Clarice Assad

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Clarice Assad
Clarice assad.jpg
Background information
Birth nameClarice Vasconcelos da Cunha Assad Simão
Born (1978-02-09) February 9, 1978 (age 40)
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
GenresJazz, classical, pop, world
Occupation(s)Singer, composer, orchestrator, arranger
Years active1996–present
LabelsAdventure Music
Associated actsNadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Yo Yo Ma, Evelyn Glennie, Leon Wang, Marin Alsop, Keita Ogawa

Clarice Assad is a Brazilian-American composer, pianist, arranger and singer from Rio de Janeiro. She is influenced by popular Brazilian culture, Romanticism, world music and Jazz, and is one of the most widely performed Brazilian concert music composers of her generation.

She comes from a musical family, which includes her father, guitarist Sergio Assad, her uncle, guitarist Odair Assad, and her aunt, singer songwriter Badi Assad.

Assad has performed professionally since the age of seven. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Roosevelt University in Chicago and a master's degree in Composition from the University of Michigan. She is a 2009 Latin Grammy nominee.[1]

Early Years[edit]

Born in Campo Grande, a modest suburb in the west portion of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Assad is the first daughter of musician Sergio Assad and school teacher Celia Maria Vasconcelos da Cunha, who named her child after the late Brazilian-Ukrainian writer Clarice Lispector. Clarice began creating music at the age of six with the help of her father,[2] but family difficulties impinged when she was a young child culminating on her parent's divorce, though their union lasted long enough for father and daughter to share formative hours making music. Sergio Assad left when Clarice was around 8, off to Paris seeking success on virgin but savvy turf, and putting on indefinite hiatus those cherished sessions together. Infrequent visits couldn’t reattach the torn ligatures, and Clarice abandoned music completely. “For so long,” she remembers, “I didn’t even touch the piano, or make any music at all because I connected it with him.” After a time, though, she began to play again. “I realized I was doing it for myself,” Clarice explains. The urge to continue her development was too great, the Assad legacy in her DNA.[3]

Clarice was born with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a group of disorders that affect connective tissues, which severely limited her ability to perform musical instruments at an early age, but the condition did not affect her voice. As a child Clarice sang numerous jingles for radio and television, as well as albums including tracks for pop star Luiz Caldas and Brazilian soul musician Hyldon. During early adolescence, as her joints became stronger, she began playing piano mostly by ear and became interested in jazz. The years that followed were filled with intensive training in music, piano, composition and arranging with Sheila Zagury, Linda Bustani and Leandro Braga.

In 1993, Clarice and her younger brother Rodrigo Assad moved to France to live with their father,[4] in a home he shared with his second wife and their child Julia. Clarice studied piano and improvisation privately with Natalie Fortin, a professor from Le Conservatoire national Supérieur de Paris, and benefited also from her father's mentorship, composing and arranging numerous pieces. This was a prolific period, though short lived amidst a turbulent time. Mr. Assad's wife, who had been battling cancer, died a year later at 38. Clarice returned to Brazil with her brother.

In Rio de Janeiro, between 1995-1997, Assad acted as a pianist, arranger and keyboardist on several musicals including Tá na Hora (by playwright Lucia Coelho), A Estrela Menina (by Joaquim de Paula) and Doidas Folias by playwright and composer Tim Rescala. Though passionate about music, she struggled with the decision to pursue an academic degree, due to the limited prospects in the industry in Brazil. As she prepared to study for the entry college exams majoring in marine biology, her father Sergio had met astro physicist Angela Olinto,[5] and moved to Chicago. A year later, Clarice was given the opportunity to study film scoring at the Berklee College of Music, leaving Brazil in 1998.




Assad's compositions include pieces for a variety of instrumentations, including smaller works for piano, guitar pieces as well as pieces for large and small chamber ensembles, and fifteen orchestral works. Though the ensembles she writes for are largely classical, her voice as a composer has been heavily influenced by Brazilian music, Jazz and World Music. Her orchestral work Nhanderú [6] and Terra Brasilis, commissioned and premiered by the Orquestra Sinfônica de São Paulo [7] are good examples of her Brazilian roots, drawing on Assad's knowledge of the country's folk style and the work of fellow classical composer Heitor Villa-Lobos. Among other works influenced by Brazilian popular culture is her concerto for guitar and orchestra, O Saci-Pererê [8] and Brazilian Fanfare, an overture for orchestra commissioned by the Chattanooga Orchestra in 2005.[9]

