Discipline: Music Composition

Janice Lowe

Discipline: Music Composition
Region: Brooklyn, NY
MacDowell Fellowships: 2022

Janice A. Lowe is a composer-poet and vocalizing pianist. Lowe holds an M.F.A. in musical theater composition from New York University-Tisch School of the Arts and spends a portion of her summers music directing new musical theater created with Brooklyn youth. A co-founder of The Dark Room Collective, she teaches multi-media composition at Rutgers-New Brunswick.

Her musical theater compositions include Lil Budda, text by Stephanie L. Jones (Eugene O’Neill Musical Theater Conference and NAMT Festival of New Works); Somewhere in Texas, book and lyrics by Charles E. Drew, Jr.; and Sit-In at the Five & Dime, words by Marjorie Duffield.

She is currently composing musical settings of the Millie-Christine poems from the Pulitzer Prize-awarded collection OLIO, by Tyehimba Jess and has composed music for plays including Liza Jessie Peterson’s Chiron’s Homegurl Healer Howls, 12th and Clairmount by Jenni Lamb, and Door of No Return by Nehassaiu DeGannes.

The album Leaving CLE: Songs of Nomadic Dispersal, performed by Janice Lowe & NAMAROON has been described by In the Black Fantastic as a “killer musical offering” and by Helen Young as a “notable experimental jazz record.”

Lowe has performed with the bands w/o a net; Julie Ezelle Patton’s Rock, Paper, Sisters; Anne Waldman & Fast Speaking Music; HAGL and Digital Diaspora. Recently, Lowe was pianist-vocalist with Irreversible Entanglements’ premier of composer Luke Stewart’s “Assassinations.”

While at MacDowell, Lowe worked on compositions and orchestrations for "Millie and Christine McKoy Sisters' Syncopated Sonnets in Song," with a libretto by Tyehimba and based on poems that form Jess's Pulitzer Prize-awarded collection, OLIO.

Portrait by Joanna Eldredge Morrissey



Janice Lowe worked in the Watson studio.

Built in 1916 in memory of Regina Watson of Chicago, a musician and teacher, this studio was donated by a group of her friends, along with funds for its maintenance. Originally designed to serve as a composers’ studio with room for performance, Watson was used as a recital hall for chamber music for a…

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