Robert Maggio

  • Hailed as a composer of music that is “smart, vital, and inventive” (Philadelphia Inquirer) Maggio has created an unusually diverse and substantial body of work. Each project creates a unique connection between Maggio’s “wondrously eclectic vocabulary” (New York Times) and a wide array of commissions, artist residencies, and interdisciplinary collaborations. “Lyrical, passionate, melodic, and rhythmically charged” (American Record Guide), Maggio’s music has been performed on concert stages, in orchestra pits, in school auditoriums, and at arts festivals around the world.

    With a firm belief that new music thrives when it takes root in an audience of passionate listeners, Maggio has been an artist in residence for school districts, arts councils, dance companies, community choirs and bands, and professional ensembles. Communities from Long Beach, California to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, have commissioned Maggio to create new compositions that reflect their history, culture, and hopes for the future.

    A long-time member of the BMI Musical Theatre Workshop in New York City, Maggio collaborates regularly with writers including Michael Hollinger, Matthew Hardy, Justin Warner, Kristin Maloney, and Amy Buchwald. He has composed songs and incidental music for numerous professional theaters, including productions at Yale Repertory Theater, Philadelphia Theater Company, People’s Light and Theater Company, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, and Shakespeare Santa Cruz. His music for theater has received several Barrymore Award nominations in Philadelphia, including his scores for The Laramie Project, The Merchant of Venice, M Butterfly, and The Outgoing Tide.

    Dance companies across the United States have commissioned Maggio for new scores, including collaborations with Pennsylvania Ballet, Ballet X, 10 Hairy Legs, Roxey Ballet, Stephen Pelton Dance Theater, Randy James Dance Works, and Leah Stein and Dancers. He was selected to participate in the month-long Young Choreographers and Composers Program at the American Dance Festival, which resulted in the creation and premiere of Barcarole with choreographer Stephen Pelton.

    Orchestras have performed Maggio’s orchestral music across North America: including the Boston Pops, Atlanta Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Long Beach Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, Oakland East Bay Symphony, Dallas/Fort Worth Symphony, Riverside Symphonia, New York Youth Symphony, Tampa Bay Youth Orchestra, and numerous university orchestras. His chamber and vocal/choral music has been performed by the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, New York Festival of Song, Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors Festival, Borromeo String Quartet, Corigliano Quartet, American Brass Quintet, Serafin String Quartet, Colorado Quartet, baritone Sanford Sylvan, Detroit Chamber Winds, Meridian Arts Ensemble, Composers Inc., Network for New Music, Orchestra 2001, and the Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia.

    Maggio is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including grants from the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Pew Fellowships in the Arts, the American Composers Forum, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, ASCAP, BMI, New Music USA, and Meet the Composer.

    A graduate of Yale University and the University of Pennsylvania, Robert Maggio lives with his family in Lambertville, New Jersey. He is a Professor and Chairman of the Department of Music Theory, History, and Composition at West Chester University’s School of Music in West Chester, PA.

