Deborah Bradley-Kramer

Lecturer in Music (on leave 2017-18)
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(On Leave)
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(On Leave)

Deborah Bradley-Kramer Ph.D, a graduate of New York University and the European Mozart Academy, is Lecturer in Music at Columbia University and was Director of Columbia's Music Performance Program from 1999-2013 where she helped to inaugurate numerous new performing series, projects, areas of study, and to establish the program's principal operating budget.

She is founder and pianist of The Moebius Ensemble, a group dedicated to championing American music and the works of emerging composers in America and beyond, and engaged in a long-term score donation project for the libraries of Eastern European conservatories. Moebius has been the recipient of Copland, Koussevitzky, Rockefeller, Arts International, and Trust for Mutual Understanding grants for a multi-year series of concerts, recordings, and presentations in Finland, Russia, Czech Republic, Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, and Armenia on issues and performance practices in  20th and 21st Century American music. They have presented European premieres of Martin Bresnick, Duncan Neilson, Aaron Kernis, Fred Lerdahl, Jonathan Kramer, Sebastian Currier, Bruce Adolphe, Morton Feldman, Paul Schoenfield, and Lou Harrison among many others.

Nominated for a teaching award, Ms. Bradley-Kramer has taught in Columbia's Core Curriculum since 1999 and introduced many new courses to the Department of Music: Russian Music From Glinka To GubaidulinaSoviet Music and MusiciansPiano Repertoire, and Jewish Music from Biblical Times to Present, to name a few. Recently, she has presented lectures on pedagogy and contemporary piano music at the Royal Irish Conservatory, The Juilliard School, Taipei National University of The Arts (TNUA), Chulalongkorn University (Bangkok), on Chinese language Television programs (NTDTV) and at the United Nations as part of the Humanicy project. She has also given talks on Russian poetry and music at New York University's Jordan Center, and was invited to present additional talks and concert-lectures on Russian Music topics in Spring 2016.

Dedicated to education and outreach, Ms. Bradley-Kramer co-founded a free community concert series, Overlook Concerts, in Riverside Park which routinely draws over 300 audience members to its events, and showcases musicians from Columbia, Juilliard, and the Manhattan School of Music.  Through the Jonathan Kramer Fund for Young Composers which she established in 2004 following the composer's death, she has assisted  many graduate and undergradute composers from Columbia University and Juilliard; in 2015-16 three Columbia composers will be assisted by the fund, with American premieres of their works presented at the 92nd Street Y on the new SoundScape series.

As a pianist Ms, Bradley-Kramer performs a wide-ranging repertoire with recent points of focus on improvisation and the fugue. This season (2015-16) she will present a series of piano duo and solo concerts titled "Flights of Fugue," which pair fugues of Bach with those of Shostakovich, Slonimsky and others written for her by composers from Columbia and Juilliard.  In 2015-16 she will also present premieres of works written for her by Russian composer Boris Tishchenko (Sonata No. 10 "Eureka" and Portrait: D-B") and give concert-lectures on contemporary American and Russian piano music at the Jerusalem Rubin Academy of Music, Targ Music Center of Jerusalem, Conservatory of Music in Prague, Prirodni School in Prague, American University in Sofia, Bulgaria, Chopin University of Music in Warsaw, Krakow Conservatory, Lodz Conservatory, St. Petersburg (Russia) Conservatory, Hartt School of Music, New York University, Kiev Conservatory, The University of Chicago, College Music Society, and the Central Conservatory of Beijing.

Recently, she formed SPEAKmusic, a collective of Columbia and Juilliard musicians and composers dedicated to introducing and enlivening the world of classical music  - especially that written by contemporary young composers - to young listeners. SPEAKmusic has received numerous invitations to take part in concerts in the United States, Europe, Asia, and West Africa, and recently performed at the United Nations, on Chinese TV (NTDTV), at the Roerich Museum, Klavierhaus, on WWFM Radio, and on the Cine-Concerts series at the Czech Center of New York. SPEAKmusic musicians will team up with the Daedalus Quartet on a new concert series at the 92nd Street Y called   "SoundScape" in Fall 2015, which will feature music of the theremin and world premieres by Columbia's undergraduate and graduate composers and others, and re-introduce to New York the works of Jacob Weinberg, a founding member of the Russian Society of Jewish Folk Music (ca. 1909-19) on whose archive Deborah has been working since 2012.

Along with SPEAKmusic, Ms. Bradley-Kramer is engaged in numerous outreach  and charitable projects, both locally and abroad. In 2015-16 she will embark on a long-term project to assist the Kenya Conservatory of Music with string instruments for their orchestra, and they will coach students and give a series of master classes to the young musicians at that institution in 2016. 

The White Buffalo Salon which she founded in 2004, has attracted many eminent composers, musicians, writers, and film makers - among them John Luther Adams, Daedalus Quartet, thereminist Dalit Warshaw, writers Oscar Hujeulos and Mirta Ojito. This year at the Salon and at the Roerich Museum, she will present a series of concerts and readings highlighting Nobel Prize winner Joseph Brodsky, and featuring photographs of the poet from her and others' private collections.

Ms. Bradley-Kramer's CD  (with Moebius) of Jonathan Kramer's chamber music will be released by Leonarda records in Spring 2016, and her essay on performing Kramer's postmodern piano works will appear in Jonathan Kramer's forthcoming (posthumous) book Postmodern Music, Postmodern Listening (Bloomsbury Press), scheduled for publication in Spring 2016. She is also the music director of a forthcoming film with director/ writer Andre Vltchek, highlighting a Rom community of South Bohemia.

Research interests include Baroque Music, postmodern music, improvisation, fugue, Russian avant-garde of Silver Age, lost generation of  Czech composers from the Holocaust, Russian Jewish Folk Music Society, Russian and Bulgarian folk music, constructivism, surrealism, Russian and Czech poetry, film, and literature, Rom music of Central and Eastern Europe, music and memory.


Courses taught at Columbia:

Russian Music and Musicians

Soviet Music

Jewish Music from Biblical Times to Present

Russian Music from Glinka to Gubaidulina

Piano Literature

Music Humanities