UB faculty member David Felder, widely regarded as one of America’s finest composers of contemporary classical music, has received the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ 2010 Academy Award in Music.
The award “honors outstanding artistic achievement and acknowledges a composer who has arrived at his or her own voice.” It carries a $7,500 cash prize and an additional $7,500 award toward the recording of one work. The award will be presented at the academy’s annual ceremonial, to be held in May in its landmark auditorium in New York City.
The award’s 2010 recipients—Felder, Daniel Asia, Pierre Jalbert and James Primosch—are considered to be among the finest composers of their generation. Candidates for all of the academy’s music awards are nominated by the 250 members of the academy, who include leading figures on the American art scene.
Winners are selected by a committee of academy members—in this case, five of America’s most celebrated composers: Robert Beaser (chair), Bernard Rands, Gunther Schuller, Steven Stucky and Yehudi Wynder.
SUNY Distinguished Professor and Birge-Cary Chair in Composition in the Department of Music, Felder is the artistic director of the June in Buffalo Festival and Conference for emerging composers of new music, and directs the Robert and Carol Morris Center for 21st Century Music at UB.