Two ballet companies will perform excerpts from José Limón’s “The Winged” featuring music by UH West Oʻahu Assistant Professor of Music, Jon Magnussen this summer. “The Winged” is a 40-minute ballet choreographed by José Limón, with music by Dr. Jon Magnussen, commissioned by The Juilliard School in 1996. The Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre will perform in Toronto on May 27 and 28. The University of Wyoming Department of Theater and Dance will perform at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. on June 11. The Kennedy Center performances are part of the 2016 National College Dance Festival.
Described as “hauntingly beautiful” (Salt Lake Tribune), and “thoughtful… deeply imaginative” (L.A. Times), Jon Magnussen’s music for the concert hall, drama, dance and film has been commissioned and performed nationally and internationally by organizations including American Ballet Theatre, The Juilliard School, Orchestra of St. Lukes, New York New Music Ensemble, New Juilliard Ensemble, St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble, New York Percussion Quartet, Limón Dance Company (NYC), Lula Washington Dance Theatre, ETHEL, Ebb and Flow Arts (Hawaiʻi), Hawaii Youth Symphony, Chamber Music Hawaii, Oahu Choral Society, New York Virtuoso Singers, Westminster Conservatory Children’s Choir, Hawaiʻi Youth Opera Chorus, The Shakespeare Theatre (D.C.), Symphony San Jose Silicon Valley and James Goldworthy’s New Works for Young Pianists Commissioning Project. His music has been published by Oxford University Press, released on the Albany and Chamber Music Hawaii labels, and funded by organizations including the Argosy Foundation, the Library of Congress, Meet the Composer, National Endowment for the Arts, Chamber Music America, the Honolulu Mayor’s Office on Culture and the Arts, and the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation. Recent collaborative projects include deep sea, distant sky (String Quartet No. 1) for the Galliard String Quartet, and Pākaʻa Lanakila! for the Spring Wind Quintet and narrator in English and Hawaiian-language versions, commissioned by Chamber Music Hawaii and recently released on CD and iTunes. Currently, Magnussen is at work on a new song cycle entitled “Twinge” based on the stories of six people who survived the 2004 Indonesian tsunami. Commissioned by Texas-based Haven Trio (soprano, clarinet and piano) with support from Chamber Music America, the group plans to premiere the work in Dallas in November 2016. Magnussen holds doctoral and master’s degrees from The Juilliard School where he studied composition with Robert Beaser. He also holds degrees from Conservatoire Nationale Supérieure de Musique de Paris where he studied with Jean-Paul Holstein and Michel Merlet; and Cornell University, where he studied with Steven Stucky and Karel Husa. He was artist-in-residence at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton from 2000 to 2007, and is currently assistant professor of music at UH West Oʻahu.