National Medal of Arts, Pulitzer Prize, and Grammy Award-winner William Bolcom (born May 26, 1938) is an American composer of chamber, operatic, vocal, choral, cabaret, ragtime, and symphonic music.

He joined the faculty of the University of Michigan's School of Music in 1973, was named the Ross Lee Finney Distinguished University Professor of Composition in 1994, and retired in 2008 after 35 years.  Bolcom won the Pulitzer Prize for music in 1988 for 12 New Etudes for Piano, and his setting of William Blake's Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience on the Naxos label won four Grammy Awards in 2005.

As a pianist Bolcom has performed and recorded his own work frequently in collaboration with his wife and musical partner, mezzo-soprano Joan Morris.  Cabaret songs, show tunes, and American popular songs of the 20th century have been their primary specialties in both concerts and recordings.  Their 25th album,  "Autumn Leaves," was released recently on White Pine Records. 




Coming up...

Previous events

The William Bolcom Song Project

Fondation des États-Unis, 15 boulevard Jourdan, 75014 Paris

As the composer reaches a milestone birthday, Soprano Rayanne Dupuis and Pianist Guy Livingston team up to serve up some Bolcom at his best: a selection of “serious” songs, as well as theatrical offerings and, of course, some Cabaret thrown in for good measure. In honour of his youthful years in Paris, studying with Darius Milhaud and Olivier Messiaen, the programme includes a new composition by Bolcom in french. Admission Free, but reservations requested.


Bolcom & Morris

Holland America’s Westerdam, San Diego, CA

Bolcom & Morris give two performances aboard Holland America’s Westerdam, sailing from San Diego down the Mexican coast Dec. 1-7.


Bolcom: Trombone Concerto; plus Joan Morris, Cabaret Songs

Hill Auditorium, 825 N University Ave, Ann Arbor, MI

Joseph Alessi, trombone, Univ. of Mich. Symphony Band, Michael Haithcock, conductor - plus Joan Morris will perform a selection of Bill's "Cabaret Songs"


Bolcom: From the Diary of Sally Hemings

Church of the Intercession, West 155th and Broadway, New York, NY

Soprano Alyson Cambridge is featured in this concert in "The Crypt Sessions" series. In these times of racial division, there are lessons to be learned from the past. No better story to learn from than this, and no better storyteller than Alyson Cambridge. Before the concert, a special wine and food tasting paired specially to the music on the program.


World Premiere in honor of WQXR Young Artists Showcase

The Greene Space, 44 Charlton Street, New York, NY

The evening will include a world premiere, commissioned for the occasion, by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer William Bolcom in a special performance by Bolcom and his wife, mezzo-soprano Joan Morris.


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