Serving the San Francisco Bay Area New Music Community

Center for New Music
55 Taylor St
San Francisco CA 94102  

The Center for New Music San Francisco, Inc. is a community center for participants of new music in San Francisco. The Center serves the practitioners of creative, non-commercial music by providing the resources they need, including space to work, rehearse, and perform, access to a like-minded community, and access to media resources. Through these services, the Center seeks to support and build the community of new music to encourage its efficiency, growth, integration, and excellence.

Upcoming Events:
Monday, November 19 2018 7:30 PM
Clara Yang Piano: Sound of the Past and the Present

Solo piano works by Chen Yi, Zhou Long, Phil Young, Scriabin, and Prokofiev.  More...

Thursday, November 29 2018 8:00 PM
Disks and Grooves: Exploring Rotary Instruments

Composer Danny Clay and printmaker Jon Fischer present an evening of film screenings with live musical accompaniment. Exhibited in conjunction with an interactive visual art display, the screening combines the duo’s hand printed records with field footage shot across the California coastline. T.D. Skatchit & Company features Tom Nunn & David Michalak playing Nunn's inventions the Skatchbox and Skatch Platter with guests from a pool of over 20 collaborators known as The Company. For this concert, The Company features Aurora Josephson.  More...

Friday, November 30 2018 7:00 PM
Enrique Arriaga (Unknown Persons) and Concepción Huerta (Territorios Personales)

Mexico City electronic sound artists Enrique Arriaga and Concepción Huerta each share sound performances intersecting visible and invisible impulses circling manifestations of humanity.  More...

Sunday, December 2 2018 3:00 PM
Crown of Eternity – Sound Experience

A total absorption in sound through the harmonic resonance of 50+ overtone rich instruments including Gongs, Bells, Hammered Dulcimer and tuned metal instruments.  More...

Friday, December 7 2018 7:30 PM
Andy Meyerson: Ritual & Resonance

A concert of new percussion solos written for Andy Meyerson featuring works by Adrian Knight, Sarah Hennies, Samuel Adams, Amadeus Regucera, and Christopher Cerrone.  More...

Wednesday, December 12 2018 7:00 PM
PlantLife: an Immersive Evening of Phyto-Experience
Sarah Cahill, Piano: Patterns of Plants, Mamoru Fujieda
Pet the Tiger: Psychobotanikon;
Cheryl Leonard, Dan Gottwald, David Samas; Invented Instruments
Christina Braun, Annikah Peabody; Butoh
Katarina Countiss; Live Projection, Painted Wardrobe
Michael Dooley: Plant Meditation
Anjelica Colliard; Plant Portraits Drawn

Join us for an evening of music, meditation, art and dance expiring and celebrating the consciousness or our allies in the green world.

7 PM: Plant Meditation with Michael Dooley every 10 min in the rehearsal room
(limited to 4 guests)
Anjelica Collard will draw your plant portrait in the library
8 PM Sarah Cahill, Piano: Patterns of Plants, Mamoru Fujieda
9 PM Pet the Tiger: Psychobotanikon

Patterns of Plants, composed between 1996 and 2011, is Mamoru Fujieda’s magnum opus. Working with the “Plantron,” a device created by botanist and artist Yūji Dōgane, the composer measured electrical fluctuations on the surface of the leaves of plants, and converted the data thus obtained into sound using the Max programming system. Through a process he has likened to searching “in a deep forest” for “beautiful flowers and rare butterflies,” he listened for musical patterns, and used them as the basis for composing short pieces, which he then grouped into collections reminiscent of Baroque dance suites. The resulting music is as varied and lovely as any garden. But it is more than ornamental; as pianist Sarah Cahill notes, these are pieces of great depth and expressivity.

Psychobotanikon was collaboratively composed by instrument inventors Cheryl Leonard, Dan Gottwald and David Samas, all of whom have been working with natural materials for decades. It explores themes of plant consciousness, botanical perception of time and the voice of the plants themselves. Developed with live projection and dance to express the private life of plants and celebrate the interconnected sentience of every living thing.

Plant Meditation with Michael Dooley and Katarina Countiss in the rehearsal room. The format is a headphoned experience for 4 people for 7-minutes for as many sessions we can do in an hour.


Sarah Cahill, recently called “a sterling pianist and an intrepid illuminator of the classical avant-garde” by The New York Times, has commissioned, premiered, and recorded numerous compositions for solo piano. Composers who have dedicated works to her include John Adams, Terry Riley, Frederic Rzewski, Pauline Oliveros, Julia Wolfe, Yoko Ono, and Evan Ziporyn, and she has also premiered pieces by Lou Harrison, Ingram Marshall, Toshi Ichiyanagi, George Lewis, Leo Ornstein, and many others.

