Jeff winslow

Carleen Hutchins Fellow


“For as long as I can remember, even going back to my childhood in a mostly rural area, when experiencing some arresting bit of my world, when reading some especially involving story, or experiencing some strong emotion, again and again, I wanted to turn it into music... Particularly in response to striking experiences of the natural world, and (real and imagined) experiences of deep emotion, I'm moved to put music around it, music that somehow distills all the wonderful aural visions I've been privileged to experience into my own unique entree into that place, that heart of those landscapes.”

— Jeff Winslow

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Where I am today...

Jeff Winslow seeks the musical heart of natural and psychological landscapes, with emphasis on vocal and piano works. He is one of eight founding members of Cascadia Composers, a chapter of NACUSA centered in Portland, Oregon, and currently serves on its board and as secretary / treasurer. In addition to their regular performance at Cascadia concerts, his works have been performed by fEARnoMUSIC, Portland Vocal Consort, the Resonance Ensemble, The Ensemble of Oregon, and also at Gary Noland's Seventh Species series, Cherry Blossom Musical Arts and Oregon Bach Festival concerts, and several other locations around the region, often with the composer at the piano. A solo piano work dedicated to Noland, “Lied ohne Worte (lieber mit Ligeti)” received honorable mention in the 2010 Friends & Enemies of New Music Composition Competition. At composers' symposia at the Bloch Festival in Newport, Oregon, and the Oregon Bach Festival in Eugene, his work has been critiqued and encouraged by Bernard Rands, Tomas Svoboda, and Martin Bresnick.

The back story...

A fourth-generation Oregonian born into a musical family, Jeff Winslow grew up among the arching oaks, tall firs, and abundant fields of the hill country west of Salem. His first serious compositional efforts were inspired by his discovery of the music of Debussy, Ravel, and Mahler. But neither the pop nor academic music of the day had much appeal, nor did a teaching career. While at the University of California at Berkeley obtaining an electronics engineering degree, he studied theory and composition with Joaquin Nin-Culmell, Edwin Dugger, Jane Wilkinson, Richard Felciano, and not least, Michael Senturia, a man with a gift for making musical analysis inspiring. Here also began a lifelong exploration of the unique pleasure of vocal-instrumental interaction. But further compositional activity sputtered until the 90's, when High Modernism finally released its death grip on the world of art music. Years were lost, but not the love of piquant harmony, elegant line, fluid rhythm, and not least, the beauty of the Pacific Northwest where he still lives today.