June 15-19, 2020


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Unheard-of//Ensemble and our composition faculty are reinventing the Collaborative Composition Initiative workshop and taking it online this season. This CCI will still be an intensive 5 day workshop from June 15-19th, 2020 consisting of an opening concert by Unheard-of, two seminars daily by our faculty and guests, a special performance from Popebama, and one-on-one collaborations writing miniatures throughout the week to be premiered on the closing concert. 

Each of the twelve composer participants is writing a full ensemble work for Unheard-of to be workshopped in June. The ensemble will then meet in July and record with each composer taking part in the session remotely. Ford and Matheus will work with participants to edit and mix the tracks for release as part of CCI//Sessions, vol. 2. While this is uncharted territory, we want this to year's CCI to have the same sense of shared community that made our first year such a memorable experience.


Ford Fourqurean (clarinet), Matheus Souza (violin), Issei Herr (cello), and Daniel Anastasio (piano) form the core of Unheard-of//Ensemble, a contemporary chamber ensemble dedicated to the development and performance of new music by living composers. With over 80 works written for them and guest performances across the United States visiting Manhattan School of Music, Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Georgia State University, University of Tennessee (Knoxville and Chattanooga), along with performances ranging from Carnegie Hall to Spectrum and DIY spaces, Unheard-of has built a reputation for "scintillating and evocative" performances as well as "an enviable cache of new pieces" (Steve Smith, National Sawdust Log).

(for more info click here)

Reiko Fueting was born in 1970 in Königs Wusterhausen of the German Democratic Republic.  He studied composition and piano at the Hochschule für Musik in Dresden, at Rice University in Houston, at Manhattan School of Music in New York, and at Seoul National University.  Some of his most influential teachers have been the composers Jörg Herchet and Nils Vigeland, and the pianist Winfried Apel.

Reiko Fueting joined the theory faculty at the Manhattan School of Music in 2000; five years later, he became a member of the composition faculty and was appointed department chair of theory.  He has also taught vocal accompanying at the Conservatory of Music and Theater in Rostock, Germany, and appeared as guest faculty and lecturer at universities and conservatories in China, Colombia, Germany, Italy, Russia, South Korea, and the United States.

As a composer, Reiko Fueting has received numerous prizes, awards, scholarships, grants, and commissions.  His music has been performed by renowned musicians and ensembles in several countries in Europe, the Americas, and Asia, broadcast on radio and television, and released on CDs.  His publications include compositions, arrangements, and analytical articles.

Nirmali Fenn is a Sri Lankan-born Australian composer. She received her initial music education at the universities of New South Wales and Melbourne, graduating with high distinction. With the support of a prestigious Clarendon Fund Scholarship, she later completed her doctorate in music at Oxford University, UK. She has worked in the faculties of the University of Hong Kong, New York University, the University of New South Wales, Yale-NUS College Singapore and is currently based in New York at Stony Brook University.

Nirmali’s music often involves a lot of theatre and she has collaborated with some of Asia’s most respected choreographers, such as Pun Siu Fai and Daniel Leung. Her collaboration with the Guangdong Modern Dance Company opened the 9th Guangdong Dance Festival in Guangzhou, China, in 2012.

Nirmali has served as composer-in-residence at a number of major European festivals, most notably the Lakes District Summer Music Festival in the UK and the Saxophone Habanera Festival in Poitiers, France. Of the first performance of her song cycle Over Exposed at the Abbaye de Royaumont near Paris, Le Monde praised it as standing out in the genre of ‘songs’ of today” and La Croix described it as “deeply moving”. Her compositions have been performed by the Arditti String Quartet, Ensemble Cairn, Ensemble Linea, Kuss Quartet, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Tinalley String Quartet, Sounds Underground, Endymion Ensemble, Hong Kong New Music Ensemble, Ensemble Concorde, S.E.M. Ensemble and the Eastman Broadband Ensemble.

