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(b 1938 )

Joan Tower’s music is noted for a number of defining qualities: driving rhythms and colourful orchestrations influenced by the sounds and sensations of a childhood spent in South America; approachability for listeners and players alike, resulting from her engagement with the performers of her music (often written with specific musicians in mind) and her own performances as a pianist and conductor. Early works were serial in conception. In the 1970s she moved toward more tonal, Messiaen-like sonorities. She has written a number of works paying homage to composers such as Beethoven (Concerto for Piano), Stravinsky (Petroushskates), and Copland (Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman). She was the first composer chosen for a Ford Made in America consortium commission, Made in America. Its topselling recording won three 2008 GRAMMY® awards, including Best Classical Contemporary Composition. She was composer-in-residence with the St Louis Symphony (1985–88), Orchestra of St Lukes (1997–2007), and Season Composer with the Pittsburgh Symphony (2010–11). She is published by G. Schirmer.

Interview with Joan Tower

You can click here to stream an interview in which Joan Tower talks about the new Naxos recording of her Made in America. The segment is part of the Naxos Classical Music Spotlight podcast series, also available on naxos.com or through iTunes.

View by Role: Classical Artist | Classical Composer
Role: Classical Artist 
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CLASS OF '38 Naxos
TOWER: Chamber and Solo Music Naxos
Chamber Music
Role: Classical Composer 
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