Discipline: Music Composition

Steven Kazuo Takasugi

Discipline: Music Composition
Region: Waban, MA
MacDowell Fellowships: 1989, 2020, 2021, 2022

Steven Kazuo Takasugi is a composer of electro-acoustic computer-assisted, algorithmic composition with live musical performance. His work has been performed extensively both in the U.S. and internationally. He is a 2022 Creative Capital Awardee.

Takasugi collects and archives acoustic sound samples into large databases that he carefully classifies. He subjects these recordings to computer-assisted, algorithmic composition and revises and adjusts them until the resulting emergent sound phenomena, energies, and relationships “reveal hidden meanings and contexts” to the composer. Over several decades he has collected thousands of these recorded instances.

During the first iteration of Virtual MacDowell in 2020 and his follow-up residency, Steven worked on a piano concerto for the Canadian pianist Roger Admiral, the SWR (South West Germany Radio) Symphony Orchestra, and electronics for the Donaueschingen Music Festival scheduled in 2022.

During his 2022 residency, Takasugi worked collaboratively with visual artist Jeff Halstead on music/sound and computer animation to be presented in the Monday Evening Concert Series in Los Angeles. He also worked on music for a new evening-long chamber piece with film by Huei Lin commissioned by the ensemble No Hay Banda of Montréal, Canada through the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation.

Image copyright Marco Giugliarelli for Civitella Ranieri Foundation, 2017



Steven Kazuo Takasugi worked in the Barnard studio.

Originally built near MacDowell's Union Street entrance, the Barnard Studio — which was funded by Barnard College music students — was re-located to its current site in 1910. When the small structure was moved, its size was doubled with the addition of a second room. This remodeling, financed by Mrs. Thomas E. Emery of Cincinnati…

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