ACO legacies

Meet the Composers

ACO exists to inspire, develop, support and build the art of American composers seeking to create new orchestral music. For over 40 years, we’ve worked with and celebrated composers such as Philip Glass, Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Joan Tower, and George Lewis, and more recently Paola Prestini, Du Yun, Alex Temple and Matthew Aucoin. We have premiered over 350 pieces at venues across NYC including Carnegie Hall, Rose Theater at Jazz at Lincoln Center, and placed these works with esteemed orchestras nationwide. We are dedicated to promoting diversity and representing all the voices and views that reflect America today.

Please note: ACO is transitioning 40+ years of data.The current archive is not yet comprehensive. To see a full list of ACO Composers, please click here.

Headshot of American Composer AJ McCaffrey

A.J. McCaffrey

“A voice that leaps out and grabs you” and “loopy and charming” are how the Glasgow Herald and the Boston Globe describe the music of composer A.J. McCaffrey.

Headshot of American Composer Aaron Severini

Aaron Severini

A recipient of The Juilliard Career Advancement Fellowship, CBA Fellowship at New York University, and a New Music USA Project Grant, Aaron Severini is a composer for concert, dance,film, television, and new media.

Headshot of composer Aaron Israel Levin, photo credit Eric Snoza

Aaron Israel Levin

Aaron Israel Levin writes music that is guided by the emotional dynamism of storytelling and drama.

Headshot of American Composer Adam Greene

Adam Greene

Adam Greene (b. 1970) is a composer and writer whose creative work references interests in literature, linguistics, and cognitive science in music that explores multiplicity, fragility, and instability, often through intensive examination of instrumental practice.

Headshot of composer Alexandria Temple

Alex Temple

A sound can evoke a time, a place, a cultural moment, or a worldview. As someone who loves both the Western classical tradition and the world of pop culture, Alex Temple (b. 1983) has always felt uncomfortable with stylistic hierarchies and the idea of a pure musical language. 

Headshot of American Composer Alexander Timfeev

Alexander Timofeev

Alexander Timofeev (b. 1983) debuted as a composer at age 19 performing his Concerto for Piano and Orchestra (2003) with the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Moldova.

Amina Figarova

Amina Figarova is a New York based, Azerbaijan born pianist and composer whose group is fast developing a reputation on the international scene, with appearances in the USA and around the world, including the Newport Jazz Festival, Chicago festival, New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Capetown Jazz festival and North Sea Jazz Festival, to name a few.

Headshot of American COmposer Amy Beth Kirsten

Amy Beth Kirsten

Composer-director Amy Beth Kirsten’s musical and conceptual language is characterized by an abiding interest in exploring theatrical elements of creation, performance, and presentation.

Andrea Reinkemeyer

The music of American composer Andrea Reinkemeyer (Dr. – she/her) explores “a reverent sound world that hovers just above the brink of silence” (Second Inversion) and expresses “a gamut of emotions… from reverence and supplication to mournfulness and despair” (textura).

Headshot of American Composer Andreia Pinto-Correia

Andreia Pinto-Correia

The prestigious literary magazine Jornal de Letras describes Andreia Pinto Correia’s compositions as “a major contribution to the dissemination of Portugal’s culture and language, perhaps a contribution larger than could ever be imagined.”

Headshot of American Composer Andrew McManus

Andrew McManus

Andrew McManus’ (b. 1985) orchestral work Strobe, premiered in 2014 by the New York Philharmonic, was called “riveting” and “breathless…surging…hazy…sometimes all at once” by the New York Times.

American Composer Andy Akiho

Andy Akiho

Andy Akiho is a contemporary composer whose interests run from steel pan to traditional classical music.

Headshot of American Composer Angel Lam

Angel Lam

Dr. Angel Lam is a Grammy-nominated composer who uses the beauty of soundscape, instrumentation and the written language to express refined emotions and her passion for life.

Headshot of American composer Anita Brown

Anita Brown

A native of both northeasten Massachusetts and Metropolitan New York, Anita attended The Pingree School in South Hamilton, MA and later graduated from Andover High School, Andover, MA.

