Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians
York, Nora, singer, composer; She began her singing career on New York1s Lower East side performance art circuit. Performing regularly in jazz venues and festivals including JVC Newport Jazz Festival, Wall To Wall Miles Davis, Lincoln Center Out Of Doors, Bell Atlantic Jazz Festiva , NYC, Women in Jazz-- World Trade Center NYC, What Is Jazz? Knitting Factory NYC, Ottawa Jazz Fest, as well as numerous concert venues at home and abroad. York has aligned her music with other performative arts presenting site specific concerts in prominent museums and theatrical spaces at home and abroad. York has written and recorded scores and songs for film and television, as well as been on the vanguard of live streaming multimedia performances onto the World Wide Web. Defying category, York has shaped her music by sampling from the repertoire of jazz, classical, and pop composers. In addition to her extensive interpretive work, York is embarked on a compositional endeavor called Breaking Tradition: a Song Cycle, which won her a New York State Council on the Arts 2002 music commission grant.
In recent years York's compositions have evolved into two distinct types of works. One she calls morphed tunes and the other straight-ahead songwriting. The morphed pieces use overlay and collage to juxtapose sources in ways that create entirely new inventions. Charles Mingus and John Coltrane can be heard together with The Rolling Stones and Richard Rogers. York will flip gender and context or conflate multiple songs in order to glean her own truth. In her straight-ahead tunes, in both music and lyric, she looks for the interplay of the sensual and the spiritual. She wrestles with how sacred and secular bounce off each other and co-mingle.
Nora York is a member of the voice faculty at The Tisch School of The Arts, New York University.
To Dream The World; Alchemy
Films and broadcasts:
Internationally acclaimed German director Doris Dorrie's award winning films have featured York's scores, songs, and acting. York has worked in television, scoring broadcasts for WGBH, PBS, Showtime, and Granada T.V.
Issue 38 - Vol.4, No.2 June 2002
Hymn & Fuguing Tune: June 2002
Photo by Stephanie Berger