School of Music

Diana Rosenblum

BIOGRAPHY

Over the past decade, Diana Rosenblum has cultivated the craft of imitative counterpoint within a contemporary tonal idiom that embraces complex sonority. Her repertoire is distinguished, not only by its inclusion of many fugues and canons, but by their inquisitive premises and immaculate structures. Sister works for keyboard, Canonic Dances (2020) for organ and Curiosities (2019) for harpsichord, implement novel and archaic canonic techniques, advancing the ancient form to imaginative new limits. Her fourth Curiosity “Contraption,” for instance, is an elaborate ‘inter-manual’ canon, treating the polyphonic content of each hand as its strictly imitative material throughout its entire duration. Despite a high threshold of contrapuntal intricacy, both four-movement works maintain listenable transparency and characteristic charm, in keeping with a broader aesthetic agenda.

Beyond her specialty as a contrapuntist, Rosenblum has cultivated a chromatically dense harmonic language, attenuated by her sensitive ear for gesture, intelligible voice-leading, archetypal phraseology, and vibratory grammar. The dodecachordal second movement of her Piano Quartet, “Poem,” with her own set class analysis, will be featured in Bradley Osborn’s textbook, Music Theory for the Modern Age, under contract with Oxford University Press, anticipating release in late 2023 or early 2024.

Rosenblum joins the faculty at Nazareth College as a Lecturer in Composition in Fall 2022, serving as a year-long sabbatical replacement for Dr. Octavio Vazquez, alongside fellow Lecturer Haralabos Stafylakis. She holds a Ph.D in Composition from Eastman School of Music, where her studies were supported by a prestigious Robert L. and Mary L. Sproull Fellowship, as well as a Samuel Adler Scholarship and a merit scholarship granted by the Imagination Fund. Her compositions have been awarded the Wayne Brewster Barlow Prize (twice), Belle S. Gitelman Award (twice), and Anthony and Carolyn Donato Prize. She was recognized as a Finalist for Eastman’s Teaching Assistant Prize for Excellence in 2017 and inducted into Pi Kappa Lambda honor society in 2018. In Fall of 2019, Rosenblum produced an archival recording of her full orchestral work, Gordian Knot, with the Baltimore Symphony Musicians in the UMBC Fine Arts Auditorium, under the baton of Edo Frenkel, now Assistant Conductor of the Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

Rosenblum has enjoyed collaborations with harpsichordist Andrew Rosenblum, organist Chelsea Barton, violinists Wendy Toh, Eri Noda and Della Davies, violist Joshua Lohner, cellist Henry Myers, pianist Tze-Wen Lin, percussionist Brant Blackard, Eastman Broadband Ensemble, the Whistling Hens (comprising soprano Jennifer Piazza-Pick and clarinetist Natalie Groom), Khroma Quartet (which includes Nazareth faculty of saxophone performance, Anne Kunkle, as a founding member), Eastman Graduate Composers’ Sinfonietta, OSSIA New Music, Duologue (violinist Suhashini Arulanandam and percussionist Nathan Petitpas) and the Red Hedgehog Trio. Her setting of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 60, Like as the Waves, for cello and vocal trio (SSA) has been performed on tour throughout England and the northeastern U.S. by cellist Matt Haimovitz and UK-based vocal trio Voice. It is published by Oxingale Music, having been one of three prize-winners in their 2014 International Call for Scores. Rosenblum’s song, Say I am a River for soprano and clarinet –– setting the poetry of Mary Buchinger, President of the New England Poetry Club –– is included on the Whistling Hens’ debut CD, Reacting to the Landscape (2022). Her prior song for the same instrumentation, Winter Rain, has been recorded by soprano Kristine Hurst-Wajszczuk and clarinetist Denise Gainey on the Naxos label.

In addition to her creative achievements as a composer, Rosenblum’s music-theoretical dissertation, Deciphering ‘Canonic Codes’ in George Benjamin’s Palimpsest II, earned superlative praise from her committee. Moreover, the renowned composer George Benjamin (whose pitch-encrypted canons Rosenblum de-codes in the dissertation) expressed astonishment in personal correspondence at “the intensity and diligence” of her work, likening her “investigative skills” to those of Sherlock Holmes.

Rosenblum holds an A.B. in Philosophy from Princeton University, where her senior thesis, Socratic Sophistry: the inherent humor of playing the hypocrite, was advised by Hendrik Lorenz, and M.M. in Music Composition from University of Oregon, where she was named Outstanding Graduate Scholar. Her principal composition mentors have been David Liptak, Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon, Robert D. Morris, and Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez at Eastman, as well as Robert Kyr and David Crumb at Oregon. Formerly, she studied cello in the Peabody Preparatory program with Thomas Kraines of the Daedalus Quartet.

School of Music Responsibilities

  • Music Composition
  • Studio Class

Education

  • Eastman School of Music, Ph.D.
  • University of Oregon, M.M.
  • Princeton University, B.A.