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Derek Bermel Shows Another Side

Friday, February 2, 2001
8:30 pm, Joe's Pub at The Public Theater

Composers Out Front logo


Derek Bermel and "Peace by Piece"

Old Songs for a New Man (1996-97)
Timothy Jones, baritone

Turning (1995)
Marilyn Nonken, piano

"Peace by Piece"
Derek Bermel, voice, keyboards, caxixi
Mat Deveau, drums
Bobby Roe, bass
Mark Tewarson, guitar

Tickets $20
at the Public Theater Box Office, 425 Lafayette Street, Manhattan.
Tickets are also available through Telecharge at: (212) 239 6200, or online at

American Composers Orchestra Puts "Composers Out Front" in Three Concerts at Joe's Pub

Friday, February 2, 2001, 8:30 pm-Derek Bermel & "Peace by Piece"
Friday, March 9, 2001, 8:30 pm-Jin Hi Kim & Quagmire
Thursday, April 19, 2001, 8:30 pm-David Raksin, Hollywood Cabaret

The American Composers Orchestra will present three concerts featuring composer-performers in its second season of "Composers Out Front" at Joe's Pub. These innovative performances, created in association with Joe's Pub at The Public Theater, puts composers on stage, making connections between their eclectic musical roots as performers and their works for the concert hall-breaking down barriers between jazz, pop, experimental and "classical" music.

The series begins with composer and clarinetist Derek Bermel, a young Guggenheim Award-winning composer/multi-instrumentalist, who is a familiar name to ACO audiences. Called "a truly exceptional talent" by the New York Times, his clarinet concerto, Voices was commissioned and performed by the ACO at Carnegie Hall in 1998. In addition to his activities as a composer, Mr. Bermel also performs actively around New York City as a clarinetist, vocalist and percussionist with his band, "Peace by Piece"-a four-member Brooklyn-based band whose songs combine funk, rhythm & blues, and West African music-that will appear with him at Joe's Pub on Friday, February 2nd at 8:30pm.

Mr. Bermel's program will include a set of songs for baritone and six players conducted by the composer, entitled Old Songs for a New Man, and a solo piano work, Turning, which will be performed by pianist Marylin Nonken. During the second half of the program Mr. Bermel will perform as a member of "Peace by Piece." Formed in the summer of 1999, the band has played at various venues in New York, including the Izzy Bar, the Cornelia Street Cafe, the Living Room, and the Sidewalk Cafe. Members include Mr. Bermel on vocals, keyboards and caxixi; Mat Deveau on drums; Bobby Roe on bass and Mark Tewarson on guitar.

Derek Bermel: composer, clarinetist, conductor

The versatile Derek Bermel-clarinetist, composer, and jazz and rock musician-has been widely hailed for his creativity and theatricality as a composer and his virtuosity as a performer. He has been featured at numerous international music festivals, and commissions have included the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Fabermusic Millennium Series, American Composers Orchestra, Albany Symphony, De Ereprijs (Netherlands), Birmingham Royal Ballet, Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, New York International Fringe Festival, and cellist Fred Sherry. He has also been awarded many of today's most important prizes, including Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellowships and residencies at the Lincoln Center Directors Lab, Tanglewood, Banff, and Yaddo. As clarinetist, he has appeared throughout the U.S. and Europe, including recitals in New York, Amsterdam, Los Angeles, Detroit, Jerusalem, The Hague, and Paris, and in radio broadcasts on both sides of the Atlantic. As clarinetist, he has premiered dozens of new works, including his clarinet concerto, Voices, which created a sensation when it was premiered at Carnegie Hall and later performed at the 2000 American Symphony Orchestra League Conference. Upcoming are an orchestral commission from the Westchester Philharmonic, his "hip-h'opera" Rhyme (a music-theater collaboration with librettist Wendy S. Walters), and a disc of his chamber music for CRI records. Derek Bermel is the founding clarinetist of Music from The Copland House and co-founder, music director, and co-artistic director of the Dutch-American interdisciplinary ensemble TONK.

Upcoming Events

Future performances in ACO's "Composers Out Front" series at Joe's Pub include Korean composer and komungo (traditional Korean zither) player Jin Hi Kim. Ms. Kim is the ACO's 2000-01 Fellowship Composer. On Friday, March 9, 2001 at 8:30 pm Ms Kim will be performing komungo and electric komungo solos, and Nong Rock for string quartet and komungo. The program will also feature "Quagmire", Ms. Kim's improvisational trio with experimental jazz greats William Parker on bass and Oliver Lake on saxophone.

On Thursday, April 19, 2001 at 8:30 pm, composer-pianist David Raksin will perform a Hollywood Cabaret, complete with reminiscences about the heydays of the Hollywood Studios. Best known for his film scores such as Laura, Forever Amber, Force Of Evil, Carrie, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, The Bad And The Beautiful, and more than 300 television shows, Raksin, at 88 years old, is now the grand old man of Hollywood music. Special guests include Francis Thorne and Ronny Whyte.

Tickets & Info:

Admission for each performance in the "Composers Out Front" series is $20, and seating is limited. Tickets to these events at Joe's Pub, located at 425 Lafayette Street (between East 4th Street and Astor Place), can be purchased at The Public Theater box office Tuesday-Saturday from 1:00pm to 7:30pm; Sunday and Monday from 1:00pm to 6:00pm or via Tele-charge, 212-239-6200, or online at

Major support of the American Composers Orchestra is from Alliance Capital Management L.P., Americans for the Arts, Mr. Thomas Buckner, the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, Booth Ferris Foundation, Citigroup Foundation, The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, Eleanor Naylor Dana Charitable Trust, Jean and Louis Dreyfus Foundation, Fidelity Foundation, Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Greenwall Foundation, Christian Humann Foundation, Meet The Composer, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, J.P. Morgan & Co., New York Foundation for the Arts, New York Times Co. Foundation, Virgil Thomson Foundation, and the Helen F. Whitaker Fund. ACO programs are also made possible with public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. ACO's "Coming to America: Immigrant Sounds/Immigrant Voices" project is supported by the Animating Democracy Initiative, a program of Americans for the Arts funded by the Ford Foundation.

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