Anthony Donofrio teaches composition, theory, and new music at the University of Nebraska Kearney. He previously taught at Kent State University in Ohio, where he gave courses in theory and post-tonal analysis. He holds the Ph.D. in music composition from the University of Iowa. Anthony is very interested in fusing the compositional techniques found in literature and painting with his own approach to composing music. Along with Morton Feldman, Elliott Carter, and Gyorgy Ligeti, he cites Mark Rothko, David Foster Wallace, and Italo Calvino as his primary artistic influences. As a result of these influences, Anthony has taken an interest in creating half concert and full concert-length pieces. He is a frequent collaborator with Atlanta’s Chamber Cartel, Quince Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, and members of Ensemble Dal Niente. His music has been featured at festivals and conferences such as the Bowling Green New Music Festival, Omaha Under the Radar, Frequency Series, New Music on the Bayou, and the Vox Novus Festival. More information, including links to his music, can be found at www.donofrio-music.com
My pieces are attempts; attempts to create individual sound worlds that speak for themselves, existing on their own terms and conditions.
I am very concerned, possibly obsessed, with the shapes and durations of my pieces. For me, durations have personality and character, similar to how certain chords and certain sounds have character. A six-minute piece speaks differently than a 30-minute piece, and I have found much pleasure in exploring these differences. Furthermore, I am interested in questioning and challenging the notions of beginning and ending. I often do not intentionally end my pieces, preferring to allow them to stop on their own. I believe that this approach brings a satisfying ambiguity to both the creation of the work and the final product.
I am influenced by the compositional techniques found in all arts as well as in music. I enjoy attempting to mirror the structural divisions of novels and the immediacy of painting. Though my approach to creation is interdisciplinary, I believe in absolute music and do not concern myself with depicting or recreating emotions, stories, or narratives. Rather, I find beauty in simply experiencing sound as it is passes through time. My music, my creative need, is an attempt to bring reflection and commentary on this belief.
2017 Featured Composition: The __ of __