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20th Anniversary MATA Festival

MATA Celebrates 20 years of cutting-edge music with our most expansive festival yet

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Two Decades of Fearless Listening: MATA Celebrates its 20th Anniversary

Posted on June 28, 2018 by Music at the Anthology, Inc. (MATA)

For three weeks in April, MATA presented new music in all its possibilities at its 20th Anniversary Festival.  MATA 2018 showcased 43 Emerging Composers, 12 World Premieres, 11 American Premieres, 5 New York Premieres, 3 MATA Festival Commissions from early-career composers, and 5 Alumni Commissions.  We presented 5 concerts at The Kitchen, a 20th Anniversary Gala, MATA Divine Mysteries, Nadia Botello’s Sono/Aqua at Imagine Swimming, and two sound installations at Project Q. We re-constructed and brought back Randy Hostetler’s P(l)aces after twenty years and showcased Mexico’s Liminar, Contemporaneous, Sandbox Percussion, and the Friends of MATA.   

“Everything was of our time.  Everything was of now.”
-I Care If You Listen

An “overwhelming avalanche of passion and creativity”
-Musical America

“…possibly the most radical work heard in New York this season.”
-New York Classical Review

Check out live video from the 2018 Festival above: Sarah Brailey and Blair McMillen premiere Nico Muhly’s “Time in Music is Much”, MATA Divine Mysteries, April 2nd, 2018, Church of the Epiphany, Yorkville, NYC 


In April 2018, MATA will celebrate its 20th Anniversary with its most expansive festival to date, featuring twelve events spread over eight locations throughout New York City. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Allan Kozinn remarked that the MATA Festival “tells us a lot about how composers are thinking” and taken in its entirety, MATA is a unique opportunity for audiences to grasp the complete spectrum of music being written by today’s composers: from gritty modernism to experiments in theater, sound, and acoustics.

At the core of MATA 2018 will be a one-week immersion (April 9-14) in the music of today with concerts held at New York’s legendary incubator of the avant-garde, The Kitchen, as well as at other locations. Surrounding this core will be additional events at venues throughout New York City, including  “MATA Divine Mysteries” centered around David Gordon’s Mysteria Incarnationis; a sound art installation at Project Q; and an immersive event set in and around a swimming pool. For this Festival, MATA has commissioned nine new works: in addition to three MATA commissions, six MATA alumni composers have written miniatures to celebrate MATA’s twenty years of presenting cutting-edge new music. In total, MATA will present more than 40 works, including a dozen world premieres and countless American premieres. Ensembles to be featured will include Mexico’s Liminar Ensemble, New York’s Contemporaneous, Sandbox Percussion, MATA’s resident all-star ensemble: the Friends of MATA, and a wide variety of leading new music soloists.

MATA sees itself as a professional listener, sorting through the incredible riches of today’s contemporary concert music landscape with the goal of presenting it to an interested public, and seeking out unaffiliated and under-recognized composers. Because of this, the majority of music programmed by MATA is found through combing through works received as a result of a free, online call for submissions from early career composers distributed worldwide through our mailing list, social media, and contact with individual influencers, composition programs, and composer organizations worldwide. For 2018, MATA received music from nearly 1100 composers from 69 countries, representing every inhabited continent. Each work was heard by at least two individuals.

Project Media

Kristina Wolfe: Record of Ancient Mirrors (LIve at MATA 2017)
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This is Kristina Wolfe’s “Record of Ancient Mirrors,” performed by NOVUS NY at the 2017 MATA Festival at The Kitchen. Wolfe was commissioned to write this work for MATA Festival 2017. It is an example of the breadth and quality of performance at our events.

Ruben Naeff: The Non-Valvular Structure of the Whale’s Blood-Vessels
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This is a performance of Ruben Naeff’s “The Non-Valvular Structure of the Whale’s Blood-Vessels” the sixth movement of the collaborative concert work “Moby Dick: Extracts on Death and Other Curiosities,” performed by Contemporaneous and presented by MATA as Interval 7.2 on February 21, 2014.

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New York, New York

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Last update on June 28, 2018

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New York, New York
Founded in 1996 by Philip Glass, Lisa Bielawa, and Eleonor Sandresky, MATA’s mission is to present, support, and commission the music of emerging composers, regardless of style or aesthetic practice. One of America’s leading presenters of new-music and the only devoted solely to the music of early career composers, MATA presents an internationally-recognized festival each…

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Mexico City, MEXICO
Performing Ensemble
New York, New York
New York, New York


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