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updated August 2013

Doug Opel explores amalgamations of rock, jazz, pop and electronica to develop a compositional language that is at once, dark and humorous, controlled and chaotic, classical and contemporary.

Recent performances include the New York premiere of "Pop Swatches" by cellist Amanda Gookin and pianist Nicola Melville, an arrangement of "Now That Your Dollar Bills Have Sprouted Wings" from Beck Hansons "Song Reader" commissioned and premiered by The Atlantic Chamber Ensemble, "Rite of an Appalachian Bolero in Blue....from Mars" premiered by PUBLIQuartet and "Serried with a Tinge of Bop", commissioned for the Chautauqua Music Festivals 17th Annual Piano Competition.

Opels music has appeared on the American Modern Ensemble's Powerhouse Pianists Concert Series, Vox Novus' 60x60 and Composer's Voice Concert Series, Vision of Sound: A Concert of Live Music and Dance, Keys to the Future's Spotlight on Four Hand Piano, Chicago's Pianoforte Salon Series, at the Britten-Pears School for Advanced Music Studies and the Scotia Festival of Music. He has also received performances by Duo Petrof and the Duquesne Contemporary Ensemble.

Past commissions include works for MATA, pianists Robert Satterlee and Nicola Melville, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic and bass-baritone Timothy Jones. He has also written for cellist Jeffrey Zeigler and the ensemble Intersection. In 2009, he was selected as Definiens C3 (Composer Commission Competition) winner. The resulting piece, "Soul Settings: Triptych 1" - utilizing the poetry of Minnesota-based poet William Reichard - received its premiere in 2010 at the Fresno New Music Festival.

In 2003, he became one of seven composers to receive the Aaron Copland Award, a residency that allows emerging composers to work uninterrupted and in privacy at Copland House - the last home of Aaron Copland. His "3 preludes to missing the point" - part of a collection of piano works commissioned, performed and recorded by pianist Nicola Melville - is currently available on the Innova label.

Upcoming engagements include the second leg of the Definiens commission, as well as new works for Trio 612 and Ricochet Duo. "Dilukkenjon" for two pianos - performed by pianists Stephen Gosling and Blair McMillen- is scheduled for release soon on the American Modern Recordings label.

Opel holds a B.S. in music education from Ball State University, an M.M. in composition from the University of Michigan and a D.M. in composition from Indiana University. He studied composition with Ernesto Pellegrini, David Foley, Kamran Ince, George B. Wilson, William Albright, Don Freund, Jeff Hass, Eugene OBrien and Claude Baker and piano with Marjorie Meredith, Pia Sebastiani and Dickran Atamian. He has also studied with U.K. composers Oliver Knussen and Colin Matthews.

He currently resides in Northfield, Minnesota.


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