  • Cover Title (Subtitle) Duration Instrumentation
    110-40741 Dreams From Childhood
    10:00 Piano
    114-40815 Elysian Fields
    For Solo Flute
    110-41778 Love-Bird
    For Solo Piano
    6:00 Piano
    410-41312 Prelude, Hymn, and Toccata
    For Piano
    14:00 Piano Unaccompanied
    114-41261 Songs From The Wood
    For Solo Marimba
    13:00 Percussion Unaccompanied
    114-40888 Variations: My Native Land
    114-40810 Winter Toccata
    Chamber Ensemble
    114-41538 …All The Live Long Day
    from Songbook for Annamaria (String Quartet No. 1)
    20:00 String Quartet
    114-40862 2 Quartets
    21:00 Flute 1, Flute 2, Violoncello 1, Violoncello 2
    114-41786 Aninventionersary
    For Two Flutes
    2:00 2 Flutes
    114-41802 Devils Garden – Angels Landing
    For Alto Saxophone And Marimba
    9:30 Mixed Duet
    114-41096 Divide
    For Horn and Piano
    12:00 Horn with Piano
    114-40741 Dreams for Childhood
    For Piano, Four Hands
    4:00 Percussion Ensemble
    114-40814 Duo Concertante
    For Violin and Piano
    114-40811 Fantasy: Spontaneous Lines
    For B-Flat Clarinet and Piano
    114-40812 Fluano Pianute
    For Flute and Piano
    15:00 Chamber Ensemble
    114-40909 Internal Rhythms
    15:00 Percussion Ensemble
    114-40865 Laurel Tree
    For 2 Flutes and Piano
    20:00 Flute 1, Flute 2, Piano
    114-40940 Phoenix
    For Two Flutes
    8:00 Flute Duet
    114-41384 Rain and Ash
    String Quartet No. 2
    String Quartet
    114-41097 Riddle
    10029 River Song
    13:00 2Ob. 2Cl. 2Bsn. 2Hn.
    414-41187 River Song
    114-41541 Touching Heaven
    For Flute and Percussion
    23:00 Flute with Piano
    10005 Tragicomedy
    for Chamber Orchestra
    22:00 1(Picc.) 1 1(B.Cl.) 1 – 1 1 1 0; 2Perc. Pno. Soli Str.(2Vn. Vla. Vcl. Cb.)
    114-41009 Traveling Songs
    For Flute and Guitar
    6:30 Flute and Guitar
    114-40809 Tributary Streams
    22:00 ASax, Piano, Bass, Percussion
    114-41383 We Gathered At The River
    Reflections On A Memorial Service At The Riverside
    9:00 Cello with Piano
    114-41617 Where You End and I Begin
    For Oboe And Piano
    13:00 Oboe with Piano
    114-41618 Where You End And I Begin
    13:00 Soprano Saxophone with Piano
    Vocal / Choral
    312-41768 Aristotle
    For S.A.T.B. Chorus, A Cappella
    6:45 SATB
    111-40208 Let Me Start Over
    Baritone, Piano
    16919 Light to Thousands: The Ballad of Galvez
    for Tenor and Orchestra
    5:30 Tenor Solo; 2 2 2 2 – 2 2 0 0; Timp. Str.
    17424 Snow Day
    12:00 S.A.Chorus; 2 2 2 2 – 4 2 2 0; Timp. 2Perc. Str.
    Band / Wind Ensemble
    115-40200 Invisible Soundtrack
    5:00 Concert Band
    115-40199 Psychedelic Circus
    8:00 Concert Band
    115-40198 South Mountain Echoes
    15:15 Concert Band
    13157 A Symphony of Memory
    32:00 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 3(EbCl./ B.Cl.) 3(Cbsn.) – 4 3 3 1; 3Perc. Pno.(Cel.) Hp. Str.
    17000 Bearded Woman
    Movement II from “Three Paintings from DOS VISIONES”
    5:00 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 3(B.Cl.) 3(Cbsn.) – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno. Hp. Str.
    10336 Big Top
    for Orchestra
    12:00 2(dbl. Picc.) 2 2 2 – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Str.
    16879 Boardwalk
    5:30 2 2 2 2 – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 2Perc. Str.
    17294 Color and Light
    8:00 2(Picc.) 2(E.H.) 2 2 – 2 2 0 0; Perc. Str.
    10008 Dorian Prelude
    for Orchestra
    10:00 3(Picc.) 3 3(E-fl Cl.) 3 – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno. Str.
    10006 Imaginary Dances
    for Orchestra
    34:00 3(Picc.) 3 3(B.Cl.) 3 – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 4Perc. Pno.(Cel.) Hp. Str.
    10004 Light and Truth
    for Brass Choir and Percussion
    12:00 4Tpt. 4Hn. 3Tbn. 2Bar. 2Tu. 3Perc.
    10175 My Home in the Horizon
    for Orchestra
    9:00 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 3(B.CL.) 3(Cbsn.) – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno. Hp. Str.
    16999 Self Portrait with Roots
    Movement III from “Three Paintings from DOS VISIONES”
    8:00 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 3(B.Cl.) 3(Cbsn.) – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno. Hp. Str.
    17100 Simple
    5:00 2 2 2 2 – 2 2 2(B.Tbn.) 0; Timp. Perc. Str.
    10054 Skylines
    8:00 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 3(B.Cl.) 3(Cbsn.) – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno. Hp. Str.
    17101 The Century Garden
    15:00 3(Picc.) 2 2 2 – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Hp. Str.
    10007 The Hand-Prints of Sorcerers
    for Orchestra
    12:00 2(Picc ) 2 2 2 – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 2Perc. Str.
    17001 The Magician of the Rain
    Movement I from “Three Paintings from DOS VISIONES”
    7:30 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 3(B.Cl.) 3(Cbsn.) – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno. Hp. Str.
    17002 Three Paintings from DOS VISIONES
    21:00 3(Picc.) 3(E.H.) 3(B.Cl.) 3(Cbsn.) – 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno. Hp. Str.
    Staged Works
    114-40813 Barcarole
    seven mad gods who rule the sea
    2:00 Violin, Cello, Percussion, Piano

