The music of Augusta Read Thomas has been performed all over the world by conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Pierre Boulez, Mstislav Rostropovich, Seiji Ozawa, Oliver Knussen, George Benjamin, Vimbayi Kaziboni, Christoph Eschenbach and many others. She is Vice President for Music at The American Academy of Arts and Letters, among many other distinctions, and is a long-standing, exemplary citizen of the profession at large supporting the work of others. Her music is published by G Schirmer and, since 2016, by Nimbus Music Publishing. Her music has been featured on nearly 100 commercial CDs. Since 2013, Nimbus Records has been recording her complete works. She is currently a University Professor of Composition in Music at The University of Chicago.
Thomas played piano as a young child, starting private lessons at age four. In third grade, she took up the trumpet and played for 14 years, attending Northwestern University as a trumpet performance major. She played trumpet in brass quintet, chamber orchestra, orchestra, band, and Jazz band and she sang in choirs for many years.
Thomas also had the distinction of having her work performed more frequently in 2013-2014 than any other living composer, according to statistics from performing rights organization ASCAP.
MUSICAL EXCERPTS (in order)
Words of the Sea for orchestra (3rd movement)
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Pierre Boulez, conductor
Carillon Sky for violin and chamber orchestra
Baird Dodge, violin
Chicago Symphony Orchestra MusicNOW ensemble
Oliver Knussen, conductor
Augusta Read Thomas official website
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Podcast artwork photograph © 2019 Philippe Stirnweiss