Harrison
1. I. Genesis (10:09)
2. II. Chorale (5:39)
3. III. Ascension (8:39)
4. Time Loops by J.S. Bach/Gounod/Harrison (2:40)
5. Ave Maria by J.S. Bach/Gounod (3:05)
6. Spiegel Im Spiegel by Arvo Pärt (9:41)
7. Raga Prelude I (Yaman) by Harrison (8:02)
8. Hijaz by Harrison (12:32)