Multi-instrumentalist and composer Dan Blake has developed a wide-ranging career as a contemporary composer, performer and educator that “regards tradition as a welcoming playground best approached with a sense of wonder and adventure” (The Boston Globe). Blake’s music has been called “stunning” (All About Jazz), and he was recently dubbed a “virtuoso” (The New York Times) for his work touring and recording both with his own projects and with luminaries of jazz and popular music like three-time Grammy winner Esperanza Spalding, NEA Jazz Master Anthony Braxton, and Velvet Underground founding member John Cale, among many others. As a composer of extended works for string quartet, orchestra, sound installation, as well as hybrid chamber/improvising ensembles, Blake gravitates toward collaborations with artists who share a desire to move beyond creative boundaries. He has found such collaborators in groups like Mivos Quartet, the Tri Centric Orchestra, Talea, and many others, who have commissioned and recorded his works.
A musician keenly interested in bringing music together with social justice causes, Dan Blake produces the annual Concert To Feed The Hungry, a fundraising event celebrating the struggle to end hunger and malnutrition in poor communities around the world. He also holds a Ph.D. in composition from the City University of New York and is currently on faculty at the New School for Social Research, and at the Conservatory at Brooklyn College.
For his concert, Blake will feature drummer and jazz legend Jeff Williams (Stan Getz, Dave Liebman, Joe Lovano, etc.) as well as his longtime musical musical colleague, bassist Dmitry Ishenko. Together they will play selections from Blake’s recent release, The Digging (2016), a rhythmic and adventurous take on post-bop jazz, described by the Ottawa Citizen as a “creative essay on what can be done in the [saxophone] trio format”.