Featured this Concert
Photo by Nataliya Gorbovskaya, 2017
Nimrod Borenstein, Composer
With many world premieres, scores of performances and multiple
recordings of his music, British French Israeli composer Nimrod Borenstein
is much in demand. His work has been championed by Vladimir Ashkenazy, the
Philharmonia Orchestra, Roberto Prosseda, Dmitry Sitkovetsky, the Oxford
Philharmonic, and many others.
The son of a renowned artist, Nimrod's first musical experience came as
a child on holiday in France, when on a family walk through a forest they
came across an outdoors concert. "I just stopped and refused to move
until the concert was finished two hours later. And I told my parents then
and there that I wanted to learn violin and be a musician," recalls
Borenstein. By age eight he developed a twelve-tone system. "I was
very pleased with myself, until someone told me that someone called
Schoenberg had got there first," laughs Borenstein.
In 1984 he won the competition of the Cziffra. He moved to London in
1986, to pursue his studies as a violinist with Itzhak Rashkovsky at the
Royal College of Music. He was then awarded the highest scholarship from
the Leverhulme Trust to study composition at the Royal Academy of Music
(where he is now an Associate).
Every composer needs artists to perform their music. One of the most
important for Borenstein has been Vladimir Ashkenazy, who took an interest
early on. A first opportunity to work together arose when Ashkenazy
conducted the Philharmonia Orchestra for a performance of The Big Bang and
Creation of the Universe to great acclaim. This was quickly followed by a
Philharmonia premiere, again with Ashkenazy, If you will it, it is no
dream. The collaboration has continued, culminating in 2017 with the
release on the Chandos label of a major album conducted by Ashkenazy,
entirely devoted to Borenstein's music.
Borenstein's music continues to rise in popularity, with his Suspended
opus 69 becoming an international success with more than 100 performances.
Commissioned by Sean Gandini and Gandini Juggling for their ballet for
jugglers and dancers 4 x 4 Ephemeral Architectures. The piece continues to
tour the world. The Arts Desk wrote, "Borenstein's transparent,
athletic string writing is stunningly realized…glorious, singing lines…Borenstein's
sense of fun is infectious".
Nimrod's catalogue currently numbers more than seventy works including
ballet, concertos, orchestral and chamber music as well as vocal and solo
Elaine Erickson, Composer
Elaine Erickson was born in Des Moines, Iowa. She has a Bachelor of
Music degree in Piano Performance from Wheaton College (Illinois) and a
Master of Music degree in Music Composition from Drake University.
She has won numerous awards, fellowships and residencies, including
from the Ford Foundation (Contemporary Music Project), Meet the Composer,
the Charles Ives Center (4 times), the National League of American Pen
Women (including the $1000 Music Composition Award), the Pyle Commission
Award from the Iowa Composers Forum, among others.
She has done additional study in composition at the University of Iowa
and at Peabody Conservatory (Baltimore, Maryland). She has composed 5
operas, 3 of which were performed at Peabody. She traveled to Iowa schools
as an artist for Very Special Arts Iowa. She is a published poet
Tyler Bainter, DMCO Associate Conductor
Tyler is currently finishing his Junior year at Iowa State University
in the Music Education Program. He is also enrolled at Shalom Bible
College and Seminary in their Theology program.
Tyler started his musical journey on the flute, and now he also plays
the double bass. Tyler has an interest in educational research with an
emphasis in string education. He developed a desire to pursue a career in
Orchestral Conducting a year before being accepted into ISU and plans to
continue his education in that field and pursue both masters and doctoral
Tyler was accepted into Iowa State University's flute studio and Music
Education program and began to study under Dr. Sonja Giles. Tyler has
performed in various ensembles at Iowa State including the ISU Flute
Ensemble, the Amado Wind Quintet, the Amado Wind Trio, the Ames Children's
Choir, and ISU Wind Ensemble. He is the current president of the Alpha
Delta chapter of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.
Richard Gordley, Guest Conductor
Richard Gordley has a B.S. degree in Music Education from Western
Illinois University where he studied conducting with Hugo Magliocco, Henry
Manfredini and Rolla Foley. Rich went on to teach band in the Illinois
public schools for 13 years before beginning a vocation in computer
programming while continuing his musical pursuits as an avocation.
Before moving to Des Moines he was assistant conductor of the Prairie
Wind Ensemble, conducted musical theater for the River Valley Players, and
was worship leader at the Eagles' Nest Christian Fellowship in
Rich joined DMCO in 1998 and has been principal bassoon for years. Rich
conducted DMCO's performance of Handel's Messiah in December, 2016.
Angela Sass, Oboe
Angela Sass is originally from Davenport, and attended Wartburg College
in Waverly, Iowa, where she played oboe and English horn in the wind
ensemble and the Wartburg Community Symphony.
Angela graduated from Wartburg with majors in accounting and finance,
and is currently a CPA and senior solution analyst at FBL Financial Group.
Angela joined the DMCO in 2001, and is also a member of the Central
Iowa Wind Ensemble. She is currently the Secretary of the DMCO Board.
Angela played oboe with Deb Gordley in DMCO for 15 years, and is
honored to be a part of the concert today in Deb's memory.
Francine Griffith, Piano
Francine Griffith is a musician/educator in the Des Moines area. Some
of her collaborations include: staff accompanist at Drake University,
private piano instructor, Kinder Choir Director at Plymouth Congregational
Church, musical director and pianist/repetiteur for area theatre
Ms. Griffith earned her BME from Drake, studying piano with Chiu-Ling
Lin, and has taught Elementary Music in the Waukee School System.