Bryce Dessner is a composer, guitarist, and curator based in New York City, He has received widespread acclaim as a composer and guitarist for the improvising new music quartet, Clogs. Bryce has performed and recorded with some of the world's most creative musicians including songwriters Sufjan Stevens, Bon Iver, Antony Hegarty and Sonic Youth guitarist Lee Ranaldo; composers Steve Reich, Philip Glass, Nico Muhly and Michael Gordon; He has received commissions from contemporary ensembles such as Kronos Quartet and eighth blackbird, and his works are performed by some of the most established performers including Britten Sinfonia, Copenhagen Phiharmonic and Amsterdam Sinfonietta.
As a composer, his recent commissions include Murder Ballades for eighth blackbird, Music for Wood and Strings, a new work for So Percussion that premiered at Carnegie Hall in November 2013, and an evening length collaboration with Brooklyn Youth Chorus celebrating the artistic endeavours of the Black Mountain College that will be premiered in full during October '14.
In November 2013, Anti- released the album Aheym featuring the first recordings of Bryce's string quartets, performed by Kronos Quartet. This critically acclaimed album includes Tenebre, Little Blue Something, Tour Eiffel, and Aheym. Other important works include Lachrimae, a work for string orchestra commissioned by Amsterdam Sinfonietta, a commission from the Rosenbach Library in Philadelphia The Lincoln Shuffle (a work in honour of Abraham Lincoln's bi-centennial) and The Long Count (an origins story told in music and video, commissioned by BAM for the 2009 Next Wave Festival).
In early 2014, Deutsche Grammophon released a disc of Dessner's orchestral works conducted by André de Ridder and performed by the Copenhagen Philharmonic. The disc includes Lachrimae, St Carolyn by the Sea, featuring Dessner as a performer, and Raphael as well as Jonny Greenwood's Suite from "There Will Be Blood".
Dessner is the founder and artistic director of the acclaimed MusicNOW Festival in Cincinnati, Ohio, which will present its ninth season in 2014. He is also a co-founder and owner of the Brassland record label, which is home to a diverse group of artists including the experimental rock duo Buke and Gase, celebrated young composer Nico Muhly and cellist Erik Friedlander. In addition, Bryce and his brother Aaron produced an extensive AIDS charity compilation, Dark was the Night, for the Red Hot Organization. The ambitious record features exclusive new recordings and collaborations from a long list of artists including David Byrne, Arcade Fire, Sufjan Stevens, Sharon Jones, Cat Power, Grizzly Bear, My Morning Jacket and Spoon. Dark was the Night has raised over 2 million dollars for AIDS charities as of January 2012.
Dessner is a graduate of Yale College and the Yale School of Music. He currently serves on the board of The Kitchen in New York City and is a composer-in-residence at Muziekgebouw Eindhoven.
Dessner is best known as the guitarist for the acclaimed rock band The National. Their albums Alligator (2005), Boxer (2007) and High Violet (2010) were named among albums of the decade in publications throughout the world. Their most recent release, Trouble Will Find Me (2013), debuted at #3 on both the US Billboard Chart and the UK Albums Chart.
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