Athenaeum San Diego New Music Concerts

San Diego New Music Concerts



Friday, April 27, 2018

All concerts begin at 7:30PM


Curated by Madelyn Byrne

Featuring pianist Shiau-uen Ding and oboist Sarah Skuster


Connections is a concert featuring new music by living female composers, curated by longtime San Diegan, Madelyn Byrne. The program features pianist Shiau-uen Ding performing the bulk of the repertoire with special guest oboist, Sarah Skuster of the San Diego Symphony. For our April 27th concert, we explore “connections” as the hopeful side of transit's Janus-faced concept. This unique, piano-focused program connects the colorful diversity of sounds, styles, and ideas found in these selections.


When we think of being “in transit,” we often think of distance or displacement, of being uprooted or unsettled. The frenetic energy of constant motion tinges our atmosphere with a haze of anxiety. The melancholia of displacement evokes alienation. And yet, the paradox of “transit” is that it disrupts, but it also connects us: transit shrinks the expanses that lie between ourselves and others, and cultivates within us the capacity to traverse cultural distances. It breeds familiarity, forges kinship that stretches across formerly-impossible distances, and launches the creative imagination past the limits of our own assumptions.


About Connections, Byrne says, “This program, Connections, features music by composers that Ms. Ding feels a profound connection with, even though they may live far apart. Many of the featured composers juggle the responsibilities of motherhood, jobs, and spouses/partners while actively pursuing their compositional careers. In these endeavors, they have extended their support and friendship towards each other. Madelyn Byrne and Shiau-uen Ding have known each other and have worked together more than a decade, and Madelyn has written a new Piano Sonata for Ms. Ding which will be performed this evening.”


A native of Taiwan, pianist Shiau-uen Ding is an energetic performer of traditional and contemporary repertoire based in New York. She was called a "daredevil" by The New York Times for her performance at Bang on a Can Marathon and "a powerful force on the new music scene" by Array for her performance at Spark Festival in Minneapolis. She directed and co-founded NeXT Ens, the first chamber ensemble in the US performing solely electroacoustic music with national recognition. She has collaborated with internationally renowned performers and composers, including Steve Reich, Michael Kugel, George Tsontakis, and Moritz Eggert.



Madelyn Byrne, Piano Sonata

Dorothy Chang, Five

Emily Doolittle, Gliese 581c

Emily Doolittle, select pieces from Minute Etudes Book 1 & Book 2

Kala Pierson, Flare and Spark

Tonia Ko, Highwire (West coast premiere), with special guest Sarah Skuster, oboe


Athenaeum Music & Arts Library

Joan and Irwin Jacobs Music Room

1008 Wall Street

La Jolla, CA 92037


Individual Tickets:
$20 members/$25 nonmembers/$5 students 



San Diego New Music is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the public performance of notated music of the highest integrity and artistic caliber from the 20th and 21st centuries. We seek to advance the art form by promoting music composed with conceptual rigor, passionate energy and singular artistic vision. SDNM enriches the artistic culture of San Diego through the presentation of an annual concert series and the soundON Festival of Modern Music, and through fostering its resident performing ensemble, NOISE.


In 1994, the only place in San Diego where you could hear an entire concert of 20th-century music was on a college campus. San Diego New Music pitched the idea of a concert series devoted to modern music and 20th-century classics at the Athenaeum. The concerts of modern music perfectly complement the exhibitions of modern art held in the Athenaeum’s galleries. In 1996, San Diego New Music presented its first season. The series was called "Noise at the Library," and the ensemble would later adopt the name, as well.


San Diego New Music and the Athenaeum have been happily co-presenting concerts of new music ever since.


For more information on the organization go to



Online tickets are subject to ticketing fees.