Whether composing, conducting or teaching, or producing concerts or recordings, Bill Ryan is passionate about contemporary music and bringing it to diverse audiences.
Bill's compositions are consistently heard on the concert stage, radio, and with dance throughout the country. Gramophone Magazine wrote that "Music as gritty and funky as Bill Ryan's seems to call for a new language to describe it...Ryan's music constantly threatens to burst at the seams, were those seams not so artfully structured...Rarely has music this earthy been so elegant." Bill has received numerous composition honors including an ASCAP Young Composers Award and several Meet the Composer awards. Highlights of the past season include performances by violinist Todd Reynolds at New York's le Poisson Rouge and Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festival, Atlanta's Sonic Generator, Seattle Dance Company Whim W'him, New Music Detroit, the Robin Cox Ensemble, saxophonists Jonathan Nichol and Dan Gelok, and the Coalescence Percussion duo in Honduras. Highlights of the upcoming 2011/12 season include a performance at Baltimore's acclaimed Mobtown Modern concert series, a new solo work for percussionist David Cossin, and the Houston premiere of The Secondary Colors, an evening-length collaboration with Karen Stokes Dance.
As a concert producer, Bill has presented over 50 concerts in his Open Ears and Free Play concert series, gaining national recognition with three ASCAP/Chamber Music America Adventurous Programming Awards. Notable guests have included Prism, So Percussion, Lisa Moore, Todd Reynolds, Julia Wolfe, Talujon, Michael Lowenstern, and the Michael Gordon Band.
As a conductor Bill has commissioned and premiered dozens of works by composers including Phil Kline, Marc Mellits, Belinda Reynolds, Evan Ziporyn, and Pulitzer Prize winner David Lang. In 2006 he founded the Grand Valley State University New Music Ensemble and shortly after produced their critically acclaimed recording of Steve Reich’s Music for 18 Musicians. Named among the top recordings of 2007 by The New York Times, L.A. Weekly, The Rest Is Noise, and New York Magazine, the CD reached the top of iTunes’ and Amazon’s classical charts, and spent eleven weeks on Billboard’s top 25 classical crossover chart. WNYC’s John Schaefer most recently named it one of the top five classical recordings of the decade, and it was named the #1 classical recording of the decade in the Soundcheck listener poll.
In late 2009 Bill produced the ensemble's second CD, In C Remixed, featuring Terry Riley’s In C along with 18 remixes from artists including Nico Muhly, Glenn Kotche, Zoe Keating, and Mason Bates. Critically acclaimed in numerous publications, the recording was named a top release of 2009 by The Washington Post, Time Out Chicago, and All About Jazz, and was named the #2 release of the year in WNYC’s Newsounds listener poll. A track from the CD was recently used in MTV's hit series Teen Wolf. In May 2010 the ensemble released their third recording, In C: Live at Le Poisson Rouge featuring Dennis DeSantis on electronics.
Bill and the ensemble have been profiled in numerous publications including the New York Times and Billboard Magazine, and featured on NPR’s Weekend Edition, All Things Considered, and WNYC's Radiolab. They performed at the 2007 Bang On a Can Marathon in New York, the 2008 College Music Society National Conference in Atlanta, as members of the all-star ensemble assembled by the Kronos Quartet to perform on the In C 45th Anniversary concert at Carnegie Hall, at New York’s Le Poisson Rouge, and at the 2011 Make Music NY Festival.
In 2008 Bill won the Michigan Governor’s Award in Arts Education for his work at Grand Valley State University, and in 2009 he received the American Composers Forum's Champion of New Music Award for his significant contributions to the work and livelihoods of contemporary composers throughout the country.
For further information please visit www.billryanmusic.com
Page last modified August 18, 2011