Bryce Dessner is a rare and vital force in new music. He has won Grammy Awards as a classical composer and with the band The National, of which he is founding member, guitarist, arranger, and co-principal songwriter. He is regularly commissioned to write for the world’s leading ensembles, from Orchestre de Paris to the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and is a high-proﬁle presence in ﬁlm score composition, with credits including The Revenant, for which he was Grammy and Golden Globe nominated, Fernando Mereilles’s The Two Popes, Mike Mill’s C’mon C’mon and the forthcoming Bardo, by Alejandro González Iñárritu.
Dessner collaborates with some of today’s most creative and respected artists, including Philip Glass, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Paul Simon, Alejandro González Iñárritu, Sufjan Stevens, Fernando Mereilles, Thom Yorke, Bon Iver, Nico Muhly, and Steve Reich, who named Dessner “a major voice of his generation.” Dessner’s orchestrations can be heard on the latest albums of Paul Simon, Bon Iver and Taylor Swift.
Bryce Dessner has had works commissioned and premiered by today’s leading conductors including Esa-Pekka Salonen, Gustavo Dudamel, Semyon Bychkov, and Santtu Matias-Rouvali. This season alone sees performances of his works by, amongst others, London’s Philharmonia Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, BBC Symphony Orchestra, HR Sinfonieorchester, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and San Francisco Symphony. New works Violin Concerto – commissioned by partners including Orchestre de Paris, Philharmonia Orchestra and San Francisco Symphony – and Mari, commissioned and performed by Tonhalle Orchester Zurich, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchester, Czech Philharmonic, Oslo Philharmonic and BBC Symphony Orchestra – have been met with widespread public and critical success.
In addition to his role as one of eight San Francisco Symphony Collaborative Partners, Bryce Dessner is currently Artist-in-Residence at London’s Southbank Centre and with Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra. Major works include Concerto for Two Pianos premiered by Katia & Marielle Labèque, London Philharmonic Orchestra and recorded for Deutsche Grammophon; Violin Concerto premiered and performed internationally by Pekka Kuusisto, Trombone Concerto for Jorgen van Rijen commissioned by Dallas Symphony and l’Orchestre National d’Île de France; Voy a Dormir for mezzo soprano Kelley O’Connor and Orchestra of Saint Luke’s and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra; Skrik Trio for Steve Reich and Carnegie Hall; the ballet No Tomorrow co-written with Ragnar Kjartansson; Wires for Ensemble Intercontemporain; The Forest for large cello ensemble, Gautier Capuçon and Fondation Louis Vuitton; and Triptych(Eyes for One on Another), a major theatre piece integrating the photographs of Robert Mapplethorpe produced by ArKtype and premiered by Los Angeles Philharmonic. Dessner also scored the music – involving full orchestra and a 200-member choir – for the Louis Vuitton show at the Louvre in Paris as part of Paris Fashion Week 2020.
Dessner’s recordings include El Chan; St. Carolyn by the Sea (both Deutsche Grammophon); Aheym, commissioned by Kronos Quartet; Tenebre, an album of his works for string orchestra recorded by Germany’s Ensemble Resonanz and which won a 2019 Opus Klassik award and a Diapason d’Or; When we are inhuman with Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and Eighth Blackbird (2019) and Impermanence (2021) with the Australian String Quartet.
Also active as a curator, Dessner is regularly requested to programme festivals and residencies around the world at venues such as at the Barbican, Philharmonie de Paris, and Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie. He co-founded and curates the festivals MusicNOW in Cincinnati, HAVEN in Copenhagen, Sounds from a Safe Harbour and PEOPLE.
Dessner earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Yale University and resides in Paris.
DREAM HOUSE QUARTET
featuring Katia & Marielle Làbeque, Bryce Dessner & David Chalmin
North American Premiere Tour Produced by ArKtype
Bryce Dessner & the Labèque Sisters bring their latest incarnation for premiere North American tour in the 2022-23 season – two pianos and two guitars, featuring collaborator David Chalmin (La Terre Invisible) with new works by Thom Yorke (Radiohead), Aphex Twin, Brian Eno, Hildur Guðnadóttir (Oscar winner for Best Score for Joker), Anna Thorvaldsdottir, Philip Glass, Bryce Dessner, Nico Muhly, Steve Reich, Caroline Shaw, Timo Andres and David Chalmin. Thom Yorke’s compositions include Don’t Fear The Light and newly generated Gawpers, these pieces for two pianos, electronics and modular synthesizer are Yorke’s first compositions for classical music artists and concert halls.
