An online new music intensive for composers and performers
led by Grammy Award-winning cellist and educator Nick Photinos

March 14-21, 2021


Are you a:

  • Performer hungry for new music, eager to expand your solo repertoire and your community by premiering a new piece written just for you, all while in a collaborative environment led by world-class faculty?
  • Composer excited to work closely with talented players, developing a new work quickly from conception through performance, all while building your community and coaching with esteemed composers and performers?

This March 14-21, join Nick Photinos and special guest faculty Marcos Balter, Haruka Fujii, and Dana Jessen for 1:2:1:

  • 1-to-1 pairing of composers and performers
  • 1 month for composers to write 1 new piece for solo player (5-10 minutes in length)
  • 1 week for solo players to learn 1 new piece
  • 1-to-1 coaching and masterclasses with esteemed faculty
  • 1 week to put 1 premiere concert together on FaceBook Live


1:2:1 is a one-week online intensive pairing composers and solo performers on any instrument or voice to create new work and new communities. Limited to a maximum of just 16 people (eight pairs of composers and performers), this close-knit group will have: 

  • Daily coachings: performers and composers will both coach daily with faculty in preparation for the world premiere of the new solo work on the final webcast concert. Composers will have the opportunity to coach with faculty on their piece and make minor revisions to the work leading up to the end-of-week premiere. Performers will also have the opportunity to coach on a short (up to 10 minute) contemporary solo piece of their choice, also to be performed on the final online concert.
  • Daily presentations and seminars: all attendees (composers and performers) will have daily opportunities to engage each other and faculty in discussion around music and beyond, such as career advice, business-focused topics, music tech, and the current political, societal, and artistic environment within which we all create. Attendees will also have the chance to present their work to other attendees in 30-minute slots each day, and also enjoy planned unstructured time to just hang out.
  • Guest lectures and coachings by Marcos Balter, Haruka Fujii, and Dana Jessen
  • A premiere performance webcast: the new works, as well as contemporary solo works by each performer, will be prerecorded for presentation in a culminating webcast featuring short introductions with the composers and performers.


“I was amazed at how much I learned in such a short period of time everyday.”

“Great way to connect and build sense of community.”

“We covered so much, I couldn’t have asked for more besides more time to talk!”

“This was by far the most gratifying musical experience of recent memory! Thank you so, so much for making this happen. I would love to be a part of another session of this in the near future!!!”

“It’s very rare to find a space where it feels safe to explore new things, and it was just that. Very grateful to walk away with the personal connections I’ve forged.”

“Our Zoom campus was creative, encouraging, accepting, and exciting. You selected musicians who were equally beautiful, creative, and supportive. I cannot express how lucky I feel to have been part of this experience and to meet all these wonderful souls. This has been a challenging year and the intensive has provided a massive highlight for me.”


Meet the faculty

Nick Photinos

Four-time Grammy Award-winner Nick Photinos is one of the most innovative and multifaceted cellists and educators of our time. An ardent advocate for new music, Nick has collaborated, toured, and recorded with a vast array of artists including Björk, Wilco, Bryce Dessner, Bonnie “Prince” Billy, film composer Gustavo Santaolalla, classical artists Dawn Upshaw, Philip Glass, the Bang on a Can All-Stars, and jazz artists including Sheila Jordan, Laurence Hobgood, Zach Brock, and Matt Ulery. He has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras including the Cleveland, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Toronto, Utah, and Atlanta Symphonies, and performed across the globe including the Sydney Opera House, the Barbican in London, KBC Hall in Seoul, and in the US from Disney Hall to Carnegie Hall Carnegie Hall in New York City. Nick formerly served as the founding cellist and Artistic Director of Eighth Blackbird and currently serves as Artist-Teacher of Cello at Longy School of Music in Boston. (Photo credit: Joe Mazza)

Marcos Balter

Marcos Balter (b.1974, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) writes music at once emotionally visceral and intellectually complex, primarily rooted in experimental manipulations of timbre and hyper-dramatization of live performance. Recently featured in a Miller Theater Composer Portrait in 2018, his music is routinely heard throughout the Americas and Europe, and through recordings on New Amsterdam Records, New Focus Recording, Parlour Tapes+, and Navona Records. His works are published by PSNY (Schott). Highlights in 2021 include works for countertenor Anthony Roth Constanzo, the Shanghai Quartet, cellist Jay Campbell and pianist Conor Hanick commissioned by the 92Y, and cellist Matt Haimovitz. Recent collaborators include the rock band Deerhoof, dj King Britt and Alarm Will Sound, yMusic and Paul Simon, Orquestra Experimental da Amazonas Filarmonica, American Contemporary Music Ensemble, American Composers Orchestra, and conductors Susanna Malkki, Steven Schick, and Karina Canellakis. He is currently Professor of Composition at University of California in San Diego. (Photo credit: Heidi Solander)

