Steven Stucky

Last updated

Steven Edward Stucky (November 7, 1949 − February 14, 2016) was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer.

Pulitzer Prize for Music prize awarded for music

The Pulitzer Prize for Music is one of seven Pulitzer Prizes awarded annually in Letters, Drama, and Music. It was first given in 1943. Joseph Pulitzer arranged for a music scholarship to be awarded each year, and this was eventually converted into a prize: "For a distinguished musical composition of significant dimension by an American that has had its first performance in the United States during the year."


The Dallas Symphony Orchestra presenting the premiere of Steven Stucky's oratorio, August 4, 1964 Dallas Symphony Orchestra.jpg
The Dallas Symphony Orchestra presenting the premiere of Steven Stucky's oratorio, August 4, 1964

Life and career

Stucky was born in Hutchinson, Kansas. At age 9, he moved with his family to Abilene, Texas, where, as a teenager, he studied music in the public schools and, privately, viola with Herbert Preston, conducting with Leo Scheer, and composition with Macon Sumerlin. He attended Baylor University and Cornell. [1] Stucky worked with Karel Husa and Daniel Sternberg.[ citation needed ]

Hutchinson, Kansas City and County seat in Kansas, United States

Hutchinson is the largest city and county seat in Reno County, Kansas, United States, and located on the Arkansas River. It has been home to salt mines since 1887, thus its nickname of "Salt City", but locals call it "Hutch". As of the 2010 census, the city population was 42,080.

Abilene, Texas City in Texas, United States

Abilene is a city in Taylor and Jones counties in Texas, United States. The population was 117,463 at the 2010 census, making it the 27th-most populous city in the state of Texas. It is the principal city of the Abilene Metropolitan Statistical Area, which had a 2017 estimated population of 170,219. It is the county seat of Taylor County. Dyess Air Force Base is located on the west side of the city.

Baylor University private university in Waco, Texas, United States

Baylor University, or simply Baylor, is a private Christian university in Waco, Texas. Chartered in 1845 by the last Congress of the Republic of Texas, it is the oldest continuously operating university in Texas and one of the first educational institutions west of the Mississippi River in the United States. Located on the banks of the Brazos River next to I-35, between the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and Austin, the university's 1,000-acre campus is the largest Baptist university campus in the world. Baylor University's athletic teams, known as the Bears, participate in 19 intercollegiate sports. The university is a member of the Big 12 Conference in the NCAA Division I. It was associated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas but no longer.

Stucky wrote commissioned works for many of the major American orchestras, including Baltimore, Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, and St. Paul. He was long associated with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where he was resident composer 1988–2009 (the longest such affiliation in American orchestral history); he was host of the New York Philharmonic's Hear & Now series 2005–09; and he was Pittsburgh Symphony Composer of the Year for the 2011–12 season. For Pittsburgh, he composed Silent Spring , in honor of the 50th anniversary of Rachel Carson's epochal book of the same title. [2] He teamed with the celebrated pianist and author Jeremy Denk to create his first opera, The Classical Style (based on the celebrated book by Charles Rosen), which premiered in June 2014 at the Ojai Music Festival. [3] Other noteworthy compositions by Stucky include the symphonic poem Radical Light (2007), Rhapsodies for Orchestra (2008), the oratorio August 4, 1964 (2008), a Symphony (2012), and his Second Concerto for Orchestra (2003), which won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Music. [4] [5]

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra symphony orchestra based in Baltimore, Maryland, United States

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra is an American symphony orchestra based in Baltimore, Maryland. The Baltimore SO has its principal residence at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, where it performs more than 130 concerts a year. In 2005, it began regular performances at the Music Center at Strathmore in Bethesda.

Chicago Symphony Orchestra American symphony orchestra in Chicago, IL

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) was founded by Theodore Thomas in 1891. The ensemble makes its home at Orchestra Hall in Chicago and plays a summer season at the Ravinia Festival. The music director is Riccardo Muti, who began his tenure in 2010. The CSO is one of five American orchestras commonly referred to as the "Big Five".

