Interview with International Composer
May 11, 2011
Jeffrey James, International Composer
1. When did you first realize you were a composer?
It was a gradual process. I had the sense for many years that I wanted to be a musician, but I didn’t know what shape my musical life would take. I grew up playing the piano at the Peabody Preparatory, studied theory and musicology as a music major at Yale, and also pursued non-classical music in both high school and college, as a pianist and music director for musical theatre productions and as director of several a cappella singing groups. I think the latter activities - which involved a lot of behind-the-scenes creative work, particularly arranging music, as well as working with other musicians - made me feel that writing music would be a good fit. I began to compose towards the end of my undergraduate studies, and continued in earnest as a Master’s and Doctoral student at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, where I am on the composition and music theory faculty... Read More
In performance: Music of Judah E. Adashi
November 19, 2010
Megan Ihnen, SybariticSinger
Last night I nestled into the Children’s Department of the Enoch Pratt Free Library – Light Street Branch surrounded by murals featuring Elmo and posters espousing, “Let the reading rumpus start!” Chatting with various Federal Hill neighbors and Peabody past and present, I prepared myself for an evening of music by composer, Judah Adashi... Read More
An Interview with Judah Adashi
August 1, 2010
Tom Moore, 21st-Century Music
Judah Adashi (b. 1975) is the child of Israeli parents, but was born and raised in the United States. He teaches composition at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, where he is also founder and director of the Evolution Contemporary Music Series. He studied with Nicholas Maw and John Harbison. We spoke via Skype on March 12, 2010... Read More
Judah Adashi: Making Classical Hip
Claire R. Mullins, SoBo Voice
He defines ‘contemporary’classical as music produced within the last twenty or so years that has drawn inspiration and influence from other musical genres—including rock, jazz and reggae—as well as life and place. The role of place is something he pondered this past season as he directed a concert series entitled Evolution Contemporary Music Series at An Die Musik on North Charles Street: does location matter? Does the national or cultural origin of music still have influence in our increasingly virtual world?
The New Now
March 31, 2010
Lee Gardner, City Paper
Wind through the warren of gates, passages, buildings, and hallways that make up the city-block-sized Peabody Institute and you eventually find yourself in an office whose sparse decoration consists mostly of a set of fliers for the Evolution Contemporary Music series. It looks like a space barely used, perhaps because its occupant, Judah Adashi, is busy teaching composition and music theory at the conservatory, working on his Ph.D., curating and running the Evolution concerts, and working on his own compositions as well... Read More
Interview on WYPR
March 2, 2010
Tom Hall, WYPR
Judah Adashi teaches at the Peabody Institute and directs the Evolution Contemporary Music Series at An Die Musik in Baltimore. He talks to Tom Hall about the life and work of a contemporary composer. The Cantate Chamber Singers will perform Judah Adashi’s Elegiac Madrigals on Saturday night at St. John’s Norwood Parish on Wisconsin Avenue in Chevy Chase. The Evolution Contemporary Music Series will continue next Tuesday at An Die Musik. The program features music by recent winners of the prestigious Rome prize: Lisa Bielawa, Sebastian Currier and Pierre Jalbert. Listen
Review of Meditation: Three Episodes from William Styron’s Darkness Visible (2000)
February 14, 2005
Dan Salvage, Sequenza21
The second half of "Resonance" contains three works by composers who are all under forty. I particularly liked Adashi's "Meditation: Three Episodes from William Styron's 'Darkness Visible'." This is a very sensitive, tonal work in three short movements. The guitar writing may lack the bravura found in several other pieces on the album, but in its place Adashi gives Lippel the chance to sing out beautiful, delicate melodic lines. The chromatic inflections to the relatively traditional harmony are well felt and never sound cheap. Also welcome were the luxurious silences: these gave some well-deserved moments of reflection to what is a pretty intense CD.
Review of Suite: Eight Haiku by Richard Wright (2001)
May 1, 2004
David Cleary, New Music Connoisseur
Suite: Eight Haiku by Richard Wright (2001) finds its composer, Judah Adashi, capturing the subtle emotive nature of this Japanese poetic format in a non-vocal environment. Scored for violin/marimba duo, it’s a personable, engaging opus with enough serious undercurrents to impart depth. And despite nods to Messiaen and Stravinsky, the sonic universe sounds fully personal.
April 29, 2004
Stewart Oksenhorn, Aspen Times
For the past 10 days, award-winning composer Judah Adashi has been working with valley schoolchildren in the creation of classical music. At times the children have been baffled and overwhelmed as they faced the limitless choices of notes and rhythms, confronted failure, and tried to gain some grasp of the slippery, intimidating art of composition... Read More
Review of Elegiac Madrigals: Five Fragments by American Poets (1999/2010)
April 14, 2003
Joseph McLellan, Washington Post
[not available online]
Judah E. Adashi was present for the world premiere of his “Elegiac Madrigals: Five Fragments by American Poets” Saturday night at Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church. The performance, by the Cantate Chamber Singers under the direction of Gisele Becker, was part of Adashi's prize for winning Cantate's fourth Young Composers Contest. Born in 1975 and embarked on a promising career, Adashi, a native of Baltimore, is a teacher at the Peabody Conservatory and has a substantial list of works listed at his web site, www.judahadashi.com.
“Elegiac Madrigals,” using texts by Hart Crane, John Ashbery, Sam Shepard, E.E. Cummings and A.R. Ammons, is a series of muted but serene a cappella miniatures, composed with a fine sense of vocal textures and word values and an undertone of joy, although, like the other works chosen for this program, it is a meditation on death.