Company | E has built almost all its art around scores composed specifically for our dances and programs. Often, the choreography comes first; sometimes they happen together. In all instances, the objective is to give the choreographer the primary or co-equal role in shaping the art, and eliminating the issues which too often arise when a dance-maker is confined to a composer's pre-made vision.
Company | E works with composers and arrangers from around the world, has three Composers-in-Residence - Gavin Stewart, Clifton Brockington and Barry Hyde and a Music Director for our Broadway and musical programs, Amikaeyla Gaston.
Check out Composer-in-Residence Gavin Stewart's Inside Looks at writing the scores for "Ghosts Across the Pond" and "The Butterfly's Burden."
Gavin Stewart began his training at Oklahoma Performing Arts and holds a BFA in Dance Performance from UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance. He has danced professionally with Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Company, Owen/Cox Dance Group, MOVE: the Company, Richmond Ballet II, Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, and is currently a member of Company E in Washington, DC.
Gavin was the first Richmond Ballet II member to create new works for both Richmond Ballet and Richmond Ballet II, and has presented choreography at UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance, Virginia Commonwealth University, Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Company, and Company E. In March 2015, Gavin was named the Composer in Residence for Company E and has originated music for four evening-length productions since joining Company E in August 2014.
Mr. Brockington is a musician from Washington, D.C. and graduate of Howard University. His musicianship has led him to Japan, London, Eurasia, the Caribbean and major U.S. cities, playing jazz, rhythm & blues, and gospel music. The Washington Post states “…trumpeter Clifton Brockington displays a knack for recalling Miles Davis’ soulful lyricism…”
While primarily known as a trumpeter, playing with notable horn sections like Mo’ Horns, Clifton also gives world class performances on piano. In this capacity he has toured and recorded with national recording artists Donnie McClurkin, Fred Hammond, Andraé Crouch and Richard Smallwood. Clifton has composed several works, writing for Strathmore and serving as Music Director for the theatrical play Roll On! featuring Tony Award Winner Melba Moore.
He is a Musical Director for Company | E, a highly revered dance troupe, and was a co-writer on Love, a critically acclaimed jazz album by vocalist Changamiré. Clifton is a celebrated educator, having re-established the jazz ensemble at the Ottley Music School in Maryland. He also gives private instruction to young and adult students. On weekends, you can catch Clifton Brockington playing in blues and Latin jazz bands around the D.C. area.
Barry Hyde is a musician, teacher and composer from Sunderland in the North East of England. He is 36 years old. He has worked in as a professional musician since 2002.
He is the lead singer and principle songwriter of the well known indie band The Futureheads. The band have released five albums and enjoyed international success. In 2004 their cover version of ‘Hounds of Love’ by Kate Bush reached the top 10 in the official British music charts and the band went on to release countless top 40 singles and albums and have performed over 800 gigs around the world. Due to the success of their debut album the band experienced massive global exposure and toured extensively playing major music festivals such as Glastonbury, Reading, Fuji Rock Festival, Coachella, Rock Am Ring, Prima Vera and Pukkelpop as well as many others.
The band have toured North America extensively and have performed on numerous major radio stations and even some high profile TV shows hosted by the likes of Jimmy Kimmel and Conan O’Brien. The band have also been fortunate enough to support some of the worlds biggest bands such as Foo Fighters, Muse, Pearl Jam, Bon Jovi, The Pixies, Queens of the Stone Age, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Oasis.
In 2009 Hyde founded Split Festival with some friends and the team staged 5 music and arts festivals and booked acts such as Dizzee Rascal, The Charlatans, St. Etienne, PIL, The Unthanks, Maximo Park and many more. The festival gained an increasing following and the final happening attracted thousands of music fans to the heart of Sunderland City Centre. Due to other commitments to organizers decided to cease trading as a festival in 2013 in amicable circumstances. Around that time Barry started giving private tuition locally and it quickly escalated to several job offers to give guest lectures and masterclasses at various schools, colleges and Universities in the North East region.
