Michael Alec Rose’s many awards and commissions include the Walter W. Naumburg Foundation’s chamber music commission, for which he composed his String Quartet No. 2; 27 consecutive annual awards in composition from ASCAP, 1986-2012; commissions from the Blair and Mendelssohn String Quartets; and three works for the Nashville Symphony. Rose’s Beatitudes, a new song cycle for tenor and piano (on texts by Maurice Maeterlinck), was premiered by Tony Boutté in Paris, France in June, 2013, with the composer at the piano. Flat Rock: Three Cedar Glades for Wind Ensemble (2013) was commissioned by a consortium of eight bands in North and South America, a project initiated by Dr. Reed Thomas, Director of Bands at Middle Tennessee State University (where Flat Rock was premiered on October 10, 2013).
Rose is Associate Professor of Composition at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music. With renowned violinist Peter Sheppard Skaerved, he co-directs an ongoing International Exchange Program between the Royal Academy of Music, London (RAM) and the Blair School. Rose regularly visits RAM as composer-in-residence, the outcome of which has been performances of many new works throughout Europe. In October 2011, Rose’s Hopeful Monsters for string orchestra, commemorating the anti-fascist Battle of Cable Street, was premiered at Wilton’s Music Hall in East London, right around the corner from where the battle took place in 1936. Hopeful Monsters is one of nine works included on the compact disc Michael Alec Rose: Chamber and Solo Works for Strings and Horn, released in the summer of 2013 (Toccata Classics). Rose is currently working on a large-scale cycle of unaccompanied violin works for Sheppard Skaerved, called Ritorno, movements of which are being premiered in the U.S. and U.K. this season. Rose’s first book, Audible Signs: Essays from a Musical Ground, was published by Continuum Books in 2010. In December, he completed Sui Generis: Five Types for Piano Inside/Out, commissioned by avant-garde Australian pianist Zubin Kanga, who will premiere the work on his first U.S. concert tour in March, 2014.
Rose studied with Pulitzer-Prize winning composers George Crumb and Richard Wernick, also with George Rochberg and Samuel Adler. He has won several major teaching awards at Vanderbilt, including the prestigious Chair of Teaching Excellence.