Life can be incredibly challenging. Feelings of pride, distress, alienation, and inadequacy all give rise to existential dilemmas regarding the human condition’s complexities. People are deeply uncertain about negative emotions and how to process them. Music can be a place to help us reprocess our neural pathways to live more authentically.
Music expresses human imagination and offers unique opportunities to examine the abstract ideas, concepts, and truths that each person may face. My philosophy emphasizes the individual’s potential, the necessity of communal humanistic values, and the need to live creatively and constructively. We will focus on universally applicable notions of human nature through music, including mortality, justice, accountability, and a higher level of meaning and well-being in one's life. Music carries healing qualities due to its unique phenomenon of processing on both sides of the brain. Music has the extraordinary capability to stimulate our emotions and evoke our memories. When we make music together, our hearts beat together.
Dorian Wallace is a composer, pianist, music therapist, and teacher based in New York City. His work addresses socio-political issues and philosophical concepts, often incorporating improvisation. He has collaborated with artists such as Bonita Oliver, John Sanborn, Paul Pinto, Pamela Z, Charlotte Mundy, Frank London, and Nicholas Finch, to name a few.
Wallace is a founding member and co-artistic director of Tenth Intervention, a progressive new music collective exploring the intersectionality of social justice and community engagement through contemporary music. During the COVID-19 pandemic, he founded the New Music Organizing Caucus, contemporary classical music advocacy, and labor rights collective to address systemic inequalities within the field. With David Kulma, Dorian co-hosts Trysteropod, an anarchist podcast discussing politics from a musician’s perspective. He is a Sing In Solidarity member, a socialist movement chorus in New York City that performs music from the international and domestic left.
One of New York City’s most in-demand dance accompanists, Wallace has played for Martha Graham Dance Company, Doug Varone and Dancers, Juilliard, New York University, Columbia University, and many, many others. He also teaches Music for Dancers at the Martha Graham School and is a teaching artist for the Mark Morris Dance Accompaniment Training Program.
Wallace received a BA in Music Therapy from Montclair State University, studying under Dr. Brian Abrams and Dr. Michael Viega. He completed an internship at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Louis Armstrong Center for Music and Medicine and MJHS Hospice and Palliative Care. Dorian completed his Level 1 training in Guided Imagery and Music from Atlantis Institute for Consciousness and Music. He leads music therapy and mindfulness meditation groups through American Humanist Association, About Face, Sing In Solidarity, Workers Arts Project, and Gibney Dance.
He currently resides in Harlem, NYC, with his partner Hajnal Pivnick and their daughter Ildikó.