After completing a BA in Performance Industries with Wolverhampton University Barry was able to become a foundation degree lecturer in keyboards, vocals and songwriting. In 2016 Barry released a critically acclaimed solo album ‘Malody’ on his own Sirenspire Records and began working as a commission composer for film, dance and live performance. His album documents a period when Hyde experienced some metal health problems, and was applauded for giving candid insight in to the taboo subject if mental illness. That year he was also commissioned to run songwriting workshops in HMP Franklin with life sentence serving prisoners for project based around the centenary of The Battle of the Somme to great success and he also wrote ‘The Seagulls and The Saints’ the official anthem for Sunderland’s City of Culture Bid.
At present Hyde is working on a soundtrack for an animated film based on Olaf Stapleton’s 1937 science fiction novel ‘Starmaker’ with Tyneside based company ‘Arcus Animation’, preparing demos for an international fashion company and is finalising plans to open a rehearsal room and recording studio complex in Sunderland next year. He lectures at the Academy of Music and Sound in Gateshead and also runs songwriting workshops with young adults with Special Educational Needs at the prestigious Sage Gateshead as well as playing regular solo performances around the UK.
Proclaimed as one of the “purest contemporary voices” by NPR, powerhouse Amikaeyla embraces the best of many types of music. Her sultry sound is “like listening to velvet waterfalls” (MTV) and her soulful flavor captures the listener with dynamic passion and sincerity. While the Washington, D.C. area native draws on a tasteful array of influences from Bel canto, Funk and Bossa Nova to Blues, her sensibility is pure Jazz.
She began her training at 4 years of age, studying classical piano and quickly started captivating audiences with her talent in venues with the National symphony as well as in theatrical and musical productions. She then added to her repertoire training on the viola, western & Indian flute, dulcimer, and later, on a multitude of percussion instruments from around the world such as djembe, bata, conga, tabla, taiko, & timbale.
Throwing herself into a multiplicity of musical contexts, she became the lead singer for a 14- piece West African band, a horn-laden 10-piece R&B combo, a 12-piece classical south Indian ensemble, a Celtic sextet, a straight-ahead jazz quintet, and an Americana folk trio.
She has studied, recorded with, and shared the stage with many award winning artists, including Take 6, Sweet Honey In The Rock, Baba Olatunji, Mickey Hart, Gil Scott Heron, Wyclef, Ubaka Hill, Ferron, Vicki Randall, Linda Tillery, Chris Williamson, and Pete Seeger. Her strong academic interest in Sacred Ethnomusicology led her to study with many spiritual and musical masters from many different cultures, and she was invited in 2003 to perform in India at the Inaugural Festival of Sacred Chanting and Singing for the commemoration of the Golden Buddha at the request and invitation of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Winner of eight Washington Area Music Association Awards for Best Jazz, World and Urban Contemporary Vocalist, Amikaeyla was named DC’s best female composer in 2006 & 2008, won the 2005 DC Mayor’s Arts Award for Innovation in the Arts, and was honored with first prize for Best World Music Composition from the 2010-2011 Maryland State Arts Council.
Amikaeyla’s glowing mezzo-soprano and her embrace of unexpected repertoire is showcased with soulful authority on her newest CD, Being In Love. Recorded in Washington, D.C. and Oakland, CA, Being In Love finds Amikaeyla surrounded by an all-star cast of musicians, among them are Grammy winners Howard Levy, Eugene Friesen, Glen Velez, Linda Tillery, John Santos, Michael Spiro, Ray Obiedo, Shiela E and Esperanza Spalding.
Eric Shimelonis is an award-winning composer, conductor, and multi-instrumentalist. His genre-defying music has been featured on concert stages, and in film, television, radio, theatre, and dance. He has performed in venues as diverse as CBGB and the Kennedy Center, and as composer had a sold-out Carnegie Hall debut in 2010 with F. Murray Abraham performing his song cycle Elusive Things - composed after poems by Ilene Starger.
