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Celebrated composer Bruce Saylor appointed Artist in Residence of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocesan Cathedral

Location: New York, USA
Choir type: Choirs with Religious Affiliation
Voicing: Mixed

Celebrated composer Bruce Saylor appointed Artist in Residence of the Archdiocesan Cathedral

BruceSaylorFather Anastasios Gounaris and Cathedral Music Director Gus Chrysson are pleased to announce that acclaimed composer Bruce Saylor has been appointed as the 2013-2014 Artist in Residence, succeeding Eleni Traganas, who will become the first Artist in Residence Emerita of the Cathedral, having served in the inaugural 2012-2013 season. Saylor’s collaborations with the Cathedral will include featured works performed in the Christmas Concert, a distinguished lecture and reception, as well as original liturgical compositions for the Cathedral Choir. He will be formally installed on October 6th, at the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, as part of the Cathedral’s celebration of National Church Music Sunday. A festive coffee hour will follow, with an opportunity for all parishioners to participate in this joyous occasion.


The composer Bruce Saylor holds degrees from The Juilliard School and from The City University of New York, where he received his PhD. He also studied at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome under a Fulbright fellowship. The winner of more than 40 awards in his field, he has received honors from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Society of Arts and Letters, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ingram Merrill Foundation, and the Mellon Foundation.

Saylor received national attention when, as the Brena and Lee Freeman Composer-in-Residence at Lyric Opera of Chicago (1992-94), he composed Orpheus Descending set to J. D. McClatchy’s libretto after the Tennessee Williams play. His fifth opera, The Image Maker, a setting of James Merrill’s verse play, was premiered by the Queens College Opera Theater in May of 2012. His orchestral music has been commissioned and performed by the Houston, San Francisco, Nashville, Saint Louis, and Yale symphonies, and by the American Composers Orchestra. Incontri di Musica Sacra e Contemporanea of Rome and Musica Viva of New York have commissioned and premiered numerous works. The late Dino Anagnost commissioned and premiered Saylor’s suite of spirituals called Good News! at the Greek Archdiocesan Cathedral’s Candlelight Christmas Concert in 2003. His vocal and instrumental chamber music has been performed in the US, Europe, and Japan. The Yard, an artists’ colony on Martha’s Vineyard, has commissioned numerous dance scores, and Nine Circles Chamber Theater has toured with his operas and theater pieces. Saylor has produced nine cantatas for chorus and orchestra and two for solo voice and orchestra. He has also composed large-scale choral works for Pope John Paul II and Benedict XVI’s visits to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, President Clinton’s Second Inaugural, and Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold’s Investiture at the National Cathedral in Washington, as well as much sacred choral music. He has written the original music and arrangements for two holiday CDs of American soprano Jessye Norman and concert arrangements of the sacred music of Duke Ellington, the latter most recently performed at Miss Norman’s “Honor!” festival in New York City in March, 2009. Mezzo soprano Constance Beavon has recorded four of his vocal chamber cycles.

An award-winning teacher, as well, Saylor is a professor at the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York in Manhattan.