The Fauxharmonic Orchestra is pleased to announce that composer David Heuser has won its first annual international orchestral composition contest. Heuser’s work stood out as particularly expressive, original, inventive and powerful. The winning composition, A Screaming Comes Across the Sky, was chosen from among eighty-six entries. Heuser will receive a cash prize as well as a recorded performance of his work by the Fauxharmonic Orchestra. The contest was open to composers of all ages, career stages, and nationalities.
About the winning composition
Listen to the Fauxharmonic Orchestra performance: A Screaming Comes Across the Sky
“A Screaming Comes Across the Sky” was commissioned by the Immanuel and Helen Olshan Texas Music Festival for its “New Texas Overtures” season in 2005. The title of the piece is the first sentence from Thomas Pynchon’s novel Gravity’s Rainbow. The piece was premiered in 2005. One reviewer of that performance wrote:
David Heuser’s ‘A Screaming Comes Across the Sky’ was a shot-in-the-arm beginning. … Heuser’s music certainly matched the title through its intense, driving rhythms and thunderclap-loud outbursts. This was all-American music at its most dynamic and visceral. Yet the piece by the University of Texas-San Antonio composer was well-crafted and smartly orchestrated … The music continually engaged mind and body as it careened along.
— Houston Chronicle (July 2005)
About the composer
David Heuser is associate professor of theory, composition, and electronic music at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Heuser’s music has been performed by various groups and individuals and on festivals and conferences throughout the US and abroad. He has won a variety of awards, grants and commissions including an ASCAP Young Composer Award, many ASCAP Standard Grants, a First Music commission from the New York Youth Symphony, an Immanuel and Helen Olshan Texas Music Festival “New Texas Overture” Commission, and the Delius Composition Contest Chamber Music Award.
The following outstanding compositions were selected by the judges for hornorable mention:
|The Flames of Imbolc||Garrett Byrnes|
|The Cerneian Hind||Kevin Cancellaro|
|In Fire||Sabang Cho|
|Creo de Irritum||Jonathan Crane|
|Amadeus ex machina||Lawrence Dillon|
|Passacaglia on a Theme by Bach||Federico Garcia|
|Symphony No. 1, First Movement||Takanori Honda|
|Variations on Chords||Vera Ivanova|
|Memories from my previous lives||Angel Lam|
|Là, ou la mèr rencontre le ciel, Prelude for orchestra||Tudor Dominik Maican|
|Surreal Abundance||Ed Martin|
|Albanian Rhapsody No. 1||Anesti Nova|
|Bénédiction d’un conquérant||Adriàn Pertout|
|Inertia||Jonathan R. Pieslak|
About the contest
The Fauxharmonic Orchestra’s international composition contest was established in 2005 to help foster new orchestral composition, and to showcase digital orchestral performance. The contest winner receives a $1,200 prize and a recorded performance by the Fauxharmonic Orchestra.
This year’s contest involved eighty-six entries by composers from the US, China, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and Canada. Judges for the 2006 contest were:
Emily Doolittle, composer (bio)
Markand Thakar, Music Director of the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra and the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra; Co-director of the graduate program in orchestral conducting at the Peabody Conservatory of Music (bio)
Herb Tucmandl, CEO and Founder, Vienna Symphonic Library, the world’s pre-eminent maker of digital orchestral instruments and performance systems (bio)
Paul Henry Smith, Music Director of the Fauxharmonic Orchestra, a digital orchestra ensemble devoted to producing recordings of orchestral music, new and old, of the highest artistic caliber.