Kurt Stallmann | Outside the Box | Music | SIU

Southern Illinois University



College of Liberal Arts

Kurt Stallmann


Kurt Stallmann

Kurt Stallmann is a composer whose approach to sound is inclusive and integrative. His compositions include works for acoustic instruments, electroacoustic combinations, environmental sounds, and synthetic sounds. He also enjoys frequent collaborations with artists from other disciplines. In the early 90’s, he worked as an improvisor, composer, and advisor to modern dance choreographers in Boston. In addition to working in private studios with choreographers, he served as a musician with the Harvard Summer Dance Program, Mark Morris Company residency classes at Dance Umbrella, and also held positions in the dance divisions at The Boston Conservatory and Tufts University. In 1999, after completing his Ph.D. in music composition at Harvard University, he joined the Harvard faculty where he served as Assistant Professor of Music and as Associate Director of the Harvard University Studios for Electro-Acoustic Composition (HUSEAC). In 2002, Stallmann joined the faculty at Rice University's Shepherd School of Music where he currently serves as Associate Professor of Music and Director of the Rice Electroacoustic Music Labs (REMLABS).

In recent years, his work has focused on breaking boundaries between environmental sound and music, finding ways to include personal life experiences in his compositions, and connecting the divide between improvisation and composition. Recent works include: Taipei Sounds, Taipei Stories (2013), a bilingual performance/sound installation at the Taiwan Music Institute in Taipei; Time Present (2013), a collaborative work with filmmaker Alfred Guzzetti that couples parallel constructions in sound from Taipei and imagery from the United States (screenings in Chicago, New York City, San Francisco, Berlin, and the London Film Festival); Ceremonial Music for Water and Land Ritual (2012), a soundtrack for an animated short featured at an eight day ceremony at Dharma Drum Mountain in Taiwan; Ten Directions (2012), an electronic work commissioned by Rice University for the dedication ceremony of Twilight Epiphany, a Skyspace designed by artist James Turrell; Change Course (2012) a collaborative improvisatory work with saxophonist Steve Duke, and Moon Crossings (2011), a work for fifteen performers, video, and surround sound.

Kurt Stallmann’s work has been recognized through grants and commissions by Chamber Music America, Meet The Composer/New Music USA, Fromm Music Foundation at Harvard University, Fulbright Scholar Program (Fulbright Senior Scholar), the American Academy of Arts and Letters (Goddard Lieberson Fellowship), and the Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.

Recent projects include: a collaboration with Choreographer Dusan Tynek on Vespertine Awakenings, a work commissioned by Rice University for the opening of the new Moody Arts Center; a commission from the Houston Arts Alliance to create a new, full-event length work for the James Turrell Skyspace Twilight Epiphany; and a 75 minute ballet and multimedia project commissioned from Asia Society Texas.