Born in 1991 in New Haven, Connecticut, American composer Jay Greenberg began playing the cello at three, and subsequently taught himself to play the piano. His first formal lessons in theory and composition with Antony John at Duke University began at seven; three years later he enrolled as a scholarship student in a special program at New York’s Juilliard School of Music that involved courses at both the pre-undergrad and undergraduate levels, including composition classes with Samuel Adler, music theory with Samuel Zyman and Kendall Briggs, and multiple courses in ear training and piano.Later, during the 2006-07 academic year, Greenberg took composition classes at the Yale School of Music as part of a high school independent study program. Currently he is a second-year undergraduate student reading Music at Peterhouse, Cambridge.
Greenberg’s work first became known in 2004, when he was featured on a 60 Minutes segment; there followed his first CD release with Sony Classical in 2006 (featuring the Symphony #5 and Quintet for Strings performed by the London Symphony Orchestra and Juilliard String Quartet with cellist Darrett Adkins respectively) and his Carnegie Hall debut in 2007 (with Joshua Bell and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s).
Greenberg’s works have been performed by the Pittsburgh Symphony, the New Haven Symphony Orchestra, the Minnesota Orchestra, and many other national and international ensembles. Recent projects include Skyline Dances, commissioned by a consortium of US youth orchestras and premiered at Carnegie Hall in June of 2009, and Neon Refracted, commissioned by the New York City Ballet and choreographed during its spring 2010 season. Upcoming projects include a new piece for the New Haven Symphony and CD releases of the Cello Sonata and I still keep mute (with Julia Kogan) in 2011. Greenberg’s scores are available through G. Schirmer publishing.
“Jay Greenberg’s talent is immense…There seems little question that this youth has demonstrated a remarkable facility for writing accomplished music …”
“A gift for drama and for lyricism, expressed in sophisticated colors and textures … There is verve in the rhythms and invention in the harmonies; the tunes catch the ear. Movement by movement and start to finish, the architecture has a sturdy logic that does not preclude surprise. It is an impressive debut.”
“Greenberg has loads of talent and knows how to deploy large musical forces.”