The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra is an American orchestra based in Cincinnati, Ohio. Its primary concert venue is Music Hall. In addition to its symphony concerts, the orchestra gives 'pops' concerts as the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra. The Cincinnati Symphony is the resident orchestra for the Cincinnati May Festival, the Cincinnati Opera, and the Cincinnati Ballet.

Stucky was an expert on the Polish composer Witold Lutosławski and authored the 1981 study Lutoslawski and His Music. He also was curator of the Philharmonia Orchestra's 2013 centenary celebration of that composer, Woven Words: Music Begins Where Words End. Stucky was the Given Foundation Professor of Composition at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.[ citation needed ]

Witold Lutosławski Polish composer and conductor

Witold Roman Lutosławski was a Polish composer and orchestral conductor. He was one of the major European composers of the 20th century, and one of the preeminent Polish musicians during his last three decades. He earned many international awards and prizes. His compositions include four symphonies, a Concerto for Orchestra, a string quartet, instrumental works, concertos, and orchestral song cycles.

Cornell University Private Ivy League research university in Upstate New York

Cornell University is a private and statutory Ivy League research university in Ithaca, New York. Founded in 1865 by Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White, the university was intended to teach and make contributions in all fields of knowledge—from the classics to the sciences, and from the theoretical to the applied. These ideals, unconventional for the time, are captured in Cornell's founding principle, a popular 1868 Ezra Cornell quotation: "I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study."

Ithaca, New York City in New York, United States

Ithaca is a city in the Finger Lakes region of New York. It is the seat of Tompkins County, as well as the largest community in the Ithaca–Tompkins County metropolitan area. This area contains the municipalities of the Town of Ithaca, the village of Cayuga Heights, and other towns and villages in Tompkins County. The city of Ithaca is located on the southern shore of Cayuga Lake, in Central New York, about 45 miles (72 km) south-west of Syracuse. It is named after the Greek island of Ithaca. Additionally, Ithaca is located 247 miles (398 km) southeast of Toronto, and 223 miles (359 km) northwest of New York City.

There he founded Ensemble X and led it for nine seasons, from 1997 until 2006, while at the same time he also was the guiding force behind the celebrated Green Umbrella series in Los Angeles. He has also taught at Eastman and Berkeley, the latter as Ernest Bloch Professor in 2003. After several earlier teaching and conducting visits, in 2013 he became artist-faculty composer-in-residence at the Aspen Music Festival and School. [6] In 2014 he became Professor Emeritus at Cornell and joined the composition faculty at the Juilliard School. [7]

Eastman School of Music American professional school of music

The Eastman School of Music is the professional school of music of the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York. It was established in 1921 by industrialist and philanthropist George Eastman.

University of California, Berkeley Public university in California, USA

The University of California, Berkeley is a public research university in Berkeley, California. It was founded in 1868 and serves as the flagship campus of the ten campuses of the University of California. Berkeley has since grown to instruct over 40,000 students in approximately 350 undergraduate and graduate degree programs covering numerous disciplines.

Aspen Music Festival and School non-profit organisation in the USA

The Aspen Music Festival and School (AMFS) is a classical music festival held annually in Aspen, Colorado. It is noted both for its concert programming and the musical training it offers to mostly young-adult music students. Founded in 1949, the typical eight-week summer season includes more than 400 classical music events—including concerts by five orchestras, solo and chamber music performances, fully staged opera productions, master classes, lectures, and children's programming—and brings in 70,000 audience members. In the winter, the AMFS presents a small series of recitals and Metropolitan Opera Live in HD screenings.

