Chester Biscardi’s music has been featured at the Gaudeamus Festival in Rotterdam, the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival in England, Moscow Autumn, Music Today-Japan in Tokyo, the Thailand Composition Festival in Bangkok, the Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors Festival, the North American New Music Festival in Buffalo, the Festival of New American Music in Sacramento, Piccolo Spoleto, the International Guitar Festival of Morelia, and the Bienal of São Paulo, Brazil. Performances of his music have also been sponsored by the American Composers Orchestra, the BBC-London, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Ensemble TIMF of Korea, the Gothia Percussion Ensemble of Sweden, the Houston Symphony, the National Flute Association, the New Jersey Percussion Ensemble, the Orchestra della Radiotelevisione Italiana in Rome, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble, and UNESCO/International Music Council.
Mr. Biscardi’s catalog includes works for opera, chorus, voice and piano, orchestra, chamber ensembles, and solo piano, as well as incidental music for theater, dance, and television. His work is published by C. F. Peters, Merion Music, Inc. of Theodore Presser Company, and Biscardi Music Press; vocal music is distributed by Classical Vocal Reprints. Recordings appear on the Albany, Bridge, CRI (New World Records), Intim Musik (Sweden), New Albion, New Ariel, North/South Recordings, and Sept Jardins (Canada) labels. He is a Yamaha Artist.
Mr. Biscardi is a recipient of the Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome, a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Academy Award in Music and a Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Aaron Copland Award, fellowships from the Bogliasco Foundation, the Djerassi Foundation, the Japan Foundation, the MacDowell Colony, and the Rockefeller Foundation (Bellagio), as well as grants from the Fromm Music Foundation at Harvard, the Martha Baird Rockefeller Foundation, Meet the Composer, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York Foundation for the Arts.
Born in l948 in Kenosha, Wisconsin, Mr. Biscardi received an M.A. in Italian Literature and an M.M. in Musical Composition from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Yale. He is Director of the Music Program at Sarah Lawrence College, where he was the first recipient of the William Schuman Chair in Music (1994-2007) and currently holds the Margot C. Bogart Distinguished Service Chair.
For more information, please visit www.chesterbiscardi.com.
Cover Title (Subtitle) Duration Instrumentation Drag Here to Add To List Solo Mestiere
140-40044 5:00 Piano Unaccompanied Chamber Ensemble Tartini
For Violin and Piano
144-40324 7:00 Violin with Piano Tenzone
For 2 Flutes and Piano
144-40066 9:00 Flute Duet with Piano Traverso
For Flute and Piano
144-40149 7:00 Trio 144-40065 Orchestra At the Still Point
11911 15:00 3 2 2 2 – 2 2 2 1; Timp. 3Perc. 2Pno. Str. Opera Piano Concerto
for Piano and Orchestra
11912 20:00 Solo Pno.; 2(Picc.) 2(E.H.) 2(B.Cl.) 2 – 4 2 2 1; 4Perc. Hp. Str. Tight-Rope
Opera in Nine Scenes.
16645 90:00 1(Picc.) 0(E.H.) 1(B.Cl.) 1, Sop.Sax.(Ten. Sax.); 2 1 1 0; 3Perc. Pno. Hp. Str. (at least 3 3 3 4 4; reduced version 1 1 1 1 1)
AT THE STILL POINT
Biscardi is exploratory, concerned with sonics and sonorities rather than melodies and chords, but just as dramatically expressive — perhaps more so by virtue of its avoidance of cliché.
–Charles Shere, The Oakland Tribune
…a mystical excursion into sound and space.
–Rad Bennett, Washington Tribune
…Biscardi writes music with a signature vividness and intensity that seems interestingly to spring from a basically lyrical temperament — it’s music that can be active and even disjunct from one moment to the next, but the overall effect is one of directed, sustained flow. The registral and geographical arrangement made for interesting interplay as the material ebbed and flowed between the various groups, or the groups themselves combined. Its best moment was an exquisite middle section in which the music slowly and inevitably phased itself out, a lovely exercise in suspended time.