Availability: April 2023
TRIPTYCH (EYES OF ONE ON ANOTHER)
Composed by Bryce Dessner
Libretto by korde arrington tuttle, Featuring the Words of Patti Smith & Essex Hemphill
Directed by Kaneza Schaal
Featuring Roomful of Teeth
Music Direction & Conducting by Brad Wells
Set & Costume Design by Carlos Soto
Lighting Design by Yuki Nakase
Video by Simon Harding
Associate Director Jennifer Newman & Lilleth Glimcher
Associate Music Director William Brittelle
Dramaturgy by Talvin Wilks & Christopher Myers
Produced by ArKtype / Thomas O. Kriegsmann
In Cooperation with The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation
March 5, 2019 – LA Phil (Concert Premiere)
March 15-16, 2019 – University Musical Society, Ann Arbor, MI (World Premiere)
Robert Mapplethorpe shook the world with his striking images of S/M, still lifes and Black and interracial subjects – thrusting the artist into the national eye within the unfolding drama of culture wars and obscenity trials. Thirty years after his death we still cannot turn away. Inspired by Mapplethorpe’s challenge of the ideals of artistic expression, human sexuality, and public decency, Bryce Dessner, one of the most sought-after contemporary composers of his generation, has set an original and soaring oratorio. This genre-melding theatrical event also features the poetry of Essex Hemphill, a poet, and activist working at the forefront of Black, Gay liberation throughout the 1980s and 90s and poet and muse Patti Smith. Filtered through the lens of a uniquely intergenerational and cross-cultural team of visionary artists including Librettist Korde Arrington Tuttle, Director Kaneza Schaal and Designer Carlos Soto in collaboration with the renowned vocal ensemble, Roomful of Teeth, Triptych (Eyes of One on Another) is an unblinking, present-day meditation on images that reject being relegated to the past. This multi-disciplinary mash-up of photography, music, and poetry asks us to reconsider what it is to see and be seen, putting the audience inside the artist’s viewfinder, to witness Mapplethorpe’s beautiful, bold, voracious interpretation of how nature and humans look, touch, feel, hurt and love one another.
Produced in Residency with and Commissioned by University Musical Society, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI. Co-produced by Los Angeles Philharmonic, Gustavo Dudamel Music and Artistic Director. TRIPTYCH was co-commissioned by BAM; Luminato Festival, Toronto, Canada; Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center, Athens, Greece; Cincinnati Opera, Cincinnati, OH; Cal Performances, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA; Stanford Live, Stanford University, Stanford, CA; Adelaide Festival, Australia; John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for performance as part of DirectCurrent 2019; ArtsEmerson: World on Stage, Emerson College, Boston, MA; Texas Performing Arts, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX; Holland Festival, Amsterdam; Wexner Center for the Arts, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH; the Momentary, Bentonville, AR, Celebrity Series, Boston, MA, and residency development through MassMOCA, North Adams, MA.
Dream House Quartet (North American Premiere Tour)
April 23, 2023 – The Town Hall, New Y0rk, NY (Benefit for The Kitchen)
April 25, 2023 – Texas Performing Arts, Austin, TX
April 26, 2023 – ArtPower, San Diego, CA
April 27, 2023 Stanford Live @ Bing Hall, Stanford, CA
April 30, 2023 CAP-UCLA@Royce Hall, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA
May 3, 2023 | TO LIVE, Toronto, Canada
May 5, 2023 | Schwarzman Center, Yale University, New Haven, CT
Triptych (Eyes of One On Another)
March 5, 2019 LA Phil, Disney Hall, Los Angeles, CA (CONCERT PREMIERE)
March 15-16, 2019 University Musical Society, Power Center, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI (WORLD PREMIERE)
March 22, 2019 – Big Ears Festival, Knoxville, TN
April 6, 2019 – Direct Current, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington DC
June 6-8, 2019 Brooklyn Academy of Music, Brooklyn, NY
June 18-19, 2019 Holland Festival, Amsterdam, NL
June 26, 2019 Summer Nostros Festival, Athens, GR
September 20, 2019 Texas Performing Arts, UT Austin, TX
September 28, 2019 CalPerformances, UC Berkley, CA
October 3, 2019 Stanford Live, Stanford, CA
October 9, 2019 The Moore Theatre, Seattle Theatre Group, Seattle WA
October 30 – November 3, 2019 ArtsEmerson, Boston, MA
April 14, 2020 Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH