Duo Anova

Fifteen Minutes of Fame: Duo Anova

An award winning ensemble, Duo Anova is a cello and guitar duo based in New York City. Members Susan Mandel (cello) and Kenji Haba (guitar) met in 2012 and immediately bonded over their passion for contemporary music and their animated sense of humor. The rare instrumentation offers an exceptional experience; it opens up a listener’s mind to a new dimension of textures and sounds unique to cello and guitar.

Duo Anova won honorable mention award in 2014 SMIA chamber music competition. It made its debut at prestigious Carnegie Hall presented by Composer’s Voice in 2014, and praised as “striking compatibility” by New Music for 21st Century. It has also performed at many other venues, including Bohemian National Hall, Composer’s Voice 100th Gala concert, 662 Center concert series, Saint Peter’s Church, and etc. Duo Anova also collaborates with artists to explore the possibility of performing arts with visual arts. In 2013, Duo Anova performed in the magnificent installation art of Hisami Taniguchi at Resobox, contemporary art museum, in New York.

Duo Anova is committed to expanding its repertoire for this unique combination and performing with virtuosity and intensity. It worked with over 20 composers, including award winning composers and emerging composers, such as Goya Masatora, Michael Kropf, Andrew Middleton, Castilla-Ávila, Inna Buganina. In 2014, it will participate in Vox Novus's Fifteen Minutes of Fame series, featuring world premieres of fifteen one-minute pieces written especially for the group.

Cellist Susan D. Mandel is a native of New York. In her classical training, she has studied with cellists Marion Feldman and Dr. Frederick Zlotkin. She has attended Domaine Forget and Bowdoin International Music Festivals where she studied with cellists Thomas Wiebe, Carol Sirvois, Matt Haimovitz, and David Ying. Susan, with her piano trio, was selected to perform the American debut of Robert Delanoff’s Trio for Clarinet, Cello and Piano at Weill Recital Hall within Carnegie Hall as finalists of the AMTL Young Musicians concert series.

Guitarist Kenji Haba is known for his interpretation of Toru Takemitsu, his performances having been described as an “ideal match for Takemitsu’s music” by Fanfare. He is also an active performer of contemporary music, with over 20 pieces of music written for and premiered by him. He has performed as a solo and chamber musician throughout the States, including in New York, New Jersey, Tennessee, Nevada, Kentucky, Georgia as well as in Japan. In 2011, Kenji Haba was appointed as featured artist at the 3rd Annual Special Guitar Concert, in New York City, sponsored by Vox Novus.

15 one-minute selections for Duo Anova

Concert program
  • Convergences

    Rodrigo Baggio

    Rodrigo Baggio's music has been performed in many cities around the world such as São Paulo (Brazil), Paris (France), Quebec (Canada), Bremen (Germany), London (England), Bucharest (Romania), Vermont, New York and Washington DC (USA). As a performer, he has played concerts in different countries of the globe.

    Piece written from a harmonic texture - based on elements of two parallel tonalities (B major and B minor) - shared by the guitar and the cello through the use of musical motives and gestures that lead the music to a sound convergence.

  • Magnetic Refraction

    Joe L. Alexander

    Joe L. Alexander’s music has been performed throughout the United States and Germany. He is a Professor of Music at Louisiana Tech University where he teaches Theory, Composition and Low Brass. Alexander holds a DMA from the University of North Texas.

    Magnetic Refraction is my first attempt at a Fifteen-Minutes-of-Fame composition. The piece was started over the Christmas holiday while in Tuscaloosa, AL.

  • Conversation during rehearsal

    David Bohn

    David Bohn received degrees in composition from the University of Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and the University of Illinois. He currently resides in West Allis, Wisconsin, and is the music director at St. John's Lutheran Church in West Milwaukee. He is the President of the Wisconsin Alliance for Composers.

    Conversation during rehearsal: Cellist: Where's Maibo? Guitarist: Where did you last see it?

  • An t-Eilean Molach

    Erik Branch

    ERIK BRANCH is a native of New York City, and received a BA and MA in Music (Composition) from Hunter College. He lives near Orlando, Florida, where he is active as a pianist, musical director, composer/arranger, operatic tenor, and actor on stage and screen.

    “An t-Eilean Molach” (“Ellen’s Island“) (an ChEE-lehahn MAW-lakh) is inspired by a landscape by the 19th century Scottish painter John Knox depicting tourists boarding a ferry for the island of that name in Loch Katrine, made famous by Sir Walter Scott’s “The Lady of the Lake.”

  • We'll Cross That Bridge Together

    Fermino Gomes

    Fermino Gomes (Patos, PB, Brasil) studied theory with Gazi Sa and João de Barro at Caipira University of Paraiba (UNICPB), Brazil. As well as an active composer, Fermino performs on the viola (Brazilian 10 string-folk guitar) regularly. Fermino currently lives in New York City.

    A seemingly insurmountable obstacle is in the path of two people who love each other. They overcome it and learn that the obstacle itself, the experience of facing it together, was a thing of beauty in itself.

  • Reverie

    Nathan R. Johnson

    A native of the Seattle area, composer Nathan R. Johnson (b. 1982) writes music that is inspired by diverse sources such as folk music, astronomy, literature, and the nature of the Pacific Northwest. His music has been performed in the United States, Canada, and Russia.

    Reverie incorporates various “impressionist” elements, including hazy harmonies based on various modal and pentatonic scales. The composers also sought to contrast the wistful delicacy of the cello’s high range with the rich warmth of the guitar’s low notes.