Among the composers who studied with Stucky are Joseph Phibbs, Marc Mellits, Robert Paterson, David Conte, Thomas C. Duffy, Yotam Haber, James Matheson, Steven Burke, Xi Wang, Spencer Topel, Diego Vega, Fang Man, Anna Weesner, Hannah Lash, Andrew Waggoner, Sean Shepherd, Chris Arrell and Jesse Jones. [8] He taught master classes and served residencies around the world, including at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Curtis Institute of Music, Rice University, the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study, the Tanglewood Music Center, and many others.[ citation needed ]

Joseph Phibbs is an English composer of orchestral, choral and chamber music. He has also composed for theatre, both in the UK and Japan. Since 1998 he has written regularly to commissions for Festivals, for private sponsors, and for the BBC, which has broadcast premieres of his orchestral and chamber works from the Proms and elsewhere. His works have been given premieres in Europe, the United States and the Far East, and he has received prestigious awards, including most recently a British Composer Award, and a Library of Congress Serge Koussevitzky Music Foundation Award. Many of his works have been premiered by leading international musicians, including Dame Evelyn Glennie, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Leonard Slatkin, Sakari Oramo, Vasily Petrenko, Gianandrea Noseda, and the Belcea Quartet.

Marc Mellits is an American composer and musician.

Robert Paterson is an American composer of contemporary classical music, as well as a conductor and percussionist. His catalog includes over 100 compositions. He has been called a "modern day master" and is primarily known for his colorful orchestral works, large body of chamber music and clear vocal writing in his operas, choral works, vocal chamber works and song cycles.

Stucky died of brain cancer at his home in Ithaca, New York on February 14, 2016. His survivors include his second wife, Kristen Frey Stucky, his two children from his first marriage to Melissa Stucky, Matthew and Maura, two brothers, and two sisters. [9]







Solo instrumental

Arrangements of music by other composers


Related Research Articles

Mark-Anthony Turnage CBE is an English composer of classical music.

John Harris Harbison is an American composer, known for his symphonies, operas, and large choral works.

Richard Danielpour is an American composer.

Chen Yi is a Chinese violinist and composer of contemporary classical music. She was the first Chinese woman to receive a Master of Arts (M.A.) in music composition from the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. Chen was a finalist for the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Music for her composition Si Ji, and has received awards from the Koussevistky Music Foundation and American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2010, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from The New School and in 2012, she was awarded the Brock Commission from the American Choral Directors Association.

Augusta Read Thomas is an American composer.

Wayne Peterson is an American Pulitzer Prize–winning composer, pianist and educator.

Roberto Sierra is a composer of contemporary classical music.

Don Kay (composer) Tasmanian Composer

Donald Henry Kay AM is an Australian classical composer.

Cecilia McDowall is a British composer born in London in 1951.

David Frederick Stock was an American composer and conductor.

Alissa Firsova Russian-British musician

Alissa Firsova is a Russian-British classical composer, pianist and conductor.

Mark Carlson (composer) American composer

Mark Carlson is an American composer, flutist, UCLA professor, and the founder and Artistic Director of Pacific Serenades.

Charlotte Bray is a British composer.

Guillaume Connesson French composer

Guillaume Connesson is a French composer born in 1970 in Boulogne-Billancourt.

Steven Sametz is active as both conductor and composer. He has been hailed as "one of the most respected choral composers in America." Since 1979, he has been on the faculty of Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where he holds the Ronald J. Ulrich Chair in Music and is Director of Choral Activities and is founding director of the Lehigh University Choral Union. Since 1998, he has served as Artistic Director of the professional a cappella ensemble, The Princeton Singers. He is also the founding director of the Lehigh University Summer Choral Composers’ Forum. In 2012, he was named Chair of the American Choral Directors Association Composition Advisory Committee.

Geoffrey Gordon is an American composer of classical music.

Matthew Peterson composer

Matthew Peterson is a composer of operas, choral works, orchestral and chamber music.


