The music of composer Marcos Balter (b.1974, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) has been regarded by critics as "frenetic" [New York Times], "a virtuosic equilibrium of colliding particles (with) both intricate clarity and convincing trajectory" [Boston Globe], "delicate" [Time Out Chicago], "a free-form mural in volume, touch, inflection, and presence" [FAME], "colorful, inventive, (...) with vibrant sonics" [New Music Connoisseur], "exciting and refreshing, (...) agile, flexible and fragile" [Zeitschichten]. His works have been championed by many of today's most prestigious and adventurous new music ensembles, performers, and organizations such as the Fromm Concert Series at Harvard University, the International Contemporary Ensemble, Ensemble SurPlus, the Manhattan Sinfonietta, the New Millennium Orchestra, Third Coast Percussion Quartet, the Holland America Music Society, the MATA Festival, the New York Miniaturist Ensemble, Brave New Works, and percussionist Samuel Z. Solomon in venues such as the Tokyo Bunka Kaikan, E-Werk Freiburg, Teatro Colón of Buenos Aires, Seiji Osawa Hall, Merkin Hall, the Juilliard School, Le Poisson Rouge, The Stone, Paine Hall, and the Chicago Millennium Park. Past awards and honors include the Leonard Bernstein Fellowship at the 2005 Tanglewood Music Center, commissions from the 2008 HAMS International Violin Competition and Boston’s New Gallery Series, performances at the MusicX, June in Buffalo, Tanglewood Music Festival, Boston Conservatory’s Hard Stuff New Music Festival, the World Saxophone Congress, the Lockenhaus Kammermusikfestival, the Chicago Latino Composers Festival, Panorama da Música Contemporânea, Musica Nova, as well as first prizes at several national and international composition competitions.

He completed his doctoral studies in music composition at Northwestern University, graduating with departmental honors as well as being the recipient of the school’s William Karlins Composition Award and the Faricy Award for Creative Music. His main composition teachers were Augusta Read Thomas, Amy Williams, and Jay Alan Yim. He has also taken lessons in festivals and master classes in Europe and North America with Louis Andriessen, George Benjamin, Pierre Boulez, Oliver Knussen, Christian Lauba, Tristan Murail, Bernard Rands, Wolfgang Rihm, and Kaija Saariaho, among others.

Projects in 2009-10 include performances in New York City, Boston, Cambridge, Chicago, Toronto, Vienna, and Bangkok by the Manhattan Sinfonietta, the dal niente ensemble, the WIRED Duo, the ai ensemble, the Anaphora Ensemble, saxophonists Eric Hewitt and Ryan Muncy, Duo Diorama, pianist Sarah Bob, as well as the releasing of commercial recordings by violist Nadia Sirota ("First Things First" - New Amsterdam Records) and cellist Russell Rolen (independent label). Having previously taught at the University of Pittsburgh, Northwestern University, and Lawrence University, he is currently an Assistant Professor of Music and the coordinator of the Music Composition program at Columbia College Chicago.

This biography was most recently edited by...
cebms - 23 Sep 2009