Jess Langston Turner

From Wind Repertory Project
Jess Langston Turner


Jess Langston Turner (b. 1983, Greenville, S.C.), is an American composer.

Dr. Jess Turner holds both the B.Mus degree and the M.Mus degree in trumpet performance from Bob Jones University, and the M.Mus degree in composition from the Hartt School in Hartford, Ct. He completed the D.Mus. degree in composition at Indiana University in Bloomington in 2015.

Jess was active in music making playing both trumpet and piano throughout his schooling. His interest in composition began in his high school years where his first attempts at scoring were Debussy preludes for his school orchestra. He began formal study of composition in his junior year of college, and though his graduate program was trumpet performance, Jess studied composition with Dwight Gustafson, Joan Pinkston, and Dan Forrest at Bob Jones University. At The Hartt School, his principal teachers were Robert Carl, Kenneth Steen, and Stephen Gryc. He has had masterclasses and lessons with Pulitzer Prize winners William Bolcom, Michael Colgrass, Jennifer Higdon, and Joseph Schwantner.

Jess Turner has won numerous honors for his music, including the 2005 National Winner of the Young Artist Composition Competition of the Music Teachers National Association for his Sonata for Trumpet Piano. He has won numerous prizes for his choral music, including the 2008 John Ness Beck Award and the 2009 first prize of the Roger Wagner International Choral-Composition Contest. In June, 2010, he was named to the National Band Association Young Composers Mentoring Project and was awarded the 2010 Walter Beeler Prize for Wind Composition for Rumpelstilzchen: A Fairy Tale for Wind Ensemble. In 2012, his work for young band, The Exultant Heart, was awarded the Merrill Jones Composition Prize for Young Bands sponsored by the National Band Association.

Jess's music has been performed by the U. S. Navy Band, the U. S. Coast Guard Band, the band at U. S. Military Academy at West Point, and wind ensembles of the Hartt School, Yale University, Ithaca College, the University of Georgia, the University of North Texas, West Chester State University, Bob Jones University, Furman University, Concordia University of Illinois, to name a few. Rumpelstilzchen has been recorded by the Wind Ensemble of the Hartt School and by the University of North Texas Wind Symphony. Rumpelstilzchen: A Fairy Tale for Wind Ensemble had its New York premiere at Carnegie Hall in May, 2010.

Works for Winds