Composer Spencer Topel is among America's most innovative and sought-after interdisciplinary composers. The recipient of numerous awards and honors (including the Palmer Dixon Prize from the Juilliard School for best composition, BMI and ASCAP Awards, and the first American composer to be awarded a Danish International Visiting Artist Residency.
Topel has composed music for many of America's premiere musical institutions, including the Minnesota Orchestra (Incendio, 2009), the Juilliard Symphony, Oregon Symphony, and the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble. Notable international collaborations include performances with the FIGURA Ensemble in Copenhagen, Denmark, theContemporarte Ensemble in Venice, Italy, and the Turkish Cultural Center 2009 artist tour. His works include three string quartets, five symphonic works, and numerous chamber and electronic works and sound-art installations. Recent major premieres and shows include Capturing Resonance (with Soo Sunny Park at the DeCordova Museum), Svin (bassist Jesper Egelund), Callings (FIGURA Ensemble), Trans-Verse (Charles River Wind Ensemble), and Five Details on the Strasbourg Rosace (Collide-A-Scope Music).
Current projects include a string quartet commission (Voxare Quartet), artist residency in Tel-Aviv at the Israeli Conservatory of Music (July, 2014), and two new installations with artist and Dartmouth faculty member Soo Sunny Park.
He received degrees from Cornell and The Juilliard School before joining the Tenure-Track Faculty at Dartmouth College, where he is currently an Assistant Professor of Music. He is on the Board of Directors for the Foundation for Emerging Technologies in the Arts, and is involved with curation of festivals and conferences, including the Sound and Music Computing, the International Computer Music Conference, and the International Society of Music Information Retrieval.
Three Representative Works:
Incendio 2008 11’ Premiered by the Minnesota Orchestra, with Osmo Vänskä, conductor.
Symphony Hall, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 2008.
Vox Nihili 2012 7’ Premiered by the Callithumpian Consort of Boston, MA.
Capturing Resonance 2011 continuous. Soo Sunny Park Collaboration
Holosonic Speakers, Bass Exciters, and laptop processing. Installation presented for one year in the Platform Series at the DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park, Lincoln, MA, 2011-2012.
Visit Me Online:
• Music: SoundCloud
• Web: Spencer Topel
• Video: Vimeo
• Social Media: Twitter
Oregon Connection: I moved to Portland, Oregon when I was nine years old. There I played in MYS and PYP, and studied violin with local teachers, notably the late Raphael Spiro. When I was eleven, I started studying composition with Tomas Svoboda, and a few years later I won the Oregon Symphony Young Composers Project, where James DePreist took my composition on tour around the state of Oregon.