Who is Ruben?

After studying mathematics and music in Amsterdam and working some years as an economist, Ruben Naeff (1981) recently graduated from New York University, where he studied composition with Michael Gordon. Ruben's broad interest led to many interdisciplinary pieces like De Bètacanon (about the hard sciences), The Dancing Dollar (about the current financial crisis), and the YouOpera (about our lives online).

Ruben co-founded the West 4th New Music Collective that promotes the work of emerging composers. He wrote music for Ensemble Signal, the JACK Quartet, the Deviant Septet, Vigil Ensemble, Cadillac Moon Ensemble (all New York-based), Wild Rumpus (S.F.), the duo Valitutto & Meyerson (L.A.), the Erasmus Kamerkoor (Rotterdam) and vocal quartet Quatre Bouches (Amsterdam). He has joined forces with such public figures as NRC Handelsblad economics editor Maarten Schinkel, scientists and former KNAW presidents Robbert Dijkgraaf and Frits van Oostrom, and cartoonist Jean-Marc van Tol. His music has been presented by the Bang on a Can Marathon, Music with a View, Hartford Opera Theatre, Center City Opera Theatre, Aspen Music Festival, June in Buffalo, Bang on a Can Summer Festival, Music11, the UNL Chamber Music Institute, the debate & fine arts festival happyChaos and several science-related events. Performances have taken place in 6 European countries (the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Latvia, Austria) and across the United States (NY, CA, MA, CT, PA, CO, NE, TX).

Ruben holds a M.Sc. degree in mathematics from the University of Amsterdam and a M.M. degree in composition from New York University. He studied with Michael Gordon, Daan Manneke, and Gilius van Bergeijk, and he attended masterclasses by Louis Andriessen, Christopher Rouse, Augusta Read Thomas, David Lang, amongst others. He received grants from the HSP Huygens Talent Scholarship, the Jerome Fund for New Music (JFund) of the American Composers Forum, the Van Bijleveltstichting, and the Stichting Fonds voor de Geld- en Effectenhandel.


Photo UvA FNWI.