A composer and performer of microtonal music, Joseph Maneri taught at NEC from 1970 to 2007. He died on August 24, 2009, at age 82. In addition to his work as a studio teacher, Maneri cofounded NEC’s Enchanted Circle contemporary music concert series in 1977, and codirected it through 1997. At NEC's 2009 Commencement, Maneri received an honorary Doctor of Music degree. Maneri's former NEC students represent a broad musical spectrum that includes Richard Danielpour, Marty Ehrlich, Satoko Fujii, John Medeski, Matana Roberts, and Cuong Vu.
A passionate advocate of a microtonal approach to sound, Maneri was coauthor of Preliminary Studies in the Virtual Pitch Continuum. Coinventor of a microtonal keyboard that has 588 notes with 72 notes per octave, he was founder and president of the Boston Microtonal Society. He presented lectures and workshops and formed groups to perform written and improvised music through the virtual pitch continuum.
Maneri's piano concerto Metanoia—commissioned but never performed by the Boston Symphony Orchestra—was ultimately performed by Rebecca la Brecque and the American Composers Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center.
A solo artist on various instruments, Maneri's repertoire included jazz and ethnic music as well as his own microtonal compositions. Get Ready to Receive Yourself, a CD of Maneri’s improvisation quartet, received the highest acclaim both in Europe and the U.S.
Theory, composition, and piano with Josef Schmid. Published by Margun. Recordings with the Maneri Quartet on Leo Lab, ECM. Other recordings on HatArt, Tzadik.
photo: Joe Maneri with his son Mat