Conversation with Joel Sachs
3pm, Saturday, April 7

"The problem with Henry Cowell is that if you had invented his life, no one would believe it."
—Joel Sachs

Joel Sachs - pianist, Juilliard professor, and author of the widely acclaimed biography Henry Cowell: A Man Made of Music- will share stories from Cowell’s adventurous life.


Joel Sachs, co-director of Continuum, has conducted at major festivals throughout the world, has been music director for experimental operas, and performs extensively as a pianist. At Juilliard, where he has been on faculty since 1970, Sachs conducts the New Juilliard Ensemble, a chamber orchestra for new music, and directs the annual "Focus!" festival of new music.

He is also artistic director of Juilliard's concerts at the Museum of Modern Art's "Summergarden" festival. Other appearances include orchestra concerts in China, El Salvador, Germany, Mexico, Switzerland, and Ukraine, and residencies in Brazil. He can be heard on all Continuum CDs. He also recorded intercultural music of the Americas with Mexico City's La Camerata de las Americas, and Icelandic music with the Reykjavik chamber orchestra Caput. He received Columbia University's Alice M. Ditson Award to a conductor for service to American music. Sachs received his B.A. in music at Harvard College and his M.A. and Ph.D. in musicology at Columbia University.

Sachs is a member of the board of the Charles Ives Society. He has also served on the boards of the Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund for Music and the Fromm Foundation at Harvard, and the peer review panels of the New York State Council on the Arts. Sachs’ biography of Henry Cowell, "Henry Cowell: A Man Made of Music," was published in 2012 by Oxford University Press.