Eleonor Sandresky writes music that has been described as “lovely, but enigmatic,” as having “ever-varying qualities of touch, register and intensity,” as “witty, liberating” and “beautiful.” Her music is featured in both narrative and art film, and has been presented at film festivals around the world, including Cannes. The results of one of her more recent collaborations was a part of the Venice Biennale 2013. She has received grants and commissions from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New York State Council on the Arts, Jerome Foundation, ASCAP, American Music Center, New Music USA and Meet the Composer. Eleonor has been a composer-in-residence at Yaddo, STEIM, and The MacDowell Colony, among others. Recent works include Donne Songs Without Words, for viols and harp, commissioned by Parthenia, premiered March 2015, and Opening for guitar ensemble, commissioned by The New York Guitar Society and premiered in May 2016.
Eleonor is the inventor and performer of The Wonder Suit, a remote set of wireless sensors that she wears and uses to trigger sonic events during her Wonder Suit shows. These sonic events range from discreet processes on a live sound, such as a subtle reverb addition, to surface manipulations of the pitch for the entire live output. She has created large-scale works for The Wonder Suit but she also performs live improvisations with the suit, most recently on a Mexican tour in 2015.
She is at the same time one of New York’s pre-eminent new music pianists, known for performing “with such sweep and fueled majesty,” Kathleen Supové, concert pianist, with performances and premieres of new works by a wide range of composers that include Don Byron, Annie Gosfield, Philip Glass and Egberto Gismonti. She has recorded for CRI, Nonesuch, One Soul Records, New World Records, Mode Records, and Orange Mountain Music, and plays concerts throughout the world. In 2013 she initiated a series of collaboration projects that she presented at Spectrum called Rétes: collaboration series. Each month she composed, rehearsed and performed music with or by another composer performer. Her collaborators included Du Yun, Andrew Sterman, Pat Irwin, Kamala Sankaram, and Randy Gibson. Out of these collaborations, Ensemble 50, a group of composer/performers with deep roots in open compositional forms, was born. The members, with Eleonor, are Mary Rowell, Kevin Norton, Jim Pugliese.
As a music director, she has led ensembles in a variety of theatrical settings, from dance performances with Susan Marshall to conducting live ensemble to film with the Philip Glass Ensemble, which she joined in 1991. Eleonor, is co-founder of the MATA Festival, http://matafestival.org/. She is also a consultant and the Associate Producer of film and live orchestra projects for The Leonard Bernstein Office.
Eleonor's mentors and teachers, aside from Philip Glass, include Martin Bresnick andJacob Druckman , and for piano, Rebecca Penneys. She is deeply appreciative of the time she spent working with Steven Doane, Piotr Janowski, György Sébok, Paul Katz and Aldo Parisot for their invaluable coaching, musicality, patience and encouragement during her student years.
Her music is available on Koch International, One Soul Records, ERM Media and Albany Records. For more information on her work, please visit www.esandresky.com, www.facebook.com/ChoreographicPianist, https://soundcloud.com/eleonor-sandresky/sets/, www.youtube.com/user/chorpiano13/videos. You may also follow her on twitter @chorpiano and @esandresky.
"Her hands drift and bob like a pair of breeze-born swallows, gently alighting on the keys one after another."
"Sandresky's arms circle one over the other and we hear the sound of the notes being played almost as we see the delicate gestures cascade one over the other. We lose sight of the separation between movement and music and the choreographic gesture becomes the sound of the piano."
"Her vision has a freshness and unusualness that has become rare in the avant-garde scene, and her delivery is captivating and true."
"Sandresky's main goal is expression via sound and movement, and the combination is much more compelling than any recital has any right to be."