Discipline: Music Composition

Stewart Wallace

Discipline: Music Composition
Region: Rome, Italy
MacDowell Fellowships: 1987, 1988, 1989, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1998, 1999, 1999, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2012, 2014, 2017, 2024

Stewart Wallace composes operas that share an obsession with what it means to be American, the dark undercurrents in our politics and a perhaps naive sense that art can change the world. He is the composer of Harvey Milk, The Bonesetter's Daughter, and Supermax, among others, all of which were worked on--to some degree--during MacDowell Residencies. Harvey Milk originally premiered in 1995 at the Houston Grand Opera, New York City Opera and San Francisco Opera. A completely new version premiered at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis in 2023 and will be followed by the San Francisco premiere next year at Opera Parallele. The Bonesetter's Daughter, his opera with novelist Amy Tan, premiered at the San Francisco Opera and was chronicled in the PBS documentary Journey of The Bonesetter's Daughter broadcast nationally on NPR, Shanghai Radio, and Hong Kong. At MacDowell he is continuing work on Supermax, which set in the prison yard of a maximum-security prison where Ted Kaczynski, Timothy McVeigh, Ramzi Yousef, and Luis Felipe were concurrently incarcerated.



Stewart Wallace 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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