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Sean Friar

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Sean Friar


Sean Friar (b. 1985) is an American composer and pianist.

Friar grew up in Los Angeles, where his first musical experiences were in rock and blues piano improvisation. He graduated summa cum laude from UCLA in 2007 with B.A.s in Music and Psychology. His principal teachers have been Steve Mackey, Paul Lansky, Dmitri Tymoczko, Paul Chihara, and Ian Krouse. His graduate studies were at Princeton University, where he held the Harold W. Dodds Honorific Fellowship and the Roger Sessions Fellowship.

Friar thrives on composing for ensembles both within and outside the realm of traditional concert music, and his recent commissions run the gamut from works for orchestra and string quartet to a junk car percussion concerto and music for laptop orchestra. His music has been performed throughout the world by ensembles including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic Scharoun Ensemble (Germany), and 4-time Grammy-winning percussionist, Glen Velez.

The youngest winner of the Rome Prize in over 25 years, Friar’s honors include the Aaron Copland Award; a Fromm Foundation Commission; Charles Ives Scholarship; as well as awards from eighth blackbird, Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, SCI/ASCAP, and the Hawaii Institute of Contemporary Music.

Friar is Senior Lecturer of Composition at the USC Thornton School of Music, and was formerly Lecturer in Composition at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music.

Works for Winds