This page contains postings on compositions, performances and press.

Commission for Newberry Library - Open House Chicago

I am honored to have been awarded a commission to write a site-specific work for the famous Newberry Library ( as part of Open House Chicago (, funded by Access Contemporary Music My piece focuses on the front lobby and stairwell, with the instruments separated spatially. Event is Saturday, October 13, 2018. The work is played continuously (with short breaks) throughout the afternoon.

Latest Events

Saturday, October 13, 2018, Newberry Library, 60 W Walton St, Chicago, Illinois, i PM-4 PM. World premiere of new work, commissioned by Access Contemporary Music for Open House Chicago. Work will be played througout the afternoon, with ten minute breaks between performances. Free of charge.

Thursday, September 6, 2018, Chapel of Good Shepherd Center, 4649 Sunnyside Ave N, Seattle, WA. Wayward Music Series presents an array of electro-acoustic music for violin and electronics by Karen Bentley Polick, including Impossible Animals.

Friday, July 6, 2018, Bucharest, Romania. Music Hall of the Cantacuzino Palace, The George Enescu National Museum - Violin recital and international interpretation workshop, Karen Bentley Pollick. Includes "Cluck Old Hen Variations."

Tuesday, July 3, 2018, Bucharest, Romania. The International Center for Research and Education in Innovative Creative Technolgies – CINETic - presents a concert of electronic music with violin (also performed recently at Stanford University’s Center for Computer Reseach in Music and Acousics.) Includes "Impossible Animals," performed by Karen Bentley Pollick.

Sunday, May 13, 2018, 2:00 PM, Mother's Day Fiddle Concert at Salvation Cafe, Newport, Rhode Island. EmmaLee Holmes-Hicks performs Cluck Old Hen Variations" along with other fiddle trio works billed as "a Mother’s Day Brunch and toe-tapping tunes on the special day." Info here.

Saturday, April 8, 2018, Concert at the home of Harry Bernstein, Berkeley, California, including performances by David A. Jaffe, mandolin; Karen Bentley Pollick, violin; Jonathan Salzedo, harpsichord. Includes premiere of violin/harpsichord version of "Three Musicians (after the Picasso paintings)". See contact page for info on tickets.

Saturcday, April 7, 2018, Cañada College Main Theatre, 4200 Farm Hill Blvd, Redwood City, California. Redwood Symphony performs "How Did It Get So Late So Soon," with Karen Bently Pollick, violin. Tickets here.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018, invited speaker at Cañada College STEM lecture series. Presenting a talk entitled "Silicon Valley Breakdown - composing a life with music and machines."

Saturcday, February 3, 2018, 7 PM; Music Mansion 88 Meeting Street, Providence, Rhosw Ialnsd. Verdant Vibes Benefit Concert, featuring "Cluck Old Hen Variations," performed by EmmaLee Holmes-Hicks violinist/fiddler. Info here.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017, Garden of Memory, a columbarium walk-through event at the Chapel of the Chimes, 4499 Piedmont Avenue, Oakland, California. 5-9 PM. I will be performing "Cluck Old Hen Variations," "Ellis Island Sonata," "Improvisation for Violin and Voice (one player)," and other works.

Saturday, April 8, 2017 at 7:30 pm - Hillside Concerts presents the "preview" of a piano/violin version of "How Did It Get So Late So Soon?" (movements 2 and 3) with Karen Bentley Pollick and pianist Marja Mutru. Also "Cluck Old Hen Variations" with film by Fred Kolouch, and other works. Berkeley, California

Wednesday, December 21, 2016 at 7:30 pm - Karen Bentley Pollick performs Violin, Viola & Video Virtuosity 2016, includes "Cluck Old Hen Variations" with film by Fred Kolouch, and other works. Seattle, Washington, Chapel of Good Shepherd Center, 4649 Sunnyside Avenue North, 4th Floor, corner of 50th Street in Wallingford, Seattle.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016, University of Colorado Composer Seminar lecture, Boulder, Colorado

Saturday, November 12 & Sunday, November 13, 2016 - Boulder & Broomfield, Colorado. US Premiere of violin concerto "How Did It Get So Late So Soon? - an homage to Dr. Seuss" (2016), Karen Bentley Pollick, Violin, Boulder Chamber Orchestra, Bahman Saless, conductor.

Thursday, September 22, 2016 at 7:00 pm - Permainu Muzika/Music of Changes Festival, Klaipėdos koncertų salė, Šaulių g. 36, Klaipeda, Lithuania. Karen Bentley Pollick performs Violin, Viola & Video Virtuosity 2016, includes "Cluck Old Hen Variations" with film by Fred Kolouch, and other works.

