Steven Stucky

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Series Advisor, Woven Words: “Music begins where words end”

Steven Stucky (born 1949) is one of America’s most highly regarded and frequently performed living composers and winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for his Second Concerto for Orchestra. Notable recent premières include Silent Spring (2011) by the Pittsburgh Symphony (Manfred Honeck), Chamber Concerto (2010) by the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra (Roberto Abbado), Rhapsodies (2008) by the New York Philharmonic at the BBC Proms (Lorin Maazel) and August 4, 1964 (2007-08) by the Dallas Symphony Orchestra (Jaap van Zweden). He has also written commissioned works for the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicago Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Saint Louis Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Singapore Symphony, Camerata Bern, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, BBC Proms and many others, and he has composed for soloists including percussionist Dame Evelyn Glennie, baritones Sanford Sylvan and Eric Owens, pianists Yefim Bronfman and Emanuel Ax, and recorder player Michala Petri.

For the 2011/12 season, Mr Stucky was the Pittsburgh Symphony’s Composer of the Year; this season, he is the Berkeley Symphony’s Music Alive Composer-in-Residence. For more than 20 years he served as Consulting Composer for New Music to the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen, and from 2005 to 2009 as host of the New York Philharmonic’s Hear and Now new-music series. He is in residence this season at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.

2012/13 has already included the world and New York premières of his four-movement symphony, a co-commission by the Los Angeles Philharmonic (Gustavo Dudamel) and New York Philharmonic (Alan Gilbert); and the world premières of a song cycle on poems of Czesław Miłosz entitled The Stars and the Roses (tenor Noah Stewart and the Berkeley Symphony under Joana Carneiro as part of his year-long residency at the Berkeley Symphony), the a cappella madrigal Say Thou Dost Love Me (New York Virtuoso Singers) and Take Him, Earth for chorus and chamber ensemble marking the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F Kennedy (American Choral Directors Association). Forthcoming projects include a violin sonata for Cho-Liang Lin and a piano sonata for the Los Angeles series Piano Spheres.

Steven Stucky has taught at the Eastman School of Music, the University of California at Berkeley, the Aspen Music Festival and School, and, since 1980, at Cornell University, where he serves as Given Foundation Professor of Music. A noted authority on Witold Lutosławski, he has won the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award for his path-breaking study Lutosławski and His Music (Cambridge, 1981) and the Gold Medal of the Lutosławski Society in Warsaw. Three of his choral works are on Grammy-winning CDs: two by the San Francisco ensemble Chanticleer, a third by the Choir of Trinity College, Cambridge under Stephen Layton.

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Esa-Pekka Salonen


Steven Stucky