Artist Statement Trevor Weston (b. 1967)
I have always gravitated to music that mesmerizes and entrances its listeners by creating a sense of suspended reality. Music can be a portal to a parallel existence where our experiences, thoughts, and ideas are communicated through the more impactful abstract nature of aural stimuli. Music allows us to retreat from the mundane to reflect more profoundly on our existence. My intention is to create music that is transformative regardless of instrumentation or style.
Trevor Weston’s music has been called a “gently syncopated marriage of intellect and feeling.” (Detroit Free Press) Weston’s honors include the George Ladd Prix de Paris from the University of California, Berkeley, a Goddard Lieberson Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and residencies from the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and the MacDowell Colony. Weston co-authored with Olly Wilson, chapter 5 in the Cambridge Companion to Duke Ellington, “Duke Ellington as a Cultural Icon” published by Cambridge University Press. Weston’s work, Juba for Strings won the 2019 Sonori/New Orleans Chamber Orchestra Composition Competition.
Weston’s Flying Fish, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall for its 125 Commission Project and the American Composers Orchestra, was described as having, “…episodes of hurtling energy, the music certainly suggested wondrous aquatic feats. I was especially affected, though, by an extended slower, quizzical episode with pensive strings and plaintive chords.” (New York Times). The Boston Landmarks Orchestra commissioned Griot Legacies for choir and orchestra, a work created with four innovative arrangements of African American Spirituals. Griot Legacies demonstrates Weston’s “knack for piquant harmonies, evocative textures, and effective vocal writing.” (Boston Globe) The Grammy-nominated Choir of Trinity Church Wall Street, under the direction of Julian Wachner, recorded Trevor Weston’s choral works. The Bang on a Can All-Stars premiered Weston’s composition Dig It, commissioned by the group for the Ecstatic Music Festival in NYC.
A list of ensembles performing Trevor Weston’s compositions include Roomful of Teeth, The Boston Children’s Chorus, St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue Choir, The Starling Chamber Orchestra, Mallarme Chamber Players, The Providence Singers, Chicago Sinfonietta, Seraphic Fire, The Tufts Chamber Chorus, Ensemble Pi, The Amernet String Quartet, The UC Berkeley Chamber Chorus, The Washington Chorus, Trilogy: An Opera Company, and The Manhattan Choral Ensemble. In addition to his creative work, Weston completed the re-orchestration of Florence Price’s Piano Concerto for the Center for Black Music Research in 2010.
Dr. Weston’s musical education began at the prestigious St. Thomas Choir school in NYC at the age of ten. He received his B.A. from Tufts University and continued his studies at the University of California, Berkeley where he earned his M. A. and Ph. D. in Music Composition. His primary composition teachers were T. J. Anderson, Olly Wilson, Andrew Imbrie and Richard Felciano. Dr. Weston is currently Professor of Music at Drew University in Madison, NJ.