Awakening - Jeremy Howard Beck - Guidonian Hand

by Jeremy Howard Beck - Guidonian Hand Trombone Quartet

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Jeremy Howard Beck's "Awakening" was composed in 2009 and premiered at the Juilliard School in New York City in April 2010. In 2011, Beck was honored with an ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award for the score and scratch sightread rehearsal recording made by the quartet. This marks the debut commercial release of "Awakening".

Each movement is based on one of four different shofar calls, the Tekiah (Blast), Shevarim (Broken), Teruah (Alarm), and Tekiah Gedolah (Big Blast). The music reflects Beck's reaction to the passage of Proposition 8 in California and, in his words, “exists somewhere between protest chant and liturgical calls, an equal mix of joy and outrage, belonging and alienation. The word 'awakening' means to me that we can never go back to the way things were.”

"Awakening" was recorded in surround sound on March 9, 2011 in the Greenfield Recital Hall at the Manhattan School of Music.


For Jeremy Howard Beck, writing music is an integral, urgent part of a life lived in search of extremes, adventures, and adrenaline––lifelong passions for roller coasters and gymnastics have lent his music intense, visceral physicality and emotional immediacy. His music has recently been presented at the Bang on a Can Summer Festival at MASSMoCA, the International Trombone Festival, the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, and New York venues Galapagos Art Space, The Tank and the Gershwin Hotel.

He is the recipient of a 2011 ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award, and his first symphony, Metropolis, was awarded Honorable Mention in the 2010 ASCAP/CBDNA Frederick Fennell Prize competition. An active performing trombonist in the DETOUR New Music Ensemble and the Chelsea Symphony, he has been commissioned to write works for both groups, and is the first Composer-in-Residence of the Guidonian Hand trombone quartet.

Jeremy holds degrees from The Juilliard School (MM, ’10), where he studied with John Corigliano and Christopher Rouse, and NYU (BM, ’07), where he studied with Mark Adamo and Deniz Hughes.


Acclaimed by the New York Times for their “expertly played” performances displaying “meaty lower brass textures,” the Guidonian Hand is America’s leading modern trombone collective.

Tireless advocates for contemporary music, this adventurous ensemble collaborates frequently with living composers, bringing to life compelling new works. They have commissioned over a dozen new works and received grants from organizations such as Chamber Music America, the Barlow Foundation, and New Music USA (formerly Meet the Composer). The Hand has premiered works by Eve Beglarian, Rob Deemer, Conrad Winslow, J. Mark Stambaugh, Galen Brown, and Jeremy Howard Beck. Current commissions include pieces by Mary Ellen Childs, Max Seigel, Christian Gentry, Tim Hanson, Ryan Carter and Alan Ferber.

An exhilarating addition to New York’s vibrant music scene, the Hand has performed extensively in the New York metropolitan area at such venues as the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society, River to River Festival, Le Poisson Rouge, The Stone, The Juilliard School, Galapagos Art Space, Roulette, Manhattan School of Music, The Tank, Mannes College of Music, New York University, the Bang on a Can Marathon, and the Tribeca New Music Festival. They appeared as featured guest artists at the International Trombone Festival and at the Eastern Trombone Workshop. Upcoming engagements include concerts in California, Arizona, West Virginia, and New York.

The Hand is passionate about creating original performance experiences that blend music with other art forms such as film, dance, theatre and spoken word. The quartet collaborated with composer Jonathan Bepler, contributing material to the soundtrack for Matthew Barney’s new film River of Fundament. Continuing its collaboration with Bepler for the River to River Festival, the Guidonian Hand provided music for “The Set Up” by choreographer Wally Cordona. Other multimedia projects include Eve Beglarian’s River Project and MADArt’s Morphing Me. Past concerts paired new music with machines constructed by kinetic sculptor and MIT Artist-in-Residence Arthur Ganson

In addition to modern literature, the Guidonian Hand gives a fresh voice to classical repertoire, juxtaposing art music of the past with modern works. Programs frequently reflect eclectic and wide-ranging musical interests, from Bach to Mozart to Thelonius Monk to Jacob TV.

Members of the Hand have performed with diverse ensembles in New York City and across the country, including Ensemble ACJW, the Either/Or Ensemble, TILT Brass Ensemble, the Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society Big Band, the Shrine Big Band, Talea Ensemble, Signal Ensemble, Argento, Wet Ink, ACME, the Wordless Music Orchestra and numerous symphony orchestras including the Pittsburgh Opera, Utah Symphony, Verbier Festival Orchestra, Akron Symphony, New Hampshire Symphony, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Symphony in C, Canton Symphony, Albany Symphony and Vermont Symphony.

Dedicated to educating and inspiring young musicians, members of the Hand actively participate in community outreach and music education through such organizations as the New York Philharmonic, the American Composer’s Orchestra, Barge Music, the Bronx Charter School for the Arts, Kaufman Music Center, and Third Street Music School Settlement. They have also presented masterclasses at various colleges and universities including the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and West Chester University.

Originally hailing from California, New York, and Utah, the trombonists of the Hand now call New York City home. They hold graduate degrees from the Manhattan School of Music, the New England Conservatory, and the Royal Academy of Music (London).


released April 21, 2012

Tenor Trombones: Mark Broschinsky, William Lang, Sebastian Vera Bass Trombone: James Rogers.
Audio Engineer: Dustin Cicero
Producer: Max Seigel



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