German composer Sven Daigger wins Earplay Donald Aird Memorial Competition
On May 10, 2012 young and aspiring German composer Sven Daigger was honored at Herbst theater during the San Francisco International Arts Festival as the winner of the 2011 Earplay Donald Aird Memorial Competition. His composition, "Strom", a quartet for flute, clarinet, cello, and piano was performed by Earplay artists around well-known conductor Mary Chun. "Strom" was selected from 202 entries from 34 countries by a panel of composers and performers specializing in contemporary chamber music. Besides "Strom", works of Richard Felciano, Morton Feldman, and Joan Huang were performed.
The evening full of energy, rhythm, and musical surprises started off with a panel discussion in which Mr. Felciano, Mrs. Huang, and Mr. Daigger engaged in an inspiring talk about their thoughts on music and composition, their composing processes, and the value of cross-cultural collaboration in their field of work. Subsequently, the audience was treated to Felciano's "Lontano", Feldman's "Spring of Chosroes", Daigger's "Strom", and Huang's "Along the River During the Qingming Festival" before being given the opportunity to meet the artists at a post-show reception.
28 year old Mr. Daigger studied composition with Prof. Peter Manfred Wolf and music theory with Prof. Dr. Birger Petersen at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in Rostock. During his studies there, he composed works for various chamber ensembles and orchestra. In 2010 he took up studies with Prof Adriana Hölszky in Salzburg, Austria. Mr. Daigger has participated in masterclasses with Helmut Lachenmann, Martin Smolka, Beat Furrer, Friedhelm Döhl and Adriana Hölszky, and his compositions have been performed at a variety of European festivals, including the 2011 Salzburg Bienniale.
The Earplay Donald Aird Memorial Competition honors the late Donald Aird, a Bay Area composer, conductor, and Earplay board member, who actively supported the creation and performance of new works. It is currently in its 27th season.