Paola Prestini / Founder & Composer
Compositions by Paola Prestini have been called “radiant…[and] amorously evocative.” by The New York Times. Paola Prestini is a composer, director and a co-founder of VisionIntoArt, an interdisciplinary collective/production company that has created over fifty multimedia productions worldwide and garnered the title “Best of 2009″ in classical and opera performances by TimeOut NY. VisionIntoArt has been called “always intriguing and frequently beguiling…” by the New York Times. Paola Prestini’s 2009 Tzadik release Body Maps has been featured on WQXR and Q2 and showcases new music’s great soloists. She has been commissioned and performed by ensembles such as New York City Opera, Ensemble ACJW, the Kronos Quartet, ETHEL, Carnegie Hall, WNYC, Concert Artist Guild, and by soloists such as vocalists Hila Plitmann and Helga Davis, violinist Cornelius Dufallo, and cellist Jeffrey Zeigler in venues and festivals ranging from Zankel Hall, Bam Cafe, The Whitney Live, Joe’s Pub, and the Stone in NY, to Catania’s Etnafest, Milano’s Teatro Manzoni and BEMUS in Belgrade, Serbia.
Paola Prestini’s passion for producing and directing led Paola Prestini to found VisionIntoArt in 1999; since then she has commissioned some of the most exciting emerging artists working in collaborations across disciplines. Paola Prestini has curated festivals at the Stone and Galapagos Art Space, and has published articles for Arcana III, and New Music Box.
Paola Prestini’s current projects include Spell, for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Music Now series; A Degree of Difference: a residency at the Krannert Center; a new work for cellist Maya Beiser and visual artist Erika Harrsch; De Deoa new opera with librettist Donna Di Novelli that will inaugurate New York City Opera’s Word First Program; YOANI, a new chamber opera with lyricist Royce Vavrek that tells the life of Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez, An Aging Magician, a multimedia song cycle with text by Jonathan Safran Foer starring Rinde Eckert and ACME that will premiere on 21c Liederabend at the Kitchen April 7-9, 2011; and House of Solitude: a Poet’s Labyrinth, written for violinist Cornelius Dufallo with electronics, film and KBOW, which will premiere at CSUF New Music Festival: Strings in the 21st Century on March 4, 2011. A graduate of the Juillard School, she has received numerous awards from NYSCA, ASCAP and LMCC. Paola is a Paul and Daisy Soros fellow, and a 2010 Sundance Fellow.
Ms. Prestini has directed education programs, taught and created curricula for the American Composers Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the New York City Opera, and the American Symphony Orchestra League, and is an advocate for music education in schools. She directs Young Visionaries, an orchestral music and technology program that reaches inner-city high school students at Brandeis High School in Manhattan. Young Visionaries is a VisionIntoArt education program in partnership with Young Audiences NY. Paola Prestini was also the Associate Director of the prestigious composition program: Making Score, of the New York Youth Symphony from 2008-2010.
Ms. Prestini has been included in ASCAP’s Thru the Walls series at the Cutting Room and has been featured in composition residencies at Dickinson College with the Corigliano String Quartet, North Carolina School of the Arts, and at UCLA. She has written for film and theater extensively, and has been a featured film composer and conductor on CNN for the ASCAP film Composers workshop. Her film collaborations have made the New York Times Critic’s Pick, and have won first prize and made official selection at the Sundance Film Festival and Austin Film Festival, among others. Other prizes and commissions include grants from the American Music Center, ASCAP, BMI Fund, two Individual Artist grants from NYSCA, a residency at the Ucross Foundation, a Monumental Brass Quintet’s Women’s Commissioning Project, an ASCAP Morton Gould Composers Award, and a commissioned dance score for St. Marks Danspace Repertory season. Her orchestra work was selected by the American Composers Orchestra’s (ACO) for the Whitaker Reading Sessions; her music has been performed by the New York Concert Singers in the ACO’s Immigrant Voices series, the Juilliard Orchestra conducted by Jeffrey Milarsky, after winning the Composers Competition, and by members of the NY Philharmonic, and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra in Edinburgh, Scotland. Paola Prestini received her BM and MM at the Juilliard School and has studied with Samuel Adler, Robert Beaser, and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies.
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