Eastern Michigan University

College of Arts and Sciences

Music & Dance

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Music Now Fest 

February 15-17, 2017

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Biography: Michael Daugherty


GRAMMY® Award winning composer Michael Daugherty first came to international attention when his Metropolis Symphony was performed by the Baltimore Symphony, conducted by David Zinman, at Carnegie Hall in 1994. Since that time, Daugherty’s music has entered the orchestral, band and chamber music repertoire and made him, according to the League of America Orchestras, one of the ten most performed American composers of concert music today.


Born in 1954 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Daugherty is the son of a dance-band drummer and the oldest of five brothers, all professional musicians. As a young man, Daugherty studied composition with many of the preeminent composers of the 20th century including Jacob Druckman, Earle Brown, Bernard Rands and Roger Reynolds at Yale, Pierre Boulez at IRCAM in Paris and György Ligeti in Hamburg. Daugherty was also an assistant to jazz arranger Gil Evans in New York from 1980-82. In 1991, Daugherty joined the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre and Dance, Ann Arbor, Michigan, as Professor of Composition, where he is a mentor to many of today’s most talented young composers. Daugherty is also a frequent guest of professional orchestras, festivals, universities and conservatories around the world.


Recent performances of Daugherty’s orchestral music include, among others, the Philadelphia Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Nashville Symphony, Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra, WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne and Orchestre National de France.


In 2011, the Nashville Symphony’s Naxos recording of Daugherty’s Metropolis Symphony and Deus ex Machina was honored with three GRAMMY® Awards, including Best Classical Contemporary Composition. Naxos recordings of Daugherty’s orchestral music include UFO, Colorado Symphony, Marin Alsop (1999); Fire and Blood, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Neemi Järvi (2005); Metropolis Symphony, Nashville Symphony, Giancarlo Guerrero (2009); Route 66, Bournemouth Symphony, Marin Alsop (2010); Mount Rushmore, Pacific Symphony, Carl St.Clair (2012) and Tales of Hemingway, Nashville Symphony, Giancarlo Guerrero (2016).


Daugherty’s music is published by Peermusic Classical, Boosey & Hawkes and Michael Daugherty Music. For more information on Michael Daugherty, see www.michaeldaugherty.net and his publisher’s websites.

The School of Music & Dance is part of the College of Arts & Sciences, 214 Pray-Harrold • Faculty Resources