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News & Events

Splitting Adams fuses a podcast with an album


“Splitting

Alarm Will Sound has teamed up with New York Public Radio's Peabody Award-winning podcast Meet the Composer to create a new kind of album.

Splitting Adams fuses the powerful music of John Adams with the power of podcasts to dig deep and get personal. It does not separate stories about the music from the music itself. Instead, we’re having an on-the-album conversation with you about the music of John Adams while we play the music of John Adams. We’ve made—actually, we’ve composed the conversation to immerse us in Chamber Symphony and Son of Chamber Symphony. Through recorded interviews with the composer, performers, and a historian, we tell the story of the creation of these two seminal works, and of the struggle required to perform them. Then we perform them.

The trajectory from Chamber Symphony to Son of Chamber Symphony is perfect for this kind of total-immersion illumination. We hear John Adams rethinking his approach to composition, and we hear him reflecting on the journey he has made. Along the way, he pulls unexpected inspirations together and pulls Alarm Will Sound into his story. It’s a story just right for the podcast-plus-album we’ve created here.

Splitting Adams is conceived and realized by Nadia Sirota, Alex Overington, and Alan Pierson, the creative forces behind Meet the Composer and Alarm Will Sound.

Mizzou International Composers Festival


Alarm Will Sound returns to Columbia, MO for the 2017 Mizzou International Composers Festival. The Festival is known as a premier showcase for new works by top young composers, and will take place this year from Monday, July 24 through Saturday, July 29. Alarm Will Sound will present two performances.

For the first concert, AWS will present music from the 2017 MICF’s distinguished guest composers, Georg Friedrich Haas and Dan Visconti, as well as works by Robert Sirota, Don Freund, and Caleb Burhans.

The grand finale of the week will showcase the world premieres of eight new works written by the festival’s resident composers and performed by Alarm Will Sound at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, July 29 at the Missouri Theatre.

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Featured Recording

The Shaggs’ Philosophy of the World

Gavin Chuck, our Managing Director, arranged Philosophy of the World by The Shaggs, the girl band who never heard music before they began inventing their own from the ground up. The results are wonderfully strange—unlike anything else at the time or since—and strangely joyous.

Soundcloud logoVisit our Soundcloud for more recordings.

Member Spotlight

Michael Harley

Michael Harley

Mike grew up thinking he would be a doctor—his dad, grandpa, and uncles were all involved in biology. He didn’t start taking regular bassoon lessons until he was a sophomore in college, but he quickly realized he was more into music than science. Mike never imagined being in a group like Alarm Will Sound, but he says it’s his most enjoyable playing outlet.

Mike recently earned his DMA from the Eastman School of Music. He currently lives in South Carolina with his wife, Jennifer. It’s rare for musician couples to find jobs in the same city, let alone the same university, but Mike and Jennifer got lucky. They are teaching at the University of South Carolina and just started a flute/bassoon/piano trio along with Steven Aldredge. Mike stays busy with his two girls who seem to admire mom and dad’s musical talent. Ella has taken up the violin and Lucia likes the cello. Maybe a family band in the future?

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