Who

Bethany Younge’s works are often birthed from an extreme curiosity in sonic, physical, and interpersonal potential. As both a performer and composer, Younge’s oeuvre is uniquely aware of the potential that resides within the physiological dramaturgy of a work. -Laura Cocks

The music of Bethany Younge is raw. It deals with the body, the unique vocal expression and physicality of Younge herself —questions of identity when as much conditioning is stripped away as possible, and the bizarre theater that is born of all this. It is music that becomes desperately personal to the performer, as Younge composes with the essence of specific humans in mind. The brilliance of it all is its uroboric quality: in the end, Younge’s creations always circle back to be a representation of themselves. -Nina Dante

Bethany Younge is an American composer of both acoustic and electroacoustic music. Many of her works incorporate speech and sound poetry that dissect words to reveal individual phonemes, illuminating a world embedded with complex semiotical relations between the spoken word and what is interpreted to be "music." Her explorations in speech have led her to find her words, her voice, and create compelling situations where performers may do the same. Her works are designed with a particular person or persons in mind and her collaborations often rely on a certain degree of intimacy.

Younge is currently pursuing her DMA in Music Composition at Columbia University in New York. She has received a Master’s degree in Music Composition from the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, The Netherlands and a Bachelor’s degree in Music Composition from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. She has studied composition closely with George Lewis, Zosha Di Castri, Richard Barrett, Martijn Padding, Yannis Kyriakides, Peter Adriaansz, Lewis Nielson, and Seung-Ah Oh.

Her works have been featured in the 2016 and 2018 International Summer Course for New Music Darmstadt, Resonant Bodies Festival, Gaudeamus Muziekweek, The 16th International Young Composers Meeting, and many other festivals. She has worked with ensembles including JACK Quartet, ASKO|Schönberg Ensemble, KLANG, Ereprijs Orkestra, Fonema Consort, AndPlay, Chartreuse, Gyre Ensemble, Ekmeles Vocal Ensemble, Mocrep, and others throughout Europe and the USA. Younge was awarded the 2016 Stipend Prize at the International Summer Course for New Music Darmstadt.

fingers stiff
I am a cold kindness
unknown, unreal, uncertain
can you follow me
when my path
is when?
the problem is simple
I don’t see the point
in an artwork
that doesn’t know itself
or how to be fluid
fingers still stiff, stiffer
and my eyes are glued
where they do not move
they do not look
at a problem
that’s been long gone
my unknowness, unrealness, uncertanty
are wearing me right