Cahill’s radio show, “Revolutions Per Minute”, can be heard every Sunday evening from 8 to 10 pm on KALW, 91.7 FM in San Francisco. She is on the faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory, and curates a monthly series of new music concerts at the new Berkeley Art Museum.

Cheryl E. Leonard is a composer, performer, and instrument-builder whose works investigate sounds, structures, and objects from the natural world. Her projects often feature natural-object instruments and field recordings from remote locales. Leonard has received grants from the NSF’s Antarctic Artists and Writers Program, American Music Center, American Composers Forum, and ASCAP.

David Samas is a teaching artist, composer, instrument inventor, curator, conceptual artist and social sculptor. A queer, native San Franciscan from mixed immigrant roots, David got his a BFA from the SF Art Institute in conceptual art in 2000 and studied poetics at the New College of California. He is the director of Pet the Tiger Instrument Inventors Collective and curates the Window Gallery for Invented Instruments at the Center for New Music.

Dan Gottwald is a sculptor, sound artist, instrument builder, musician and composer. Informed by desert landscapes, tools of industry, cartoons and tinnitus, his work focuses on the tactile, temporary and social through object, sound and performance.
Gottwald’s main exhibition vehicle is the Analogous Ensemble, A collection of sound sculptures and instruments designed and built for the purpose of exploring new music and interactions between objects, performers and audiences.

Lifelong dancer Christina Braun’s choreography with collaborating composers has been presented regularly since 2002. Her core teachers in the Butoh form are local treasures Hiroko and Koichi Tamano.  More...

Saturday, January 26 2019 7:30 PM
56×54: But Wait! There’s More!

E4TT performs a concert of 15 short works: 9 pieces by women composers (including Missy Mazzoli, Elena Ruehr, Sarah Kirkland Snider, Laura Schwendinger, Shulamit Ran, and Tamar Diesendruck), 5 more from E4TT's first Call for Scores, at which we received 275 works by 200 composers and chose 56 x 54, plus a piece by E4TT composer David Garner.  More...

Friday, February 1 2019 8:00 PM
In her solo violin project “Meshes,” Leslee Smucker explores the strange and unnerving relationship between dream and reality by juxtaposing the music of Conor Abbott Brown, Lera Auerbach, Luc Brewaeys, Michel van der Aa, Locatelli, and film of Maya Deren. The film “Meshes of the Afternoon,” by Maya Deren is set neither in reality or dream, and it is the mesh and web of fugue-like sequences that is the impetus for the solo violin program entitled “Meshes.” Michel van der Aa’s “Memo” uses a live tape recorder, and Luc Brewaey’s work for violin and electronics (using pots and pans as ‘ghost bells’) are examples of works that connect everyday actions with the psyche–symbolizing small-meaning occurrences through an artistic realm. The program “Meshes” develops themes surrounding dream and reality, and sound and silence–compelling the audience to experience the subliminal relationship between dream and reality.  More...

Friday, February 15 2019 7:30 PM
Composer-pianist Jared Redmond returns to his home in the Bay Area, performing a recital of contemporary piano works. Jared will premiere new pieces written for him by composers Carolyn Chen, Saman Samadi, and Kurt Rohde, and play modern masterpieces by Giacinto Scelsi, Salvatore Sciarrino, and more.  More...

Saturday, February 16 2019 8:00 PM
Grammy winner Henry Kaiser is widely recognized as one of the most creative and innovative guitarists, improvisers, and producers in the fields of rock, jazz, world, and contemporary experimental musics. The California-based musician is one of the most extensively recorded as well, having appeared on more than 300 different albums and contributed to countless television and film soundtracks. Mr. Kaiser not only produces and contributes to a staggering number of recorded projects, he performs frequently throughout the USA, Canada, Europe and Japan, with several regular groupings as well as solo guitar concerts and concerts of freely improvised music with a host of diverse instrumentalists. He is also a longtime research diver in the US ANTARCTIC PROGRAM.

Evidence of his exceptional musical breadth and versatility can be found in just a few of the extraordinary artists with whom he has recorded and/or performed: Evan Parker, John Oswald, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Toshinori Kondo, Steve Lacy, John Stevens, Michael Stipe, D’Gary, Herbie Hancock, John Zorn, Wadada Leo Smith, Bill Laswell, John Stevens, Terry Riley, Michael Snow, Diamanda Galas, Thomas Mapfumo, Phil Lesh, Lukas Ligeti, Cecil Taylor, Negativland, and Michael McClure.

