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Kati Agócs: Biography

Kati Agócs
1975 -
Region: Atlantic

Kati Agócs

The music of Kati Agócs is hailed for merging sensuous allure with lapidary rigor, and is performed by leading musicians worldwide. The Boston Globe has cited its elegance, praising “music of fluidity and austere beauty” which “disperses its energy in unexpected ways,” “combining great tensile strength with a gorgeous unfolding of luminous lyrical episodes, rich inventive counterpoint, and a feeling of deep, elusive mystery.” The New York Times has characterized her chamber music as “striking”, her orchestral music as “filled with attractive ideas”, and her vocal music as possessing “an almost nineteenth-century naturalness.” Her works have been commissioned and performed by ensembles such as the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Minnesota Orchestra, Symphony Nova Scotia, National Arts Center Orchestra, Newfoundland Symphony, CBC Radio Orchestra, Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra, Windsor Symphony Orchestra, Peterborough Symphony, National Youth Orchestra of Canada, Boston Symphony Chamber Players, eighth blackbird, Duo Concertante, and many others. Boston Modern Orchestra Project has recorded a CD devoted to orchestral music by Kati Agócs, including her critically acclaimed work for women’s chorus and orchestra The Debrecen Passion. She has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Leonard Bernstein Fellowship from the Tanglewood Music Center, a Fulbright Fellowship, the prestigious Arts and Letters Award in Music from The American Academy of Arts and Letters, and many other awards and honours. In its award citations, The Academy said: “The music of Kati Agócs reveals a wonderfully accessible lyricism that unfolds with both drama and complexity…It has heart: it reaches the hearer through melody and clear design, with its soulful directness and its naturalness of dissonance.” Kati Agócs earned Doctoral and Masters degrees from The Juilliard School, where her principal teacher was Milton Babbitt. She is also an alumna of the Aspen Music Festival, Sarah Lawrence College, and the United World Colleges. Born in 1975 in Windsor, Ontario, Kati Agócs serves on the composition faculty at the New England Conservatory in Boston and maintains a work studio in the fishing village of Flatrock, near St. John’s, Newfoundland.


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