Release Date: March 5, 2010
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- David Felder, PhD, SUNY Distinguished Professor and Birge-Cary Chair in Composition in the University at Buffalo Department of Music, widely regarded as one of America's finest composers of contemporary classical music, has received the American Academy of Arts and Letters' 2010 Academy Award in Music.
The award "honors outstanding artistic achievement and acknowledges a composer who has arrived at his or her own voice." It carries a $7,500 cash prize and an additional $7,500 award toward the recording of one work. The award will be presented at the academy's annual ceremonial, to be held in May in its landmark auditorium on West 156 St., New York, New York.
The award's 2010 recipients -- Felder, Daniel Asia, Pierre Jalbert and James Primosch --are considered to be among the finest composers of their generation. Candidates for all of the academy's music awards are nominated by the 250 members of the academy, who include leading figures on the American art scene.
Winners are selected by a committee of academy members, in this case five of America's most celebrated composers: Robert Beaser (chair), Bernard Rands, Gunther Schuller, Steven Stucky and Yehudi Wynder.
An Amherst resident, Felder is the artistic director of the June in Buffalo Festival and Conference for emerging composers of new music, and directs the Robert and Carol Morris Center for 21st Century Music at UB.
His work is known for its highly energetic profile, through its frequent employment of technological extension and elaboration of musical materials (including his "Crossfire" video series), and for its lyrical qualities.
His compositions have been featured at many leading international festivals for new music here and abroad, and earns continuing recognition through performance and commissioning programs by such organizations as the New York New Music Ensemble, Arditti Quartet, American Composers Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic, American Brass Quintet and many others.
Felder has received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, two New York State Council commissions, fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, Guggenheim, Koussevitzky, and Fromm foundations, two awards from the Rockefeller Foundation, Meet the Composer "New Residencies" with the Buffalo Philharmonic, two commissions from the Mary Flagler Cary Trust and a commission from the Siemens Foundation.
From 1992 to 1996 he was Meet the Composer "New Residencies" Composer-in-Residence with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and WBFO-FM. He formed and is the artistic director of the Slee Sinfonietta, and his works are published by Theodore Presser and recorded by Albany, Mode, Bridge and EMF.
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