The composer writes:
One of the youngest composers ever to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize, Aaron Jay Kernis (b. 1960, Philadelphia) is among the most esteemed musical figures of his generation. His music is featured prominently on orchestral, chamber, and recital programs worldwide. He has won numerous awards in addition to the 1998 Pulitzer Prize, including the 2002 Grawemeyer Award, the 2012 Nemmers Prize from Northwestern University, a Rome Prize, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and Grammy Award nominations, among others. Kernis serves as Director of the Minnesota Orchestra's Composer Institute, a program that gives young composers the opportunity to hear their works played by one of the world's great orchestras. He teaches composition at Yale School of Music and was recently appointed to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
"Pieces of Winter Sky," a piece commissioned by Hancher in league with the Music Accord consortium, is evocative of an environment Iowans know all too well: a cold, harsh winter. At times it reminded me of sleet hitting my face in sub-zero weather. At the same time, it has a kind of calm inside: lonely and still, with the quiet beauty of the end of a winter storm.
— Wallace Chappell, Hoopla
Pieces of Winter Sky
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Composer: Aaron Jay Kernis
Premiering Artists: eighth blackbird
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