Born in Washington, D.C. in 1955, composer Jeffrey Mumford has received numerous fellowships, grants, awards and commissions.
Awards include the "Academy Award in Music" from the American Academy of Arts & Letters, a Fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation, a Fellowship to the Composers' Conference (Johnson, Vermont) and an ASCAP Aaron Copland Scholarship. He was also the winner of the inaugural National Black Arts Festival/Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Composition Competition.
Other grants have been awarded by the Ohio Arts Council, Oberlin College, the D.C. Commission on the Arts & Humanities (funded through the NEA), the Minnesota Composers' Forum, the American Music Center, the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, Meet the Composer, the Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund for Music Inc. , the ASCAP Foundation, and the University of California.
Mumford's most notable commissions include those from the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra, violinist Ole Bohn, the Haydn Trio Eisenstadt (Vienna), the Network for New Music, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, a consortium of presenters consisting of the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Chamber Music Columbus (OH.) and Omus Hirshbein (New York) (for the Pacifica Quartet and pianist Amy Dissanayake), Cleveland radio station WCLV, violist Wendy Richman, the Nancy Ruyle Dodge Charitable Trust (for the Corigliano Quartet), a consortium of presenters consisting of the Phillips Collection (Washington, D.C.), Miller Theatre (New York) and the Schubert Club (St. Paul, MN.) (for pianist Margaret Kampmeier), the Contemporary Music Forum of Washington, D.C. and Philip Berlin, Sonia and Louis Rothschild (for the Opus 3 Trio), the Theatre Chamber Players, the Meet the Composer/Arts Endowment Commissioning Music/USA program (for the CORE Ensemble), the National Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati radio station WGUC, 'cellist Joshua Gordon, the Walter W. Naumburg Foundation , the Fromm Music Foundation, the Amphion Foundation (for the Da Capo Chamber Players), the New York New Music Ensemble, the McKim Fund in the Library of Congress, the Aspen Wind Quintet, and 'cellist Fred Sherry.
Mumford's works have been extensively performed both in the United States and abroad, including Paris’ Theatre Dunois, Miller Theatre, the Library of Congress, the Aspen Music Festival, the Bang On A Can Festival, the Seattle Chamber Music Festival, San Migel de Allende (Guanajuato, Mexico), London's Purcell Room, Finland's prestigious Helsinki Festival, the Musica nel Nostro Tempo Festival, in Milan and the Musikverein in Vienna. His works have been performed by such major orchestras as the Cleveland Orchestra, the National, Detroit and Atlanta Symphony Orchestras, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and the American Composers' Orchestra. His chamber works have been performed by major ensembles such as the Pacifica, Corigliano, Maia and Borromeo Quartets, the Mann Duo, the CORE Ensemble, the Empyrean Ensemble, the Network for New Music, Imani Winds, the Amelia Piano Trio, the Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Ensemble, Voices of Change, the New Music Consort, the New York New Music Ensemble, the Aspen Wind Quintet, the Group for Contemporary Music, the Da Capo Chamber Players. Among the prominent soloists who have performed his music have been violinists Ole Bohn and Lina Bahn, 'cellists Frances-Marie Uitti, Joshua Gordon and Fred Sherry, violist Misha Amory, Wendy Richman, and Eliesha Nelsona nd pianists Amy Dissanayake, Lura Johnson-Lee, Jenny Lin, Tuyen Tonnu Shannon Wettsein, Eliza Garth., Margaret Kampmeier and Sarah Cahill. Mumford is also a composer-member of the Washington, D.C. based Contemporary Music Forum, which has performed his music many times.
Recent and forthcoming performances include the play of intervening objects by Imani Winds, the comfort of his voice, (a work commissioned by the Cleveland Orchestra celebrating the legacy of Martin Luther King and which commemorates Severance Hall) by the Cleveland Orchestra, within a cloudburst of echoing brightness by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, verdant and shimmering air: four views of a reflected forest by the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra, undiluted days (piano trio) Contemporary Music Forum in Paris, a landscape of interior resonances (solo piano) by Jenny Lin, the promise of the far horizon by the Artis Quartett in Vienna, billowing pockets brightly layered by ‘cellist Darrett Adkins and the Cleveland Chamber Symphony, and a celebration of Elliott (solo piano) by the Network for New Music in New York and Philadelphia. In addition, the CORE ensemble will also give several performances nationwide of a window of resonant light (‘cello, piano, percussion) as part of their touring program entitled “Of Ebony Embers.”
