Composer and multi-disciplinary artist Yoav Gal specializes in the marriage of music an image. He has devoted his artistic life to the creation of “indie opera” (The New York Times, “Never Say Die in Indie Opera”), a genre that evolved in small spaces, often with limited means, and is designed to provide the audience with an “operatic” experience in a concert hall, a black box theater or a gallery, just as well as in a large opera house. Gal works with a range of new media, such as video projections, computer graphics, web and performance art, while also drawing on traditional practices, especially those of Baroque Opera – vocal virtuosity, highly stylized dramatization and polyphonic settings cast in a clear harmonic language.
The recent production of Gal’s MOSHEH, a videOpera (commissioned by Merkin Concert Hall, 2006) ran at a sold-out HERE Arts Center, NY, during Jan/Feb 2011, and was hailed by the press for its “exhilarating complexity” (the Forward); as a “compellingly idiosyncratic meditation” (the New York Times); as a “a lush, vibrant, and very contemporary new opera” (NYTheatre.com); for “The gem of the score … a quartet for the women narrating the plagues of Egypt, a virtuoso slow march of writhing vocal lines and sudden subtle modulations (NY Post), etc.
Gal’s other works for the stage include THREE WEEKS (in progress), about the last days of the Jewish revolt in Jerusalem, in 70AD, which presented by New York City Opera VOX program in May 2011, and hailed by the NY Times as “truly fresh” and “sometimes absurd, sometimes sincere - but with a core of real feeling”; VENUS IN FURS, a videOpera, commissioned and premiered in 2004 by Golden Fleece LTD and also produced at Here Arts Center and Berkshire Fringe Festival (2007); THE DWARF, a comic opera, (Vertical Player Rep, 2003); BERESHIT, (2001), for the Golden Fleece LTD; and MAO ZEDONG – JEALOUS SON (LaMaMa ETC, 1999). Gal is also currently working on a song cycle for saxophone and soprano, for Argeo Ascani
His chamber works include Dr. KING, commissioned by Bang on a Can, based on Martin Luther King Jr.’s recorded speeches; WE SHALL FIGHT, commissioned by the Real Quiet trio, based on Winston Churchill’s “We Shall Fight on the Beaches” speech; IR SHEL SHALOM, solo vibraphone and vocal samples for David Cossin; STRANGERS, solo cello, after Frank Sinatra, for Wendy Sutter; several piano pieces for Gila Goldstein, as well as works for Ensemble Pamplemousse, Abby Fischer and Now Ensemble.
Gal’s work has been presented in venues such as New York Opera Vox series; the Whitney Museum; Here Arts Center; LaMaMa ETC; Vertical Player; Golden Fleece opera; Galapagos Art Space And others. He is a recipient of grants from the NEA, Bang on a Can People Commissioning Fund; Meet the Composer, American Music Center, Harvestworks, Franklin Furnace and BCAT/Brooklyn-Rotunda Gallery, and others. Born in Israel and a New York resident since 1988, Gal holds a BA in composition from the Manhattan School of Music and an MA from Queens College. He also studied visual art in Thelma Yelin School for the Arts in Tel
Gal’s recorded music includes, BIT BY BIT, CELL BY CELL, a ‘virtual opera’ based on “World of Awe”, by media artist Yael Kanarek, for digitally processed voice and vintage Atari 800XL computer. Released by Innova in 2006. The multi media CD had been hailed as “clusters of angels caught in various beams of light and held suspended as their songs bleed through to our world…. Quite lovely, listenable, and beautifully packaged as well.” by George Parsons of Dream Magazine; “perfectly accessible and often quite beautiful for it.” by Tim Rutherford-Johnson; and “A gorgeous work” that “..really pushed the envelope of how much can be asked of the listener.” By DaveX of the Startling Moniker.
Other recordings include MOSHEH (HEARart 2011) VENUS IN FURS (CD Baby, 2008) and MAO ZEDONG – JEALOUS SON Net Cast on the “Future of the Present” by Franklin Furnace, and up-coming the DWARF and ABSALOM.