2017 Biographies — New Music

Charly Akert

Charly Akert

Cello

Charles Akert has captivated audiences around the world as both soloist and chamber musician. Some of his more recent engagements include concerts in Weill Recital Hall with Ensemble: Périphérie, on NPR Tiny Desk with The Family Crest and recording music for ABC's Grey's Anatomy. An Alaska native and cellist from age 5, by 13, Mr. Akert joined the Fairbanks Symphony Orchestra. He holds degrees from the University of Northern Colorado and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, studying with James Fittz, Mark Kosower, Jennifer Culp, and Mark Sokol. He has served as a faculty member at the Kinhaven Music School, Blue Lake Music Festival and the Fairbanks Summer Fine Arts Festival. As a member of the Nexus String Quartet, Mr. Akert was awarded residencies at the Banff Centre, Aspen Music Festival and in 2010, he won the Grand Prize at the National Plowman Chamber Music Competition.


Joe Bergen

Joe Bergen

Percussion

Joe Bergen is a percussionist, educator, and composer active in the New York metro area. As a co-founder of Mantra Percussion ("superhuman..." New Yorker) and Transit New Music ("boldly surreal aural experience..." NY Times,) Joe has toured North America, Europe, and Asia performing some of the most interesting and compelling music of our time. Highlights include guest performer on the San Fransisco Symphony "American Mavericks" series at Carnegie Hall, featured ensemble on the Percussive Arts Society 50th Anniversary Concert, stops in Seoul, South Korea at the Music Now Series, and in Drogheda, Ireland at the Drogheda Arts Festival, and cited by the New Yorker for top ten performances of the year for Mantra Percussion's performance of Timber at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in NYC. Joe also performs extensively with the Cellar and Point, Experiments in Opera, and from 2007-2014 with Newband performing on Harry Partch's original microtonal instruments. Joe has recorded extensively for tv, radio, film, and video game soundtracks most notably playing percussion for the 2011 RockStar video game of the year; "Read Dead Redemption," playing vibraphone on the 2015 German film "Elixir" directed by Brodie Higgs, and most recently on Mantra Percussion's 2016 album "Timber Remixed" featuring notable remix artists including Squarepusher, Johan Johansson, Hauschka, and Oneohtrix Point Never. He can be heard on several record labels including New Amsterdam, Cantaloupe, Cunieform, and New World Records. A native of Ramsey NJ, Joe studied with John Ferrari and Tom Kolor receiving his bachelors degree in music from William Paterson University with additional studies from Gordon Gottlieb and Nancy Zeltsman. In addition to performing with Mantra, Joe is the group's education director overseeing programs including; Mantra Youth Percussion ("ear-opening..." NY Times,) the Necessary Noise Festival, and Mantra's in-school residencies. Additionally, Joe is a Wolf Trap early education teaching artist and dance accompanist for New Jersey Performing Arts Center, the percussion director and in school specialist for the award winning Rahway School District teaching percussion grades 4-12, and is an accomplished arranger and composer in the education world writing music for various music programs.


Katie Cox

Katie Cox

Flute

Originally from Fairbanks, flutist Katie Cox resides in Brooklyn, NY. An active contemporary musician in NYC, Katie has worked with leading contemporary ensembles Transit, Concert Black, Contemporaneous, Ensemble Signal, Experiments in Opera, Little Opera Theatre of NY, members of eighth blackbird, and 2015 Latin Grammy nominee Mariachi Flor de Toloache. A member of Hotel Elefant, Katie also is Executive Director of Wild Shore New Music in Homer and Program Associate for Exploring the Metropolis in NYC, an arts service organization dedicated to resolving workspace issues for NYC's performing arts communities. Katie has performed at NYC’s tops venues Roulette Theater, the Park Avenue Armory, Hearst Plaza for Lincoln Center Out of Doors (2014), Carnegie Hall for the Weill Music Institute (2013), (le) poisson rouge, Miller Theatre at Columbia University, and Brookfeild Place for the Bang on a Can Marathon (2014). Major composers she has worked with include 2014 Pulitzer Prize winner John Luther Adams, 2015 Guggenheim Fellow Richard Carrick, Conrad Winslow, Jamie Stewart of the band Xiu Xiu, Anna Clyne, Carlisle Floyd, and Mary Kouyoumdjian. Katie is also a teaching artist for Little Orchestra Society. Katie received her Bachelors of Music degree at Concordia College in Moorhead, MN and Masters of Music Degree at the Bob Cole Conservatory at California State University, Long beach. Primary teachers include John Barcellona, Deborah Harris, and Dorli McWayne.


Stephen Lias

Stephen Lias

Composition

Adventurer-Composer Stephen Lias has been Artist-in-Residence at Rocky Mountain, Denali, Glacier, and Gates of the Arctic National Parks. His compositions have been performed throughout the world including premieres of “Mount Rainier Search and Rescue” in Taiwan, “Kings Canyon” in Australia, and “Gates of the Arctic” by the Boulder Philharmonic in Colorado. “The Timberline Sonata” was featured in the Fall 2011 issue of National Parks Magazine and his upcoming CD includes new pieces about Yosemite, Mesa Verde, and Denali National Parks. Also active as a writer and photographer, he is the creator of FSAF’s “Composing in the Wilderness” class, and his passion for the outdoors, along with his engaging teaching style, makes him an ideal facilitator for this unusual field seminar.


Mara Mayer

Mara Mayer

Clarinet

Mara Mayer is a clarinetist and bass clarinetist based in Brooklyn, NY. She completed her degrees at the Eastman School of Music and the University of Rochester where she studied with Ken Grant and Jon Manasse. She has also studied with members of the Cleveland Orchestra including Dan Gilbert and Linnea Nerreim. Mara is currently performing as a member of NYC-based contemporary music ensembles including the Nouveau Classical Project, Curiosity Cabinet, Contemporaneous, Curium, and Lykos Quartet. Mara also performs across a variety of other genres including with the Mexican big band Banda de los Muertos, with experimental pop artist GABI, in her experimental duo Feral Children, and as part of the Broadway show Natasha Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812. Mara is also founder and curator of a monthly performance series in Brooklyn called Home Audio that features experimental music, dance, and visual art. Recent residencies include Avaloch Farms New Music Initiative (2016) and E|Merge interdisciplinary collaborative residency (2014, 2015).


Andie Springer

Andie Springer

Violin; New Music Coordinator

Andie Springer is a violinist specializing in new and experimental music and theater. She is a founding member of and violinist in the ensembles Redshift, TRANSIT and Hotel Elefant, and has also performed with the Wordless Music Orchestra, David Byrne, and many others. In 2016 James Moore and Andie Springer released their premiere album "Gertrudes" on New World Records. 2017 will see the release of "Dandelion," an audio-visual album of music for violin, voice, electronics and video. Andie is active in the theater through her work with New York City Players and Object Collection, whose pieces resulted in performances around the globe on mandolin, accordion, electric bass, percussion and voice. A native of Alaska, Andie is the Music Director and cofounder of Wild Shore New Music — a presenting organization dedicated to bringing adventurous new chamber music to the communities in and around Kachemak Bay, Alaska — and the New Music Coordinator of the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival.

Andie earned her BFA at Carnegie Mellon University with Professor Andres Cardenes, and her MFA at New York University with Professor Arturo Delmoni. She enjoys teaching and is currently on the faculty the Larchmont Music Academy and St. Lukes School.

"The best joining of human and machine since RoboCop." - I Care If You Listen
"Model new-music citizen," -The New York Times


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