  • Maggio’s music has real virtues: a light, active sense of texture, a good nose for drama, and a sophisticated but readily approachable tonal language.
    –Russell Platt , Strings

    Robert Maggio does not fear being beautiful in his music which is both grand yet reticent, tuneful yet tough, gorgeous in sound yet lean in method. More important, Maggio is blessed with that ambiguous trait that can neither be bought nor faked: the knack
    –Citation from the American Academy of Arts and Letters

    …contains not one but several gems, and their luster brightens with frequent hearings… Maggio shows a real gift for creating gradually evolving structures that, despite a large-scale architecture, really do get somewhere in the end and do not collapse int
    –Robert Carl , Fanfare

    …the most ambitious…and was received with enthusiasm…Maggio’s score was the most dynamic and effective.
    –Tracie Fellers, The Herald Sun

    It is a very fine piece, colorful and expressive. It easily stands alone as a musical experience, without the choreography. A very important release from a young composer who bears watching.
    –American Record Guide

    …Yankee Doodle meets Daffy Duck and most points between… rousing crowd-pleaser…
    –Susan Elliott, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

    His compositional vocabulary is wondrously eclectic, allwoing him to say exactly what he wished to express here.
    –Bert Wechsler, The New York Daily News

    …an impressive orchestral essay based on the Oscar Wilde novel. Invention is rife here, with its contrast of youthful elation (gleefully intoned by the clarinet) and the cynicism of age (shards of sound at the end.).
    –Mary Ellen Hutton, The Cincinnati Post

    …imaginative and vibrant… Its orchestration… proved striking.
    –James R. Oestreich, New York Times

    … an attractive work of passionate power and surpassing grace… it was the music that mattered: rich, inviting, rhythmically intriguing music that expressed the passions of two cultures and celebrated two rich and diverse kinds of music.

    …dynamic, fierce… distinctive… celebratory.
    –Daniel Webster, Philadelphia Inquirer

    The first movement, titled ‘Aggressive,’ opens with loud dissonances, quick swells, abrupt meter changes, and rapid-fire exchange between violin and piano. The second movement, ‘Tender, Conciliatory,’ provides a marked contrast and reaction to the first,
    –American String Teacher

    …[Maggio has written] genuinely effective passages in this interesting work, particularly the intense finale, and the earlier meditative and finely nuanced musings… A real challenge, therefore, which at seven minutes duration does not outstay its welcome.
    –Duke Dobing, Pan

    …its rhapsodic, constantly fluctuating melodies, rhythms and meters impart a feeling of improvisation and spontaneity. In the hands of a capable soloist, Maggio’s piece will be a work of power and expressivity.
    –Jerry L. McBride, MLA Notes

    Its brief five minutes are filled with drama and insight…On first hearing, all I wanted was to hear it again…the sparkle and vibrancy in the marriage of Whitman’s words and the composer’s vividly persuasive music announced a significant contribution to th
    –John Fidler, Reading Eagle

    Just as a cloud-streaked sky or gauze curtains fluttering in a window can unfetter the mind, these episodes proved capable of inducing a deep reverie. Maggio’s music, at its best, is deep and inspired.
    –David Gere, Oakland Tribune

    …an exciting new talent in a composition that was both technically complex and very satisfying as a listening experience. Maggio, 28, writes in an idiom that is recognizably modern but plainly original… The overall impression was of freshness and exuberan
    –Basil De Pinto , The Montclarion

    …imaginative, whimsical, surprising and successful.
    –Cheryl Greger, Times Star

    Maggio handles the orchestra with genuine flair, and the interactions of the brass and percussion sections give Imaginary Dances a certain punchy energy.
    –Joshua Kosman, San Fransisco Chronicle

    …Debussy-inflected colors; hard-driving, hand-alternating rhythms, and onrushing episodes…
    –Anthony Tommasini, Boston Globe

    …a jazz-inflected work of solidly idiomatic keyboard writing.
    –Will Crutchfield, New York Times

    The piece began with a solemn reading of names of the dead over thickly layered voices of the chorus, and hauntingly skeletal symphonic creations. The listener then journeyed through a musical jigsaw puzzle whose pieces ranged from somber uncertainty to a
    –Beth Buchanan, Washington Post

