Alexander Hille, choreographer
Alexander Hille received his dance education in New York at Juilliard School and with the Netherlands Dance Theatre. He danced in Austin McCormick’s Company XIV, in Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal under Louis Robitaille, in Les Grands Ballets Canadiens with Ivan Cavallari and lastly in the Ensembles Les 7 Doigts de la main, Foniadakis Dance and Cirque du Soleil (»Vitori«). There he worked with choreographers like Andonis Foniadakis, Fernad Nault, Anabelle Lopez Ochoa, Itzik Galili, Cayetano Soto Ramirez, Mauro Bigonzetti, Alexander Ekman, Aszure Barton and Benjamin Millepied. His own choreographic works were created for George Mason University, the University of Vermont and Theatre Rialto. He also studied Andonis Foniadakis’s »Cosmos« with Staatsballet Hannover. With the beginning of the 2020/2021 season he belongs to the company of the Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz.
Gabriel Kahane, composer
The morning after the 2016 election, Gabriel Kahane boarded a train at New York’s Penn Station and traveled just under 9,000 miles around the continental United States, talking to dozens of strangers, eating plate after plate of three cheese tortellini, and drinking in the rich landscape of the country. The resulting album, Book of Travelers (Nonesuch), is an intimate musical travelogue, hailed by Rolling Stone as “a stunning portrait of a singular moment in America”.
A singer-songwriter, pianist, and composer, Kahane has over the last decade established himself as a distinct and penetrating voice in an array of cultural spaces. He is also a passionate Italophile, and will cheerily fight you over the proper emulsification technique involved in saucing pasta.
This season, Kahane begins a three-year term as the inaugural Creative Chair of the Oregon Symphony, which commissioned his 2018 oratorio, emergency shelter intake form. That work, which explores inequality through the lens of housing and homelessness, was performed last summer at the Grant Park Music Festival in Chicago, and will be heard this season in performances by the Orlando Philharmonic, as well as by the Detroit and Milwaukee Symphonies. A commercial recording, featuring the Oregon Symphony, will be released in early 2020.
Other highlights of the season include the premiere of Pattern of the Rail: Six Orchestral Songs from Book of Travelers with the Oregon Symphony and Louisville Orchestra, as well as solo concerts at the Luxembourg Philharmonie and Konservatoriets Koncertsal in Copenhagen, the latter under the auspices of a festival curated by the Danish String Quartet. In March, he welcomes Pulitzer Prize-winner (and master of egg cookery) Caroline Shaw as the guest of his new concert series, Open Music, presented by the Oregon Symphony. He reunites with Shaw in May for a collaborative concert with the Attacca Quartet at the Phillips Collection in Washington DC. A new choral work, co-commissioned by the LA Master Chorale and The Crossing, receives its world premiere at Disney Hall the same month.
Gabriel’s career as a theater artist dates back to childhood, when he terrorized director Francesco Zambello during rehearsals for Houston Grand Opera’s production of Kurt Weill & Langston Hughes’ Street Scene. In 2012, he made his Off-Broadway debut with music & lyrics for February House at the Public Theater in New York. In 2014, he wrote and starred in the BAM Next Wave Festival production of The Ambassador, directed by Tony and Olivier Award-winner John Tiffany. A study of Los Angeles seen through the lens of its ten street addresses, The Ambassador was also released as an album by Sony Masterworks. Last season, he made his Broadway debut with a score for Kenneth Lonergan’s The Waverly Gallery, starring Elaine May and Lucas Hedges. Michael Cera was also in that show, and it turns out he’s a pretty good chess player.
Collaboration, schmollaboration, I said more ham! There’s an extraordinary constellation of vibrant musical communities active today, and Gabriel considers himself fortunate to be in their midst. Memorable projects have included tours with Andrew Bird and Punch Brothers; recordings with Sufjan Stevens, Phoebe Bridgers, and Blake Mills; and an arrangement of “Bridge Over Troubled Water” written for Paul Simon’s Farewell Tour in 2018. As a composer, he has been commissioned by, among others, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and Carnegie Hall.
A graduate of Brown University, Kahane lives in Brooklyn.
Kyle Pederson, composer
Kyle Pederson (b. 1971) is a Minneapolis-based composer, lyricist, pianist, and educator. Kyle was awarded the ACDA Genesis Prize in 2020 and the American Prize in Choral Composition in 2019. His work has been commissioned and recorded by All State/Honors choirs, and youth, church, college, and professional choirs around the world. Kyle enjoys working at the intersection of the sacred and secular, and his lyrics and music invite the choir and audience to be agents of hope, grace, and compassion in the world. Kyle has an undergraduate degree from Augustana University, a Masters Degree in Education from University of St. Thomas, and an MFA in Music Composition from Vermont College of Fine Art. His work is published by Walton, Santa Barbara, Galaxy, Morningstar, Alfred, and Carl Fischer music publishers. Additional information and links to Kyle’s music can be found at kylepederson.com.
Elayna Waxse, choreographer
Elayna Waxse is a professional performer, educator, and choreographer, originally from Overland Park, Kansas and is now based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She began her training at nine years old with Alecia Good and also at the Kansas City Ballet School under the direction of Karen P. Brown, spending her summers at the School of American Ballet in New York City. She continued her training at the Professional Division program at Pacific Northwest Ballet School in Seattle, WA., where she regularly performed with the company.