August 18, 2014 - Celebrate World Music, a locally produced CD featuring original works by eight composers and 11 solo artists, was a winner in the 13th Independent Music Awards Vox Pop poll, the fan-determined portion of the prestigious international award program for independent artists. The music was presented at a world premiere concert at Benaroya Hall in Seattle, Wash., in 2013. Celebrate World Music was a winner in the Contemporary Classical category. A second IMA Vox Pop winner was Nan Avant, whose composition “Tributum” is part of the Celebrate World Music CD. “Tributum” was selected by popular vote as best Instrumental Song. The voting began in March when nominations were announced, and to date, more than 100,000 fans championed their favorite artists and albums.
Composers represented in the Celebrate World Music CD were: Nan Avant, Glenna Burmer, Catherine Grealish, Tim Huling, Todd Kovell, Lonnie Mardis, Eric Nielsen and Jason Staczek. All are Seattle-based musicians, except for Grealish (Los Angeles). Solo artists represented were: Kevin Auld, Eliot Grasso, James Howard and Danny Godinez, Greg Powers, Paul Beck, Shourangiz Pourahmadi, Chuck Deardorf, Tom Dziekonski and Arturo Rodriguez. The soloists were accompanied by the Northwest Sinfonia Orchestra, conducted by Grammy award-winner David Sabee. The CD for Celebrate World Music is available at CD Baby, iTunes and Amazon.com.
The Independent Music Awards cover a broad spectrum of today’s global independent music scene. More than 330 nominees in some 80 categories representing albums, songs, music videos and design were culled from thousands of submissions from around the globe. In addition to the “people’s choice” winners announced Aug. 12, a second set of winners was selected in May by a panel of artists and industry judges that included Ann and Nancy Wilson, Laurie Anderson, Suzanne Vega, Judy Collins, Tom Waits and Brandi Carlile, as well as industry representatives. As in the past, the popular winners often differed from those selected by the industry judges. More information at: http://www.independentmusicawards.com/ima/.
Celebrate World Music brought together eight composers who created original works for an instrument associated with a particular country or culture. The instruments included a stringed Persian tar, didgeridoo, bagpipes, Uilleann pipes, Flamenco guitar and cimbalom, among others. The concert was the brainchild of Glenna Burmer, president of Burmer Music and co-produced with Tim Huling of The Composition Lab. It followed in the footsteps of Symphonic Stories which had a world premiere in 2012 in Benaroya Hall. This year, Burmer Music commissioned three ballets— Dante’s Inferno, Demeter and Persephone, and Sacred and Profane —featuring original music, choreography and costumes, which premiered at Meydenbauer Center in February 2014.
“Music is a universal language,” says Burmer. “Although religion, politics and customs may differ, the love of music transcends boundaries. With these concerts, my goal is to bring Northwest artists into fresh, new and exciting collaborations. I am thrilled that this work is recognized by music lovers around the globe and by the Independent Music Awards.”
Called “an unexpected new presence in Seattle culture” by the Seattle Times, Burmer Music has several new productions in the works. They are Origins: Life and the Universe, juxtaposing music with dazzling images from outer space, produced in collaboration with the Departments of Astrobiology and Astronomy, University of Washington, to premiere in fall 2015, and Fashion 2500, a futuristic fashion runway show with original electronic dance music, scheduled for 2016.