Friday, February 10, 2017


We are proud to announce that Yevgeniy Sharlat, associate professor of composition and music theory at the Butler School of Music, has been selected by Kronos Quartet to compose a new string quartet for Fifty for the Future: The Kronos Learning Repertoire. Launched in 2015, Fifty for the Future is an unprecedented commissioning project developed in partnership with Carnegie Hall and 26 other institutions including Texas Performing Arts Association at the University of Texas at Austin to create 50 new works for string quartet — written by 25 female and 25 male composers from around the globe — expressly for the training of young string students and emerging professional string quartets.

The hallmark of this large commissioning initiative is that the scores, parts, recordings, videos and other learning/teaching materials for each of the compositions will be offered, online and free of charge to all.

The 50 new works will represent a broad range of difficulty levels, from beginning to advanced, enabling young quartets to develop as players by working through the ascending levels of complexity and technical challenge. Each composition represents a fully realized work, programmed alongside other repertoire in Kronos’ own touring season. Kronos has given more than 160 performances of the 16 Fifty for the Future pieces premiered thus far.

The Kronos Quartet’s 2016 residency at Texas Performing Arts—during which they performed works from the Fifty for the Future series—was an integral part of creating this strong relationship with both the Butler School and The University of Texas at Austin. The residency was made possible in part by a Mellon Foundation grant to support interdisciplinary programming, extended artist residencies, and the commission of new work by Texas Performing Arts.

Professor Yevgeniy Sharlat has been teaching at the Butler School since 2005. Born in Moscow, Russia, he majored in violin, piano, and music theory at the Academy of Moscow Conservatory. After immigrating to the United States in 1994, he studied composition at Juilliard Pre-College, received his bachelor’s degree from the Curtis Institute of Music, and his master’s and doctoral degrees from Yale University. Sharlat’s catalog includes orchestra, chamber, solo, theatrical and multimedia works. This commission  from the Kronos Quartet will be Dr. Sharlat’s fifth composition for string quartet. His most recent quartet, August 1, 1966 was commissioned by Texas Performing Arts to accompany a dance piece by Seattle-based choreographer, Donald Byrd.

"It is an honor to be taking part in this project, led by the Kronos Quartet and sponsored in part by our own Texas Performing Arts. The fact that the Butler School and TPA are literally joined at the hip has been a boon for both the faculty and students in the composition area,” said Professor Sharlat. “The Kronos residency, funded by the Mellon grant, is only the most recent in a rich history of such collaborations, which have included in past years readings of student works by Brooklyn Rider, Eighth Blackbird, So Percussion, Cassatt Quartet as well as conversations with Steve Reich, Laurie Anderson, Philip Glass and others.”