steven sametz

Steven Sametz has earned increasing renown in recent years as a composer and conductor. Hailed as “one of the most respected choral composers in America, Sametz has received commissions from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Princeton Singers, the Connecticut Council on the Arts, and the Santa Fe music festival, creating new works for Chanticleer, the Dale Warland Singers, The Los Angeles Master Chorale, Cantus, Philadelphia Singers, Pro Arte Chamber Choir, Connecticut Choral Artists, Joyful Noise and the King of Thailand.


Sametz is the 2013 winner of the Raymond and Beverly Sacker Prize in composition, for which he will be writing a new oratorio to be premiered in the spring of 2015. His choral symphony, Carmina amoris, is slated for performance at Carnegie Hall in November of 2014 and his O Magnum Mysterium was recently premiered by Chanticleer during their Christmas programs in New York and California. In 2011, Sametz received one of the country’s most prestigious choral commissions, the American Choral Director Association’s Raymond W. Brock Memorial Commission, writing Three Mystical Choruses for premiere by Chanticleer at the 2011 ACDA National Convention in Symphony Hall, Chicago. Sametz’s ballet, Small Steps/Tiny Revolutions has been performed world-wide by the Rioult Dance Company. His Music’s Music, commissioned by the Los Angeles Master Chorale, was premiered at Disney Hall in Los Angeles. Dr. Sametz’s compositions have been heard throughout the world at the Tanglewood, Ravinia, Salzburg, Schleswig-Holstein, and Santa Fe music festivals. His in time of, a setting of e.e. Cummings poetry, appears on Chanticleer’s Grammy Award-winning CD, The Colors of Love.


Dr. Sametz is the Ronald J. Ulrich Professor of Music at Lehigh University. He is the founding director of the Lehigh University Summer Choral Composers Forum, co-sponsored by the American Choral Directors Lehigh Association, to foster new choral music in America. He also serves as advisor to the ACDA in composition. Most recently, he was appointed as a candidate to the Fulbright Specialists Program, which sponsors residencies for mentor-teachers to universities abroad. He has also been invited as a Fellow at the Yaddo Artist Colony in the spring of 2014.


Sametz is the Artistic Director of the professional chamber choir, The Princeton Singers and is Director of Choral Activities at Lehigh University. He has appeared as guest conductor with the New York Chamber Symphony, the Taipei Philharmonic Foundation, the Berkshire Music Festival and the Netherlands Radio Choir appearing in such venues as Avery Fisher Hall, the Schubertsaal at the Vienna State Opera House, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Hall (Russia), Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall (Taipei) and Berlin Philharmonic Hall. Equally at home with orchestral and choral conducting, Dr. Sametz has led major works ranging from Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony and Beethoven’s Triple Concerto to the Britten War Requiem, Bach’s B-minor Mass, Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem, the Verdi Requiem, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, Lutosławski’s Trois poemes d’Henri Michaut and innovatively staged performances of Debussy’s Martyr de Saint Sébastien and Bach’s Matthäuspassion. Sametz has conducted the Grammy Award winning ensemble Chanticleer in performances of Monteverdi’s Vespro della beata Vergine (1610) to critical acclaim in San Francisco and New York. His commitment to new music may be seen in the many premieres he regularly conducts as founder-director of the Lehigh University-American Choral Director’s Association Summer Choral Composers Forum. He frequently conducts premieres of his own works, including his choral-orchestral symphony Carmina amoris, the ballet-piano concerto The White Raven, his ballet Small Steps/Tiny Revolutions, the concerto for electric violin and orchestra Be/Dazzled, the concerto for two harps and orchestra Earth, Wind, Fire and the orchestral song cycle American Songs–Sacred and Profane.


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