Kevin Puts (b. 3 January 1972, St. Louis, Mo.) is an American composer.
Dr. Puts received his bachelor’s degree from the Eastman School of Music, his master’s degree from Yale University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the Eastman School of Music.
Winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Silent Night, Puts has been hailed as one of the most important composers of his generation. His work has been commissioned and performed by leading orchestras in the United States and abroad, including the New York Philharmonic, the Tonhalle Orchestër (Zurich), the symphony orchestras of Baltimore, Cincinnati, Detroit, Atlanta, Colorado, Houston, Fort Worth, Utah, St. Louis, the Boston Pops, and the Minnesota Orchestra which commissioned his Sinfonia Concertante, and by leading chamber ensembles such as the Mirò Quartet, the Eroica Trio, eighth blackbird, the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.
Puts’ orchestral catalog includes four symphonies as well as several concertos written for some of today’s top soloists. In 2005, Mr. Puts received the tremendous honor of a commission in celebration of David Zinman’s 70th birthday, and the result was Vision, a cello concerto premiered by Yo-Yo Ma and the Aspen Music Festival Orchestra. During the same year, his Percussion Concerto was premiered by Evelyn Glennie with the Pacific and Utah Symphonies. He has also written concertos for marimbist Makoto Nakura, violinist Michael Shih, clarinetist Bil Jackson, and a piano concerto commissioned by the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and premiered in 2008 by pianist and conductor Jeffrey Kahane. In March 2022, Puts’ fourth opera, The Hours, had its world premiere on the concert stage by the Philadelphia Orchestra under the baton of Yannick Nezet-Seguin.
Puts has received awards and grants from the American Academy in Rome, the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, BMI and ASCAP. He has served as composer-in-residence of Young Concerts Artists, the California Symphony, the Fort Worth Symphony, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, Music from Angel Fire, and the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society.
Since 2006, he has been a member of the composition department at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore, Maryland.
Works for Winds
- Charm (2012)
- Chorus of Light
- Elegy (arr. Ward) (2006/2011)
- Millennium Canons (arr. Spede) (2001/2003)
- Network (tr. Kelly) (1997/2013)
- Cardany, Brian M. "Charm." In Teaching Music through Performance in Band. Volume 11, Compiled and edited by Richard Miles, 152-158. Chicago: GIA Publications, 2018.
- Kevin Puts website
- Spinazzola, James. "Network." In Teaching Music through Performance in Band. Volume 11, Compiled and edited by Richard Miles, 967-973. Chicago: GIA Publications, 2018.