Jody Diamond

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Jody Diamond in 2008

Jody Diamond (born Pasadena, California, April 23, 1953) is an American composer, performer, writer, publisher, editor, and educator. She specializes in traditional and new music for Indonesian gamelan and is active internationally as a scholar, performer, and publisher.

Biography[edit]

She received a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1977, and an M.A. from San Francisco State University in 1979, pursuing interdisciplinary studies in music, anthropology, and education.

Diamond founded (in 1981) and directs the American Gamelan Institute and edits its journal, Balungan. She is also a co-founder and co-director, with Larry Polansky, of Frog Peak Music (a composers' collective).

She received a Fulbright Senior Scholar Research Fellowship to survey contemporary music in Indonesia (1988–89), as well as two National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships for work on Indonesian composers (1991), and for work on the gamelan music of Lou Harrison (2007).

She has created numerous works for gamelan, some based on songs from various traditions. Her works have been performed internationally. She is often a guest composer/performer with Gamelan Son of Lion, notably for their participation in the Yogyakarta Gamelan Festival in 1996. She performed her own work in 1997 with Sapto Raharjo and Ben Pasaribu, and wrote an article for the Leonardo Music Journal with an epilogue by Sutanto on the "Yogyakarta Gamelan Festival 1997."

Diamond is an Artist in Residence in the Music Department of Harvard University, where she uses the instruments of Gamelan Si Betty, built by Lou Harrison and Wiliam Colvig, for collaborative projects and an open performance group Gamelan SiBetty and the Viewpoint Composers' Gamelan. At Dartmouth College in Hanover NH, she is a Senior Lecturer in AMES (Asian and Middle Eastern Studies) and Indonesian Gamelan Ensemble Director, for which she has used her own Javanese gadon," a chamber ensemble built by Tentrem Sarwanto of Surakarta in Central Java, as well as a Balinese Gamelan Angklung Sleeping Fox. She has also taught at the University of California, Berkeley, Mills College, Goddard College, Bates College, Franklin Pierce College, and Monash University in Australia.

Selected works[edit]

  • 1981 In that Bright World, voice, gamelan (based on Appalachian folk song)
  • 1982 Sabbath Bride, gamelan, 1982 (based on Hebrew melody)
  • 1984 Hard Times, chorus, violin, mandocello, gamelan (based on a Stephen Foster song)

Writings[edit]

Diamond, Jody (1990). "There is no They There." Musicworks, no. 47, pp. 12–23.

Recordings[edit]

  • In That Bright World: Music for Javanese Gamelan. Compositions by Diamond performed by the musicians of the Indonesian National Arts Institute in Surakarta, Central Java, called ISI Solo. Liner notes by Judith Becker can be downloaded at "In That Bright World". Produced by New World Records.

External links[edit]