Judith Lang Zaimont
Judith Lang Zaimont (b. 8 November 1945, Memphis, Tenn.) is an American composer.
Both Zaimont and her sister, Doris Lang Kosloff, began piano lessons with their mother, Bertha Lang, who was an accomplished pianist and singer. Judith began lessons at Juilliard at age 12, where she studied piano and theory from 1958-1964. These lessons included piano with Rosina Lhévinne and theory and duo-piano with Ann Hull. Judith and Doris had a successful performance career as duo-pianists that included appearances on Lawrence Welk's and Mitch Miller's television programs and a Carnegie Hall debut in 1963.
Judith's musical ability was observed at an early age. Family members recall her singing in her sleep when she was a child. She also had an incredible ability to play by ear and sight read. She was drawn to the art of composing after performing Chopin. She was not fond of practicing since she did not like to play the same notes over and over. She states, "I like to mess around with the notes." She began her compositional attempts at age eleven and won first place from the National Federation of Music Clubs for a piece written when she was only twelve.
As Zaimont continued her education, she received a diploma from the Long Island Institute of Music in 1966, a bachelor's degree from Queens College in 1968, and a master's degree in 1978 from Columbia University. She studied composition with Hugo Weisgall and Jack Beeson at Queens College and later studied with Otto Luening while at Columbia. She also traveled to France through a fellowship in order to study orchestration with André Jolivet.
Ms. Zaimont is internationally recognized for her distinctive style, characterized by its expressive strength and dynamism. Many of her 100 works are prize-winning compositions; these include three symphonies, chamber opera, oratorios and cantatas, music for wind ensemble, vocal-chamber pieces with varying accompanying ensembles, a wide variety of chamber works, and solo music for string and wind instruments, piano, organ, and voice.
Among her composition awards are a Guggenheim Fellowship (1983-84); Maryland State Arts Council creative fellowship (1986-87); and grants to support recordings from the Aaron Copland Fund (American Music Center: 1995, 2002) and Ditson Fund (Columbia University: 2002). Over the past decade, she has been Composer of the Year at Alabama University-Huntsville (1994-95), Featured Composer at the 1995 Society of Composers International meeting, and Honored Composer at the 11th International Van Cliburn Competition in 2001 (where both gold medalists selected and performed her music). Most recently she has been a 2005-06 Commissioned Composer - Kaplan Foundation (work for wind ensemble) and recipient of a 2005 Bush Foundation Artist Fellowship in Composition.
Ms. Zaimont has taught at the Peabody Conservatory of Music, Adelphi University, and the University of Minnesota.
Works for Winds