Christopher Cerrone (b. 1984) is internationally acclaimed for compositions characterized by a subtle handling of timbre and resonance, a deep literary fluency, and a flair for multimedia collaborations. Balancing lushness and austerity, immersive textures and telling details, dramatic impact, and interiority, Cerrone’s GRAMMY-nominated music is utterly compelling and uniquely his own.
In the 2020–21 season, Cerrone composes a new antiphonal brass concerto for the Cincinnati Symphony featuring principal trumpet Robert Sullivan and principal tubist Chris Olka, a new work for Hub New Music premiered via Livestream with Arizona Friends of Chamber Music, and begins work on In a Grove, a new opera composed with librettist Stephanie Fleischmann that was commissioned by LA Opera and will premiere at Pittsburgh Opera in February 2022.
The 2020–21 season will also see the premiere of The Last Message Received, jointly commissioned by Northwestern University and the Yale Symphony Orchestra and Glee Club, as well as new works for pianist David Kaplan, mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke, cellist Johannes Moser, Lorelei Ensemble, cellist Inbal Segev, and pianist Anthony DeMare (the Liaisons project, adapting the music of Stephen Sondheim).
Recent highlights include The Air Suspended, a piano concerto for pianist Shai Wosner, who gave the world premiere performances with the East Coast and Cayuga Chamber Orchestras, and the Phoenix and Albany Symphonies; Don’t Look Down, a concerto grosso for Conor Hanick and Sandbox Percussion that premiered at Caramoor; The Insects Became Magnetic, an orchestral work with electronics for the Los Angeles Philharmonic; Meander Spiral, Explode, a percussion quartet concerto co-commissioned by the Civic Orchestra of the Chicago Symphony and the Britt Festival; Breaks and Breaks, an acclaimed violin concerto for Jennifer Koh and the Detroit Symphony; a Miller Theatre Composer Portrait performed by Third Coast Percussion; Will There Be Singing, premiered by the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra; and Can’t and Won’t, commissioned for the Calder Quartet by the LA Phil.
Cerrone’s opera, Invisible Cities, a 2014 Pulitzer Prize finalist, was praised by the Los Angeles Times as “A delicate and beautiful opera…[which] could be, and should be, done anywhere.” Invisible Cities received its fully-staged world premiere in a wildly popular production by The Industry, directed by Yuval Sharon, in Los Angeles’ Union Station. Both the film and opera are available as CDs, DVDs, and digital downloads. In July 2019, New Amsterdam Records released his GRAMMY-nominated sophomore effort, The Pieces that Fall to Earth, a collaboration with the LA-based chamber orchestra, Wild Up, to widespread acclaim. His most recent release is Liminal Highway, a film and EP performed by Tim Munro and released on New Focus Recordings. Cerrone is also the winner of the 2015-2016 Samuel Barber Rome Prize in Music Composition.
Christopher Cerrone holds degrees from the Yale School of Music and the Manhattan School of Music. His work is published by Schott NY and Project Schott New York. He was a guest composition faculty member at the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University for 2019–2020 and currently teaches at Mannes School of Music, along with having an active private studio. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, writer Carrie Sun.