She first came into the national spotlight in 2004, when conductor Marin Alsop programmed her violin concerto with the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music featuring Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg as the soloist.[10] The piece was recorded by Salerno-Sonnenberg and Marin Alsop leading the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and released on the NSS Music label when Assad was 26 years old. Since then, Assad has been steadily commissioned, pursuing ways of incorporating her composing and performing. Such attempts culminated on the creation of a major work: a concerto for scat singing, piano and orchestra which she wrote for herself to perform. Scattered [11] was premiered by the Albany Symphony under the baton of the conductor David Alan Miller, and has since been performed by many other ensembles and conductors, including the Michigan Philharmonic, Chicago Composers Orchestra and OCAM. Other works include “The Disappeared,” a political piece for orchestra and concert band that draws on impressions of Rufina Amaya, the sole survivor of the El Mozote massacre in 1981, during the Salvadoran Civil War,[12] and most recently, “Ad Infinitum,”[13] a percussion concerto written for Dame Evelyn Glennie involving improvisational gestural techniques - such as sound painting - for the orchestra, soloist and conductor alike.[14]

Her music has been commissioned by many institutions,[15] performers and orchestras including Carnegie Hall,[16] the Orquestra Sinfônica de São Paulo,[17] General Electric,[18] the Chicago Sinfonietta,[19][20] and Duo Noire, to name a few.[21] Her works have also been recorded by some of the most prominent names in the classical contemporary music scene today, including Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, pianist Anne-Marie McDermott [22] and oboist Liang Wang. She has also collaborated with the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, Turtle Island String Quartet, the Aquarelle Guitar Quartet, the Philadelphia Orchestra, Louisville Symphony Orchestra, Austin Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Edmonton Symphony, as well as conductors Marin Alsop and Christoph Eschenbach, Kazuyoshi Akiyama and Carlos Miguel Prieto. She has written extensively for active members on the new music scene in the United States such as the Cavatina Duo,[23] Sybarite5 and SOLI ensemble [24]

Clarice Assad has served as composer-in-residence for the Albany Symphony,[25] the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music[26] and the Boston Landmarks Orchestra.[27]

Assad's works have been published in France (Editions Lemoine),Germany (Trekel), in the United States by (Virtual Artists Collective Publishing) and Criadores do Brasil.


Clarice Assad has contributed significantly [28][29] to the growing repertoire of classical guitar, having written works ranging for solo to duos (Valsas do Rio) and quartets [30] such as the piece Bluezilian,[31] which has become a staple of the guitar quartet repertoire. Larger works include three concertos: Album de Retratos, commissioned by the ProMusic Chamber Orchestra for two guitars and orchestra, O Saci-Pererê,[32] for solo guitar and chamber orchestra, commissioned by the Harris Foundation and a concerto for two guitars and string orchestra, commissioned by the Tychy guitar festival for the Brazil guitar duo.


Assad's first work for the stage was a soundtrack written for a 2001 re-adaptation of the play La Lección de Anatomía, by Argentinian playwright Carlos Mathus, originally published in the 1970s. Directed by an original cast member Antonio Leiva, the play received mixed reviews, but garnered the composer favorable mentions from the acclaimed theatre critic Bárbara Heliodora. Following a hiatus of over a decade, Assad resumed writing for stage in 2010, when she was invited by choreographer Kristi Spessard - then in residency at Mabou Mines - to compose the score to her piece "Essentials of Flor."

Recent works include the ballets Iara, (2018)[33] and Sin Fronteras (2017), Opera das Pedras (libretto by Denise Milan) (2010) [34] and collaborations with librettist Niloufar Talebi (The Disinherited)[35] and playwright E.M. Lewis (The Crossing). Strongly shaped by a conscious drive towards narrative, her works wear its influences well, feeling inspired rather than derivative.



