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Michael Djupstrom

Philadelphia, PA   

The work of composer and pianist Michael Djupstrom (b. 1980) has been honored with first prizes in the international composition competitions of the UK’s Delius Society, the American Viola Society, the Chinese Fine Arts Society, and has been further recognized through awards and grants from institutions such as the American Academy of Arts and Letters (Charles Ives Fellowship, Charles Ives Scholarship), Pew Center for Arts & Heritage (Pew Fellowship), New Music USA, S&R Foundation (Grand Prize, Washington Awards), Meet the Composer, the American Composers Forum, the Académie musicale de Villecroze, and the Sigurd and Jarmila Rislov Foundation, among many others. The Music Teachers National Association named him its 2005 MTNA-Shepherd Distinguished Composer of the Year.

Recent commissions have come from the Philadelphia Orchestra Association, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, the Tanglewood Music Center, the New York Youth Symphony Chamber Music Program, Music From Angel Fire, the Curtis Institute of Music, the Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus, International Opera Theater, the Lyra Society, the Lotte Lehmann Foundation, and the Cavatina Duo, among others.

Djupstrom’s music continues to receive local Philadelphia performances by Network for New Music, Dolce Suono, and Lyric Fest, by ensembles across the country including Music from Copland House, the Definiens Project, Dinosaur Annex, Juventas, Sounds New, and the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble, and has been heard abroad at concerts and broadcasts in the UK, France, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Chile, Taiwan, China, and Japan. In recent seasons, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the American Composers Orchestra, the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra, Symphony in C, Shasta Symphony, and International Opera Theater have presented his works for larger forces.

As a pianist, Djupstrom has taken a special interest in performing chamber music. He presented national concert tours as a founding member of the Phoenix Trio and has been a recurrent collaborator with the Philadelphia-based new music ensemble Relâche. His festival appearances include Hong Kong’s “Intimacy of Creativity,” Music From Angel Fire, Tanglewood, Brevard, and the Académie musicale de Villecroze, and he has performed in major metropolitan cities throughout the world, including Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Detroit, Houston, Atlanta, Hong Kong, Paris, London, Tokyo, Shenzhen, and Aix-en-Provence. He has recorded for American Public Media’s "Performance Today," Radio Television Hong Kong’s Radio 4, and the Equilibrium, American Modern, and Meyer Media labels.

An active and committed teacher, Djupstrom is Coordinator of the composition department and a member of the Musical Studies faculty at the Curtis Institute of Music. He previously taught piano at Settlement Music School, theory and orchestration for Boston University, and ear training at the University of Michigan and has been a guest teacher and presenter at Rice University, Westminster Choir College, Montana State University, Rowan University, Shasta Community College, the International School of Brussels, the Paris Conservatory, and Yichao Music Training Center in Shenzhen, China.

Djupstrom received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Michigan, where he studied with composers Bright Sheng, Susan Botti, William Bolcom and Karen Tanaka. Djupstrom pursued further studies in Paris with Betsy Jolas, whom he later worked for as assistant. He also holds an Artist Diploma from the Curtis Institute of Music, where he was a student of Jennifer Higdon and Richard Danielpour.

IV. Turbulent, from “Daydreams and Nightvisions”

Nikki Chooi, violin; Natalie Helm, violoncello

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excerpt from “Walimai”

Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt, viola; Michael Djupstrom, piano

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excerpt from “Suite from ‘The Wedding'”

Diego Silva, tenor; Curtis Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Vinay Parameswaran

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NewMusicBox Articles

Articles June 5 2011 | By Michael Djupstrom
Blogging the 2011 ACO Composer Readings: Not a Fish on the Cutting Board

While their backgrounds were varied—from Tanglewood to Hollywood—our mentor composers, in examining each of our pieces during today's "aesthetics and form" feedback session, came to the same conclusions far more...

Articles June 3 2011 | By Michael Djupstrom
Blogging the 2011 ACO Composer Readings: Before & After

Those traps and pitfalls I was wondering about last night just didn't happen. My piece is pretty clear and direct, but I still was a little surprised by how easily...