Lee Weisert (Assistant Professor) is a composer of instrumental and electronic music and an assistant professor in the Music Department at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he teaches courses in composition, electronic music, and musicianship. Prior to his teaching position at UNC, he taught courses in music theory and ear training at Northwestern University. He has degrees in music composition from the University of Colorado (BM, 2000), California Institute of the Arts (MM, 2004), and Northwestern University (DM, 2010), where his primary composition instructors were James Tenney, Michael Pisaro, Jay Alan Yim, and Chris Mercer.
Some of Weisert’s current compositional interests include physical modeling, recursive structures, non-traditional performance techniques, and micro-montage. His recent music has incorporated increasingly disparate elements such as orchestral instruments, found sounds, field recordings, digital synthesis, and analog circuitry, in an attempt to find, “through experimentation, tinkering, and unconventional approaches, a ritualistic and deeply expressive world of sound” (Dan Lippel, New Focus Recordings). His instrumental music has been commissioned and performed by nationally recognized performers and ensembles, including Steve Schick and the red fish blue fish percussion ensemble, the Callithumpian Consort, the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), the JACK string quartet, Wild Rumpus, Matthew McClure, Clara Yang, and the 4racas Ensemble.
His electronic music has been presented at numerous national concerts and festivals, including SEAMUS (the Society for Electro-Acoustic Music in the United States, 2013), and the International Saxophone Symposium (2013). Along with composer Jonathon Kirk, he is a member of the Portable Acoustic Modification Laboratory (PAML), a collaborative sound installation team. PAML’s most recent project, Cryoacoustic Orb, uses underwater microphones to capture the sounds of ice melting from within several large spheres of ice. PAML has been invited to present their sound installation work at festivals and venues across the country, including the New Interfaces for Musical Expression festival (NIME, 2009 & 2011) and the International Computer Music Conference (ICMC, 2010). Lee and Jonathon recently presented their work at the 2104 TEDx Conference at UNC-Chapel Hill.
As a performer, Weisert frequently collaborates with Matthew McClure in their saxophone and live electronics ensemble M/W Duo. M/W Duo has performed their improvisations across the east coast and is currently working on their first studio recording. The group recently collaborated with the Durham-based dance troupe COMPANY on The Weights, a 45-minute multimedia production that performed three sold-out shows at the Carrack Modern Art Museum in Durham, NC.
Weisert’s compositions and sound installations have received grant funding from New Music USA, the Illinois Arts Council, the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in the Arts, and the UNC Performing Arts Special Activities Fund. His music is published by the Brooklyn-based new music label New Focus Recordings. Wild Arc, his debut CD of original compositions, was released in 2014, and has been praised by critics as “dazzling” and “mind-melting.” Wild Arc is available for purchase online from Amazon, iTunes, and the New Focus Recordings label site (http://www.newfocusrecordings.com).
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Film by Kazimierz Bendkowski
Music by Lee Weisert