biography

pithy (100 words):

Oakland, CA-based composer/performer Kyle Bruckmann’s work extends from a classical foundation into gray areas encompassing free jazz, electronic music and post-punk rock. He is a member of acclaimed new music collective sfSound, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, Eco Ensemble, Splinter Reeds, and Quinteto Latino. He has worked with the San Francisco Symphony and most of the area’s regional orchestras while remaining active in an international community of improvisers and sound artists. From 1996-2003, he was a fixture in Chicago’s experimental music underground; long-term affiliations include the electro-acoustic duo EKG, the art-punk monstrosity Lozenge, and the Creative Music quintet Wrack.

 

thorough (300 words)

Composer/performer Kyle Bruckmann’s work extends from a Western classical foundation into genre-bending gray areas encompassing free jazz, electronic music and post-punk rock. A busy and varied performance schedule and appearances on more than 60 recordings have led to his recognition as “an excellent composer, striking the right balance between form and freedom” (Signal to Noise), “a modern day renaissance musician” (Dusted) and “a seasoned improviser with impressive extended technique and peculiar artistic flair” (All Music Guide).

Shortly after moving to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2003, he joined forces with acclaimed new music collective sfSound and with Quinteto Latino (a woodwind quintet specializing in Latin American composers). He is now also a member of the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, Eco Ensemble, and Splinter Reeds. He has worked with the San Francisco Symphony and most of the area’s regional orchestras remaining active in an international community of improvisers and sound artists. Current local improvising working groups include Addleds, Shudder, and mchtnchts.

From 1996 until his westward relocation, he was a fixture in Chicago’s experimental music underground, with frequent collaborators Jason Ajemian, Jim Baker, Jeb Bishop, Olivia Block, Guillermo Gregorio, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Robbie Hunsinger, Bob Marsh, Weasel Walter, and Michael Zerang. Long-term affiliations include the electro-acoustic duo EKG, the “rock” monstrosity Lozenge, and the Creative Music quintet Wrack (recipient of a 2012 Chamber Music America New Jazz Works award).

Bruckmann earned undergraduate degrees in music and psychology at Rice University in Houston, studying oboe with Robert Atherholt, serving as music director of campus radio station KTRU, and achieving academic distinction as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He completed his Masters degree in 1996 at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where he studied oboe performance with Harry Sargous and contemporary improvisation with Ed Sarath.

 

exhaustive (800 words):

Composer/performer Kyle Bruckmann’s work extends from a Western classical foundation into genre-bending gray areas encompassing free jazz, electronic music and post-punk rock. A busy and varied performance schedule and appearances on more than 60 recordings have led to his recognition as “an excellent composer, striking the right balance between form and freedom” (Signal to Noise), “a modern day renaissance musician” (Dusted) and “a seasoned improviser with impressive extended technique and peculiar artistic flair” (All Music Guide).

Shortly after moving to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2003, he became a member of new music collective sfSound (a winner of the 2008 Chamber Music America/ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming) and Quinteto Latino (a woodwind quintet specializing in Latin American composers). He has worked with the San Francisco Symphony and most of the area’s regional orchestras, accompanied 20th and 21st century opera productions with Opera Parallèle, and is now also a member of Splinter Reeds, Eco Ensemble and the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players. With these groups and formerly as a member of Gene Coleman’s Chicago-based Ensemble Noamnesia, he has performed an encyclopedic cross-section of contemporary composition, including the works of Andriessen, Berio, Boulez, Braxton, Cage, Cardew, Carter, Crumb, Czernowin, Dillon, Feldman, Ferneyhough, Glass, Goldstein, Hurtado, Lavista, Leach, Lim, Murail, Niblock, Penderecki, Reich, Scelsi, Sciarrino, Spahlinger, Stockhausen, Subotnick, Tenney, and Xenakis.

