Bruce Adolphe

Resident Lecturer and Director of Family Programs

Bruce Adolphe Photo credit: Yumiko Izu

Composer Bruce Adolphe has written music for many renowned musicians and ensembles, including Itzhak Perlman, Yo-Yo Ma, Joshua Bell, Daniel Hope, Sylvia McNair, the Brentano String Quartet, the Beaux Arts Trio, the Washington National Opera, the Metropolitan Opera Guild, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, ROCO, the IRIS Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and the Human Rights Orchestra of Europe.

The 2019-20 concert season features eight premieres of works by Mr. Adolphe: Are There Not a Thousand Forms of Sorrow for string quintet, commissioned to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center; Coiled (based on Beethoven's Op. 95 quartet) for the Brentano String Quartet; I Too Bleed and Hope for Beauty (inspired by the life of Alma Rosé) for chamber orchestra, commissioned by ROCO in Houston; Music is a Dream and We Were the Music, two chamber works inspired by women who survived the Holocaust, commissioned by ROCO; The King, the Cat, and the Fiddle (based on a story by Yehudi Menuhin and Christopher Hope) for narrator, violin solo, and chamber ensemble and The Nightingale for solo violin and narrator, both commissioned by Daniel Hope; and In the Same Breath, commissioned by the Dorian Wind Quintet. Additionally, he contributed the chapter on composition to the book Secrets of Creativity, a collection of new essays by neuroscientists and artists, published this fall by Oxford University Press, edited by Suzanne Nalbantian.

Recent recordings of his music include Chopin Dreams performed by the Italian pianist Carlo Grante on Naxos American Classics label, Einstein's Light performed by violinist Joshua Bell and pianist Marija Stroke on Sony Classical, and The End of Tonight for three mezzo-sopranos, three cellos, and piano, a digital release on the St. Urban label.

In addition to composing, Mr. Adolphe holds several positions concurrently: founder and director of the Meet the Music! family concert series and resident lecturer at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center; creator/performer of public radio’s weekly Piano Puzzler on Performance Today; co-artistic director of Off the Hook Arts Festival in Colorado; and founder and creative director of The Learning Maestros. The author of three books on music, he has taught at Yale, The Juilliard School, and New York University, and is composer-in-residence at the Brain and Creativity Institute in Los Angeles. The second edition of his book The Mind's Ear: Exercises for Improving the Musical Imagination was published by Oxford University Press in 2013.