2012 Venice Biennale interview
Hailed by New Yorker critic Alex Ross as “deeply haunting,” and chosen as one of the 30 composers under 40 by Orpheus Chamber Orchestra’s Project 440, Yotam Haber, was born in Holland and grew up in Israel, Nigeria, and Milwaukee. Haber received the 2007-2008 Frederic A. Juilliard/Walter Damrosch Rome Prize and resided at the American Academy in Rome for a year beginning in September 2007. He was the recipient of the 2005 Guggenheim, and commissioned by Pritzker Prize winning architect Peter Zumthor. He has received recent commissions from the Alabama Symphony, the American Composers Forum and the Jerome Composers Commissioning Program, Meet the Composer, and the Harvard Fromm Foundation.
He received a 2002 ASCAP Foundation Morton Gould Award for his chamber orchestra work, In Sleep a King, and another one in 2004 for his double clarinet quintet, Blur. In 2004, he also won the second bi-annual ASCAP/CBDNA Frederick Fennell Prize for the wind ensemble work, Espresso, which was performed at Carnegie Hall by Rutgers Wind Ensemble, directed by William Berz, and consequently recorded for release in the fall of 2006.
He has been a Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center (studying with George Benjamin and Osvaldo Golijov), the Aspen Music Festival (studies with Chris Rouse and Nicholas Maw), and been in residence at the Hermitage, the Aaron Copland House, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, Yaddo, and the Macdowell Colony (where he was the recipient of the first ASCAP Foundation Composer Fellowship); and has won fellowships to the Bellagio Rockefeller Foundation, Bogliasco and IRCAM. His music has been performed in Germany, Italy, Holland, and across the U.S.
Since 2010, Haber has served as Artistic Director of MATA, the non-profit organization, founded in 1996 by Philip Glass, Lisa Bielawa, and Eleonor Sandresky, dedicated to commissioning and presenting new works by young composers from around the world.
2013 promises new, exciting projects including the premiere of A more Convenient Season, a 70′ work for the Alabama Symphony; The Voice Imitator, a collaboration with visual artist and MacArthur Fellow Anna Schuleit; and a monograph CD of recent works recorded by GPR Records and distributed by NAXOS.
After attending Indiana University, studying with Eugene O’Brien and Claude Baker, he completed a doctorate in composition at Cornell University in 2004, under Roberto Sierra and Steven Stucky. He spent 2000 in Bologna, Italy, as part of the Course on Use of Live Electronics, taught by Alvise Vidolin (Luigi Nono’s sound engineer) and the composer Adriano Guarnieri.