Mumford’s music has also been presented as part of Miller Theatre’s “Composer Portraits” series in New York City.
Current projects include a newly commissioned piece for the Imani Winds entitled the play of intervening objects, a consortium commission for a set of piano pieces entitled of ringing and layered space for pianists Amy Dissanayake, Lura Johnson, Jenny Lin, Tuyen Tonnu and Shannon Wettstein, a newly commissioned work for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra entitled through dancing echoes spreading softly, as well as two commissioned works commemorating Elliott Carter’s 100th birthday (including a celebration of Elliott for solo piano commissioned by the Network for new Music). Additionally, the Cincinnati Symphony has recently announced that they have commissioned Mr. Mumford for a new orchestral work to be premiered in March 2009. Recent CDs featuring Mumford's works include. the promise of the far horizon, containing five recent chamber works was just issued on the Albany Records label (TROY 698) and "Telling Tales" (on Capstone Records and sponsored by the Cleveland Composers Guild) which includes pianist Tuyen Tonnu's performance of barbaglio dal manca.
In 2005 Mumford was selected for a residency with the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra as part of the Meet-the Composer/American Symphony Orchestra League “Music Alive” program.
His a focused expanse of evolving experience (2003) (fl., vln., vla., vlc., piano) was selected for inclusion and performed as part of the 2005 NEO Show at the Cleveland Museum of Art.
Mr. Mumford is published by Theodore Presser Co. and Quicklight Music and represented by AIM Int’l. Artists Mgmt.
For more information, please visit www.jeffreymumford.com
View scores here (roll over to view score title):
2003: "Academy Award in Music" from the American Academy of Arts & Letters
1995: Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship
1982 &1993: American Music Center CAP Grant
ASCAP Aaron Copland Scholarship Award
ASCAP Foundation grant
ASCAP Standard Panel Awards
Seven Meet the Composer grants
a focused expanse of evolving experience for Flute, Violin, Viola, Cello and Piano (2003) -- ca. 9'
Available From Composer
a pond within the drifting dusk for Alto Flute, Cello and Harp (1988) -- 10'
Full Score - Study (#114-41206S)
Full Score - Study (#114-41207S)
a window of resonant light for Cello, Piano and Percussion (1997) -- ca. 14'
Premiere Information: CORE Ensemble, October 6, 1997, Washington & Lee University Roanoke, VA
amid fleeting pockets of billowing radiance for Cello (1990) -- 11'
Premiere Information: Pamela Greitzer, cello; St. Mary’s College, St. Mary’s County, MD; September 20, 1991
eight aspects of appreciation for Violin and Viola (1996, rev. 2000) -- 9'
Premiere Information: Mann Duo: Nicholas Mann, violin and Robert Mann, viola; Washington, DC; February 9, 1997
filaments for 2 Flutes (1990) -- 9'
Commission Information: Peter Brown and Karen Johnson
Premiere Information: Peter Brown and Karen Johnson; Tawes Recital Hall, University of Maryland, College Park, MD; June 9, 1991
four dances for boris for Solo Piano (2003) -- ca. 8'
Available From Composer
fragments from the surrounding evening for Piano (1984) -- 9'
Commission Information: La Gesse Foundation
Premiere Information: Bruce Anderson, piano; Lafayette Presbyterian Church, Brooklyn, NY; February 24, 1985
in forests of evaporating dawns for String Quartet (1996) -- 18'
Premiere Information: Maia Quartet; Goucher College, Towson, MD; October 1997
Set of parts (#114-41105P)
linear cycles vii (cambiamenti ii) for Violin (1979, rev. 1993) -- 9'
Not yet released (in prep: #114-41066)
Premiere Information: Kurt Nikkanen, violin; Aspen Music Festival, Aspen, CO; 1979
revisiting variazioni elegiaci for Solo Viola (2001) -- 9'
Not yet released (in prep: #114-41036)
Commission Information: Wendy Richman
Premiere Information: Wendy Richman, Oberlin Conservatory, Oberlin, OH, February 10, 2001
Additional Information: Adaptation of variazioni elegiaci
ringing fields of enveloping blue for Cello and Piano (1997) -- 14'
Not yet released (in prep: #114-41126)
Premiere Information: Joshua Gordon, cello and Christopher Oldfather, piano; Music in Chelsea Series, Historic St. Peter’s Church, New York, NY; March 1, 1998
still radiance within dark air (1999) -- 15'
Fl., Cl., Vln., Vcl., Pno.
