The EarWorm Project Begins!

Composer Daniel Felsenfeld is working on a new undertaking called The EarWorm Project. In honor of Danny's 40th--er, 21st--birthday, I am raising funds to commission this interesting work of his. I'm also soliciting raw material for the project. If you'd like to contribute money, please click on the Donate button to the right. To offer ideas that will serve as grist for the composition, please read on.

About the Project
An "earworm" is a song which, once you hear it, you simply cannot get it out of your head. Danny is not looking for "the song that changed my life," but rather for those tunes that never, ever leave your mind. For example, Danny's earworm is "Tomorrow" from the musical Annie, a song he pretty much loathes. Once he hears it, even just a few bars, the song stays with him for hours. A friend says the Suzanne Vega song "Tom's Diner" has the same effect on her but that she loves it nevertheless. So you don't have to hate the source material, but you also don't have to love it. It just needs to be something from which you cannot escape. Once he's gathered enough dastardly material, Danny will compose pieces based on it. While he's not exactly sure what form this all will take, he is sure that once he has the (no doubt hysterically funny) raw material, the parameters will begin to present themselves.

From you, dear reader, Danny needs to know your earworms and receive permission to use your name in conjunction with the composition he will make from, around, in spite of, or beneath said song. If you'd like to add a few sentences by way of explanation, he would welcome that, too. Please click the "Share Your Earworm" link at the bottom of this page.

About Danny
Brooklyn-based composer Daniel Felsenfeld’s recent commissions include: THE RISE AND FALL OF ZIGGY STARDUST (his own musical resetting of David Bowie’s lyrics), for the Real Quiet trio and singers Petra Haden and Theo Bleckmann; REVOLUTIONS OF RUIN, an oratorio for the Congressional Chorus premiered at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. in May, 2009; ALL WORK AND NO PLAY, a piccolo piece for Stephanie Mortimore, premiered at Carnegie Hall, 2007; THE COHEN VARIATIONS, for pianist Simone Dinnerstein; FROM SLEEPLESS NIGHTS, for cellist/vocalist Jody Redhage; THE POET’S DREAM OF HERSELF AS A YOUNG GIRL, commissioned by Stanford University in 2008, for mezzo-soprano Amy Schneider and piano trio; THE BREASTS OF HERA for Sequitur; and THE CURSE OF SOPHISTICATION, a piano concerto for Andrew Russo.

In Spring 2009, the PEN Foundation sponsored COLLABORATIONS/ELABORATIONS, an evening-length performance for their World Voices Festival based on Felsenfeld’s work with writers including Rick Moody, Mark Z. Danielewski, Wesley Stace, and Jonathan Lethem. OPERA AFTER HOURS, an evening of music theatre, was performed at the Zipper Factory in April 2008 (directed by Christopher Alden). THE DRESDEN SOUL SYMPHONY, written for the MDR Orchestra in collaboration with arranger and cellist Larry Gold, premiered in Dresden, Germany in 2008. Felsenfeld’s opera THE LAST OF MANHATTAN was commissioned by (and premiered at) The Kitchen in 2004, and in 2004 another opera, SUMMER AND ALL IT BRINGS, was chosen to be part of New York City Opera’s VOX 2004: Showcasing American Composers.

Felsenfeld is composer in residence for the Xanthos Ensemble, and for Real Quiet. Commercially available works include: pianist Andrew Russo’s DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS and MIX TAPE (Endeavor Classics); pianist Jenny Lin’s AMERICAN INSOMNIAC (Koch). He has received fellowships from Yaddo, The MacDowell Colony, Atlantic Center for the Arts, and the Wellesley Composers Conference.

Felsenfeld is the author of eight books (biographies of composers ranging from Benjamin Britten and Aaron Copland to Bach and Vivaldi). He received his bachelor’s degree at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and went on to earn a doctorate from the New England Conservatory of Music. NEC recently awarded him as their first 10 Year Distinguished Alumni. He teaches at City College of New York.

Click Below to Share your Earworm