Eric served as assistant director for performances of Stravinsky's L'histoire du Soldat with the Philadelphia and Boston Symphony Orchestras, and he has been nominated for two awards for outstanding music direction. Along with music and sound design for over 300 plays, Eric has composed scores for film and television, including for the films Winter Passing, starring Will Ferrell, Ed Harris, and Zooey Deschanel; and International Falls, starring Rachael Harris and Rob Huebel.
He has been the recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, and the Boomerang Fund for Artists. He is the winner of a Helen Hayes Award, and has been nominated for Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel Awards.
Eric is the resident composer for the Voice Of The City Ensemble, and has been a professor at the University of Maryland, a frequent guest artist at the Juilliard School, a music contributor to Slate Magazine and WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio, and an educational writer, director, and media producer for the Washington Bach Consort. In collaboration with his wife, Rebecca Sheir, Eric scores and designs sound for the podcast Circle Round, a production of WBUR - Boston's NPR station.
Along with over 60 produced episodes, they are starting a collaboration with the Boston Symphony Orchestra for live performances in Boston and at Tanglewood, along with three special episodes.
Marcin Brycki was born in Poland and move to Sweden when he was 12 years. Already as a kid in Poland he started to play classical piano and his highest dream was to be a famous concert pianist. From his young days he also had a great interest in experiment with different sounds and as a teenager he started to make his first compositions. Through the years he has been working with all kinds of genres and music styles, everything from sound art and contemporary art music to jazz and mainstream pop music.
He has been a producer, worked as a composer and been playing himself. In 1999 he started his own record company, MBA Records and through that company he has among other things been working with different artists as well as for Swedish national TV, radio and different commercial companies.
Marcin composed the music for Lidia Wos dance performance “Who let the dogs out?” in 2011. That was his first composition for dance. After that he has also created the sound image for choreographies by Marcos Morau and Martin Forsberg at Skånes Dansteater.
He has an exam as an acoustic engineer and is now working as a music and acoustic consultant for ÅF where he is making different acoustic and sound work connected to construction of new buildings and city environments.
ALBERTO SCHWARTZ (ALMA, INSIDE IT'S RAINING) Alberto is a composer who writes music for films, television, dance, and theatre.
Born in Uruguay, and now residing in Tel Aviv, Alberto began to study classical guitar at the age of eight. Over the years, he extended his studies in the Uruguay University of Music, and at the Film Scoring Department of Rimon Music School
Alberto has been commissioned to write the music for several films, among them, the multiple award-winning “Life in Stills”; for a variety of theatre plays, some of them produced by Habima National Theatre; and has worked with well-known choreographers such as Yoram Karmi (Fresco Dance Company), Rachel Erods, and dancer Ido Tadmor.
ARBOL (composer of FEW) - Miguel Marín, a Seville-born musician based in Barcelona, is the man behind the musical project Arbol. Marín, the composer of soundtracks and contemporary music which combine austere and melodic electronica with IDM, he's one of Spain's most important audiovisual artists.
Arbol released three CDs/LPs ("S.T." on 2003; "Dreams Made Of Paper" on 2005 and "You Travelled My Heart Inside Out" during 2007) as well as several singles and compilations on Lejos Discos and his own label (Emilii Records). His music can be described as "electronic soundtrack" or "glitch".
During his career, Marín (born in November 1974) has recorded twenty LPs and performed his compositions at several music and multimedia festivals. As well as having worked with producers, choreographers and artists of the stature of Bigas Luna, Leo Obstbaum and Jean Nouvel, he is the man behind numerous soundtracks for both cinema and theatre, and has provided the sound for various video installations.
"The MC builds and supports whole-child learning...instilling the values of self-discipline and team building."
- Roseanna B. MC Parent
The Company | E Movement Center for Dance Education teaches the next generation both the technique and the joy of movement.
"...exactly the kind of work we had imagined when creating the Performances for Young Audiences series, elegantly combining multiple art forms including modern dance, classical music, storytelling, visual arts, and theater."
- David Kilpatrick, Director, Education Programs and Productions. The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.