David Crowell


Brooklyn-based composer, instrumentalist and producer David Crowell brings a “singular vision that transcends genre” (Exclaim) to diverse forms of composed and improvisational music, and has been praised for compositional work that is "notable for its crystalline sonic beauty" (Boston Globe). 

David’s music has been performed at the Lucerne Festival Spotlights Series, Mizzou New Music Festival, Library of Congress, London Jazz Festival, MATA Festival, Bang on a Can Summer Marathon, Cleveland International Classical Guitar Festival, Da Camera Society, Walled City Festival, Crossing Brooklyn Ferry Festival, Cortona Sessions for New Music, American Music Festival, Tribeca New Music Festival, Festival for New American Music, Composers Now Festival, and the Festival Internacional Chihuahua, by groups such as the JACK Quartet, Alarm Will Sound, New Morse Code, NOW Ensemble, and Sandbox Percussion. His work has also been performed by noted international performers Mak Grgic, Brian Archinal, Dan Lippel and Ian Rosenbaum. 

In New York City, his work has been featured at concert halls and clubs such as Carnegie Hall, Brooklyn Academy of Music, National Sawdust, Merkin Hall, Le Poisson Rouge, Symphony Space, the Stone and Joe’s Pub. David's music has been presented at the art galleries Gavin Brown Enterprise and Dominique Levy.

An extended work for multiple saxophones and electronics, Eucalyptus, was performed by the composer at New York City’s Museum of Modern Art in conjunction with Carlito Carvalhosa’s exhibition, Sum of Days. Eucalyptus was also performed in an arrangement for percussion at the Lucerne Festival Spotlights Series. A recording featuring Eucalyptus was released by Innova Recordings. Innova also released Spectrum, by the David Crowell Ensemble. Additionally, David’s music has been featured on New Amsterdam, VIA & Skirl. Spring 2020 will include two new releases: Music for Percussion Quartet, performed by Sandbox Percussion for their album on Coviello Classics, and Point Cloud, performed by Dan Lippel for his album on New Focus Recordings.

David's band, Empyrean Atlas, has released three albums. From the New York Times: "Depending on the tune, the interwoven triple-guitar gamesmanship of Empyrean Atlas can run in few different directions: toward the mathy post-punk of Horse Lords or Battles, toward warmly anesthetic ambience (say, Pink Floyd meets Bradford Cox), or toward West African high life. On “Echolocation,” the clangy, lapping repetitions feel most in line with that last influence. The quintet’s movements are coiled and contained, but pulsing with small, ecstatic fibrillations." Empyrean Atlas has been featured numerous times on WNYC's New Sounds program, including a live performance/interview with John Schaefer. In 2015, Wilco named Inner Circle as one of their 17 favorite records of the year.

As a woodwinds performer, David has toured internationally as a member of the Philip Glass Ensemble (2007-16) and has also performed with the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Steve Reich, the Bang on a Can All-Stars, Signal Ensemble, and the Asphalt Orchestra. David has recorded with the Philip Glass Ensemble, New York Philharmonic, Signal Ensemble, and Shakira/Wyclef Jean, among others.

As an educator, David has worked with Found Sound Nation to produce music with kids enrolled in the Social Justice Leadership Academy, a program of the Kite’s Nest in Hudson, NY. In October 2016, he collaborated with Omnibus Ensemble (Uzbekistan) and young Central Asian musicians to create an hour long program that toured all five Central Asian Countries, organized by CEC ArtsLink and sponsored by the U.S. State Department. In 2009, 2012 & 2013, he completed commissions for A4TY, a project at the Bloomingdale School of Music designed to foster learning and interaction between students and working composers. David also served on the saxophone and composition faculty for the 2011-12 school year. David has also presented lectures on his music, most recently at Manhattan School of Music, Duquesne University, and California State University, Sacramento for the Festival of New American Music. 

A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, David has also studied composition with Nathan Davis, Paul Caputo and Jonathan Dawe; woodwinds with Andrew Sterman; and improvisation with Ralph Alessi, Don Byron, Peter Epstein, Steve Coleman and Ravi Coltrane through New York’s School for Improvisational Music. He has worked with Julia Wolfe, Michael Gordon and David Lang as a composition fellow at the Bang on a Can Summer Festival, and with Donnacha Dennehy and Steven Stuckey as a composition fellow at the Mizzou International Composers Festival.