Saturday, August 27, 2016 at 8:00 pm - Tytuvenai Festival, Lithuania.
World Premiere of Violin Concerto "How Did It Get So Late So Soon?"(2016), Karen Bentley Pollick, Violin; Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre Orchestra, Robertas Šervenikas, conductor.

Fricay, March 5th, 2016, 7:30 PM. Chapel Performance Space, at the Historic Good Shepherd Center, 4649 Sunnyside Ave. N., 4th Floor, Seattle, WA. "Music in the Space Between Us," for eight strings and Radiodrum controlled Trimpin percussion, featuring Andrew Schloss, the Lafayette String Quartet and others; "Impossible Animals," for two voices, with Karen Bentley Pollick and David A. Jaffe, voices; "Cluck Old Hen Variations," for violin, with Ann Elliott-Goldschmid.

— Events in 2015: Yi David Yang and Jack Van Geem perform "Library of Babel," S.F. Conservatory of Music (Feb. 22); Lecture/concert at CCRMA, Stanford University (March 4); New Music Works performs "Dybbuk" (Oct. 24); Lecture/concert on Mills College's Songlines series (Nov. 23), including performance of "Cluck Old Hen Variations."

— Events in 2014: US premiere of "Fox Hollow," in Lafayette, Danville and Berkeley, California (Feb 21-24); "Cluck Old Hen Variations" performances: Vilnius, Lithuania (June 16), SPECTRUM in New York, with premiere of film by Fred Kolouch (Oct 5), Detroit Institute of Arts (Oct 10), CCRMA, Stanford (Nov 20); World premiere of "Eight O's in Woolloomooloo" for baroque strings and voice, S. F. Early Music Society, Berkeley, California (Dec 4).

— Events in 2013: Lectures at U.C. Berkeley (March) and Sonoma State (April); premiere of "NotomotoN Unstrung", for mandolin and computer-controlled percussion, at U.C. Irvine (April); World premiere of "The Library of Babel," at the Zeltsman Marimba Festival, Arcata, California (July); University of Victoria Orion Fellow for 2013, with World premiere of "Fox Hollow" for string quartet and Canadian premiere of "The Space Between Us," "May All Your Children Be Acrobats," and 8 other works (November), Victoria, B.C., Canada.

Garden of Memory

On June 21, 2017, I performed as part of the unique Garden of Memory event, a columbarium walk-through event held every June 21st from 5pm to 9pm to celebrate the solstice at The Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland, California.  Along with some forty other Bay Area new music performers, ranging from Kitka to Sarah Cahill, from the Rova Saxophone Quartet to Amy X Newburg, i will be positioned in one of the hidden nooks in the labrynthine Chapel of the Chimes, performing solo works for violin and mandolin, including "Cluck Old Hen Variations," "Ellis Island Sonata," and assorted improvisations on fretless banjo and other instruments. Note that tickets are available at the door throughout the event. 

Here are some video excerpts:

Hillside Concerts - violin/piano version of How Did It Get So Late So Soon?

April 8, 2017 - Hillside Concerts.  Bob Cowart's classic Berkeleyconcert series presented the preview performance of the 2nd and 3rd movements of a violin/piano version of my 2016 concerto, "How Did It Get So Late So Soon?," performed by Karen Bentley Pollick and Marja Mutru. This was my first opportunity to have the pleasure of working with Ms. Mutru, who also was extremely helpful in advising me on the piano arrangement. 

"Boulder Chamber Orchestra presents music grown from friendship"

by Peter Alexander, Boulder Weekly, November 9, 2016. Link to article is here.. Excerpts below. . .

“I strongly believe music is made between people who know each other,” [Karen Bentley Pollick] says. “The history of music is people writing with and for people that they’re fond of.” . . . “What really appealed to me was how clever [Jaffe’s music] was written for the violin, because he was a violinist,” Pollick says. She also loved his mixing of idioms across many different styles. “He has such a grounding in roots music,” she says. “Blues, folk music — it’s all in there. And it feels good to play on violin.” . . . “This concerto could only have been written by an American vernacular composer,” she says. “There’s a familiarity for anybody who comes from American music — they’ll feel immediately connected with this piece. . . . “My dream is to unite our audience through the celebration of eloquent varieties of American music, and the U.S. premiere of the violin concerto, creating a transcendent and memorable experience for all present.”

Read More