Conductor Jeffrey Milarsky Leads the Juilliard Orchestra in Annual Evening of World Premieres by Juilliard Student Composers on Monday, February 25 at 8 PM in Juilliard's Peter Jay Sharp Theater


Four New Works for Orchestra by Stefan Cwik, Yuri Boguinia, Paul Frucht, and Peng-Peng Gong

Start Date

Friday, January 25, 2013

Press Release Images

Stefa Cwik (Photo by Eric Lesch)
Stefa Cwik (Photo by Eric Lesch)
Yuri Boguinia
Yuri Boguinia
Paul Frucht
Paul Frucht
Peng-Peng Gong
Peng-Peng Gong
Jeffrey Milarsky
Jeffrey Milarsky


Conductor Jeffrey Milarsky leads the Juilliard Orchestra in the School’s annual evening of world premieres by Juilliard student composers on Monday, February 25 at 8 PM in Juilliard’s Peter Jay Sharp Theater. The program features four new works for orchestra, all composed in 2012: Stefan Cwik’s The Illusionist; Yuri Boguinia’s Margarita at the Ball; Paul Frucht’s Relic (winner of the Arthur Friedman Prize); and Peng-Peng Gong’s Death of the Honeybees – Suite No. 1 from the Two-Act Ballet. Stefan Cwik is in the master of music degree program and studies with John Corigliano. Yuri Boguinia is a third-year undergraduate studying with Christopher Rouse. Paul Frucht is in the master of music degree program and studies with Robert Beaser. Peng-Peng Gong is in the bachelor of music program and is a student of Samuel Adler.

FREE tickets will be available beginning February 11 at the Janet and Leonard Kramer Box Office located at Juilliard, 155 West 65th Street. Box Office hours are Monday through Friday from 11 AM – 6 PM. For further information, call the Juilliard Box Office at (212) 769-7406 or visit the Web site at events.juilliard.edu.

Each year, two outside judges, who are respected professional composers and whose identity is kept confidential, select four winning works from the 10-15 scores they receive. The main restriction is that the piece must not have received a public performance prior to the date of the concert. The winners are then selected for this annual Juilliard Orchestra concert, conducted by Jeffrey Milarsky.

Stefan Cwik says his new work, The Illusionist, “is a tone poem for orchestra that is meant to illustrate the theatrical prowess and awe of a master illusionist. In order to represent this musically, the piece needed to be designed in a way that there was an ‘entity’ behind the progression of the music. It was also necessary that this ‘entity’ create a collage of musical ideas that combine to make a theatrical experience. The form and use of instruments in the piece are designed around this idea.”

Stefan Cwik is in the master of music degree program and studies with John Corigliano. He recently attended the European American Musical Alliance summer program in Paris and studied with French composer Michel Merlet and composer and Juilliard faculty member Philip Lasser. Mr. Cwik was chosen as a winner of the 2011 Juilliard Orchestral Composition Competition, and his work, Terpsichore, was premiered and recorded by the Juilliard Orchestra, conducted by Jeffrey Milarsky. In 2009, Mr. Cwik had the privilege of collaborating with Symphony Parnassus and Music Director Stephen Paulson and principal bassoonist for the San Francisco Symphony. His orchestral work, Concert Dances for Orchestra, was premiered by the ensemble at Herbst Theatre in San Francisco. In their 2010-11 season, Symphony Parnassus premiered Mr. Cwik’s Concerto for Piano and Orchestra with pianist Scott Foglesong as the soloist. His Eight Miniatures was premiered at the 2011 International Double Reed Society Conference and is now published by TrevCo Publishing. Mr. Cwik began his studies in composition with composer/guitarist Dusan Bogdanovic at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He then studied for a short time with David Garner, also at SFCM. He finished his undergraduate studies in composition at SFCM studying with David Conte. Mr. Cwik is a member of ASCAP. For more information, visit www.stefancwik.com.

Yuri Boguinia’s work was sparked by a passage about the Devil’s Ball from Russian writer and playwright Mikhail Bulgakov’s 1937 novel, The Master and Margarita.

