Society for New Music

upcoming concerts

Sound Legends III: Libba Cotten
Saturday, December 5, 2020, 3:00 PM
Online, Anywhere
Online Access: $20 regular, $15 seniors (65+)/students (18+), free for ages 18 and under

The preview of a music theater work commissioned by SNM about musician Libba Cotten, famous for her alternating bass style, dubbed "Cotten-pickin." Libba spent the last 20 years of her life in Syracuse and won a Grammy at age 91. Scenes from the opera about the left-handed singer/songwriter who played the guitar and banjo upside-down and backwards will be performed, along with a conversation between librettist Kyle Bass and composer Mark Olivieri.

Given the increased risk of public gatherings during the pandemic, the performance will be virtual. All ticket holders will be emailed a link to experience the 'making of an opera' about this iconic African American legend.

Buy Tickets
For free youth online access, email

Sound Arts: Unsilent Night
Sunday, December 20, 2020, 5:00 PM
TBD, Syracuse
Online Access: $20 regular, $15 seniors (65+)/students (18+), free for ages 18 and under

Upstate NY premiere of this 1992 work by Ohio native Phil Kline. A luminous soundscape written to be heard outdoors during December in the form of a holiday caroling party with the audience as performers. Each participant gets one of four tracks of music to play on their favorite electronic device.

The location to gather in downtown Syracuse for this 45-60 minute promenade will be posted on the website.

past concerts

Sound Legends II: Blackmail
Sunday, November 8, 2020, 6:15 PM

A female take on Blackmail, the iconic 1929 silent film by Alfred Hitchcock, with original music by CNY singer/songwriter/composer Erin O'Hara. This video features SNM's second performance of the work, plus annotation provided by the composer and film scholar Julie Grossman, Dean at LeMoyne College.

If you already have an SNM season ticket, you will be emailed the link to the special channel. Film Festival ticket holders will also receive the link. Register here.

Musicians include Erin O’Hara, composer/vocals; Sonya Williams and Ann McIntyre, violins; Heidi Hoffman, cello; Darryl Pugh, doublebass; Ken Meyer, guitar; Rob Bridge, drum set; Travis Newton, conductor

Sound Legends I
Sunday, October 11, 2020, 3:00 PM
Online, Anywhere
Tickets: $20 regular, $15 seniors (65+)/students (18+), free for ages 18 and under

Featuring Eliot Fisk, guitar

Music by Persis Vehar, Augusta Read Thomas, Christopher Cresswell, and Israel Prize-winner Cheng Jin Koh. Plus, guest artist Eliot Fisk will perform music by Robert Beaser and George Rochberg.

American Music
Wednesday, July 29, 2020, 7:00 PM–8:00 PM
Lakeland Park Pavilion, Cazenovia
Tickets: Free

Program includes the world premiere of Persis Vehar's String Quartet No. 3, "Nature Walk", along with music by Vincent Persichetti, Mark Summer, Augusta Read Thomas, and John Corigliano.

Attendance at the park will be limited to 150. Masks and social distancing required. Events will be videotaped and available on SNM's YouTube channel.

Rising Stars Lunch Hour Program
Tuesday, July 28, 2020, 12:00 PM–1:00 PM
First Presbyterian Church, 27 Albany St., Cazenovia
Tickets: Free

Premieres of music by young composers by prize-winning young musicians. Zachary Slade, piano; Vita Marie Dean, flute; and Dominic Fiacco, organ, perform works by Alexandria Kemp, Kevin Swenson, and Emmanuel Sikora, plus the classics and American music.

To ensure that capacity stays within guidelines, there will be limited seating for this event with reservations needed. Email to reserve. Masks and social distancing will be required.

Events will be videotaped and available on SNM's YouTube channel.

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