He has meanwhile become firmly enmeshed in the vibrant local improvised music community; frequent co-conspirators have included Liz Albee, Ernesto Diaz-Infante, Matt Ingalls, John Ingle, Aurora Josephson, Jacob Lindsay, Tim Perkis, Dan Plonsey, Jon Raskin, and Toyoji Tomita. Current Bay Area working groups include Shudder (with Lance Grabmiller and Phillip Greenlief), Ghost in the House (with David Michalak, Tom Nunn, and Karen Stackpole), Addleds (with Tony Dryer, Jacob Felix Heule and Kanoko Nishi) and mchtnchts (duo analog electronics with Lance Grabmiller).

From 1996 until his westward relocation, he had been a fixture in Chicago’s experimental music scene, with frequent collaborators Jason Ajemian, Jim Baker, Jeb Bishop, Olivia Block, Guillermo Gregorio, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Robbie Hunsinger, Bob Marsh, Weasel Walter, and Michael Zerang. Long-term projects include the electro-acoustic duo EKG (“a fine example of the kind of genre hybridisation that typifies early 21st century music,” Wire), the Creative Music quintet Wrack (“dazzling proof that intricately arranged, angular modern jazz can be accessible and enjoyable,” Wire) and the art-punk monstrosity Lozenge (“one of the most criminally underrated outfits in alt.rock”, Signal to Noise). His underground rock misadventures also led to a short stint in the volatile My Name is Rar-Rar (touring in support of The Locust) and to entanglements with neo-no-wave stalwarts Cheer-Accident and Bobby Conn.

In the course of his travels, Bruckmann has shared the stage repeatedly with a cast of improvisers including Allesandro Bosetti, Tom Carter, Audrey Chen, Christopher Cogburn, David Dove, Jeremy Drake, Harris Eisenstadt, Bryan Eubanks, James Falzone, Chris Forsyth, Jeff Gburek, Gunda Gottschalk, Anton Hatwich, Boris Hauf, Chris Heenan, Bill Horvitz, Guiseppe Ielasi, James Ilgenfritz, Greg Kelley, Larry Marotta, Tatsuya Nakatani, Kurt Newman, Polwechsel, Bhob Rainey, Vic Rawlings, Frank Rosaly, David Rothbaum, Steve Rush, Sara Schoenbeck, Jason Stein, and Jack Wright.

As a composer/performer, he has presented solo and ensemble works in settings including the sfSound Series, the Chicago Cultural Center’s New Millennium/New Music Series, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee’s Unruly Music Series, St. Louis’ New Music Circle, and NYC’s Issue Project Room and The Stone. Projects he has helmed have received support from the Aaron Copland Fund for Music Recording Program, Chamber Music America, the Center for Cultural Innovation, Meet the Composer, the Zellerbach Family Foundation, the American Composers Forum’s Subito Program, the San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music, Chicago’s Experimental Sound Studios Artist Residency Program, and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs.

His debut CD of solo improvisations, entymology, was hailed as “an enchanting experience that expands the possibilities (and the comprehension) of the double reed family” (François Couture, All-Music Guide). He has recorded as leader, collaborator, or sideman for Hat Art, New World, Musica Genera, 482 Music, Sedimental, and/OAR, Barely Auditable, Archive, Lucky Kitchen, Formed, Nine Winds, Another Timbre, Wodger, Rossbin, Edgetone, ToYo, Sickroom, Farrago, and Locust Music. His session work has graced albums by artists as diverse as indie mope-rock icons Damon and Naomi and confrontational purveyors of noisy blues abjection Oxbow.

Bruckmann was born in 1971 in Danbury, CT, hometown of Charles Ives. He earned undergraduate degrees in music and psychology at Rice University in Houston, studying oboe with Robert Atherholt, serving as music director of campus radio station KTRU, and achieving academic distinction as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He completed his Masters degree in 1996 at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where he studied oboe performance with Harry Sargous and contemporary improvisation with Ed Sarath. He has attended the Bowdoin Summer Music Festival in Maine, the Chautauqua Institution in upstate New York, and the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara.