Praised as “highly lyrical and provocative of thought” (San Francisco Classical Voice), “mesmerizing” (The New York Times), and “pungently attractive” (The Washington Post), the music of composer Alexandra Gardner draws inspiration from sources including mythology, contemporary art forms, and her training as a percussionist. Composing for varied instrumentations and often mixing acoustic instruments with electronics, Gardner is building new audiences for contemporary music through an expressive sound and flair for the imaginative and unexpected.
Gardner’s compositions have been featured at festivals and venues throughout the world, including performances at the Aspen Music Festival, Warsaw Autumn Festival, MATA, Beijing Modern Festival, Centro de Cultura Contemporania de Barcelona, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Look & Listen, Conservatory of Amsterdam, Symphony Space, Merkin Hall, The Library of Congress, Festival Cervantino, and The Kennedy Center. Her music has been commissioned and performed by acclaimed ensembles and musicians such as SOLI Chamber Ensemble, cellist Joshua Roman, Percussions de Barcelona, NOW Ensemble, pianist Jenny Lin, and The Seattle Chamber Players.
Recent performance highlights include the world premieres of Just Say Yes for the Seattle Symphony, conducted by Ludovic Morlot and featuring drummer Alan White from the band Yes on drum set, Banyan by the Chicago Composer’s Orchestra, and Ciphers and Constellations for string orchestra with electronics, commissioned by The String Orchestra of Brooklyn. During the summer of 2016 the Grand Valley State University New Music Ensemble took eight newly commissioned works including Gardner’s Vixen for mixed chamber ensemble on a tour of National Parks to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the National Park System.
Gardner’s music has received honors and awards from organizations such as ASCAP, American Music Center, American Composers Forum, Mid-America Arts Alliance, Maryland State and District of Columbia Arts Councils, Meet The Composer, The Netherland-America Foundation, Open Meadows Foundation, the Prix Ton Bruynèl, and the Smithsonian Institution. She has conducted residencies at the Atlantic Center for the Arts, Harvestworks Digital Media Arts Center, Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, and The MacDowell Colony. She was awarded the 2002-03 Vassar College W.K. Rose Fellowship in the Creative Arts, and from 2002-2004 she served as a visiting composer at the Institut Universitari de l’Audiovisual in Barcelona, Spain. Her music is recorded on the Innova, Ars Harmonica, and Naxos labels.
Gardner holds degrees from The Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University and Vassar College. She currently resides in Baltimore, Maryland.
For more information, please visit www.alexandragardner.net.
Articles by Alexandra Gardner:
ETHEL's latest CD Oshtali is a collection of vital, engaging compositions by a talented group of young composers that not only provides a tribute to the heritage and future of...
By Alexandra GardnerI did all that really fun stuff and they're going to (*gasp*) pay me for it?! Sweet!
Composer/guitarist Scott Johnson has a knack for orchestrating the pitches and rhythms of recorded speech, and his most recent CD Americans, takes that ball and runs with it.
The bass clarinet-wielding San Francisco-based duo Sqwonk, comprised of Jeff Anderle and Jonathan Russell, dive into both the supercharged and the potentially off-the-wall nature of instrument multiples with their CD...
Chance and improvisation are the primary forces driving composer/violist/guitarist John King's 3rd CD of riveting, inventive string quartets.
By Alexandra GardnerFor those with a taste for ambient music and/or minimalism, this is a highly satisfying recording that employs the duo’s self-stated mission to "make you cry in a...
NPAC feels like the most gigantic family reunion ever; the folks you see regularly are all in attendance, but so are the distant cousins you've heard all those stories about...
Notes on music recordings for broadcast media.