The NHSO is commissioning and performing a brand new Symphony by composer Hannah Lash inspired by the mysterious Voynich Manuscript.
The NHSO is commissioning and performing a brand new Symphony by composer Hannah Lash inspired by the mysterious Voynich Manuscript. Read more
About this project
The New Haven Symphony Orchestra is embarking on a two year journey with Hannah Lash, the NHSO’s new Composer-in-Residence, as she writes her most monumental work of her career - a complete Symphony based on the mysterious Voynich Manuscript housed in Yale’s Beinecke Library.
The NHSO will premiere each of the Symphony's four movements over the course of two seasons, with the first movement, “Herbal,” premiered October 1, 2015 and the second movement, “Astronomical,” premiered on May 19, 2016 at Woolsey Hall in New Haven, CT. The third movement, "Biological," will be performed in the Fall of 2016 and the entire Symphony, including the fourth movement, "Cosmological," will be premiered in the Spring of 2017.
The Lash/Voynich Project’s defining feature will be the involvement and partnership of the Greater New Haven community and music lovers connected electronically across the globe in the working process and creation of this commission. Throughout the composition process, Lash will write and video blog about her progress on the piece and walk all of us through the creation of this brand new work.
The NHSO needs your help to produce and perform this entirely new piece of music. Artists need the support of their audience and community to create new work; most orchestras are not willing to take the risk of programming a piece that has never been heard before. At the NHSO we believe that new music and contemporary composers are the life blood of our art form. Please help the NHSO fund the future of classical music and donate to the Lash/Voynich Project!
About the Voynich Manuscript
Written in Central Europe at the end of the 15th or during the 16th century, the origin, language, and date of the Voynich Manuscript—named after the Polish-American antiquarian bookseller, Wilfrid M. Voynich, who acquired it in 1912—are still being debated, along with its puzzling drawings and undeciphered text. Described as a magical or scientific text, nearly every page contains botanical, figurative, and scientific drawings of a provincial but lively character, drawn in ink with vibrant washes in various shades of green, brown, yellow, blue, and red.
About the NHSO
As the fourth oldest orchestra in the US, the New Haven Symphony Orchestra continues to fulfill its mission of increasing the impact and value of orchestral music for its audiences through high quality, affordable performances and educational programming.
Dedicated to the performance of contemporary music, the NHSO has premiered eight works in the past eight years, has instituted a Composer-in-Residence program and the Young Composer’s Project, and was awarded the ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming in both 2010 and 2014.
The NHSO presents more than 55 concerts per season throughout the region and reaches more than 30,000 students through its award-winning educational and community programming. For more information, visit NewHavenSymphony.org.
About Hannah Lash
Hailed by the New York Times as “striking and resourceful…handsomely brooding,” Hannah Lash’s music has been performed at the Times Center in Manhattan, the Chicago Art Institute, Tanglewood Music Center, Harvard University, The Chelsea Art Museum, and on the American Opera Project’s stage in New York City. Commissions include The Fromm Foundation, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Alabama Symphony Orchestra, Carnegie Hall, Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, American Composers Orchestra, The Naumburg Foundation, The Orpheus Duo, The Howard Hanson Foundation’s Commissioning Fund, Case Western Reserve’s University Circle Wind Ensemble, MAYA, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, the Arditti Quartet, the Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival and the Aspen Music Festival and School, among many others.
Lash has received numerous honors and prizes, including the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award, a Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Fromm Foundation Commission, a fellowship from Yaddo Artist Colony, the Naumburg Prize in Composition, the Barnard Rogers Prize in Composition, the Bernard and Rose Sernoffsky Prize in Composition, and numerous academic awards.
Lash will follow in the footsteps of internationally-acclaimed American composers Augusta Read Thomas and Christopher Theofanidis as the third NHSO composer-in-residence.
Risks and challenges
We are committed to presenting this new piece of music whether or not we meet our Kickstarter target. We are confident that there are enough people out there who share our desire to create and perform new music to find a way to fund this project.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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