Acclaimed as writing music of “austere beauty” that exhibits the “pressure and presence of personal conviction,” Kevin Siegfried (b. 1969) is in demand as a composer of distinctive and engaging musical works. His music was recently described as “hypnotic and beautifully written” by The Boston Musical Intelligencer, and is known for its direct expression, lyricism, and accessibility.
Siegfried’s music is published by E. C. Schirmer, Earthsongs, G. Schirmer, and MorningStar and has been performed by leading ensembles including The Byrd Ensemble, The Cardinall’s Musick, Conspirare, The Dale Warland Singers, The Exon Singers, and the Seattle Bach Choir. Recent festival performances include the American Masterpieces Choral Festival, Llangollen International Musical Eistoddfod (Wales), Minnesota Beethoven Festival, and the St. Magnus International Festival (Scotland). Siegfried’s music has been featured at both national and regional conventions of the American Choral Director’s Association, and was performed by the ACDA National Youth Honor Choir during their inaugural concert tour of England. “Lay Me Low,” one of Siegfried’s most popular choral works, was recently performed by The Joint Armed Forces Chorus at the State Funeral of President George H. W. Bush. Siegfried is the recipient of grants and awards from ASCAP, Choral Arts New England, National Endowment for the Arts, and New Hampshire State Council on the Arts.
Since 2014, Siegfried has been composer-in-residence with the Capitol Hill Chorale in Washington, DC. The Chorale has commissioned and premiered over a dozen works, including two cantatas: “Child of Earth,” for mezzo-soprano, SATB chorus, strings, and harp, and “Angel of Light,” for soprano solo, and SATB chorus a cappella. Other recent works premiered by the Chorale include "Music of the Spheres" for choir and glass armonica, and "Appalachian Carols," based on the music of Kentucky folksinger Jean Ritchie.
Siegfried is actively involved in the research and performance of early American music and his arrangements of Shaker music have been performed and recorded by choirs across the globe. The Tudor Choir’s “Gentle Words” CD, the premiere recording of Siegfried’s Shaker arrangements, received wide acclaim and was praised as “a stunning addition to the repertoire” by Fanfare Magazine. In recent years, Siegfried has performed at the Maine Festival of American Music, where he has presented concerts in collaboration with Brother Arnold Hadd, one of the few surviving Shakers at Sabbathday Lake, Maine.
Siegfried teaches at The Boston Conservatory at Berklee, where he is Coordinator of Theory in the Theater Division, and directs the Songwriting Emphasis, a two-year curriculum for budding songwriters in a variety of styles. Siegfried graduated from The New England Conservatory with a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in composition. He studied additionally in Paris, through the European American Musical Alliance, and in India, having received a Stanley Fellowship to study South Indian classical music with performing artist Sriram Parasuram. His previous teaching experience includes Harvard University, The New England Conservatory, and The University of Iowa.