SONiC Festival Curator
Praised as “one of the most exciting opera composers in the country”” (Washington Post), composer Kamala Sankaram moves freely between the worlds of experimental music and contemporary opera. Recent commissions include works for the Glimmerglass Festival, Washington National Opera, the PROTOTYPE Festival, and Creative Time, among others. Kamala is known for her operas fusing Indian classical music with the operatic form, including Thumbprint, A Rose, Monkey and Francine in the City of Tigers, and the forthcoming Jungle Book. Also known for her work pushing the boundaries of the operatic form, recent works include The Last Stand, a 10-hour opera created for the trees of Prospect Park, Brooklyn, Only You Will Recognize the Signal, a serial space opera performed live over the internet, Looking at You, a techno-noir featuring live datamining of the audience and a chorus of 25 singing tablet computers, all decisions will be made by consensus, a short absurdist opera performed live over Zoom, and The Parksville Murders, the world’s first virtual reality opera. Read More
As a performer, Kamala has been hailed as “an impassioned soprano with blazing high notes” (Wall Street Journal). A frequent collaborator with Anthony Braxton, she has premiered his operas Trillium E and Trillium J, as well as appearing on his 12-hour recording GTM (Syntax) 2017. Other notable collaborations include Meredith Monk’s Atlas with the LA Philharmonic, The Wooster Group’s LA DIDONE (Kaaitheater, Brussels, Edinburgh International Festival, Rotterdam Schouberg, Grand Théâtre de la Ville, Luxembourg, St. Anne’s Warehouse, NY, REDCAT, Los Angeles),and the PROTOTYPE Festival’s production of her composition THUMBPRINT (Baruch Performing Arts, NY, REDCAT, Los Angeles). Kamala is the leader of Bombay Rickey, an operatic Bollywood surf ensemble whose accolades include two awards for Best Eclectic Album from the Independent Music Awards, the 2018 Mid-Atlantic touring grant, and appearances on WFMU and NPR. Awards, grants and residencies: Jonathan Larson Award, NEA ArtWorks, MAP Fund, Opera America, HERE Artist Residency Program, the MacDowell Colony, and the Watermill Center.
Dr. Sankaram holds a PhD from the New School and is currently a member of the composition faculty at SUNY Purchase.
Communal Sing-In with Kamala Sankaram
Saturday, June 3, 2023 at 12:30pm
Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Music Center
Composer/singer Kamala Sankaram showcases an ongoing creative project in which the audience becomes integral participants in the music-making process. Celebrating ACO’s commitment to creativity, Sankaram has been developing an app to enable anyone to participate regardless of prior music experience or score reading ability. Come join this ever-evolving game-like work at this lunchtime concert presented by Merkin Hall.