Anthony Cheung (b. 1982, San Francisco) is a composer and pianist. His output ranges from solo to orchestral works, occasionally with electronics. His music has been commissioned by leading groups such as the Ensemble Modern, Ensemble Intercontemporain, New York Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, Scharoun Ensemble Berlin, International Contemporary Ensemble, and Talea Ensemble, and also performed by the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Chicago Symphony Orchestra (MusicNOW series), Minnesota Orchestra, Ensemble Linea, Le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne, wild Up, Musiques Nouvelles, Atlas Ensemble, Orchestra of the League of Composers, Taipei Chinese Orchestra, Orchestre National de Lorraine, Orchestre National de Lille, eighth blackbird, Dal Niente, the New York Youth Symphony, and the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra.
The recipient of a 2016 Guggenheim Fellowship, he has also received awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters (Charles Ives Fellowship and Scholarship) and ASCAP, and first prize in the Sixth International Dutilleux Competition (2008), as well as a Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome (2012). He has also received commissions from the Koussevitzky and Fromm foundations. From 2015-17, he is the Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow of the Cleveland Orchestra.
His music has been programmed at international festivals such as Ultraschall (Berlin), Cresc. Biennale (Frankfurt), Présences (Paris), impuls (Graz), Wittener Tage, Tanglewood, Aspen, Mostly Mozart, Transit (Leuven), Heidelberger Frühling, Helsinki Festival and Musica Nova Helsinki, Centre Acanthes, Musica (Strasbourg), and Nuova Consonanza (Rome).
Two portrait discs have recently appeared: Roundabouts, with the Ensemble Modern and Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra (Ensemble Modern Medien 2014), and Dystemporal, with the Talea Ensemble and Ensemble Intercontemporain (Wergo, 2016). His music and performances have also appeared on New Focus Recordings, Tzadik, and Mode. His music is published by EAM/Schott (PSNY edition), Editions Alphonse Leduc, and in self-published editions (ASCAP).
As a performer and advocate for new music, he co-founded the Talea Ensemble in 2007, serving as Artistic Director and pianist; he is currently co-Artistic Director. With Talea, he has performed extensively in the US and abroad as a specialist of new music, and has helped to curate programs, conferences, and festivals. As a pianist, he has worked with leading composers such as Pierre Boulez, Stefano Gervasoni, Tristan Murail, Hans Abrahamsen, Iancu Dumitrescu, Julian Anderson, Steve Lehman, Steve Coleman, and Chou Wen-Chung.
As a writer and scholar, he has completed a dissertation on György Ligeti (on the Hamburg Concerto, 2010), as well as articles on contemporary music for both specialists and a general readership. Primary musical interests include notational aesthetics, jazz improvisation and transcription, microtonality and alternate tunings, rhythmic polyphony, and temporal perception. His music reveals an interest in the ambiguity of sound sources and the subtle transformation and manipulation of timbre allied with harmony, sometimes leading him to explore electronics. It also engages poetic imagery, syntax and rhetoric, natural phenomena, and the visual arts. Representations of space and place are common themes in his work, achieved through innovations in spatialization and orchestration, as well as with musical allusions and actual source material via field recordings.
Anthony received a BA in Music and History from Harvard and a doctorate from Columbia University, where he taught and also served as assistant conductor of the Columbia University Orchestra. His primary composition studies were with Tristan Murail and Bernard Rands, and he has studied additionally at the Tanglewood Music Center, Aspen Music Festival, Domaine Forget, Fontainebleau, and Centre Acanthes, working with many leading composers. His primary piano studies were with Robert Levin and Paul Hersh. From 2009 to 2012, he was a Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows, and is currently an Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Chicago.