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Stephen Hartke: WFIU’s Contemporary Composer for May

Hartke is a member of the faculty at the Thornton School of Music at University of Southern California

A man in a Hawaiian shirt stands on cobblestones holding a music score

Photo: Philip Channing

Composer Stephen Hartke

WFIU’s featured contemporary composer for the month of May is Distinguished Professor of Music and the University of Southern California, Stephen Hartke.

Hartke received his musical education as a boy soprano in New York, and at Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, and UC-Santa Barbara. As a Fulbright Professor, he taught in Brazil before coming to USC in 1987.

Stephen Hartke’s music spans a variety of genre, from the abstract liturgy for chamber ensemble, Wulfstan at the Millenium, to the Biblical satire Sons of Noah, to the piano quartet The King of the Sun, which was inspired by Medieval music. He has worked with many noted performers on concerti, including clarinetist Richard Stolzmann and violinist Michele Makarski. A collaboration with the Hilliard Ensemble, the New York Philharmonic, and conductor Lorin Maazel resulted in Hartke’s Symphony No. 3. He has also received commissions from the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra, Carnegie Hall, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

The recipient of numerous awards, Stephen Hartke won the Rome Prize in composition, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and two Koussevitsky Music Foundation grants. His opera The Greater Good, premiered by the Glimmerglass Opera, was awarded the Charles Ives Opera Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Music of Stephen Hartke is available on the Bridge, Chandos, EMI Classics, ECM New Series, Naxos, and New World Records labels.

WFIU will feature music of Stephen Hartke in classical music programming throughout the month of May.

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