Téllez balances activities as a creative multimedia artist, conductor, scholar, producer, and administrator. She directs IU’s Contemporary Vocal Ensemble and is the artistic co-director of Aguavá New Music Studio, an artists’ group with which she records and tours internationally.
Téllez has conducted 20th century masterpieces by Stravinsky, Ligeti, Schnittke, Xenakis, Lutosławski, as well as the canonic symphonic choral repertoire. She is the first woman on record to conduct the monumental Grande messe des morts by Hector Berlioz.
In 2006 she conducted the world premiere of James MacMillan’s Sun-Dogs, which she also co-commissioned. Mario Lavista’s Missa ad Consolationes Dominam Nostram, Cary Boyce’s Ave Maria and Ingram Marshall’s Savage Altars are among the distinguished choral compositions she commissioned and premiered.
Téllez also presented the collegiate premiere of Osvaldo Golijov’s opera Ainadamar, and she prepared the vocalists in the Chicago premiere of Antonio Estévez’s Venezuelan masterpiece La Cantata Criolla. She has conducted the Midwest and collegiate premiere of John Adam’s opera-oratorio El Niño, as well as the American premiere of Ralph Shapey’s oratorio Praise.
In 2010, Professor Téllez received the University’s Tracy M. Sonneborn Award for distinction as a teacher, scholar, and artist.
WFIU will feature music performed by Carmen Téllez throughout the month of August.