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9/17/2015

EllenTaaffeZwilichLongBiographyMusicSalesClassical

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Composers
Ellen Taaffe Zwilich
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Ellen Taaffe Zwilich


Born: 1939
Nationality: American
Publisher: AMP
Photo Cori Wells Braun
Asthe21stcenturydawnsandthemusicalofferingsoftheworldaremorevariedthan
everbefore,fewcomposershaveemergedwiththeuniquepersonalityofEllenTaaffe
Zwilich.Hermusiciswidelyknownbecauseitisperformed,recorded,broadcast,and
aboveall,listenedtoandlikedbyallsortsofaudiencestheworldover.Likethegreat
mastersofbygonetimes,Zwilichproducesmusic"withfingerprints,"musicthatis
immediatelyrecognizedastheproductofaparticularAmericancomposerwhocombines
craftandinspirationinreflectingheroptimisticandhumanisticspiritinhercompositions.
EllenZwilichistherecipientofnumerousprizesandhonors,includingthe1983Pulitzer
PrizeinMusic(thefirstwomanevertoreceivethiscovetedaward),theElizabethSprague
CoolidgeChamberMusicPrize,theArturoToscaniniMusicCriticsAward,theErnstvon
DohnanyiCitation,andAcademyAwardfromtheAmericanAcademyofArtsandLetters,a
GuggenheimFellowship,fourGrammynominations,and,amongotherdistinctions,she
hasbeenelectedtotheFloridaArtistsHallofFameandtheAmericanAcademyofArts
andLetters.In1995,shewasnamedtothefirstComposer'sChairinthehistoryof
CarnegieHall,andshewasdesignatedMusicalAmerica'sComposeroftheYearin1999.
Aprolificcomposerinallmediaexceptopera,EllenTaaffeZwilich'sworkshavebeen
performedbyvirtuallyalloftheleadingAmericanorchestrasandbymajorensembles
abroad.HermusicfirstcametopublicattentionwhenPierreBoulezconductedher
SymposiumforOrchestraatJuilliard(1975),butitwasthe1983PulitzerPrizefortheSymphonyNo.1thatbroughther
instantlyintointernationalfocus.Commissionsandmajorperformancesandrecordingssoonfollowed:theSymphonyNo.2
(CelloSymphony),premieredbyEdodeWaartandtheSanFranciscoSymphonytheSymphonyNo.3,writtenfortheNew
YorkPhilharmonic's150thanniversaryandtheSymphonyNo.4("TheGardens")withchorus,commissionedbyMichigan
StateUniversitythestringofconcertosforsoloinstrumentsandorchestra,commissionedandperformedbytoporchestras

forpiano(DetroitSymphony,GntherHerbig),trombone(ChicagoSymphonyOrchestra,SirGeorgSolti),flute(Boston
SymphonyOrchestra,SeijiOzawa),oboe(ClevelandOrchestra,ChristophvonDohnnyi),violinandcello(Louisville
Orchestra,LawrenceLeightonSmith),basstrombone(ChicagoSymphonyOrchestra,DanielBarenboim),Frenchhorn
(RochesterPhilharmonic,LawrenceLeightonSmith),bassoon(PittsburghSymphonyOrchestra,LorinMaazel),trumpet(San
DiegoSymphony,JoAnnFalletta),TripleConcertoforpiano,violinandcello(MinnesotaOrchestra,ZdenekMacal),andviolin
(OrchestraofSt.Luke's,HughWolff).
HerorchestralessaySymbolonwascommissionedbytheNewYorkPhilharmonicexpresslytoreceiveitsworldpremierein
whatwasthenLeningrad.ZubinMehtasubsequentlyperformeditinEuropeandAmericaandrecordeditontheNewWorld
labelandCarnegieHall's1997familyconcertseriesfeaturedPeanutsGalleryforpianoandorchestra,basedonCharles
Schulz'Peanutscharacters.
HerchamberworkshavebeencommissionedbytheBostonMusicaViva(ChamberSymphony,Passages),theAbeFortas
MemorialFundoftheJohnF.KennedyCenterforthePerformingArts,92ndStreetYandSanFranciscoPerformances(Piano
Trio),theNewYorkStateSchoolMusicTeachersAssociation(Divertimento),theMcKimFundintheLibraryofCongress
(RomancesforViolin),theSantaFeChamberMusicFestivalandChamberMusicNorthwest(ClarinetQuintet),theChamber
MusicSocietyofLincolnCenter(DoubleQuartet),andCarnegieHall(StringQuartetNo.2).

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