Member Profile: Andrew McManus
Andrew McManus’ (b. 1985) orchestral work “Strobe”, premiered by the New York Philharmonic, was called “riveting” and “breathless…surging…hazy…sometimes all at once” by the New York Times. In 2014 he began “Neurosonics”, a long-term collaboration with University of Chicago neuroscientist, that creates electronic soundscapes using data from experiments used in the study of epilepsy. New Music USA funded the project’s second work, “pathways, bursting [neurosonics 2]” for string quartet and electronics, which places the Spektral Quartet amidst a sea of occasionally violent artificial sounds. “Embers, fused to ash”, for Alarm Will Sound, amalgamates Wagner’s “Magic Fire Music” with other fire-based imagery and timbres. His opera “Killing the Goat”, based on the novel “La Fiesta del Chivo” (“The Feast of the Goat”) by Mario Vargas Llosa, describes its Dominican setting through references to the dance idioms of bachata and merengue as it follows a woman confronting her traumatic memories of the Trujillo regime. He is a 2018 recipient of an Aaron Copland House Residency Award, as well as a residency with the Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts. Other ensembles and festivals that have featured his work include eighth blackbird, the Pacifica Quartet, Fort Worth Opera, the Aspen Music Festival, SPLICE Institute, New York Youth Symphony, Wellesley Composers Conference, and the Minnesota Orchestra. He is based in Chicago.