Sivan Cohen Elias
Sivan Cohen Elias’s work is cross-disciplinary, using the body, everyday objects, installations, technological interventions and musical instruments to all constantly contribute to, and disrupt, one another’s domains. In her work, she looks to materials that appear in “in-between” places; places where contradictory impulses—musical performance, play, task, absurdity, tension, humor—operate simultaneously. Described by the New York Times as “deconstructing the instruments themselves,” Cohen Elias’s work involves performers frequently appearing in dual roles as producers of sound, agents of choreography, and puppeteers of objects. Cohen Elias has been the recipient of numerous international awards, residencies and commissions, including the Music Theatre Composition Staatstheater Darmstadt Prize (2016), Akademie Schloss Solitude fellowship (2012–13) and the Impuls International Composition Competition (2009). Cohen Elias’s works have been commissioned, broadcast and performed by ensembles and performers (including herself) in and around the United States, Europe, Russia and Israel. Collaborators include Staatstheater Darmstadt, Klangforum Wien, MusikFabrik, Mosaik, Dal Niente, and Jack Quartet, among many others, and festival appearances include Darmstadt Fereinkurse, Bludenz, Wien Modern, Witten, Warsaw Autumn, and Bang on a Can. She received her doctoral degree from Harvard University, where she studied with composer Chaya Czernowin. Since 2018 Cohen Elias has been a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Iowa, where she teaches applied composition and music technology, as well as serving as the director of the electronic music studios.