Doug Opel
[Composer]

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About

updated June 2015

Doug Opel explores amalgamations of rock, jazz, pop and electronica to develop a compositional language that is at once, dark and humorous, controlled and chaotic, classical and contemporary.

He has served as composer-in-residence at the University of Wyoming's New Frontiers Music Festival, Visiting Assistant Professor and Guest Lecturer at Gustavus Adolphus College, and as board member, curator and contributing composer to upstate New York's Vision of Sound.

Opel’s recent appearances include performances by the newly formed California Sound Collective, at National YoungArts Week, Nautilus Music Theater and Idyllwild Arts Academy. Past presenters of his work include New York's Keys to the Future and DUMBO Dance Festival, Chicago's Pianoforte Salon Series and the Duquesne Contemporary Ensemble. He has received repeat performances from such artists and ensembles as Zeitgeist, Duo Petrof, American Modern Ensemble, Vox Novus, the Definiens Project, cellists David Carter and Amanda Gookin, and pianists Nicola Melville, Esther Wang & Jill Dawe.

Among his commissions are new works for the Chatterton-McCright Duo, singer/actor Eric Morris, the Bridge Chamber Music Festival, Ricochet Duo, Atlantic Chamber Ensemble, the Chautauqua Institution, MATA, pianists Robert Satterlee and Nicola Melville, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic and bass-baritone Timothy Jones. He has also written for former Kronos Quartet and solo artist/cellist Jeffrey Zeigler, PUBLIQuartet and the ensemble Intersection.

Opel is a winner of Definien's Composer Commission Competition (C3). The resulting piece, Soul Settings: Triptych  1 - utilizing the poetry of Minnesota-based poet William Reichard - received its premiere at the Fresno New Music Festival. He is also a recipient of the Aaron Copland Award, a residency that allows emerging composers to work uninterrupted and in privacy at Copland House - the last home of Aaron Copland.

Opel's 3 preludes to missing the point can be found on Melville's Dozen, a collection of piano pieces commissioned, performed and recorded by pianist Nicola Melville [Innova Recordings]. His Dilukkenjon for two pianos, appears both on Duo Petrof's 88x2 [Columna Música], and the newly released Powerhouse Pianists II, featuring American Modern Ensemble pianists Stephen Gosling and Blair McMillen [American Modern Recordings].

Opel holds a B.S. from Ball State University, an M.M. from the University of Michigan and a D.M. in from Indiana University. He studied composition with Ernesto Pellegrini, David Foley, Kamran Ince, George B. Wilson, William Albright, Don Freund, Jeff Hass, Eugene O'Brien and Claude Baker and piano with Marjorie Meredith, Pia Sebastiani and Dickran Atamian. He has also studied with U.K. composers Oliver Knussen and Colin Matthews.

He currently resides in Northfield, Minnesota.

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updated June 2015

Exploring amalgamations of contemporary, rock, jazz, pop and electronic music, Doug Opel’s work has been sought after and performed by the National Young Arts Foundation, American Modern Ensemble, Nautilus Music-Theater, Vox Novus, Duo Petrof, Keys to the Future, Vision of Sound and the Duquesne Contemporary Ensemble. He is a recipient of the Aaron Copland Award and winner of Definiens' Composition Competition Competition.

He has received commissions from the Chatterton-McCright Duo, Ricochet Duo, the Bridge Chamber Music Festival, the Chautauqua Institution, the Atlantic Chamber Ensemble, pianists Robert Satterlee and Nicola Melville, MATA, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic and bass-baritone Timothy Jones. He has also written for cellist Jeffrey Zeigler, PUBLIQuartet and the ensemble Intersection.

Opel’s 3 preludes to missing the point can be found on Melville’s Dozen, by pianist Nicola Melville [Innova Recordings]. Dilukkenjon for two pianos, appears both on Duo Petrof’s 88x2 [Columna Música], and the newly released Powerhouse Pianists II, featuring pianists Stephen Gosling and Blair McMillen [American Modern Recordings].

Download Word Document

Works

Serried with a Tinge of Bop 2:45

for piano

Bodacious Gaits 6:00

for piano

3 Preludes to Missing the Point 8:00

for piano

Dilukkenjon 8:30

for two pianos

Amalgams 5:30

for flute and piano

Kids These Days 4:30

for piano trio

playtime with elvis & krispy 6:00

for marimba and piano

Now That Your Dollar Bills Have Sprouted Wings 6:00

for tenor voice, picc, ob, b-fl cl, bsn, pno, drum kit, 2 vlns, vla, vc, db

Rite of an Appalachian Bolero in Blue...from Mars 7:30

for string quartet

Pop Swatches 5:30

for cello and piano

Soul Settings: Triptych 1 11:00

for fl (doubling picc), ob, b-fl cl (doubling bass cl), vln and vc with spoken word

slight change of plan (with bubbles) 6:00

for b-fl cl, pno and perc

NeoCons & Libertines 11:00

for pno/perc, alto and tenor sax, vc & db

Patchwork 10:00

for picc, ob, e-fl cl, cb, hn, tpt, tbn, perc, pno, 2 vlns, vla, vc, db

Eine Kinda Bachmusik 3:00

for fl, b-fl cl, bsn, marimba

Dilukkenjon 8:30

for 2 pianos

Ferlinghetti 18:30

for speaker, b-fl cl, hp, pno, 2 perc, cb

Pentableaux 18:00

for fl (doubling picc, bass fl), oboe (doubling eh), b-fl cl (doubling e-fl, bass cl), Hn, bsn (doubling cb)