One of the last advisory board members of GUITAR PLAYER MAGAZINE still standing, Henry has a longtime habit of musically collaborating with his many guitar heroes; such as: Jerry Garcia, Derek Bailey, Richard Thompson, David Lindley, Bill Frisell, Nels Cline, D’Gary, Sonny Sharrock, Mike Keneally, David Torn, Fred Frith, Eugene Chadbourne, John Abercrombie, Amos Garrett, Bob Weir, Steve Kimock, Jody Stecher, Jim O’Rourke, Martin Simpson, and Harvey Mandel.
Álvaro Domene is a Madrid-born, New York based guitarist and composer operating at the convergence of various styles of spontaneous and composed music. Recent collaborators include Briggan Krauss, Jim Black, Joe McPhee, Karl Berger, Michaël Attias, Mike Pride, Peter Apfelbaum, Ches Smith, Michael Bisio, and Fred Lonberg-Holm. Domene attended the jazz program at Middlesex University in London, and studied under Chris Batchelor, Elliott Sharp, and John Stowell. He is currently composing a new piece for string quartet, also writing for his newly formed trio “Leaving The Sky in Splinters” (with drummer Kate Gentile and bassist Kim Cass), and promoting the release of his first solo guitar album, “The Compass”. He is an active performer in New York City’s jazz and creative music scene, leading various groups in addition to working with numerous artists. His work has been positively reviewed by Jazzwise, New York City Jazz Record, All About Jazz, El Intruso, Tomajazz, and many other specialized media outlets like Avant Music News, on which a recent release, “Synaptic Self” by the trio dMu, was included in the list of “Best Albums of 2016”. His latest and first solo record, “The Compass”, was featured “Record of the Week” also on Avant Music News, along with John Coltrane’s “Lost Album”.  More...

Friday, March 1 2019 7:00 PM
Modeled after Cher’s decades long Farewell Tours, violist and composer Kurt Rohde continues his multi-year commissioning project, Kurt Rohde’s FAREWELL TOUR—Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6, with PART 2 taking place on March 1, 2019. The commissioned new works feature some of the most gifted composers that Rohde feels are underrepresented and deserve a wider audience, while also broadening the repertoire for viola. The project’s anticipated year of completion is 2028, at which time Mr. Rohde will retirefrom playing in performance and donate his instrument to “some talented whipper-snapper who wants to play viola.” Tonight’s event focuses on new works for viola and electronics.

Richard Chowenhill crush for Amplified Viola WORLD PREMIERE

Peter Van Zandt Lane Décalcomanie 2 for Viola and Electronics WORLD PREMIERE

Elainie Lillios Liquid | Crystal | Vapor for Viola and Live, Interactive Electronics WORLD PREMIERE

Sam Nichols Imaginary Units for Viola and Interactive Electronics WORLD PREMIERE

Tina Tallon excision no. 2: they didn’t know we were seeds for Viola and Live Electronics WORLD PREMIERE*
*Tina Tallon’s new work is Commissioned by the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition at Brigham Young University.

Rebecca Clarke Sonata for Viola and Piano (1919)  More...

Sunday, April 28 2019 7:00 PM

New Music for Baroque cello
Elinor Frey, Baroque cello & 5-string Baroque cello
Guided by Voices is the commissioning project of cellist Elinor Frey who uses two Baroque instruments that each have a very different sound than the modern cello. Here the Baroque cello and five-string cello are each instruments of sound in the present day, capable of inspiring some of today’s outstanding composers who wish to explore their unique qualities. Begun in 2014 with a work for the five-string Baroque cello by Scott Edward Godin, the project also features Canadian composers Linda Catlin Smith, and Isaiah Ceccarelli, and Maxime McKinley whose work calls for cello and harpsichord. Solo works by the Japanese-American composer Ken Ueno and Swedish-German composer Lisa Streich complete the program. In a sense, this music acts as a kind of update of the instrument; when composers write a new piece for “Baroque” cello it becomes an instrument of today, not only past eras, helping to expand the sound worlds of both the cello and new music audiences. Each work reveals the cello’s incredible versatility and remarkable colours. An article about the six-work commissioning project can be found in the journal of contemporary music, Circuit, published in September 2018. The CD recording will be released in March 2019 on the Analekta label.

Linda Catlin Smith (b. 1956)
Ricercar (11.5 min) 4-string cello (2015)
Isaiah Ceccarelli (b. 1978)
With concord of sweet sounds (11.5 min) 5-string cello (2015)
Scott Edward Godin (b. 1970)
Guided By Voices (11:30) 5-string cello (2014-15)
Lisa Streich (b. 1985)
Minerva (8 min) 4-string cello (2018)
Ken Ueno (b. 1970)
Chimera (20-25 min) 5-string cello (2017)
“Night opening its black flower”
“in the shadow of my sorrow”
“we are resurrected”
“the sky will be lavender”
“an ocean bell sounding”  More...

Photo Albums (click to view photos):
Rova Saxophone Quartet is now in residence at Center for New Music. The Center, located at 55 Taylor Street, is establishing a hub for the new music community, providing space to work, learn, rehearse and perform.