Miguel del Aguila

Miguel del Aguila, ICO Composer-in-Residence 2023-2024

Three-time Grammy nominated American composer Miguel del Aguila was born in Montevideo, Uruguay. In more than 130 works that couple drama and driving rhythm with nostalgic nods to his South American roots, he has established himself among the most distinctive and highly regarded composers of his generation. His music, which enjoys over 200 performances yearly, has been hailed as “brilliant and witty “(The New York Times), “sonically dazzling” (LATimes) and “exquisitely imaginative” (Fanfare).

He was 2021 composer in residence with Danish Chamber Players/Ensemble Storstrøm, Denmark; following residences with Orchestra of the AmericasNew Mexico Symph, and festivals Fresh InkCTSummerfestTalisChautauqua and Saint Maló. Recent commissions include works for John Hopkins Center for the ArtsCuarteto LatinoamericanoEroica TrioKalliope, and Fivebyfive.

Awatds received include 3 Latin Grammy nominations for CD Salón Buenos Aires, for Clocks; and for Concierto en TangoKennedy Center Friedheim AwardNew Music USA/Music AliveMagnum Opus Award,  Lancaster Symph. Composer of the Year, and Copland Foundation

His multicultural background gives his music international appeal and presence with performances by over 100 orchestras, thousands of ensembles, soloists, and 56 CD recordings. This list includes ChicagoWelsh BBCRoyal LiverpoolNorwegian Radio OrchBrandenburgisches StaatsorchesterOrchestra of the AmericasOrquesta de AsturiasKiev, Odessa, Heidelberg, México,  BrooklynBuffaloLouisianaRhode Island and Sacramento philharmonic orchestras; and ChicagoTorontoWinnipegEdmontonNashvilleSeattleChicagoAlbanySanta FeSan AntonioLong BeachVirginiaNewarkAugustaFort WorthMemphisOmahaSanta BarbaraSarasotaSpokaneChautauqua,  Codarts,  ReykjavíkCaracasPuerto Rico,  Sao Paulo,  Mexico, Costa Rica and Panama symphonies.

Artists who premiered, recorded or performed his works include: Leonard SlatkinJoAnn FallettaGiancarlo GuerreroMarin AlsopCarlos Miguel Prieto,  Lukas FossGerard SchwarzJorge MesterGuillermo FigueroaDavid Allan MillerMiguel Harth-BedoyaAndrew LittonEckart PreuKen MasurJosé Luis NovoJose Arean, and Maximiano Valdés; as well as: LA Chamber OrchestraSphinx VirtuosiWindscapePNMESOLIChicago Phil. Ch. PlayersMACENew Juilliard EnsCamerata de las AmericasPhiladelphia Ch. EnsCollegium Novum ZürichKammerensemble ClassicImaniFifthHouse, PentaèdreAlcanAriannaInvokePacificaVerona quartets, WindSyncOlmosOnixManuel Barrueco and Richard Stoltzman.

Recent and upcoming CDs include his Giant Guitar/Norwegian Radio Orch;  Broken Rondo/Louisiana PhilMiami Suite/Nestor Torres; Orchestra Works/Augusta Symph;  Clarinet Piano works/Javier Vinasco; Piano Quintets/Cuarteto Latinoamericano; Barroqueada/Eroica Trio, and CDs by Annex, and Q-Arte on Naxos, Dorian, Telarc, New Albion, Albany, Centaur and Eroica. Recent performances include Eastern MusicMinnesota Orchestra SommerfestNew HampshireSaarburgMusic in the VineyardsCervantinoForo Internacional de Musica Nueva, and Chelsea festivals.

A sought after guest as lecturer, advisor and curator; he serves as Barlow Endowment’s Board of Advisors member, and joined United States Artists FellowshipsCamino de la Fe competition, and Cayambis Music Press judge panels. Master classes/residencies include U.of Michigan, U.of Illinois, Vanderbilt, Lynn, U.of Arkansas, Texas A&M, and Colombia’s Univ. Nacional and EAFIT. His music is published by Peermusic ClassicalTh.Presser and self-published.

After graduating from the San Francisco Conservatory he continued studies at Universität für Musik un Darstellende Kunst and Music and Arts University of Vienna. Early works premiered in MusikvereinKonzerthaus and Bösendorfer halls were hailed by the press as “dancing with incendiary rhythms” with “near to obsessive vitality” (Wiener Zeitung). In 1986 his works were introduced in New York at Carnegie Recital Hall and by Lukas Foss/Brooklyn Philharmonic. His first CDs  released 1989 on KKM, Sony-Austria and Albany Records.

Soon after his US return LATimes praised him as “one of the West Coast’s most promising young composers.” and San Antonio Express-News as “One of the more intriguing compositional voices to come along in recent years“. He currently lives in Seattle.

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