Faces 7:00

for Baritone, Vln, Vla, VC and Pno

Hydroforms 10:00

for fl, bass cl, perc

Fragments, Pulses and Dialogues 7:00

for 2 pianos

Drive! 11:00

for chamber orchestra

Episodica 14:30

for 3(picc)33(e-fl)3(contra) 4331 timp, 3 perc, hp, pno/cel, strings

Dilukkenjon 9:00

for 3(picc)3(EH)3(b cl)3(contra) 4331 timp, 3 perc, hp, pno, strings

The Unbearable Being of Likeness 1:00

for digital audio

Hell's Hounds are Yorkies 1:00

for digital audio

I must warn you 2:00

for digital audio

Carving Lorien 8:00

for violin and tape

Our God 6:25

for tape

Hell's Hounds are Yorkies
Hell's Hounds are Yorkies
Now That Your Dollar Bills Have Sprouted Wings
Now That Your Dollar Bills Have Sprouted Wings
Playtime with Elvis & Krispy
Playtime with Elvis & Krispy
Pop Swatches (World Premiere)
Pop Swatches (World Premiere)
Carvling Lorien
Carvling Lorien
The Unbearable Being of Likeness
The Unbearable Being of Likeness
Nautilus Music-Theater
Nautilus Music-Theater
Jeff Zeigler Colloquium
Jeff Zeigler Colloquium
Chautauqua Piano Commission
Chautauqua Piano Commission
Powerhouse Pianists II
Powerhouse Pianists II
Duo Petrof performs Dilukkenjon
Duo Petrof performs Dilukkenjon
Pop Swatches (2011)
Pop Swatches (2011)
Serried With a Tinge of Bop
Serried With a Tinge of Bop
Pop Swatches (2015)
Pop Swatches (2015)
The Unbearable Being of Likeness
The Unbearable Being of Likeness
Eine Kinda Bachmusik, pt.2
Eine Kinda Bachmusik, pt.2
Copland House
Copland House

Recordings

Powerhouse Pianists II

Hailed as the “the dynamic duo of contemporary pianists” who “share a messianic devotion to modern music” by The New York Times, Gosling and McMillen apply the full force of their artistry to seven shining examples of music for two pianos by living composers, including John Adams, Mary Ellen Childs, John Corigliano, Amanda Harberg, Doug Opel, Robert Paterson, and Frederic Rzewski. The album is impeccably produced by GRAMMY® -winning producer Adam Abeshouse.

Order now from Amazon, iTunes and all major retailers and digital outlets.

88X2

In the diversity that the present musical production offers, one of its unifying ideas is the employ of arrangement or transcription, used here as a resource and also as a specific genre. Therefore, the original works are transformed according to the tastes and technical challenges sought after by the arrangers and performers, and only a few of the compositions chosen by Duo Petrof are performed in the composer's original version. Undoubtedly, this still little frequented repertoire for two pianos not only showcases the virtuosity of the pianists but urges us to know and enjoy more of it. - Elena Kopylova

Order now from Amazon, iTunes, Columna Música and all major retailers and digital outlets.

Melville's Dozen

Pianist Nicola Melville caught the bug of working with living composers while she was still a student in New Zealand. You get a different feel when no-one else has ever performed a work and you can email the composer to ask questions about interpretations; it certainly beats the umpteenth performance of an old warhorse.

Years and a hemisphere later, arriving in Northfield, Minnesota, Melville wanted to share that experience with her students at Carleton College. Thus was born the idea to commission some of today’s hottest com- posers to write according to her brief: a short piece, in a recognizable style of the Americas, that would be approachable to play for young, advanced-level students.

With influences drawn from styles of the Americas such as funk, jazz, blues, rock, tango, Peruvian, and Appalachian folk, the resulting pieces are engaging, sophisticated, and challenging. The composers range from Pulitzer Prize-nominated Augusta Read Thomas to young guns Marc Mellits, Carter Pann and Gabby Frank. The dynamic voice of each of the thirteen com- posers (bakers and pianists both throw in an extra one for free) speaks in a unique and compelling way throughout the CD.

Order now from Innova, Amazon, iTunes and all major retailers and digital outlets.

News

Sep 30, 2015
Reviews: Dilukkenjon for two pianos
Read More
Sep 05, 2015
Review: California Sound Collective
Read More
Aug 06, 2015
California Sound Collective
Read More
Mar 09, 2015
It Hath Arrived
Read More

Events

Previous Events
Dec 5, 2018: Matthew McCright: Portland, OR
Matthew McCright: Portland, OR

Date: Dec 5, 2018
Time: 12:00pm
Venue: The Old Church
Work: Serried with a tinge of bop

Matthew McCright performs a program of music titled “There and Back Again” --new music that traverses, breaks, loops, and tips the hat to the iconic music of American blues, jazz, and musical theater; showcasing the CD release of What is Left Behind and featuring the world premiere of Sean Friar’s Elastic Loops 2018 along with works of Sondheim, Bresnick, Opel, Mazzariello, Mazzoli, Moya, Rakowski, and Willie Dixon.

