Jonathan Pieslak, Ph.D., graduated from the University of Michigan in 2003 where he also received Master of Music degrees in Music Theory (1999) and Composition (2002). His music has been performed and broadcast throughout the United States and internationally, entailing recent collaborations with, among others, the Plainfield Symphony Orchestra, Las Sirenas Women’s Choir, Kiev Philharmonic, North/South Consonance, and receiving acclaim in concert venues as “a powerful and intense statement” [The Michigan Daily] and “especially inspired” [The Eugene Register-Guard]. He has been recognized with recent awards and commissions from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Jerome Foundation, American Composers Forum, and American Music Center.
In addition to these compositional activities, Jonathan is an active performer and scholar. He has performed as an electric bassist in ensembles under the direction of John Zorn and Ben Whiteley (Cats, Winter Garden) and is currently bassist for the ambient metal band, half (www.halfmusic.com). As a scholar, Jonathan has presented papers at distinguished institutions and conferences including The Society for Ethnomusicology, The Society for Music Theory, The Dublin International Conference on Music Analysis, The Music Theory Society of New York State, The International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM), The Given Institute of the University of Colorado, Emanuel University (Oradea, Romania), The City College of New York, The Graduate Center, CUNY, Davidson College, and the University of Michigan. His research interests include critical theory, popular music, music and the war in Iraq, and has been published in Theory and Practice, Popular Music, and Journal of Musicological Research.
Born in 1974, Jonathan has studied composition with Michael Daugherty, Susan Botti, Andrew Mead, Erik Santos, Kevin Korsyn. He currently teaches music at The City College of New York, CUNY. His music can be heard at: www.myspace.com/jpieslak or on ERM Media’s “Masterworks of the New Era, Volume 4” CD (available through Amazon and iTunes).