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Max Duykers

Brooklyn, NY      

Max Giteck Duykers is a composer whose work is dedicated to unusual beauty, unique forms, and collaborative processes.  He frequently incorporates technology in performance in a manner which gives the performers room for individual expression. A veteran of multidisciplinary performance, Duykers is also interested in reworking developmental processes for artists to find their collective “sweet spot” and produce work which is personal, confronting, and starkly beautiful.

Duykers was recently commissioned by The National Parks Service, New Music USA and the Jerome Foundation to create a chamber opera for tenor, soprano, baritone, electro-acoustic percussionist (performing on Buchla Instruments’ Marimba Lumina) and mixed ensemble with the Paul Dresher Ensemble.  Featuring a libretto by acclaimed playwright and filmmaker Philip Kan Gotanda, the piece is a comment on the internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII.  The piece will be premiered at Japanese-American Confinement Sites across the U.S. in 2019-20.

His numerous other commissions and premieres include the Avian Orchestra, The Stony Brook Symphony Orchestra, the Oakland Youth Orchestra, The Seattle Chamber Players, Third Angle New Music, The BEO String Quartet, The Glass Farm Ensemble, PUBLIQuartet, Iron Works on the Edge, Anti-Social Music, Trio Tara, The Poné Ensemble, The Stony Brook Contemporary Chamber Players, HERE Arts Center, PS122, La Mama ETC, Horizon Theater Rep., the Stony Brook Department of Theater Arts, and numerous individual performers.  Duykers’ Glass Blue Cleft was recently released by the Escher String Quartet on Bridge Records. Of the piece, Three Village Patch writes “[Glass Blue Cleft] is a piece for lovers of the string quartet, those amazed by how fiery and how dulcet these four-stringed instruments can range in expression.”  This and other pieces have been featured at music festivals throughout the U.S. and abroad, including the Seattle Chamber Players’ Icebreaker IV, curated by The New Yorker’s Alex Ross. 

Duykers is a founder and co-director of Ensemble Ipse, a contemporary music ensemble based in NYC, now in its third season, with several commissions and premieres. Ipse’s mission is to find common threads in works whose stylistic profiles appear, on the surface, as divergent.  The group presents recent music that transcends aesthetic categorization and strives to create a forum for composers on the edges of the mainstream of contemporary music. To this end, Ipse commissions and performs pieces that fall outside the practical confines of traditional concert resources, including works of long duration, multidisciplinary projects, collaboratively composed pieces, and pieces with unusual or non-standard instrumentation.

Duykers has also been commissioned to compose music for over 35 theatrical, dance, film, and multimedia projects in the New York City area.  With the theater group Prototype he was an artist-in-residence at HERE Arts Center in 2002-2004, and in 2000-2001 he worked for Philip Glass’ The Looking Glass Studios and Dunvagen Music Publishers, where he did studio recording, Pro-Tools post-production, music sequencing, music copying and music editing for the Philip Glass Ensemble, film scoring projects, and operatic works.  He received a BM from Oberlin Conservatory where he studied composition with Randy Coleman, and has recently completed his PhD at Stony Brook University where he studied with Sheila Silver.  At Stony Brook he was also honored with the 2012 Ackerman Award for Excellence in Music. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife Rebecca and sons Quinlan and Liev.

Folding Music

Ensemble Ipse premieres Max Giteck Duykers’ “Folding Music”
March 5th, 2017
Shapeshifter Lab, Brooklyn

Margaret Lancaster, flutes
Christa Van Alstine, clarinets
Esther Noh, violin
Caitlin Sullivan, cello
Stephen Gosling, piano
Matt Ward, percussion
Ben Grow, conductor

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Near and Hollow

Max Giteck Duykers – “Near and Hollow”
For violin and two MIDI foot controllers
Composed for Curtis Stewart

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Dark Body

Dark Body (2014) for flute, violin, cello, and piano.

Composed for and premiered by Margaret Lancaster, Esther Noh, John Popham, and Stephen Gosling.

Produced by the New York Composers Circle.

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