Clarice Assad was the featured composer for the 2008–2009 season at the New Century Chamber Orchestra, where she worked as the orchestra's primary arranger and orchestrator for a decade.[36]

Upon graduating from the University of Michigan, Assad moved to New York City to experience the exploding music scene, freelancing as a composer and arranger while trying to build a career as pianist and singer. During her New York years (2005-2015), Assad worked as the featured composer for the New Century Chamber Orchestra, as well as serving as the orchestra's primary arranger [37] from 2007-2017,[38] contributing vastly to the addition of new works for strings, by orchestrating and transcribing over twenty five major works from the symphonic repertoire, including Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition,[39] Richard Strauss' Dance of the Seven Veils from the opera Salome,[40] and the suite An American in Paris, by George Gershwin.[41]

Assad's keen sense of orchestration carefully curates some of the most effective tricks of orchestrator's past greats: Maurice Ravel's elegance and subtleties and Njcolaj Rimski-korsakov's coloristic orchestral effects - All while retaining a personal, unique fingerprint that's compelling and dramatic in its very construction.[42]


Hailed by the LA Times as a "Dazzling Soloist", Assad is also an accomplished singer [43] and pianist [44] and is well versed on classical, jazz, pop and the Brazilian music repertoire and appears frequently with orchestras and chamber music ensembles[45] to name a few. performing her original works or arrangements of classical, Brazilian, jazz and contemporary music.

In 2010, Assad began performing more frequently, and eventually founded the international ensemble OFF THE CLIFF,[46] an energetic and daring four piece ensemble of internationally accomplished musicians.[47]

Notable performances include the renowned Savannah Music Festival, Moab and the Mendocino Music Festival. Included amongst the venues and series that Off the Cliff has appeared on are Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City and Doha, Qatar,[48] The Stone, Cal Performances in San Francisco, and Sesc São Paulo in Brazil. Special guest artists have included Japanese singer Hiromi Suda, Swiss-American singer Beat Kaestli, clarinetist Derek Bermel, mandolinist Mike Marshall, Paquito D'Rivera and the group Choro Famoso.

Awards in Music Composition[edit]

Clarice Assad is the recipient of such awards as the American Composers Forum National Composition Competition (2016), the McKnight Visiting Composer Award (2015),[49] the New Music Alive Partnership program (League of American Orchestras)-(2014–15),[50] the Van Lier Fellowship (2010), Latin Grammy nomination for best contemporary composition (2009), the Aaron Copland Award (2007),[51][52] the Morton Gould Young Composer Award (2006), All Songs Considered - NPR (2004), the Franklin Honor Society Award (2001) and the Samuel Ostrowsky Humanities Award (2001).

Clarice Assad performing at the New York Festival of Song.


Solo albums[edit]

  • 2016: Clarice Assad & Friends: Live at the Deer Head Inn (Deer Head Inn Records)
  • 2016: RELÍQUIA (Adventure Music) [53]
  • 2014: IMAGINARIUM (Adventure Music)
  • 2012: HOME (Adventure Music)
  • 2008: LOVE, ALL THAT IT IS (NSS Music)
  • 2004: INVITATION, Introducing Clarice Assad (Independent Release)
  • 2004: A BRAZILIAN SONGBOOK, Um Momento de Puro Amor' Sergio Assad & Their Family (GHA Records)

Recorded works[edit]

list of recorded compositions
Album Title Album Details Title of recorded work(s) Release Date
  • Artists: Duo Noire
  • Label: New Focus Recordings
  • Instrumentation: two guitars
Hocus Pocus 2018
  • Artists: Cavatina Duo
  • Label: Cedille Records
  • Instrumentation: flute, guitar and string quartet
Sephardic Suite 2016
  • Artists: Four Aces Guitar Quartet
  • Label: Cedille Antarctica Records
  • Instrumentation: 4 guitars
Danzas 2016
  • Artists: Will Duchon, piano
  • Label: Independent release
  • Instrumentation: solo piano transcription by Will Duchon
Slow Waltz 2015
  • Artists: De Stefano, Fortino
  • Label: Dotguitar SRL
  • Instrumentation: 2 guitars
Brasileirinhas | Mercador de Sonhos 2015
  • Artists: Duo Eterna
  • Label: Dotguitar SRL
  • Instrumentation: solo guitar
The Last Song 2015
  • Artists: Beat Kaestli
  • Label: Independent
  • Comme En Plein Rêve
  • (Clarice Assad/Antoine Loyer)
  • Artists: Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg & The New Century Chamber Orchestra
  • Label: NSS Music
  • Instrumentation: solo violin and string orchestra
Dreamscapes 2014
  • Artists: Odair Assad, Sergio Assad, Yo-Yo Ma, Kathryn Stott
  • Label: Sony Music Masterworks
  • Instrumentation: 2 guitars, piano, percussion and violoncello
The Lat Song | Suite Back To Our Roots 2012
  • Artists: Cavatina Duo
  • Label: Cedille Records
  • Instrumentation: flute and guitar
Three Balkan Dances 2010
  • Artists: Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, violin | Sergio & Odair Assad
  • Label: NSS Music
  • Instrumentation: 2 guitars and violin
Three Sketches 2009
  • Artists: The San Francisco Guitar Quartet
  • Label: Independent release
  • Instrumentation: 4 guitars
Bluezilian 2009
  • Artists: The New Century Chamber Orchestra
  • Label: Nss Music
  • Instrumentation: string orchestra
Impressions, Suite For Chamber Orchestra 2009
  • Artists: Aquarelle Guitar Quartet
  • Label: Chandos Records
  • Instrumentation: 4 guitars
  • Danças Nativas
  • Bluezilian
  • Artists: Sergio & Odair Assad
  • Label: Nonesuch Records
  • Instrumentation: 2 guitars