  • Sour Soul

    Emil Khoury

    Dr. Emil Khoury has various works: Great Love cantata for the late King Hussein of Jordan; Glory Maker cantata for King Abdullah the 2nd of Jordan; Our Love Is So Bright for Kay Weaver; the music of Dive in Aqaba and A Teacher’s Memoirs films and My Love Turkish TV drama; and orchestral and ensemble music.

  • Tastar de Corde

    Ted Mann

    Ted Mann: B.M., M.A., M.F.A., multi-instrumentalist and award-winning composer, is on the music faculty at Keene State College in N.H. He teaches courses in the history of rock and roll, avant rock, counterpoint, guitar classes, private guitar and lute instruction. He also has coached the guitar ensembles. His performing career has brought him to venues from Boston to New York City and across the country as a soloist and with a variety of chamber groups. Mr. Mann has been awarded many grants to bring music into schools and has appeared on television and public radio. He was also 2003’s NHMTNA composer of the year. As a lutenist and vihuelist he has appeared as a guest artist with the Boston-based early music ensemble Capella Alamire. As an advocate for new music, he is co-founder of the New Music Festival For Guitar based at SUNY Plattsburgh. In the fields of electronic music and composition Mann has run the electronic music programs at private preparatory schools and colleges. His compositions, electronic and otherwise, have been recorded and performed regularly. His most recent performances were in August 2013 at Vermont College of Fine Arts and Carnegie Hall in January 2014. Mr. Mann is regularly commissioned to write music for many different media. www.tedmann.net

    I was inspired to write this after I saw Duo Anova play at Carnegie Hall.It's impetus comes from the early lute and vihuela pieces with the same title.

  • A Short Daydream in E Minor

    Andrew Middleton

    Andrew Middleton is an amateur contemporary composer based in North East England. In 2012, Andrew completed Master of Music degree at Newcastle University (UK), under the supervision of Professor Agustin Fernandez where he composed a number of works for chamber ensembles exploring a range of techniques including minimalism, post-minimalism, 12 tone music, paraphrasing and indeterminacy.

    A Short Daydream in E Minor is piece written with similar harmonic and rhythmical repetition of Erik Satie. Throughout the piece the guitar should always let the strummed chords ring out.

  • Toccatina

    Uri Netanel

    1989: M.Mus in composition (Tel Aviv University). 1983: B.Mus in composition (the Jerusalem Academy). 1987: I won a special scholarship with merit from the America-Israel Culture Foundation for "The Blue West" for symphonic orchestra. I play chamber music regularly, mainly in a piano trio, featuring, among the classics, my own works.

    The piece is called Toccatina, suggesting a short virtuoso piece, which is what I had in mind for a one-minute piece for guitar and cello. The piece opens with a 7/8 meter motive, repeated in varied ways, mostly imitative in stretto mode, however keeping the piece's unity and expressing it all with some humor.

  • Serenata a la luz de Fobos y Deimo

    Juan Maria Solare

    Juan Maria Solare, born 1966 in Argentina, works currently in Germany as composer, pianist (contemporary & tango) and teaching at the University of Bremen and at the Hochschule fuer Kuenste Bremen. His music has been performed in five continents. Thirteen CDs of different performers include at least one piece of him. www.JuanMariaSolare.com

    Serenata a la luz de Fobos y Deimos (Serenade under the light of Phobos and Deimos). Not the moonlight – what means that we are actually on Mars. You have to find out who symbolizes Phobos & Deimos respectively: the cello or the guitar. Find the allusion to Beethoven's Serenade Opus 8 (hint: notice the cello figure).

  • Bulldozer

    Thomas Smith

    Thomas Smith graduated from Temple University’s College of Music where he studied with Peter Segal. 2009 resident at the Millay Colony for the Arts. Premieres include “The Birds of Winter” for chamber ensemble, “Changing Elevations,” for the American Composers Forum New Voices Program, and “River Rising” for the Philly Fringe Festival.

    a Bulldozer: n. a machine that moves, clears, gouges out, or levels off by pushing with its broad, blunt horizontal blade. The guitar provides the engine, which propels the music forward, while the cello ‘digs in’ to push, sweep and clear the path ahead.

  • Cathexis

    Samuel Stokes

    Dr. Samuel Stokes teaches in the talent music program for the Natchitoches Parish Schools in Louisiana, and is the music composition instructor at Northwestern State University. Recent compositional premieres include Symphony No. 1, "Eustace the Monk," by the LSU Symphony and "Mein Merveilleux Salvador," by the Hong Kong New Music Ensemble.

    "Cathexis" is the process of investing mental or emotional energy in a person, object, or idea.

  • Pizzifunky

    Ananda Sukarlan

    Composer & pianist Ananda Sukarlan has composed orchestral, chamber and solo works for performers who perform them such as violinist Midori Goto, Woodwind Principals of Boston S.O., works for ballet and film music. He is the founder of the Indonesian Classical Music Foundation http://musik-sastra.com and Ananda Sukarlan Award International Piano Competition. Born in Jakarta in 1968, he now lives in Spain and writes his popular blog http://andystarblogger.blogspot.com .

    Pizzifunky explores the soundworld of plucked strings from 2 different timbres of both instruments. This is the first piece by composer for this instrumental combination which he found strange in the beginning but became fascinated during the course of the creative process, and hope to write more movements to make a suite out of it.

  • In My Dreams

    Blair Whittington

    Blair Whittington is a Los Angeles based composer who concentrates mainly on chamber and orchestral music. He studied composition with Byong-kon Kim and has worked for 18 years as music librarian at the Brand Library & Art Center in Glendale, California.

    This is an expressive yet dreamy piece full of augmented and diminished harmonies. I love the sounds of harmonics on both instruments, full guitar chords and expressive cello playing all of which are prominent in this short piece.