Chelsea Komschlies’ music has been said to possess an “ingratiating allure” (San Diego Story). Ms. Komschlies is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in composition with Jean Lesage at McGill University’s Schulich School of Music, where she holds a Schulich Scholarship and a Graduate Excellence Fellowship. Previously she studied with David Ludwig and Richard Danielpour at the Curtis Institute of Music, where she was awarded the Alfredo Casella Award for composition, and with Dan Kellogg and Carter Pann at the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she was awarded the Thurston Manning Composition Award and Cecil Effinger Fellowship in Composition. Her work springs from spontaneous subconscious mental imagery, and she combines musical elements from across time and tradition, from ancient to modern and from the traditional to the strange, to trigger the same in her listeners. One of her goals is that listeners make deep, instinctual associations with her music, be they emotional, visual, or otherwise abstract.
Chelsea’s music has been performed in eleven countries on four continents around the world. She has received commissions from the Philadelphia Bach Festival, the Rock School for Dance Education, One Book, One Philadelphia, and a distinguished composition fellow commission from the Cortona Sessions for New Music. She has had performances at events such as the Ravinia Festival and the finale concert of Make Music Chicago and has received fellowships at programs such as the Aspen Music Festival, where she was the first woman ever to be awarded the 2019 Hermitage Prize, Copland House’s CULTIVATE, the Fontainebleau School where Nadia Boulanger once taught, and a number of other festivals in the U.S. and abroad. Her recent projects include a synesthetic collaboration with Alkemia Perfumes for the Oasi Trio and an oratorio for chorus, soloists, and baroque instruments premiered by Choral Arts Philadelphia in 2019. Collaborators include Alarm Will Sound, the Fifth House Ensemble, Ensemble Paramirabo, the Curtis Symphony Orchestra, and others. In her spare time, Chelsea enjoys drawing, digital painting, creating hand-sculpted jewelry, and haunting her favorite local coffee shops.
Biography taken from composer’s website.
Photo: Kyle Benjamin Turner