Valsas do Rio

  • Artists: LA Guitar Quartet
  • Label: Telarc Records
  • Instrumentation: 4 guitars
Bluezilian 2007
YO-YO MA & Friends
  • Artists: Yo-Yo Ma
  • Família
  • Sergio & Clarice Assad
  • Artists:
  • Sheila Zagury, piano
  • Daniela Spielmann, saxophone
  • Label: Independent
  • piano and guitar arrangement
  • Originally scored for mandolin orchestra
Song for my father 2007
Concertos in D Major
  • Artists:
  • Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, violin
  • Marin Alsop, conductor
  • Colorado Symphony Orchestra
  • Label: NSS Music
  • Instrumentation: *violin and orchestra
Violin Concerto 2005
  • Artists:
  • Boris Gaquere, guitar
  • Odair Assad, guitar
  • Label: Vgo Recordings
  • Instrumentation: 2 guitars
Valsas do Rio 2003
Velho Retrato
  • Artists:
  • Sergio Assad, guitar
  • Gabrielle Mirabassi
  • Label: EGEA
  • Instrumentation: guitar and clarinet
Flutuante 1999

Arrangements & Guest Appearances[edit]

List of guest appearances on albums
Title Album details
O cinema que o sol não apaga

(Track: Cantilena Alada)

  • Release date: June 1, 2018
  • Label: Rocinante discos
  • Clarice Assad: 4 part vocal overdub
  • Thiago Amud: Artist
Bandzilla rises

(Track 13: Tip for a toreador)

  • Release date: November 18, 2016
  • Label: Bandzilla Records
  • Clarice Assad: Scat singing [54]
  • Richard Niles: Composer & producer

(Track 3: Quis Acreditar)

  • Release date: 2014
  • Label: Independent
  • Clarice Assad: Arranger
  • Clara Valente: Singer-Songwriter

( All Tracks)

  • Release date: 2014
  • Label: GHA Records
  • Clarice Assad: Arranger, piano & vocals
  • Carolina Assad: Singer
The Elkcloner

( Track 5: Have you seen my baby?)

  • Release date: July 9, 2012
  • Label: EMI MUSIC
  • Clarice Assad: Piano, scat singing
  • Filip Mitrovic: Composer & Producer
The Music of Astor Piazzola

( Three Piazzolla etudes)

  • Release date: 2010
  • Label: (Bridge Records)
  • Clarice Assad: Arranger
  • Cavatina Duo: Artists
Merry, A Holiday Journey

(Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg & Friends)

  • Release date: 2006
  • Label: (NSS Music)
  • Clarice Assad: Arranger, singer.

(Tracks: 2,4,7 & 11.)

VERDE: Badi Assad

(Track: Viola, meu bem)


  • Clarice Assad radio interview on UEL, Londrina. Modos de Vida - Comportamento e Cultura[55]
  • Dreamscapes Q&A with Clarice Assad – SoundAdvice.[56]
  • Chicago Sinfonietta Commissions CLARICE ASSAD's SIN FRONTERAS Preview – Insights to Assad and her Work.[57]
  • SONiC Composer Spotlight – Clarice Assad – SoundAdvice.[58]
  • University of Chicago Presents: An interview with Clarice Assad [59]
  • ABODE MAGAZINE: From Brazil to Carnegie Hall to Doha (p. 106-107)[60]
  • REVISTA 29 HORAS: DNA Musical [61]
  • The Portfolio Composer: Ep 8-Clarice Assad on the Endless Possibilities of New Music and Letting Go [62]
  • 1TrackPodcast: Season 2, Episode 3.[63]