  1. "Steven Stucky biography". Theodore Presser. Archived from the original on May 26, 2003. Retrieved May 25, 2008.
  2. Druckenbrod, Andrew (February 12, 2012). "Composer Steven Stucky's new piece will honor Rachel Carson's work". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette . Retrieved October 24, 2012.
  3. Boehm, Mike (December 4, 2013). "Ojai Music Festival to premiere a comic opera by Denk and Stucky". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  4. 1 2 Child, Fred (April 5, 2005). "Steven Stucky Wins Pulitzer Prize for Music". NPR . Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  5. 1 2 "Pulitzer Prizes for Letters, Drama and Music". The New York Times . 2005. Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  6. Oksenhorn, Stewart (July 21, 2013). "Music Festival: A new start for new music in Aspen". The Aspen Times . Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  7. "Composers Matthias Pintscher and Steven Stucky to Join The Juilliard School's Composition Faculty This Fall 2014". The Juilliard School.
  8. Swed, Mark (October 31, 2013). "Review: A smoother sound from Juilliard String Quartet". The Baltimore Sun . Retrieved June 13, 2015.
  9. Tommasini, Anthony (15 February 2016). "Steven Stucky, Composer Who Won a Pulitzer, Dies at 66". The New York Times . p. B11.
  10. Keebaugh, Aaron (March 29, 2014). "BMOP offers a riveting, rhapsodic Lei Liang premiere". Boston Classical Review. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  11. Cariaga, Daniel (January 19, 1990). "Music Reviews: Vaughan Williams, Stucky Works at the Philharmonic". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved May 29, 2015.
  12. Rhein, John von (March 30, 1996). "Gielen Leads Cso In Beethoven, Steven Stucky's World Premiere". Chicago Tribune . Retrieved July 11, 2015.
  13. Druckenbrod, Andrew (January 14, 2012). "PSO abounds with a spirited sound: Concert review". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette . Retrieved July 11, 2015.
  14. Swed, Mark (March 15, 2004). "Sounds of eternal spring: Composer Steven Stucky's Second Concerto is a lush, tailored fit for Disney". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  15. Kozinn, Allan (June 13, 2012). "New Composers and New Sounds Converge in Buffalo". The New York Times . Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  16. "2007 New Music Festival schedule". The Courier-Journal . September 27, 2007. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  17. Kosman, Joshua (December 5, 2009). "Stucky's 'Radical Light' a feast of mood, color". San Francisco Chronicle . Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  18. Rhein, John von (December 2, 2011). "Jaap van Zweden directs bracing Mahler symphony with CSO". Chicago Tribune . Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  19. Tommasini, Anthony (September 19, 2008). "The Conductor Asked for Something Rhapsodic; the Composer Delivered a Surprise". The New York Times . Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  20. Druckenbrod, Andrew (February 18, 2012). "PSO takes hard look at turmoil, both environmental and human". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette . Retrieved October 24, 2012.
  21. Kanny, Mark (February 18, 2012). "Offerings of 'Silent Spring,' venerated material excel". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review . Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  22. Ng, David (September 26, 2012). "Steven Stucky marks return to L.A. with his very own 'Symphony'". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  23. Tommasini, Anthony (November 30, 2012). "A New Work Bares Its Secrets, With Feeling". The New York Times . Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  24. Tommasini, Anthony (December 5, 2014). "We're Nothing but Busts, Mozart. Busts!". The New York Times . Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  25. Swed, Mark (June 16, 2014). "Review 'Classical Style' at Ojai Music Festival draws on wit, wisdom". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  26. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Woodard, Josef (March 27, 2007). "Steven Stucky shows modern touch: The composer balances complexity, immediacy at Cal Lutheran's New Music Concert". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  27. Oestreich, James R. (September 19, 2008). "All the Way Through Fateful Day for L.B.J." The New York Times . Retrieved October 24, 2012.
  28. Ross, Alex (June 6, 2011). "Mix And Match: Spring for Music, at Carnegie Hall". The New Yorker . Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  29. Cantrell, Scott (June 25, 2012). "Classical CD review: DSO releases Stucky's 'August 4, 1964'". The Dallas Morning News . Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  30. Sarah Bryan Miller (2016-04-11). "St. Louis Chamber Chorus Considers 'All Manner of Gods'". Saint Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved 2016-05-08.
  31. Fischer, Heinz-Dietrich, ed. (2010). The Pulitzer Prize Winners for Music: Composer Biographies, Premiere Programs and Jury Reports. Peter Lang. p. 263. ISBN   3631596081.
  32. Paget, Clive (February 13, 2013). "Classical GRAMMY Awards 2013". Limelight . Archived from the original on May 18, 2015. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  33.,%5B%5D Retrieved March 2016