Haruka Fujii

Multi-percussionist Haruka Fujii has won international acclaim for her interpretations of contemporary music, having performed premieres of works from composers including Tan Dun, Nico Muhly, Vijay Iyer, Joji Yuasa, and Maki Ishii. Since 2010 Ms. Fujii has performed as an artist of the Grammy Award winning Silkroad Ensemble, joining a group of international musicians founded by Yo-Yo Ma. She has frequently collaborated with composer Tan Dun, performing his Water Percussion Concerto, Paper Percussion Concerto, and opera Tea in major venues across the world. She has appeared as a soloist with the San Francisco Symphony, Munich Philharmonic, Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Nationale de Lyon, and the NHK Symphony Orchestra. She is a member of San Francisco Contemporary Players and the New York based Line C3 Percussion Group, also Utari Percussion Duo, a duet project with her sister Rika which actively commissions new compositions from young composers. Her world premiere recordings can be found on the SONY, Kosei, ALM Records, and Deutsche Grammophon labels.

Dana Jessen

Hailed as a “bassoon virtuoso” (Chicago Reader), Dana Jessen tirelessly seeks to expand the boundaries of her instrument through original compositions, improvisations, and collaborative work with innovative artists. Over the past decade, she has presented dozens of world premiere performances throughout North America and Europe while maintaining equal footing in the creative music community as an improviser. Her solo performances are almost entirely grounded in electroacoustic composition that highlight her distinct musical language. As a chamber musician, Dana is the co-founder of the contemporary reed quintet Splinter Reeds, and has performed with Alarm Will Sound, Amsterdam’s DOEK Collective, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, and the Tri-Centric Ensemble, among many others. A dedicated educator, Dana teaches at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and has presented masterclasses and workshops to a range of students from across the globe.

sample daily schedule

(Central Time Zone, subject to change)

  • 10am – 2pm: 30 min daily private coachings with each pair of performers/composers
  • 3pm – 4pm presentation by performers and composers. Each attendee will perform or present once for 30 min during the intensive, either performing or presenting a short work (composers), with discussion to follow.
  • 4 – 5pm faculty presentations and discussions
  • 5 – 6pm open discussion time


  • professional or pre-professional performer or composer
  • at least 21 years of age
  • reliable internet connection
  • devices that support both video chat via Zoom and recording your instrument with a microphone and camera


  • Friday February 5: applications due
  • Sunday February 7: final composer/performer duos decided on, acceptance notifications sent, composers begin writing and are to be in touch with performers throughout process
  • Monday February 8: full tuition due
  • Monday February 8 – Sunday March 7: composer and performers work together to craft a new solo work
  • Sunday March 7: new composer pieces due to players
  • Sunday March 14 – Friday March 19: daily schedule followed: one lesson with coaches between 10am-2pm CDT, then 3pm-6pm CDT with everyone together
  • Saturday March 20: free day to make final presentation videos
  • Sunday March 21: Final webcast performance!


  • Submit your free application via the link below by Friday February 5, 6pm Central Time.
  • You will be asked to submit 2-3 recent, sub-10 minute videos of your performing or compositions as well as a short (three minute or less) video about why you want to attend the program and what topics you would most like to cover.
  • Once accepted, a link will be emailed where payment via Venmo or Chase Quickpay may be made. To secure a spot in the course, payment must be made in full by Monday February 8. Payment is non-transferable and non-refundable except in cases of emergency as determined by Nick Photinos.
  • Tuition: $499


I play contrabass daxophone/nyckelharpa/pyrophone, can I still apply?

Yes! Because of the nature of this intensive with composers writing new solo pieces, performers on ANY instrument can apply and will be equally considered. It’s a great opportunity to build new repertoire for your instrument! 

I’m a composer. How long will I have to write the piece? 

Notifications will go out by February 7 and pieces will be due on March 7, so you will have roughly four weeks to compose a 5-10 minute work for solo performer with or without electronics (see below). 

I’m a composer, can I write a piece for solo instrument and backing track and/or electronics?

Absolutely, and is even encouraged, so long as the performer you are writing for is willing and has the right equipment. In the application both performers and composers will be asked their preferences for this. 

I’m a performer, how many pieces will I be playing as part of this intensive?

Two: you’ll be learning a brand new piece written by a composer paired with you, as well as getting coached on an existing piece of recent (from the last 25 years) repertoire for your instrument, with or without electronics (see below). Both works will be videotaped and shown as part of the final concert. 

I’m a performer, can I learn a solo piece during the intensive that has backing track and/or electronics?

Yes! This intensive is a GREAT way to dive into a piece like this, even if you have never done so. Please indicate the piece and what is required to perform it on the application form, and we will discuss the best way to make a stellar performance happen!

I have attended or applied before, can I do so again?


I have another question, where can I ask it?

Email us at the “contact” link on the upper right hand side!