Daniel Dorff's flute music has entered the repertoire and is frequently performed and recorded worldwide; in the 5 years since its publication, over 30 flutists have shared YouTube performances of his Sonata (Three Lakes). Dorff has written 7 commissions for the Philadelphia Orchestra's education department, and the Minnesota Orchestra's Kinder Konzert series has performed his music over 200 times.
Performances in the 2021-22 season include an all-Dorff concert and related events presented by the Atlanta Flute Club, a masterclass on his music at the Raleigh Area Flute Association, and rescheduled orchestral performances of his Concertino for Flute and Orchestra. Recent performances include his Concerto for Contrabassoon by the Colorado Symphony, an all-Dorff faculty recital at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and an all-Dorff flute recital at Bydgoszcz Academy of Music in Poland. Other recent highlights have included two episodes of NPR's From The Top featuring "Salmon Lake" from Sonata (Three Lakes), and performances of his music at annual conventions of the National Flute Association, International Clarinet Association, International Double Reed Society, and Midwest International Band, Orchestra, And Music Conference. During the quarantine season, Dorff's instrumental solos, duos, and quartets staples of many live-from-home recitals and self-layered videos.
Dorff's works have been presented by Young Audiences (over 1000 opera performances in schools), the Atlanta Opera (60 performances), Baltimore Symphony (32 performances), Pittsburgh Symphony, Louisville Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Aspen Music Festival, Chicago Symphony Radiothon, clarinetists of the Chicago Symphony and Berlin Philharmonic, pianists Jeremy Denk and Marc-André Hamelin, famed harpist Yolanda Kondonassis of the Cleveland Orchestra, and many of the world's leading flutists. His orchestral music has been premiered by maestros including Alan Gilbert and Wolfgang Sawallisch.
Other commissions have come from piccolo legends Walfrid Kujala and Sarah Jackson, the Colorado Symphony's Up Close and Musical series, Young Audiences, American Composers Forum, Ithaca College School of Music, and many other soloists and organizations. Dorff has also created arrangements for Sir James Galway and pop musicians Keith Emerson and Lisa Loeb.
Recent and upcoming premieres include: - Atomic Turquoise for Flute, Trumpet, and Harp, a consortium commission premiered by the Astralis Chamber Ensemble in September 2021
- Perfect Storm for Piccolo, Flute, and Piano, commissioned by Duo Flautas Frescas (Julia Barnett and Alina Windell), premiere scheduled for January 2022 through the Atlanta Flute Club
- Meditation at Perkiomen Creek for Solo Harp, commissioned by Yolanda Kondonassis for the "Five Minutes for Earth" initiative, premiere scheduled for April 2022 in NYC
- BFF's for Eb Clarinet and Bb Clarinet, commissioned for the Amicitia Duo (Diane Barger and Denise Gainey) premiere date pending
- (Welcome to the) Fabulous Fifties for Solo Bongos, by Mell Csicsila, Cleveland OH, premiere date pending
- Invention on Mozart's 11-tone Surprise for Flute and Bb Clarinet, commissioned by Cindy Anne Broz, premiere date pending
- Swans for Two Alto Flutes and Piano, commissioned by the NeStern Duo (Kathleen Nester and Wendy Stern) for premiere in 2022
- Songs of the Open Road for Solo Flute, commissioned by Flute Pro Shop for premiere by Joan Sparks in 2022
- Big Sky for Flute, Viola, and Harp, commissioned by Hat Trick (April Clayton flute, David Wallace viola, Kristi Shade harp) for premiere and tour in 2023
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Daniel Dorff was born in New Rochelle, NY; acclaim began at age 18 with First Prize in the Aspen Music Festival's annual composers' competition. Dorff received degrees in composition from Cornell and University of Pennsylvania; teachers included George Crumb, George Rochberg, Karel Husa, Henry Brant, Ralph Shapey, and Elie Siegmeister. He studied saxophone with Sigurd Rascher and bass clarinet with Ronald Reuben. Dorff served from 1996 through 2015 as Composer-In-Residence for Symphony in C, in which he played bass clarinet from 1980 through 2002.
A sought-after expert on music engraving and notation, he has lectured at many colleges as well as Carnegie Hall, won over 50 MPA Paul Revere Awards for Excellence in Music Engraving, and advised the leading notation software companies. He serves on the Boards of Directors for the Music Publishers' Association of the USA, Charles Ives Society, Vincent Persichetti Society, Flute Society of Greater Philadelphia, on the New Music Committee of the International Clarinet Association, and has served on the Board and committees of the National Flute Association.
Dorff's compositions have been recorded on Albany, Bridge, Centaur, Crystal, Azica, and many other labels. Performers have uploaded over 400 YouTubes of his compositions and arrangements, which have received over 1,300,000 views.