  1. ^ es:Anexo:Premios Grammy Latinos 2009
  2. ^ "Clarice & Sergio Assad: Reliquia". June 30, 2016. ("Sol De Clave (Treble Clef)"), a piece that bottles the ephemeral and connects it to present day. A decades-old recording snippet of Clarice singing along with her father's guitar leads into that pair's present day sound. It's a testament to the bonds forged through birth and life, continually strengthened in every small and large gesture of love that takes place between a parent and child.
  3. ^ "The crazy, sweet life of Clarice Assad. By Carolina Amoruso". May 31, 2018.
  4. ^ "Jazz, cabaret and world music take center stage at MMF". April 5, 2015. "“My brother and I traveled back and forth between Rio de Janeiro and Paris so I absorbed all this musical culture from those places — all the classical music from France and all the popular music in Brazil,” she said. “It combined to shape my musical career.”
  5. ^ "Lives of Music and Physics, Lovingly Bound". November 25, 2010. Clarice Assad, Mr. Assad’s oldest child (by his first wife), is a highly regarded composer and pianist. At 31, she has already published nearly 40 works. She graduated from Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University and now lives in New York..
  6. ^ "Albany Symphony Orchestra opens 2013-14 campaign in midseason form". September 21, 2013. Assad dark harmonies and colors, some lovely lush lyricism with sweeps of sound, and thick rhythmic sections.
  7. ^ "Marin Alsop opens a new Brazilian chapter". March 6, 2012. based on the Brazilian national anthem, treats it to a variety of effects from the mysterious, to the neo-classical, to a toe-tapping syncopated section, to a harmonisation of delicious warmth.
  8. ^ "Biasini Festival and Competition Opens with Two Outstanding Premieres". January 15, 2016. This is precisely the sort of adventurous and involving piece the guitar repertoire needs more of. I hope other orchestras will take a chance on it.
  9. ^ "Latin American Pomp and Syncopation". April 12, 2008. Assad’s colorful, deftly orchestrated work incorporates rhythms from different regions of her native country, like the olodum from Bahia and the samba from Rio de Janeiro, and earlier styles like the waltz, with boisterous brass and percussion and sultry string interludes.
  10. ^ "The orchestra in Assad 'Violin Concerto'". philly-archives. Retrieved 26 December 2015.
  11. ^ "Clarice Assad's Delightfully Ingenious Approach to the Concerto". June 18, 2017. basic description cannot do justice to the wild ride through the execution of Assad’s concerto.
  12. ^ "NCCO he lure of the central coast's music festivals". July 30, 2012. Brazilian composer Clarice Assad wrote a macabre yet jazzy piece about brutal civil war in El Salvador, with the composer as dazzling vocal soloist.
  13. ^ "Cristian Macelaru's debut weekend at Cabrillo Fest featured plenty of fire and passion". August 9, 2017. Assad stunning world premiere of “Ad Infinitum,” a percussion concerto that tracks the impulse of human life from beginnings in the womb to the domain of eternal mystery beyond death.
  14. ^ "Evelyn Glennie prepares for Assad's AD INFINITUM". June 30, 2017.
  15. ^ "Clarice Assad's 'Lemuria' about hope in times of climate change". December 23, 2018. “It was because of climate change,” says Assad, the prolific Brazilian American composer whose music has been championed by the Bay Area’s New Century Chamber Orchestra and Cabrillo Music Festival and is widely performed."
  16. ^ "Singers and Composers in a Stylistic Mix and Match". April 17, 2007. a humorous piece about the insecurities and obsessions of modern women that swings between musical theater and cabaret, with jazzy piano riffs and tango-tinged strings.
  17. ^ "Osesp na Filarmônica de Berlim: quando a música é o que importa". October 22, 2013. a peça estabelece a compositora carioca como uma orquestradora inspirada e segura de si... Assad se revela também uma estrategista musical hábil: ela dá o esperado final bombástico a seu mini-poema sinfônico, mas sabendo contornar a gratuidade.
  18. ^ "GE piece is a breeze for ASO". June 9, 2016. composer Clarice Assad was commissioned to write the piece about GE’s wind turbines. Miller said there were no parameters for the length or style for the piece. There was only one request: GE insisted that Assad take a trip to a Cape Cod wind farm and experience the 40-story climb to the top one its wind turbines.
