Scott Gendel (b. 1977) is a freelance composer and arranger, as well as a vocal coach and accompanist for singers and opera companies. In 2006, Scott won first prize in the ASCAP / Lotte Lehmann Foundation Song Cycle Competition. That award gave him a large song cycle commission from ASCAP and the Lehmann Foundation, performance of that commissioned work in three major American cities by the Joy in Singing Foundation, and publication of the work by E.C. Schirmer. Since gaining the exposure provided by that competition, Scott is now emerging as a composer on the national and international scene.
His music has been programmed by The Art Song Project, New Music New York, The New York Singing Teachers Association, soprano Claudia Waite, the 60×60 Project, and many other groups. There are currently four CD recordings, all intended for commercial release, involving Scott’s compositions, including an entire CD of his choral works. “Patterns” has been recorded on the Albany label by Mimmi Fulmer and Leone Buyse with the composer at the piano, and selections from “Forgotten Light” appear on a Naxos release, performed by Julia Faulkner and Martha Fischer. For two years, Scott was Composer in Residence with the Festival Choir of Madison. Recently, he was announced as the winner of the 2012 Vanguard Premieres Choral Composition Contest. His “Sound and Fury” for mixed-age boychoir and instrumental ensemble will be featured at the 2014 Aberdeen International Youth Festival in Aberdeen, Scotland, UK. Scott’s “At Last” was recently featured as the closing song in the AIDS Quilt Songbook @20 benefit concert organized by Sing for Hope.
In May of 2005, Scott received his DMA degree in composition from The University of Wisconsin-Madison, with a minor in opera accompanying and vocal coaching. While he was working on that degree, he held the position of Associate Lecturer in composition at the UW, where he designed and taught an undergraduate composition curriculum, as well as working with individual students. His composition teachers have included Stephen Dembski, Daron Hagen, and Joan Tower. He has been commissioned by Joy in Singing, the Madison Youth Choirs, All Souls UU Church (Washington DC), Hobart and William Smith Colleges, the Madison Symphony Orchestra, and others. Scott’s compositions have a wide-ranging scope, but his particular specialty is vocal music. He has written 14 song cycles, 14 large-scale individual songs and duets, 5 pieces for voices and orchestra, 28 choral works, a 45-minute mass for choir and chamber ensemble, 2 musical theatre works, and 2 operas. When he’s not writing or playing music, he enjoys as many moments as he can find with his amazing wife Kelly and his two daughters, Lotte and Twyla.
photography by Katrin Talbot