the clarity of remembered springs for Viola (1992-93) -- 13'
Commission Information: Walter W. Naumburg Foundation
Premiere Information: Misha Amory, viola; Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, New York, NY; April 26, 1993
the focus of blue light for Violin and Piano (1987-88) -- 18'
Commission Information: McKim Fund in the Library of Congress
Premiere Information: Kurt Nikkanen, violin, and Bruce Anderson, piano; Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge Auditorium, Library of Congress, Washington, DC; March 17, 1989
the milliner's fancy for Solo Alto Saxophone (2003) -- ca. 5'
Available From Composer• Recordings
the promise of the far horizon for String Quartet (2002) -- ca. 16'
Premiere Information: Corigliano Quartet, December 4, 2002, at Miller Theatre, New York, NY
toward a deepening stillness beyond visible light (2004) -- 11'
Piano, String Quartet
Commission Information: Co-commissioned by the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, Chamber Music Columbus (Ohio), and Omus Hirshbein for the Pacifica Quartet.
Premiere Information: October 19th, 23rd, 2004. Amy Dissanayake, Piano, Pacifica Quartet, University of Chicago, Mandel Hall, Artists-in-Residence Series (19th); Southern Theatre, Chamber Music Columbus, Columbus, OH (23rd)
two miniatures for Violin and Piano (1993) -- 6'
Premiere Information: David Abel, violin and Julie Steinberg, piano; Mills College, Oakland, CA; October 14, 1994
undiluted days for Piano Trio (2000) -- ca. 11'
Vln., Vcl., Pno.
Premiere Information: Opus 3 Trio, March 19, 2000, in Hearst Hall at the Washington National Cathedral School, Washington, D.C.
variazioni elegiaci for Cello (1979-80, rev. 1997) -- 9'
Premiere Information: Julie Charland, cello; Aspen Music Festival; July 10, 1981
wending for Solo Viola (2001) -- ca. 11'
Not yet released (in prep: #114-41260)
as the air softens in dusklight for Orchestra (1994) -- 9'
2 2 3 2 - 4 2 2 1; Vibr. Hp. Str.
Available from the Presser Rental Library
Premiere Information: Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Yoel Levi, conductor; Robert W. Woodruff Arts Center, Atlanta, GA; July 29, 1994
Full Score - Large (#416-41228)
distinct echoes of glimmering daylight (In memoriam Peter Brown) for Orchestra (1995) -- 16'
2 2 2 2 - 4 2 2 1; Vibr. Hp. Str.
Available from the Presser Rental Library
Commission Information: Roanoke Symphony Orchestra
Premiere Information: Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, David Wiley, conductor; Roanoke Civic Center, Roanoke, VA; October 16, 1995
Full Score - Large (#416-41229)
within a cloudburst of echoing brightness Fanfare for Orchestra (1995) -- 4'
3 3 3 2 - 4 3 3 1; Timp. Vibr. Hp. Pno. Str.
Available from the Presser Rental Library
Commission Information: National Symphony Orchestra
Premiere Information: National Symphony Orchestra, Leonard Slatkin, conductor; John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, DC; November 2, 1995
Full Score - Large (#416-41230)
"Put simply, Jeffrey Mumford's music is a place where extraordinary compositional skills, a keen mind, and an intuitive empathy for the full spectrum of human emotions, meet and are given expressive form."