  19. ^ "Why are female composers still markedly behind in terms of prominence?". August 22, 2018. TOne US orchestra that has consistently championed diversity is the Chicago Sinfonietta. Music by women represented 42% of the repertoire it programmed for its 30th-anniversary season in 2017–18 and included four new commissions – from Brazilian–American composer Clarice Assad, African–American composer and violinist Jessie Montgomery, Indian–American composer Reena Esmail and the multi-award-winning Jennifer Higdon.
  20. ^ "Women composers, global beats and more in Sinfonietta's 30th season". September 9, 2017. The concert’s second half will begin with the world premiere of Grammy-nominated composer Clarice Assad’s “Sin Fronteras” (“Without Borders”), featuring the Cerqua Rivera troupe in a work commissioned by the orchestra.
  21. ^ "Guitarists Duo Noire get 'a little weird' at Ethical Society concert". January 29, 2017. "Hocus Pocus” by Clarice Assad which, according to Flippin, “gets a little weird.” Sure enough, in the first section, “Abracadabra,” there were lots of clicks and thumps, strings bent violently sideways and a rhythmic pattern that sounded like a herd of horses at full gallop. In the second section,“Shamans,” they used tablespoons to slide up and down or beat on the strings producing an eerie, sci-fi sound. The third section — “Klutzy Witches” — ended with a loud thump produced by four feet hitting the floor and both players slapping the bodies of their guitars.
  22. ^ "Adventures in Piano, Haydn to Tatum". June 1, 2009. In contrast was the New York premiere of “When Art Showed Up” by Ms. Assad, a young Brazilian composer. Before beginning the piece she learned that Ms. McDermott, a fan of Art Tatum, had always wanted to play jazz. According to Ms. Assad, her programmatic work evokes a pianist learning a new classical piece while possessed by the spirit of Tatum. The lively work, in theme and variations form, alternated between Baroque and Classical allusions and jazzy interludes of increasing energy played with panache by Ms. McDermott.
  23. ^ "Sephardic Journey – Cavatina Duo" (PDF). September 9, 2016. Clarice Assad’s Sephardic Suite sometimes embraces almost- avant garde techniques in an amazingly inventive work, which has brilliant writing for the flute and guitar. The ending, utilizing percussion from the players is wonderful. Review by Al Kunze
  24. ^ "Brazilian Singer Wows Audiences". January 25, 2016. it was Assad who won the audience, which demanded and received an encore, leaving everyone spellbound.
  25. ^ "Composer Assad to hear ASO premiere her new work". September 19, 2013. She sings on her two discs, “Home” (Adventure Music) and “Imaginarium” (to be released), and she has written a concerto for herself, “Concerto for Scat Singer, Piano and Orchestra,” that the ASO will perform next May with Assad singing.
  26. ^ "Clarice Assad Turns Bad Dreams Into Music". July 16, 2014. Assad comes to the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music for the third time as a composer-in-residence to present her latest work, "Dreamscapes. - By Wallace Baine
  27. ^ "Landmarks Orchestra tells bedtime stories on the Esplanade". August 13, 2015. But those works shared the program with the world premiere of “Cirandadas” by Brazilian native Clarice Assad, who had her own fascinating story to tell.
  28. ^ "Duo Noire Presents Newly Commissioned Works on Night Triptych". August 15, 2018. The album opens with a tantalizing three-movement tour-de-force called Hocus Pocus. The composer, Clarice Assad, is the daughter of a member of one of the world’s great guitar duos (the Assad Brothers), and she plays guitar herself. It shows in this piece–in a good way. Each movement illustrates a distinct characteristic sound in the guitars: the first movement is clownish, the second features playful and sudden contrasts between lyricism and improvised sound effects, and the third movement concludes the piece with jaunty flair.
  29. ^ "Natural born talent". May 15, 2013. The guitars are very soft instruments and can be easily covered. I think that in a symphonic context, the best solution is to amplify the instruments.
  30. ^ "Spirit of Brazil". February 8, 2009. Ms. Assad’s music is witty and cool, constantly inventive and always pleasing to the ear.
  31. ^ "LAGuitar". February 8, 2009. No such problems with the multiplicity of colours in Clarice Assad’s Bluezilian.Written for the LAGQ it is a highly sophisticated mix of Brazilian and contemporary American forms, with a smoky jazz flavour.
  32. ^ "SACI PINTA E BORDA NA ORQUESTRA DE CLARICE ASSAD". February 8, 2016. Hoje os jovens adolescentes e crianças podem até saber quem é o Saci, mas não com profundidade, pois são cada vez mais inundados pela monopolização cultural Norte Americana. Temo que, com o passar do tempo, percamos o que há mais de rico no Brasil: a cultura popular.
