NATALIE ELIZABETH WEISS is a story teller who creates experimental electro-acoustic music. A self-taught multi-instrumentalist and DJ with a BFA in Theater, Natalie’s hybrid performance work has been presented at Carnegie Hall, Rockefeller Center, PS1: MoMA, BAM, The Munch Museum (Oslo), New York Theater Workshop, LPR, Joe’s Pub and the Performa Biennial. She has fulfilled commissions for The Wooster Group, The Brooklyn Philharmonic, Roulette Intermedium and Ars Nova and has collaborated with Caroline Polachek, Ches Smith, Jeremiah Cymerman, Joshua Rubin, Shelley Burgon, Brian Chase, choreographer Celia-Rowson Hall, costume designer Machine Dazzle and Fischerspooner. Special thought is always given to the set, costumes and lighting and Natalie usually performs in her own work.
Her first experience working with orchestral instruments was in 2008 when she teamed up with composer Conrad Winslow and glitch-hop producer Machinedrum on a music theater piece called Camp Wanatachi -- it’s about two teenage girls that fall in love with each other at Christian summer camp. The Off-Broadway run of Camp Wanatachi at LaMaMa was heralded as “hilariously subversive” (NY Magazine), “refreshing and uplifting” (TimeOut NY) and “best queer-inclusive theater of the year” (The Advocate). Fast forward to 2022, Camp Wanatachi is currently being adapted into a feature film by Zaden/Meron, the Academy Award winning producers of the seminal musical films Chicago, Hairspray and Footloose.
In 2011, Natalie received a composition mentorship fellowship with The Brooklyn Philharmonic, during which she worked closely with its then Artistic Director Alan Pierson and composition mentor Randall Woolf. During that fellowship, Natalie learned to notate music and she laid the groundwork for her first opera: Borderland. Borderland is a dark comedy about Ida C. Craddock, a real-life 19th-century sexologist who claimed to be married to an angel. After taking a decade away from the opera to develop her career as a DJ and educator, Natalie returned to Borderland during the pandemic. In May 2022, Natalie presented an evening length concert of Borderland at Roulette Intermedium, featuring string quartet The Rhythm Method, percussionist Shayna Dunkleman, synth/electronics wizard Joe McGinty and 10 vocalists, including herself as the lead role of idiosyncratic Ida C. Craddock.
Natalie’s work as a DJ very much informs her orchestral arrangements. Her interactive DJ sets have lit up dance floors across the US, South America and Asia. She has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Rolling Stone, TimeOut NY, the New Yorker, VICE and other media outlets worldwide. Natalie is also the founder of Baby DJ School, a music education program that teaches infants and toddlers to DJ in order to accelerate their cognitive development. Baby DJ School has been described as “an exciting new musical landscape” (TIME Magazine) and “really creative and fun” (Good Morning America). As an educator, she has also been a visiting artist to MFA students at NYU and has led two experimental composition classes -- both of which were featured in The New York Times.
For more on Natalie's work as a DJ, please see her DJ BIO.