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Allan von Schenkel (born July 31, 1975) is an American double bassist, performance artist, music promoter, and composer. He is a self-described "creative bass soloist", and, since the beginning of his music career in the early 1990s, has performed an average of 80 recitals each year. He has developed connections with many important personalities in music, including Lee Hoiby and Yoko Ono.


Schenkel grew up near Mount Shasta, Californiamarker. He attended Shasta College in Redding, Californiamarker from 1993 to 1996 and lived in Lansing, Michiganmarker and attended University of Michiganmarker, Michigan State Universitymarker, and Wayne State Universitymarker from 1996 until he relocated to Washington, D.C.marker in 2005.

Schenkel has composed over three hundred musical works including three musicals, incidental music to eight plays and other pieces. The most recent work, composed alongside Kristen Williams, was '69 Ways to Fall in LOVE'; premiered at the Capital Fringe Festival in Washington DC in 2007.

Schenkel is best known as a performer of contemporary classical music and performance art. His main mentors on the bass have been Gary Karr and Stefano Sciascia. Schenkel studied with Sciascia in Italy from 2002 to 2003.

Since 2004, Schenkel has expanded his career to include promoting contemporary music for the double bass from around the world. As a member of the Basso Moderno Duo, alongside pianist Kristen Williams since 2006, Schenkel has commissioned more than 100 composers from dozens of countries in all regions of the world. In addition, he has premiered works by Karlheinz Stockhausen and Alan Hovhaness.

In November 2005, he performed the works of Lee Hoiby, together with the composer himself at the Cosmos in Washington DC.

In 2006, renowned composer and artist Yoko Ono wrote "Secret Piece II" for Allan von Schenkel, which he premiered at the Hirshhorn Museummarker. This and many of the other pieces Schenkel performs are, according to him, "just as much art as music." This has made Von Schenkel a notable performance artist. These works involve Schenkel using the double bass in innovative ways, such as turning it upside down and making unusual sounds with it. Since the beginning of his career, Schenkel has attempted to lead an expansion in the popularity of the double bass while also exploring its musicological nature and expanding its uses. He believes that his entry into the world of performance art may be an important step in this process.

American composers Ned Rorem, Pauline Oliveros, Leo Kraft and seven other celebrated American composers composed works for the Basso Moderno Duo to be premiered at the Smithsonian American Art Museummarker in July 2007.

In November 2007, Schenkel relocated to New York, from where he continues his musical career, including a greater emphasis on travel.Recent activities have included a tour of Bulgaria and Romania as well as a recital at the United Nations in New York City.

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