  33. ^ "Compose by Northwest Piano Trio and PDX Contemporary Ballet". May 10, 2018. To represent the tale’s origin in the Amazon – along with Iara’s intertwined fate with the river – Assad chooses to interpolate sounds of an ocean drum with episodic appearances of a water drum. Choreography by PDX Contemporary Ballet’s Artistic Director Briley Neugebauer reflects the mythical mood of the piece by integrating the water drum into the choreography itself. In an extension of Assad’s symbolism, Neugebauer pursues the duality of Iara’s fate – her life being spared, but at the cost of eternal imprisonment in the water.
  34. ^ "A artista das pedras". December 7, 2011.
  35. ^ "Niloufar Talebi: prolific geo-artist". October 14, 2015. Declamations of love, separation and betrayal hover over composer Clarice Assad’s piano reduction of a score certain to accede to the ensemble or orchestra. We hear echoes of Stravinsky and Persian tonality,Scheherazade against Les Noces, as Mina ponders the danger of letting Arya stay in Iran. Because of the war with Iraq, boys his age are being drafted to walk through and clear minefields.
  36. ^ "Music review: New Chamber Century Orchestra". September 12, 2009. Assad creates a wealth of textural variety from her limited orchestral resources and puts her own stamp on the piece.
  37. ^ "New Century starts a farewell to artistic director". May 17, 2017. Clarice Assad has been a stalwart presence throughout Salerno-Sonnenberg’s tenure — she was the first composer to be selected for highlighting, and she continued over the years to contribute a wealth of ingenious arrangements of other music for the ensemble.
  38. ^ "Salerno-Sonnenberg bids her beloved ensemble farewell". May 9, 2017. Composers such as Clarice Assad, she notes, contributed at least 20 new arrangements to the ensemble – most recently, the new arrangement of Gershwin’s “An American in Paris,” which New Century played as part of a recent program with Chanticleer.
  39. ^ "Let Us Now Arrange Famous Composers". September 11, 2009. Assad had shown herself, during previous service as NCCO’s composer in residence, to be an arranger and orchestrator of great imagination, and she proved it again here.
  40. ^ "New Century offers deft, if bland, evening of dance music". May 9, 2016. “an inventive arrangement by Clarice Assad.
  41. ^ "This Evening in Paris Is Sublime". March 21, 2017. “Their initial partnership owed some of its success to a medley of tunes arranged for that particular program by Clarice Assad, a Brazilian-American musical polymath.
  42. ^ "NCCO Breaks the Mold Again". March 25, 2011. Assad, NCCO’s resident composer-arranger and the wizard behind some of NCCO’s previous clever stunts...I remember with particular fondness a strings-and-percussion orchestration of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition.) Setting Schubert’s repeating figures and pregnant chords for strings produced effects alternately reminiscent of lush Tchaikovsky romanticism, cool Scandinavian modernism, and Philip Glass minimalism.
  43. ^ "Piano jazz e la grande voce di Clarice Assad". July 30, 2016. Originaria di Rio de Janeiro, Clarice Assad è nata in una delle famiglie brasiliane più famose nell'ambito musicale (è la figlia di Sergio Assad, uno dei più noti chitarristi e compositori odierni); si è esibita professionalmente sin dall'età di sette anni.
  44. ^ "Clarice Assad makes debut performance at Harris Center". March 12, 2015. Assad’s music often has a thematic core and explores the physical and psychological elements of the chosen story or concept.
  45. ^ "Backstage Utah Arts Festival". June 24, 2016. Assad will premiere two arrangements of Brazilian songs with the Salt Lake Jazz Orchestra
  46. ^ "Brazilian Star Wars at NYFOS". June 19, 2018. Ordinarily, I would name a particular song, but for this evening, it had to be the collective genius of a group of top musicians, alive and totally together as one, demonstrating that different talents combine, overlap, and morph into something even greater than the stellar individual parts.
  47. ^ "Beethoven sonatas and Brazilian soul". April 2, 2015. Assad sauntered onto the stage and, accompanied by percussionist Keita Ogawa, immediately riveted the audience's attention with an entrancing rendition of a song that was part jazzy folk tune, part ambient soundscape and part Portuguese scat singing/beatboxer throwdown.
