Dr. Timothy Bonenfant is Assistant Professor of Music at Angelo State University, where he teaches the single reed studio and directs the jazz ensemble. He comes to Angelo State University from Las Vegas, Nevada, where he recently earned his Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Nevada Las Vegas, the first woodwind performer from that institution to earn that degree.
Dr. Bonenfant has studied with Alberto Asercion, Felix Viscuglia, William Powell, Raphael Sanders, Marina Sturm, Michael Limoli and Michele Zukovsky. He received his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. While there, Dr. Bonenfant played with the famed UNLV Jazz Ensemble, directed by Frank Gagliardi. During his time with the jazz ensemble, he played with Joe Williams, Don Menza, Louis Bellson, Chuck Findley, Marlena Shaw and Carl Fontana.
Later, Dr. Bonenfant attended California Institute of the Arts, earning a Master of Fine Arts degree from that institution. While at CalArts, he worked with many of the major composers of our time, including John Adams, Louis Andriessen, Milton Babbitt, Luciano Berio, John Cage, Paul Dresher, Morton Feldman, Stephen Mosko, Mel Powell, Steve Reich, and Frederic Rzewski. He has premiered over thirty works, many written especially for him. Dr. Bonenfant's interest in contemporary music is evident in the composers with whom he has collaborated, including in addition to those already mentioned, Libby Larsen, Dorrance Stalvey, Eric Whitacre, Jorge Villavicencio Grossmann, Walter Blanton, Steven Horowitz, and most significantly, Virko Baley. Dr. Bonenfant's DMA dissertation was about Baley's works for clarinet, four of which were premiered by him, and two of which were written for him, including that composer's most recent work, Partita No. 4 for clarinets (bass, A, Eb and Bb contrabass) and piano.
Dr. Bonenfant was a longtime member of both the Las Vegas and the Nevada Symphony Orchestras and, from its inception in 1998, the Las Vegas Philharmonic. He has also performed with the Houston Symphony and the Boise Philharmonic. His professional experience also includes playing with such notable performers as Randy Newman, Marvin Hamlisch, Tommy Tune, Luciano Pavorotti, Placido Domingo, Andrea Bocelli, Charlotte Church, Theodore Bikel, Rip Taylor, the Village People, the Moody Blues, Beatlemania, Dudley Moore, David Foster and John Duykers.
Dr. Bonenfant’s performances can be heard on three recordings. Two of these feature him playing works written especially for him, Those recordings include “San Francisco Chronicled: The Chamber Music of Steven Horowitz 1990-1996” (the composer of the soundtrack to “Super Size Me”), “The Body of a House: Music of Walter Blanton” and “Voyage From The Past,” a recording with Blanton’s small jazz group Dharma.
Recently he took part in a recreation of Miles Davis’s classic album “Birth of the Cool” at the Cactus Hotel in downtown San Angelo, where he played the alto saxophone part. His performance plans for the immediate future include recitals on both saxophone and clarinet, and a recording of Virko Baley’s “Partita No. 4.”
© & ℗ 2005 William E. Powell
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