    …four well-known old tunes that were favorites of his adopted daughter. The tunes…are surrounded with concepts that contribute to several moments of real emotional meaning…Thanks, Robert, I think you have something special there.
    –D. Moore, American Record Guide

    …honest and sincere.…musical invention, subtle wit, and theatrical timing…You just want to hear it again…
    –David Patrick Stearns, Philadelphia Inquirer

    This was no calming Buddhist ‘Ohm’ evocation. For Maggio, the inward search of Daphne and by extension the audience, is scary, filled with eerie night-music, whispers and whimpers.
    –Paul Somers, Classical New Jersey

    Maggio’s music speaks directly in a comprehensible language of dark-hued colors which often touch the heart.
    –T.J. Medrek, The TAB

    The real find on the disc is the young Philadelphia composer Robert Maggio’s Desire-Movement… This is a composer whose career merits close attention.
    –Roger Oyster, Gay and Lesbian Literature in Print

    …a now turbulent, now serene work, pits bright soaring flights of flutes against the dusky, brusque rumbling of cellos before joining their voices in empathy.
    –Bruce Michael-Gelbert, New York Native

    …minimalistic yet achingly romantic
    –Tom Samiljan, Time Out New York

    The piece explores dualities of mind and of heart, while also probing the special dualities inherent in its unique instrumentation.
    –American Record Guide

    Two Quartets is memorable for, among other things, the soaring flute and cello pyrotechnics and for the lovely way instruments blend to achieve a wide range of effects.
    –Ken Keuffel Jr, The Pennsylvania Gazette

    …casual quasi-tonalities and loping lines.
    –Miriam Seidel, Philadelphia Inquirer

    …lyrical, passionate, melodic, and rhythmically charged… a young composer who bears watching.
    –Stephen Hicken, American Record Guide

  • Open Road OPEN ROAD
    Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus (); June 10, 2006
    Performer(s): Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus
    Work(s): Open Road
    The Wishing Tree: Choral Music of Robert Maggio THE WISHING TREE: CHORAL MUSIC OF ROBERT MAGGIO
    Albany Records (Troy 645); March 30, 2004
    Performer(s): Ithaca College Choir, Lawrence Doebler, conductor
    Work(s): Aristotle
    Riddles RIDDLES
    CRI/New World Records (NWCR870); January 1, 2001
    Performer(s): Audrey Andrist, piano, David Fedele, flute, Bart Feller, flute, Daniel Grabois, horn, Robert Koenig, piano, Tara Helen O’Connor flute, Scott St. John, violin, James Stern, violin, Colette Valentine, p…
    Work(s): Divide
    Duo Concertante
    Fluano Pianute
    Elysian Fields: Bart Feller, flute ELYSIAN FIELDS: BART FELLER, FLUTE
    Independent (B0001WW2M6); January 1, 1999
    Performer(s): Bart Feller, flute
    Work(s): Elysian Fields
    Seven Mad Gods SEVEN MAD GODS
    CRI/New World Records (NWCR720); June 18, 1996
    Performer(s): Bradley Lubman, conductor; Jennifer Higdon, conductor; Bart Feller & Kathleen Nester, flutes; Don Liuzzi, percussion; Fred Sherry & Jonathan Spitz, cello; Hugh Sung, piano; John Koen, cello; Scott St.…
    Work(s): Barcarole (seven mad gods who rule the sea)
    Two Quartets
    Winter Toccata (I can’t believe you want to die)
    Spontaneous Lines: Twentieth Century American Music for Clarinet and Piano SPONTANEOUS LINES: TWENTIETH CENTURY AMERICAN MUSIC FOR CLARINET AND PIANO
    Albany Records (TROY311); June 8, 1990
    Performer(s): Nathan Williams, clarinet; Audrey Andrist, piano
    Work(s): Fantasy: Spontaneous Lines

  • 1994: Composer-in-residence at the American Dance Festival
    Guggenheim Foundation award
    American Academy of Arts and Letters award
    Pew Fellowships in the Arts award
    Pennsylvania Council on the Arts award
    Meet the Composer award

  • Color and Light
    for Chamber Orchestra
    Snow Day
    for Chorus and Orchestra
    The Century Garden
    for Orchestra
    Tributary Streams
    for Alto Saxophone, Piano, Bass, and Percussion