–Linda Sanders, The Soho News
…precise and stimulating…
–Virgilio Celletti, Avvenire
Here one heard at work experienced craftsmanship. The play of timbral contrasts and durational values had an appealing, suggestive quality.
–Dino Villatico, La repubblica
Chester Biscardi’s “Mestiere” is a short, sonorous work of pleasing elegance.
–John Henken, Los Angeles Times
It offers a remarkable integration of diverse sonorities into a compelling structure. It all grows out of a striking beginning, and the use of the piano’s pedals is very telling. All in all a sensible, sensitive work.
…delicate yet powerful. …diverse sonorities integrated into a compelling structure.
–Maurice Hinson, Guide to the Pianist’s Repertoire
…quite a showpiece, mingling boogie-woogie rhythms with virtuoso atonality, but still finding room for bittersweet lyricism.
–Scott Cantrell, The Dallas Morning News
…elegant sonic strands interweaving between the flutes with periodic interjections from the piano…
–Robert Carl, Fanfare
It was a hit all the way. “Tight-Rope” is relatively short — just 90 minutes — but long in psychological power. The Biscardi score is full of grace, a pleasure to listen to, both in the vocal line and in the orchestration that supports it.
–Wisconsin State Journal
The elegant, vividly orchestrated music reinforces the characters’ most human qualities.
–The Milwaukee Journal
The vocal lines are undergirded with a vivid instrumental score that illuminates the characters’ inner motions. Biscardi and Butler also challenge the members of the audience to begin their own quiet journey to a part of themselves where their own separate identities – lover, striving saint, fool – can be embraced and accepted into the unity of a single personality, a personality of exciting, ever challenging diversity and limitless possibilities.
–James Chute, Musical America
The composer shows himself to be talented and in control of his medium, having offered both pianist and flutist a challenging composition.
–Alfred W. Cochran, Notes
They are strikingly beautiful compositions that employ delicate textural and timbral effects. Structurally they grow from carefully shaped fragments into phrases and longer lyric gestures that relate sectionally.
–Tom Cleman, MLA Notes
IN TIME’S UNFOLDING
Naxos (8.559639); June 1, 2011
Performer(s): Blair McMillen, Piano
Work(s): Mestiere for Solo Piano
2007: Academy Award in Music, American Academy of Arts and Letters
2007: Koussevitzky Music Foundation in the Library of Congress Commission
2006: Bank of New York Teaching Excellence Award, Sarah Lawrence College
2005: The Bogliasco Foundation
2001: Aaron Copland Award, Copland House (residency for summer of 2002)
2000: New Ariel Recordings Piano Composition Competition, 2001, First Prize, for In Time
1999-2002: Fromm Music Foundation at Harvard Commission
1999: Aaron Copland Fund for Music Recording Grant, for Resisting Stillness
1999: The Bogliasco Foundation
1998: Hewlett-Mellon Grant
1998: Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust Recording Grant, for Resisting Stillness
1997: Distinguished Alumni Award presented by the Board of Directors, GLB Alumni Council of the University of Wisconsin Alumni Association, in recognition of achievements as a composer and performer
1993: The Rockefeller Foundation
1990: New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowships in Music Composition
1989-1990: The Japan Foundation Professional Fellowship
1989: The Djerassi Foundation Music/Composition Fellowship (Ridge Vineyards)
1988: Virgil Thomson Foundation Grant
1983: Creative Artists Public Service Program (CAPS) Fellowship in Music, New York
1982: Jerome Foundation Grant
1982: Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund for Music, Inc. Grant
1981: American Composers Alliance Recording Award, for Mestiere
1981, 1984, 1992, 1993, 1994-1995, 1998, 2000/4: MacDowell Colony Fellowships
1981-1987, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1998: Meet the Composer Grants
1980: American Music Center Grant
1979-1980: John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in Music Composition
1979: Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for the Enrichment of the Humanities Grant
1977-1978, 1980-1981: National Endowment for the Arts Composer/Librettist Fellowship Grants
At the Still Point
for OrchestraPiano Concerto
for Piano and Orchestra