Yuri Boguinia was born in Stavropol, Russia and immigrated to the United States to develop his skills as a composer, pianist, and violinist. He is a third-year undergraduate student at Juilliard and studies composition with Christopher Rouse. For the last two years, he worked with Samuel Adler at Juilliard. He is a teaching fellow at Juilliard in music theory. Mr. Boguinia was awarded a Concert Fellowship in 2011 and the Arts Enrichment Fellowship this year, which have given him the opportunity to teach music in East Harlem and Bronx middle schools. Prior to coming to Juilliard, Mr. Boguinia studied composition at Colorado University in Boulder with Dr. Daniel Kellogg and violin with the first violinist of the Moscow String Quartet, Eugenia Alikhanova. He attended Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan where he studied composition with Dr. John Boyle. He was awarded the 2011 ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award in the senior division, and the 2008 and 2009 ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Awards in the younger division. Mr. Boguinia has been commissioned by the Mannheim School of Music, the Longmont Symphony Orchestra, the Boulder Youth Symphony Orchestra, and others.

Paul Frucht was studying harmony and counterpoint at the time he was beginning to conceive his piece, Relic. He writes: “I began to find myself fascinated with the triad as one of the most, if not the most important harmonic formation in Western music after the 16th century. As I learned how the triad came to be, out of contrapuntal rules relating to consonances and dissonances, I found it astonishing how far the triad had come and how it has survived through all of the periods of harmonic innovation throughout the past 400+ years…This piece is my contribution to what can be done with the ‘simple’ triad.”

Paul Frucht, originally from Danbury, Connecticut, is in the second year of the master of music degree program in composition at Juilliard where he studies composition with Robert Beaser. In May 2011, he graduated magna cum laude from NYU’s Steinhardt School with a bachelor of music degree in composition, studying with Justin Dello Joio and an instrumental concentration in classical percussion, studying with Jonathan Haas and Simon Boyar. In February 2012, his orchestral work, Penumbra, was selected as a winning composition with the San Diego Symphony Earshot readings competition. His piece was read and performed by the San Diego Symphony in Copley Symphony Hall in April, led by guest conductor James Feddeck. His work has been performed at Merkin Concert Hall, the Aspen Music Festival, Fredrick Loewe Theatre, La Schola Cantorum in France, and in Juilliard’s Paul Hall. Mr. Frucht’s music has been commissioned and performed by Altius Winds, Node Contemporary Music, PULSE New Music, and the NYU Symphony Orchestra, among others.

Peng-Peng Gong composed his orchestral suite, Death of the Honeybees – Suite No. 1 from the Two-Act Ballet. He writes: “The story of the ballet is based on the tragic fairy tale by Chinese novelist He Shu-kun, about the sentimental voyage of a schoolboy who befriends a honeybee after rescuing a honeycomb from an insect lab, and how his miniature friends were later killed in order to protect him from their rival species. Five pieces from the ballet score were selected for the First Suite, lasting about 15 minutes. The suite opens with the City Scenes and the Dance of the Boy, which also forms the opening scene for the ballet itself. The middle section consists of The Blue-Eyed Awakening, and the Pas de Deux, both from the ballet’s first act. The title of the third dance, The Blue-Eyed Awakening, refers to the story’s main heroine, a beautiful blue-eyed honeybee who was rescued from the lab. The title for the final dance, the Dance of the Killers, refers to the killer bees who massacred the honeycomb.

Peng-Peng Gong was born in 1992 in Nanjing, China. At an early age he demonstrated an intense sensitivity and strong talent for music. He began studying piano performance at the age of five with instructor Hui-fang Ye. Accepted by the Shanghai Music Conservatory Primary School at the age of nine, he continued his studies with pianists Jian-zhong Wang and Zhijue Chao. It was during this period that Mr. Gong won several major piano competitions in his native country. Subsequently he was accepted by The Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division, and is currently enrolled as an undergraduate student. At Juilliard, he has worked with pianist Yoheved Kaplinsky, composers Andrew Thomas and Samuel Adler, and conductor Adam Glaser.

In 2006, Mr. Gong performed Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 as part of Juilliard’s Centennial Gala, John Williams conducting. He also performed a solo recital at the Louvre Museum in Paris. Soon thereafter, Mr. Gong signed to the roster of Opus 3 Artists (formerly ICM Artists), and participated in numerous solo and concerto engagements in the North America, South America, Europe, and China. Most notably, he appeared as guest soloist with the Nashville Symphony and Leonard Slatkin at the 2007 American Symphony Orchestra League annual conference. He joined forces again with Slatkin again at National Symphony’s 2007 opening season gala. Past orchestral engagements include the San Francisco Symphony, Detroit Symphony, National Symphony (Washington, D.C.), China National Symphony, Brazilian Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony of the Dominican Republic, and RTV Slovenia Symphony, among many others. Mr. Gong has toured his native country of China both in recital and concerto engagements. Most recently, he performed Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with the China National Symphony.

