Seattle Chamber Music Society

James Ehnes, Artistic Director

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Steven Stucky //
1949 - 2016
Winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for his Second Concerto for Orchestra, Steven Stucky is a trustee of the American Academy in Rome, a director of New Music USA, a board member of the Koussevitzky Music Foundation, and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is also active as a conductor, writer, lecturer, and teacher.

The 2014-15 Season brings a number of important Stucky premieres and performances. Led by Artistic Director Steven Sametz, the Princeton Singers kick off the season with the world premiere of Winter Stars, a setting of Sara Teasdale’s poem of the same name, in a special concert celebrating the chamber choir’s 30th anniversary. The Pittsburgh Symphony, under conductor Manfred Honeck, performs Silent Spring at Carolina Performing Arts in Chapel Hill, NC. The work, a one-movement orchestral tone poem in four sections, was commissioned during Stucky’s tenure as the orchestra’s 2011 Composer of the Year. His Piano Sonata receives its world premiere by Gloria Cheng in the “Piano Spheres” series at Los Angeles’s Zipper Hall. And New York-based orchestral collective The Knights joins vocal soloists at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall for the New York premiere of The Classical Style, a new opera—Stucky’s first—composed to a libretto by MacArthur Fellow Jeremy Denk.

Last season saw the Choral Arts Society of Washington DC host the East Coast premiere of Take Him, Earth (2012), Stucky’s choral composition commemorating the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination, while Philadelphia’s The Curtis Institute of Music premiered the chamber version of Stucky’s song cycle The Stars and the Roses (2012-13) to critical acclaim. Cho-Liang “Jimmy” Lin and pianist Jon Kimura Parker performed the Violin Sonata (2013) at La Jolla SummerFest, the Kansas City Symphony undertook the Pulitzer Prize-winning Second Concerto for Orchestra (2003), and in Boston and at Carnegie Hall, Bernard Haitink led the Boston Symphony Orchestra in Funeral Music for Queen Mary (1992), an evocative re-orchestration of three 17th-century masterpieces by Henry Purcell.

Stucky has fulfilled commissions for many major American orchestras, including those of Baltimore, Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, Florida West Coast (Sarasota), Minnesota, Philadelphia, St. Louis, St. Paul, MN, and Washington, DC, as well as for Chanticleer, Boston Musica Viva, Camerata Bern, the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet, the Koussevitzky Music Foundation, the Barlow Endowment, the Howard Hanson Institute of American Music, Carnegie Hall, the BBC, the Aspen Music Festival, the Singapore Symphony Orchestra, and the Percussive Arts Society, and for such celebrated solo artists as pianist Emanuel Ax, recorder virtuoso Michala Petri, guitarist Manuel Barrueco, baritone Sanford Sylvan, percussionist Evelyn Glennie, and violinist Cho-Liang “Jimmy” Lin.

Stucky’s music has also been performed by the American Youth Symphony, Aspen Festival Orchestra, Aspen Chamber Symphony, Bavarian Radio Symphony, BBC Symphony, Boston Symphony, Chicago Chamber Musicians, Cleveland Orchestra, Colorado Symphony, Copenhagen Philharmonic, Da Camera of Houston, Danish National Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, the Handel and Haydn Society, Hartford Symphony, Helsinki Radio Symphony, Houston Symphony, London Sinfonietta, London Symphony, Munich Philharmonic, the Nash Ensemble, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, New World Symphony, Philharmonia Orchestra, Phoenix Symphony, RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, St. Petersburg Chamber Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, Swedish Radio Symphony, Syracuse Symphony, Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra, Toronto Symphony, Tucson Symphony, West Australian Symphony, and many more.

Stucky is permanently employed as Composer-in-Residence of the Aspen Music Festival and School, having previously held that post in 2001 and 2010, in addition to serving as director of the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble in 2005. He was appointed as the first Barr Institute Composer Laureate at the University of Missouri at Kansas City. Among his other honors are a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Bogliasco Fellowship, the Goddard Lieberson Fellowship of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the ASCAP Victor Herbert Prize, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. His first Concerto for Orchestra was one of two finalists for the 1989 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Stucky taught at Cornell University from 1980 to 2014, chairing the Music Department from 1992 to 1997, and now serves as Cornell's Given Foundation Professor of Composition, Emeritus. He has been Visiting Professor of Composition at the Eastman School of Music and Temple University, and Ernest Bloch Professor at the University of California, Berkeley. Stucky joined the faculty of the Juilliard School in 2014.

Born on November 7, 1949 in Hutchinson, Kansas, Stucky was raised in Kansas and Texas. He studied at Baylor and Cornell Universities with Richard Willis, Robert Palmer, Karel Husa, and Burrill Phillips.

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Monday, July 20, 2015: 7:00 pm Recital

Monday, July 20, 2015: 8:00 pm Concert