  48. ^ "Une voix singuliere au jazz at lincoln center". September 14, 2014. Clarice Assad a baigné depuis son plus jeune âge dans un univers musical. Fille du guitariste Sergio Assad, elle étudie la musique avec des mentors de renom... Titulaire d’un Bachelor of music de l’Université de Chicago et d’une maîtrise de composition musicale délivrée par l’Université du Michigan, nous pourrions penser d’elle que son parcours est essentiellement académique. Il n’en est rien."
  49. ^ "Composing Through Collaboration: Clarice Assad's Comprehensive Approach to Teaching Music". March 7, 2017. In working with youth, the stakes are even higher. But Assad has a patience and grace with the teenage participants she’s worked with. “It’s personal work that we have to do. It’s easy to get caught up with bullying in school… even if a person is not able to sing, we find what that person is good at.
  50. ^ "Pairing Composers and Orchestras, With an Eye on Younger Audiences". October 22, 2014. Music by the youngest generation of composers has a proven appeal to the younger audiences that orchestras are trying to reach, and as those audiences are drawn in they are finding the appeal in older contemporary (and earlier) works as well.
  51. ^ "Review: American Composers Orchestra Brings Jazz to Classical, Effortlessly". April 8, 2018. And its way of handling Clarice Assad’s 2009 “Dreamscapes,” alongside the violin soloist Elena Urioste, proved riveting.
  52. ^ "Dreamscapes in New York: genre-busting composers showcased by the American Composers Orchestra". April 8, 2018. Having heard Clarice Assad in person only as an engaging jazz singer and pianist, I was thoroughly impressed by this example of her classical chops.
  53. ^ "CLARICE & SÉRGIO ASSAD 'RELÍQUIA' CD/DIG (ADVENTURE MUSIC) 5/5". August 24, 2016. a magical album written and performed by Clarice and her father Sérgio as a “homage” to the musical legacy of their family.
  54. ^ "RICHARD NILES & BANDZILLA: BANDZILLA RISES (Bandzilla Records)". May 2018. Clarice Assad later follows her lead with one of the more surprising solos. (Dave Jones)
  55. ^ "Modos de Vida - Comportamento e Cultura". August 8, 2018. Compositora, pianista, arranjadora e cantora, Clarice Assad vai estrear como regente em outubro, na Polônia.
  56. ^ "Dreamscapes Q&A with Clarice Assad". April 4, 2018. When I think of languages I think of cultures, so yes, I think somehow speaking other languages may influence the way in which we organize thoughts. I traveled frequently to France as a child and this experience deeply influenced me in every area of my life. Traveling at a young age also meant that I came in contact with people from other nationalities, so this may have given me a sense of familiarity with cultures that were not my own, and carte blanche to write in styles and genres that might not have come from my place of origin. I still feel a sense of belonging to more than one place at once.
  57. ^ "Chicago Sinfonietta Commissions CLARICE ASSAD'S SIN FRONTERAS Preview – Insights to Assad and her Work". September 13, 2017. In the liner notes, I wrote that SIN FRONTERAS (Without borders) in its own way, carries the inclusion and diversity message of the orchestra - and emerged from an utopian state of mind in which I found myself one day, daring to erase imaginary lines that disconnect us geographically, culturally and morally: Boundaries that the human race has willingly subscribed to for thousands of years.
  58. ^ "SONiC Composer Spotlight - Clarice Assad - SoundAdvice". October 20, 2015. And part of the magic, I found, was being on the edge of falling apart, but somehow, being able to hold it together. That’s why we call the ensemble Off The Cliff.
  59. ^ "University of Chicago Presents: An interview with Clarice Assad". December 12, 2015. I see a lot more woman composers than when I was going to school. They’re doing very well. So it’s a good time to take advantage of that. There’s room for more music than ever before—music of different styles, too. These days, I don’t think there’s as much tension [between styles]; you can pursue more than one style of music, and have it be your own style of music.
  60. ^ "From Brazil to Carnegie Hall to Doha. ABODE Magazine". September 30, 2014. I like to think of myself as a facilitator for the music that we all make together. For most of my life I was always on the outside- writing or arranging music for others.
  61. ^ "DNA Musical. ABODE Magazine". October 1, 2013. Dos meus avós, com certeza é esse amor todo que eles sempre tiveram em fazer música só pelo prazer de fazer.
  62. ^ "the Endless Possibilities of New Music and Letting Go". October 1, 2013.
  63. ^ "Clarice Assad about her Concerto for Guitar and Chamber Orchestra:O Saci-Pererê". October 1, 2016.


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