Mr. Gong’s musical passion also extends to composing. At age 16, he completed his one-hour First Symphony dedicated to the victims of the 2008 Sichuan Great Earthquake, followed by his epic and biblical Second Symphony, along with three piano concertos, orchestral overtures, chamber music, lieder, and solo piano repertoire. Those works are distributed by Hal Leonard and published by Lauren Keiser Music Publishing. Mr. Gong is a member of ASCAP, and has been awarded a Morton Gould Young Composer Award annually since 2005. His style takes root from post-romanticism and ethnomusicology. He is also involved in educational outreach which has recently included lectures on Mahler Symphonies at Beijing’s National Performing Arts Center.

Juilliard has presented past premieres at the annual spring concert by composers Mason Bates, Kenji Bunch, Jefferson Friedman, Nico Muhly, and Sean Shepherd. Juilliard continues to provide a strong education in composition; bachelor, master and doctoral degree programs are offered in composition. The current members of Juilliard’s composition faculty are Samuel Adler, Robert Beaser, John Corigliano, and Christopher Rouse. Alumni of the composition program include: Bruce Adolphe, Mason Bates, Kenji Bunch, Sebastian Currier, Richard Danielpour, Norman Dello Joio, Philip Glass, Laura Karpman, Lowell Liebermann, Nico Muhly, Steve Reich, Richard Rodgers, Ned Rorem, Huang Ruo, Peter Schickele, Conrad Susa, and Ellen Zwilich.

About Conductor Jeffrey Milarsky

American conductor Jeffrey Milarsky is on the conducting faculty of Juilliard and is music director of Juilliard’s AXIOM. Known for his innovative programming, and a command of wide-ranging repertoire, spanning from Bach to Xenakis, Mr. Milarsky has led such groups as the American Composers Orchestra, MET Chamber Ensemble, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Milwaukee Symphony, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, New World Symphony, New York Philharmonic chamber music series, and the San Francisco Symphony. In the United States and abroad, he has premiered and recorded works by groundbreaking contemporary composers, including Charles Wuorinen, Fred Lerdahl, Milton Babbitt, Elliott Carter, Gerard Grisey, Jonathan Dawe, Tristan Murail, Ralph Shapey, Luigi Nono, Mario Davidovsky, and Wolfgang Rihm. Mr. Milarsky is senior lecturer in music at Columbia University, where he is the music director and conductor of the Columbia University Orchestra.

Mr. Milarsky continues his relationship with the Los Angeles Philharmonic where he has conducted for the last two seasons. He also is scheduled to conduct concerts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at Walt Disney Concert Hall in 2013-2014. This past season Mr. Milarsky conducted the San Francisco Symphony in San Francisco, Michigan, and at Carnegie Hall. In addition to Los Angeles and San Francisco, he will conduct in Norway, Italy, and Paris in the 2012-2013 season. Mr. Milarsky appears regularly at Carnegie Hall with the American Composers Orchestra, and also recently performed at IRCAM in Paris, conducting and recording compositions by Joshua Fineberg and Tristan Murail.

A highly sought-after timpanist and percussionist, Mr. Milarsky has performed and recorded with the New York Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, among other ensembles.  In addition, Mr. Milarsky was named the principal timpanist for the Santa Fe Opera beginning in the summer of 2005. He has recorded extensively for Angel, Bridge, Teldec, Telarc, New World, CRI, MusicMasters, EMI, Koch, and London records. Mr. Milarsky received his bachelor and master of music degrees from The Juilliard School. Upon graduation, he was awarded the Peter Mennin Prize for outstanding leadership and achievement in the arts.

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Monday, February 25, 8 PM, Juilliard's Peter Jay Sharp Theater

Juilliard Orchestra

Jeffrey Milarsky, conductor

Four World Premiere Works by Juilliard Student Composers

All Works Composed in 2012


PAUL FRUCHT Relic (Arthur Friedman Prize recipient)

YURI BOGUINIA Margarita at the Ball

STEFAN CWIK The Illusionist

PENG-PENG GONG Death of the Honeybees – Suite No. 1 from the Two-Act Ballet


FREE tickets will be available beginning February 11 at the Janet and Leonard Kramer Box Office located at Juilliard, 155 West 65th Street. Box Office hours are Monday through Friday from 11 AM – 6 PM. For further information, call the Juilliard Box Office at (212) 769-7406 or visit the Web site at events.juilliard.edu.