Through her music, Nirmali often challenges performers to “see” with their ears and construct spatial “views” of their surroundings. She believes that sound is a tool that gives audiences the opportunity to experience the volume of the space in which they exist.

Christopher Stark (b. 1980, St. Ignatius, MT) is a composer of contemporary classical music deeply rooted in the American West. Having spent his formative years in rural western Montana, his music is always seeking to capture the expansive energy of this quintessential American landscape. Stark, whose music The New York Times has called, "fetching and colorful," has been awarded prizes and commissions from organizations such as the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the Fromm Foundation at Harvard, Chamber Music America, the Orléans International Piano Competition, ASCAP, and the Barlow Endowment. Named a 2017 "Rising Star" by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, his music has been performed by such ensembles as Alarm Will Sound, American Composers Orchestra, Arctic Philharmonic, Buffalo Philharmonic, Los Angeles Piano Quartet, Left Coast Chamber Ensemble, Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble, Momenta Quartet, New Morse Code, FLUX Quartet, and the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble. In 2012, he was a resident composer at Civitella Ranieri, a fifteenth-century castle in Umbria, Italy, and in June of 2016 he was awarded a residency at Copland House. Recent highlights included performances at the 2016 Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival and at the Whitney Museum of American Art as part of the 2016 NY Phil Biennial. Stark recently completed a three-month residency in Bergen, Norway where he worked with members of the BIT20 Ensemble from the Bergen Philharmonic on a new string quartet, and in June of 2019 he premiered a new work with the LA Phil New Music Group, conducted by John Adams at Walt Disney Concert Hall. His score for the feature-length film, "Novitiate," premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January of 2017 and was theatrically released in October by Sony Pictures Classics. Stark is currently Assistant Professor of Music at Washington University in St. Louis.

Guest Artists

As RighteousGIRLS, New York-based flutist Gina Izzo and pianist Erika Dohi “Rattle speakers and expectations with stop-time razzle, vocal (flute-talk) and electronic (phaser) effects" (NYC Jazz Record) while continually expanding their creative reach by bringing 21st century music to new audiences and commissioning works that root themselves in classical idioms but draw from other genres. 


RighteousGIRLS have received awards including the 2016 New Music USA Impact Fund Award, a 2015 New Music USA Project Grant, and an Independent Music Awards Nomination for gathering blue (Best Album) and KARakurENAI (Best Instrumental) by composer/steel-pannist Andy Akiho.

In 2015, RighteousGIRLS released their debut album gathering blue (New Focus Recordings) collaborating with steel-pannist Andy Akiho, trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, and drummer Justin Brown, among others. gathering blue has been met with critical acclaim from both jazz and contemporary-classical critics alike; Jackson Cooper, from I Care If You Listen, called it “…one of the most adventurous new music debut albums in recent years.”  gathering blue received a 4.5 stars rating by John Ephland in DownBeat magazine.  

RighteousGIRLS recently performed at festivals including the Gharana Music Festival (Kathmandu, Nepal), the DC Jazz Festival, and at venues such as the Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center, SubCulture, Icicle Creek Center for the Arts, Rockwood Music Hall, Atlas Performing Arts Center, and Joe's Pub at the Public Theater. RighteousGIRLS were recently featured by New Music USA at SubCulture alongside Steve Coleman & the Five Elements, Rudresh Mahanthappa and the Prism Quartet, and Wet Ink Ensemble and on Q2 Music, WQXR, WNYC. 



CCI Sessions, vol. 1

This limited release, informal album highlights workshop recordings and session reads from our first Collaborative Composition Initiative. Each work was written and developed for Unheard-of//Ensemble in collaboration with CCI composition faculty Erin Rogers, also featured on saxophone. All proceeds go towards funding our second workshop in the summer of 2020.



Fee: $400 all-inclusive

This covers lessons with Reiko, Nirmali, Chris

and ensemble recording sessions and concerts.

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© 2019, U//E. Photo credits: Michael Yu.