Jennifer Higdon is one of the most performed living American composers working today.
Higdon has been the recipient of the Pulitzer Prize, three Grammy Awards, the Nemmers Prize from Northwestern University, the Eddie Medora King Award from the University of Texas at Austin, Guggenheim and Pew fellowships, a commission from the Serge Koussevitsky Music Foundation, and two awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She has been commissioned by a wide range of performers, including the Philadelphia Orchestra; the Chicago Symphony Orchestra; “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band; the Tokyo String Quartet; Eighth Blackbird; and individual artists such as baritone Thomas Hampson, violinist Hilary Hahn, Jennifer Koh, and Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg; and pianists Gary Graffman and Yuja Wang. Her first opera, Cold Mountain, was a resounding success, winning an International Opera Award for best world premiere. Her works are recorded on more than 75 CDs.
Higdon enjoys hundreds of performances a year of her works. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree in performance from Bowling Green State University, an artist diploma from the Curtis Institute of Music, and a master’s degree and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. She has been awarded honorary doctorates from the Hartt School and Bowling Green State University, and was inducted into the American Philosophical Society. Higdon joined the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music in 1994, where she holds the Milton L. Rock Chair in Composition Studies.