Raven Chacon — Mills Music Now

Music Event

Saturday, March 18, 2023, 8 – 10:30pm PDT
Jeannik Méquet Littlefield Concert Hall, Music Building

Raven Chacon — Mills Music Now

Presented by Mills College at Northeastern University Music Department and the Center for Contemporary Music

This event is free and open to the public.


Duo Improvisation
Raven Chacon: guitar, William Winant: percussion
American Ledger No.1, for ensemble (2018)
Quiver for solo cello (2018)
Ben Davis: cello
Round, for many performers and turntable (2007)

Raven Chacon is a Pulitzer Prize–winning composer, performer and installation artist from Fort Defiance, Navajo Nation. As a solo artist, Chacon has exhibited, performed, or had works performed at LACMA, The Renaissance Society, San Francisco Electronic Music Festival, REDCAT, Vancouver Art Gallery, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Borealis Festival, SITE Santa Fe, Chaco Canyon, Ende Tymes Festival, and The Kennedy Center. As a member of Postcommodity from 2009-2018, he co-created artworks presented at the Whitney Biennial, documenta 14, Carnegie International 57, as well as the 2-mile long land art installation Repellent Fence.
A recording artist over the span of 22 years, Chacon has appeared on more than eighty releases on various national and international labels. His 2020 Manifest Destiny opera Sweet Land, co-composed with Du Yun, received critical acclaim from The LA Times, The New York Times, and The New Yorker, and was named 2021 Opera of the Year by the Music Critics Association of North America.
Since 2004, he has mentored over 300 high school Native composers in the writing of new string quartets for the Native American Composer Apprenticeship Project (NACAP). Chacon is the recipient of the United States Artists fellowship, The Creative Capital award in Visual Arts, The Native Arts and Cultures Foundation artist fellowship, the American Academy’s Berlin Prize for Music Composition, the Bemis Center’s Ree Kaneko Award, the Pulitzer Prize in Music, and and the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage Fellowship-in-Residence.
His solo artworks are in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum and National Museum of the American Indian, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Getty Research Institute, the University of New Mexico Art Museum, and various private collections.

Jean Macduff Vaux Composer-in-Residence
Jean Macduff Vaux (Class of 1933) was a Mills alumna who went on to earn a secondary teaching credential at the University of California at Berkeley. She lived a life of community service. During World War II, for example, she was a civilian volunteer with the 3rd Fighter Command and worked with the Red Cross. She was an active supporter of Mills' Alumnae Association and served as the National Branch Chair, over-seeing thirty-four branches in the 1950s. Jean and her husband Henry Vaux were founding members of the Cyrus and Susan Mills Society.
The Vaux family has established The Jean Macduff Vaux Composer-in-Residence Fund at Mills in Jean's memory. The endowed fund is used by the Music Department to invite distinguished composers to teach at Mills in residencies which culminate with concerts of their works.
The Mills College Music Department is very grateful for the vision and generosity of the Vaux family.
Photograph by Adam Conte