The Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) has announced winners of their Individual Artist Award, which include Peabody alumni and faculty. Faculty artist Blake Meister (BM ’08, Jazz Double Bass), incoming faculty artist Kris Funn, and alumni Todd Simon (BM ’07, Jazz Piano) and Patrick McMinn (MM ’12, Computer Music) all received top prizes in their categories. Samuel Burt (MM ’05, Composition), Byung Kang (BM ’14, GPD ’16, Jazz Percussion), and Russell Kirk (BM ’05, Jazz Saxophone) were awarded second prizes. Third prizes were awarded to Adam Rosenblatt (BM ’10, Percussion; KSAS BS ’10, Molecular/Cellular Biology) and incoming faculty artist Warren Wolf, vibes.
Peabody junior Anthony Peña, studying recording arts and computer music, has signed his recording group June Pastel with The Native Sound, an independent recording label. Their album will be released this summer, and features Peabody students, including jazz pianist Troy Long, jazz percussionist Kayin Scanterbury, Sean McFarland (’17, Composition), and John Murphy. This group will also be on an East Coast Tour in March.
Bijan Olia (BM ’11, MM ’12, Computer Music) was nominated for a Motion Picture Sound Editors Golden Reel Award for his work on Lego DC Super Hero Girls: Brain Drain as music editor. The winners will be announced on Sunday, February 18.
Josh Armenta (MM ’15 Computer Music, MM ’14 Composition) gave a lecture, “Activating a Physical Space through Sound,” on October 27 at the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture in Karachi, Sindh Province, Pakistan. Armenta collaborates with MICA alumnus Omer Wasim, a sculptor based in Karachi, and went to Pakistan to attend the first Karachi Biennale, an art event that seeks to bring visual art into public spaces to invite, encourage, and sometimes impose public engagement on the viewing audience, and to conduct field research for a planned interdisciplinary work featuring both artists. This work is being created in anticipation of Peabody Computer Music’s 50th anniversary, which will occur in the 2019-20 school year.
Bijan Olia (BM ’11, MM ’12, Computer Music) was selected as a fellow for the Sundance Institute Music and Sound Design Lab at the Skywalker Ranch in July of 2017. At this lab, composers, directors, and sound designers worked together to create music for narrative film projects, and takes place in two parts: one for feature film scores and one for documentary scores. The Broadcast Music, Inc (BMI) has been and remains an important partner with the lab, and helps to forward the careers of many of the participants, like Olia.