 

Matthew McCright 2018

Nov 15, 2018: Matthew McCright: Wilmington, PA
Matthew McCright: Wilmington, PA

Date: Nov 15, 2018
Time: 7:30pm
Venue: Wallace Memorial Chapel, Westminster College
Work: Serried with a tinge of bop

Matthew McCright performs a program of music titled “There and Back Again” --new music that traverses, breaks, loops, and tips the hat to the iconic music of American blues, jazz, and musical theater; showcasing the CD release of What is Left Behind and featuring the world premiere of Sean Friar’s Elastic Loops 2018 along with works of Sondheim, Bresnick, Opel, Mazzariello, Mazzoli, Moya, Rakowski, and Willie Dixon.

 

Matthew McCright 2018

Oct 25, 2018: Zeitgeist Halloween Festival 2018
Zeitgeist Halloween Festival 2018

Date: Oct 25, 2018
Time: 7:30pm
Venue: Studio Z
Work: Midnight Mary

Zeitgeist’s Halloween Festival takes over Studio Z for four days of haunting sounds, bone-chilling new commissions, spine-tingling storytelling, and the return of Crocus Hill Ghost Story, a macabre tale of a house possessed created by composer/flutist Julie Johnson, writer Cheri Johnson, and filmmaker/actor D.J. Mendel.  

SCHEDULE:
(times approximate) 

Thursday, October 25
7:00 Storyteller Loren Niemi 
7:30 Zeitgeist premieres new works by Dameun Strange, Dan Nass, and Doug Opel. Plus electronic realizations by composer Mike Olson of FUNGI from Yuggoth by H.P. Lovecraft. 
8:30 Electronic music set by Queen Drea

Friday, October 26
7:00 Storyteller Loren Niemi
7:20 Saxophonist Benjamin Cold performs She Sings She Screams by Mark Engebretson
7:40 Storyteller Debra Ting
8:00 RenegadeEnsemble premieres new work by Alyssa Anderson inspired by Edgar Allen Poe’s THE BELLS
9:00 Festival musicians perform improvised score to a silent horror film

Saturday, October 27
7:00 Storyteller Loren Niemi
7:20 Electronic music by DeVon Russell Gray
7:40 Storyteller Laura Packer
8:00 Crocus Hill Ghost Story
9:00 Electronic set by Eric Gonzalez

Sunday, October 28
6:00 Electronic music set by Dameun Strange
6:20 Storyteller Loren Niemi
6:40 Hexantanz by Carlisle Evans Peck
7:00 Crocus Hill Ghost Story

Oct 5, 2018: Matthew McCright: Northfield, MN
Matthew McCright: Northfield, MN

Date: Oct 5, 2018
Time: 8:00pm
Venue: Applebaum Recital Hall
Work: Serried with a tinge of bop

Matthew McCright performs a program of music titled “There and Back Again” --new music that traverses, breaks, loops, and tips the hat to the iconic music of American blues, jazz, and musical theater; showcasing the CD release of What is Left Behind and featuring the world premiere of Sean Friar’s Elastic Loops 2018 along with works of Sondheim, Bresnick, Opel, Mazzariello, Mazzoli, Moya, Rakowski, and Willie Dixon.

 

Matthew McCright 2018

American pianist Matthew McCright has performed extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, and the South Pacific as piano soloist and chamber musician. He has thrilled audiences and critics alike with imaginative programming that places the greatest piano repertoire alongside the music of today’s most innovative composers. A native of Pennsylvania, McCright now resides in Minneapolis, Minnesota and is a member of the piano faculty of Carleton College. An accomplished recording artist, McCright has released five solo recordings on innova, Centaur, and Albany Records. He is represented by Proper Canary Artist Services.

Sep 6, 2018: Zeitgeist Lowertown Listening Sessions
Zeitgeist Lowertown Listening Sessions

Date: Sep 6, 2018
Time: 6:00pm
Venue: Studio Z
Work: Midnight Mary

Zeitgeist has commissioned composers Daniel Nass, Dameun Strange, and Doug Opel to write brand new works for Zeitgeist’s Halloween Festival: Things that go bump in the night. Join Zeitgeist, singer Alyssa Anderson, and composers Daniel Nass, Doug Opel, and Dameun Strange for a discussion on how to create music that sends shivers up your spine.

Lowertown Listening Sessions invite curious listeners to enjoy adventurous sounds and insightful conversation with the music-makers of our time. Held at Studio Z, Zeitgeist’s performance space in Lowertown St. Paul, this monthly happy hour series brings guest artists from all genres of new music (jazz, classical, world music, folk, and more) for performances and informal discussion in an after-work setting with food and beverages from Lowertown eateries.

Archived Events

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