Yotam Haber

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Portrait of Yotam Haber

Yotam Haber is a composer based in New Orleans. He is a 2005 Guggenheim fellow[1][2] and a 2007 Rome Prize winner in Music Composition.[3]


Yotam Haber was born October 27, 1976 in the Netherlands and grew up in Israel, Nigeria, and Milwaukee. He studied music composition at Indiana University with Eugene O'Brien and Claude Baker and then earned his doctorate at Cornell with Steven Stucky and Roberto Sierra.[4][5][6][7] In 2013 Haber married visual artist Anna Schuleit.[8]

Haber has written music for leading new music ensembles and performers including Alarm Will Sound,[9] Gabriel Kahane,[10] Flux Quartet,[11] and The Knights (orchestra).[12] He has been a fellow at the Aspen Music Festival and Tanglewood Music Festival, and artist colonies including MacDowell Colony,[13] Yaddo,[14] Aaron Copland House,[15] Bogliasco Foundation,[16] the Rockefeller Foundation's Bellagio Center,[17] the Blue Mountain Center,[18] and the Hermitage Artist Retreat.[19]

Haber served as the Artistic Director of the MATA Festival from 2010 to 2014.[6][20] His work at the MATA festival was lauded by The New York Times as "a testament to MATA’s enduring mission and to the high standards maintained by its current directors, David T. Little and Yotam Haber."[21] During his final festival The New York Times further remarked "If there is one thing that sets the MATA Festival apart from many of the other contemporary-classical bounties New York regularly produces, it might be a robust international representation, which seems to have grown sharply since Yotam Haber — a Dutch-born global citizen and the festival’s artistic director from 2009 until this year — has been at the helm."[22]

Recent major projects include a commission for a concert length work, A More Convenient Season, for the Alabama Symphony Orchestra with chorus and soloists commemorating the 50th anniversary of an explosion that killed four in a Baptist church in Birmingham on September 15, 1963.[23] In 2015, Haber’s first monographic album of chamber music, Torus, was released on Roven Records and distributed by Naxos to wide critical acclaim, hailed by New York’s WQXR as "a snapshot of a soul in flux – moving from life to the afterlife, from Israel to New Orleans – a composer looking for a sound and finding something powerful along the way." [24] In 2015 he was commissioned by the Kronos Quartet and Carnegie Hall for the 50 For the Future Project to write break_break_break for string quartet and electronics (electronics by Philip White).[25]

Haber's music has been well received, called "haunting" by New Yorker critic Alex Ross[26] and The New York Times.[27] The New York Times called Haber's From the Book of Maintenance and Sustenance "Alluring" and "Engaging" adding that "Mr. Haber used the soulful lower register of the viola to expressive effect, and its higher register to create intriguing timbres. Fluttering trills unfolded over lone piano notes; bell-like descending piano chords were echoed by gently ascending viola motifs. The piece faded to an enigmatic whisper at the end."[28] Haber was hailed by the Los Angeles Times as one of five classical musicians "2014 Faces To Watch,” [29] and chosen as one of the “30 composers under 40” by Orpheus Chamber Orchestra’s Project 440.[30]

Selected works[edit]

  • LAST SKIN for 8 retuned violins[31]
  • We Were All for Sinfonietta[9]
  • I AM for Chorus and String Quartet[32]
  • On Leaving Brooklyn for Chorus, solo voices, and Violin[33]
  • New Ghetto Music for full orchestra, voice, and field recordings of Roman cantors from 1950-60[12]
  • between composure and seduction for baroque violin, double bass, percussion
  • Hvem er Det (who is it) for two sopranos and mezzo-soprano
  • A Wine Dark Sea for string orchestra (commissioned by The Knights Ensemble)[12]
  • death will come and she shall have your eyes for string orchestra, voice, field recordings of Roman cantors from 1940-1960
  • Espresso for Wind Ensemble[34]
  • Purity Guaranteed for violin and flute
  • Death in Venice for solo trumpet
  • The Little Bird Concerto for Nicolet Orchestra[35]



  1. ^ a b "2005 Guggenheim Fellowships Announced". 7 April 2005.
  2. ^ "John Simon Guggenheim Foundation - Fellows". www.gf.org.
  3. ^ a b "New Music News Wire". 27 April 2007.
  4. ^ a b "YOTAM HABER - COMPOSER". www.yotamhaber.com.
  5. ^ a b "Yotam Haber". 19 October 2009.
  6. ^ a b c "WQXR - New York's Classical Music Radio Station". WQXR.
  7. ^ a b "Yotam Haber - The Days of Yore". www.thedaysofyore.com.
  8. ^ Lipton, Lauren. "Anna Schuleit and Yotam Haber - Vows".
  9. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-08-24. Retrieved 2012-09-29.
  10. ^ "MATA » Gabriel Kahane". matafestival.org.
  11. ^ Tommasini, Anthony. "Flux Quartet - Music - Review".
  12. ^ a b c Kozinn, Steve Smith, James R. Oestreich and Allan. "Performances by the Knights, A Far Cry and Neil Rolnick".
  13. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-12-04. Retrieved 2012-09-29.
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-07-21. Retrieved 2012-09-29.
  15. ^ Hershenson, Roberta. "Copland Slept Here".
  16. ^ "Home - Bogliasco Foundation". www.bfny.org.
  17. ^ "The Bellagio Center - The Rockefeller Foundation".
  18. ^ "Home". Blue Mountain Center.
  19. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-06-19. Retrieved 2016-07-04.
  20. ^ "MATA » Yotam Haber". matafestival.org.
  21. ^ Smith, Steve. "MATA Festival at Roulette in Brooklyn".
  22. ^ "Global Sounds, Woven Together".
  23. ^ "Composer prepares work for 50th anniversary of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham (slideshow, video)".
  24. ^ "WQXR - New York's Classical Music Radio Station". WQXR.
  25. ^ "Kronos Quartet". kronosquartet.org.
  26. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-06-13. Retrieved 2012-09-29.
  27. ^ Kozinn, Allan. "In 'Five Borough Songbook,' 20 Composers Show N.Y. - Review".
  28. ^ "Experimental Interludes".
  29. ^ "Faces to Watch 2014: Classical music | Yotam Haber, Sunny Yang and more - latimes". Articles.latimes.com. 2013-12-27. Retrieved 2018-09-21.
  30. ^ "Orpheus Chamber Orchestra Announces Project 440". NewMusicBox. 2010-06-23. Retrieved 2018-09-21.
  31. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-07-25. Retrieved 2012-09-29.
  32. ^ [1][dead link]
  33. ^ [2][dead link]
  34. ^ a b "Yotam Haber Wins $5,000 ASCAP/CBDNA Frederick Fennell Prize". 4 November 2004.
  35. ^ "World Premiere of "Little Bird" Concerto". Shorewood, WI Patch. 2018-10-24. Retrieved 2018-11-06.
  36. ^ "Berliner KĂźnstlerprogramm des DAAD - Startseite | Facebook". De-de.facebook.com. Retrieved 2018-09-21.
  37. ^ "MAP Fund - Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra for Yotam Haber, New Orleans Airlift". mapfund.org.
  38. ^ "Yotam Haber". frommfoundation.fas.harvard.edu.
  39. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-05-28. Retrieved 2016-07-04.

External links[edit]