-Joshua Freeman, American Composer's Forum Newsletter
"… a fine strong piece… a near Medieval purity of line…"
-Tim Page, The Washington Post
"… a gracious use of instruments and a style of writing that is abstract yet attractively figurative"
-Joseph Dalton, "Time Out" New York
"… a philosophy of music making that embraced both raw passion and a gentle imagistic poetry… his pieces carry musical evocations of the effects he describes"
-Alan Kozinn, The New York Times
"Jeffrey Mumford is emerging as a truly important composer of the last decade or so of this century."
-Joan Reinthaler, The Washington Post
"…a composer who makes something mesmerizing and beautiful out of harmonic ambiguity…Compelling listening; excellent performances
… a coloristic glow created by the leisurely unfolding of layered lines… contemplative with gleaming touches evoking poetic sonic imagery"
-Donald Rosenberg, The Plain Dealer (Cleveland)
"…a style of writing that is abstract yet attractively figurative…Mumford's sounds are distant and floating, often gentle and beguiling…remarkably rich and varied."
-Joseph Dalton, Time Out New York
"[The] balance between impressionism and expressionism makes Mumford's music quite listenable if not outright interesting."
-American Record Guide
"…evocative music that does not reveal all it has to say on the first hearing but invites and rewards repeated [listening]."
-Joseph McLellan, Washington Post
"… this music…has a deeply thoughtful, even soulful integrity…
… Mumford is a composer to watch."
-Robert Carl, Fanfare
"Changing almost like a kaleidoscope, a Mumford chord can sound like Brahms, one of his heroes, one moment and then ca suddenly be a spiky chromatic entity. The handling of these masterful transition in harmonic coloration is…a hallmark of Mumford's subtle and expressive style."
-Joseph Pehrson, The New Music Connoisseur
"This is a piece I could listen to several times more, trying to feel out its formal argument while still enjoying its visceral pleasures…Mumford is a composer to watch."
-Robert Carl, Fanfare
"Mumford is an astute craftsman who understands different timbres and their subtlety. In this work, in eight sections, he explores the timbral relationship between the violin and viola."
-Sorab Modi, The Strad
"The work was no warm, fuzzy tribute; instead, its brief movements suggests a series of thorny topics. The Manns threw themselves into the whirl of angular, combative lines with the kind of virtuosity Mumford’s piece seemed designed to display."
-Joe Banno, The Washington Post
"…a melancholy, elegiac piece that is nicely suited to the viola’s deep voice. Its tempo is slow, yet it moves compellingly forward."
-Allan Kozinn, The New York Times
"It was a fascinating experience and the highpoint of a recital…"
-Joseph McLellan, The Washington Post
"…brief but potent … an abstract riot of color, dissonance and density"
-Mark Stryker, Detroit Free Press
"The work depicts clouds in motion… Largely static, often pointillistic, dusklight skillfully exploits sonorities and moods, with reflective passages interrupted by threatening sounds."
-Derrick Henry, Atlanta Journal / Constitution
"…Mumford creates structures analogous to cloud formations, in which competing sonorities rise and fall, creating a unique beguiling effect."
-Mary Ellen Hutton, Cincinnati Post
"Perhaps the evening’s most forward-looking composition… Melodically austere and rhythmically diverse, Mumford’s work served nicely to showcase the quality of CCM’s Philharmonia."
-Keith Morris, The Cincinnati Enquirer
"Mumford has packed an enormous amount of musical activity into what I can only call a four-minute epic. The harmonies are dense but never impenetrable, the orchestral colors are downright prismatic, the dissonances are aggressive and angular yet brimming with poetry and nuance."
-Tim Page, The Washington Post
"…there couldn't have been a more attentive and appreciative audience…His one movment, atmospheric piano quintet stretches the listeners' ears and imaginations."
-Mary Hoffman, Columbus Dispatch