Anna Clyne

Described as a “composer of uncommon gifts and unusual methods” in a New York Times profile and as “fearless” by NPR, Clyne’s work often includes collaborations with cutting-edge choreographers, visual artists, filmmakers, and musicians.

Anthony Green

The creative output of Anthony R. Green (composer, performer, social justice) includes musical
and visual creations, interpretations of original, contemporary, and repertoire works,
collaborations, educational outreach, and more.

Headshot of composer Anthony Tidd

Anthony Tidd

Tidd’s musical palette as a composer and performer is diverse. He holds a deep knowledge of jazz, R&B, Hip-hop, classical, and new music, as well as a particular affinity for creative improvisation. Born and raised in the United Kingdom, he has been living and working in the United States since 1997.

Headshot of American composer Austin Jaquith

Austin Jaquith

Austin Jaquith is a composer and music professor living in the greater Dayton area where he teaches at Cedarville University.

Headshot of American composer BP Harrington holding a chicken

B.P. Harrington

Composer B. P. Herrington was born and raised in the Big Thicket of Texas and his music is rooted in the folk ballads and rural music of this unique region.

American Jazz Composer Ben Morris smiling on a pile of fall leaves

Ben Morris

Described by the Huffington Post as “lovely,” the music of Ben Morris (b.1993) explores the intersections between jazz and concert music.

Headshot of American composer Benjamin Taylor

Benjamin Taylor

Benjamin Taylor, a trumpeter and pianist performs with and writes music for a variety of chamber ensembles, jazz combos and big bands, wind bands, choirs, and experimental ensembles.

Headshot of American Jazz Composer Brian Friedland

Brian Friedland

Composer/pianist Brian Friedland’s music displays creativity through a large and varied body of works.

Brian Nabors

Brian Raphael Nabors (b.1991, Birmingham, AL) is a composer of emotionally enriching music that tells exciting narratives with its vibrant themes and colorful harmonic language.

Headshot of American Composer Carl Schimmel

Carl Schimmel

Carl Schimmel is a composer based in Iowa and Illinois. Praised by The New York Times as “vivid and dramatic,” his recent music is dense with literary and musical references, often humorous, and combines intensity of expression with a structural rigor which draws upon his mathematics background.

Carlos Bandera

Carlos Bandera is a composer who is fascinated by musical architecture and by the music of the past. His recent music explores these fascinations, often by placing a musical quotation, be it a phrase, scale, or sonority, within dense microtonal textures.

Headshot of American Composer Carlos Oliver Simon

Carlos Oliver Simon

Carlos Simon is a versatile composer and arranger who combines the influences of jazz, gospel, and neo-romanticism.

Carlos Rafael Rivera

Copmoser for the Netflix Mini-Series THE QUEEN’S GAMBIT, starring ANYA TAYLOR-JOY, CARLOS RAFAEL RIVERA is an EMMY Award winning composer

Charles Ives

For all his singularity, the Yankee maverick Charles Ives is among the most representative of American artists. Optimistic, idealistic, fiercely democratic, he unified the voice of the American people with the forms and traditions of European classical music.

Headshot of American Composer Chen-Hui Jen

Chen-Hui Jen

Chen-Hui Jen is a composer, poet, and pianist. Currently, she serves as a pianist in the NODUS Ensemble at Florida International University and the Ensemble Ibis at the University of Miami.

Chiayu Hsu

Chiayu has been interested in deriving inspirations from different materials, such as poems, myths, and images. Particularly, however, it is the combination of Chinese elements and western techniques that is a hallmark of her music.

Watch ACO Composer Portrait Videos

To preserve and promote new American Music, we assemble and maintain an extensive video and audio archive of the works we perform.

Our Mission & Vision

American Composers Orchestra (ACO) is dedicated to the creation, celebration, performance, and promotion of orchestral music by American composers. With commitment to diversity, disruption and discovery, ACO produces concerts, pre-college and college education programs, and emerging composer professional development to foster a community of creators, audience, performers, collaborators, and funders.

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