Mark Gresham is an American composer whose music is rooted in traditions of neo-romanticism, yet explores modern and eclectic influences with a passionate lyricism that is sensitive to word, history, and sense of place.
His compositions have been performed in by instrumental ensembles such as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra, String Orchestra of the Rockies, Bent Frequency, Thamyris, Sonic Generator, Georgia State University Percussion Ensemble, and the Atlanta Symphony Brass Quintet.
His choral music has been performed by the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, the National Lutheran Choir, the New York Concert Singers, the Emory University Concert Choir, the Plymouth Music Series, the Hong Kong Bach Choir, the Candler Choraliers, and the choir of the Cathedral Church of St. Paul (Boston), among others.
His music has also been performed by artists such as cello/piano duo Dorothy and Cary Lewis, cellist Karen Freer, percussionist Stuart Gerber, percussionist Peggy Benkeser and pianist Laura Gordy, mezzo-soprano Maya Hoover, cellist Wouter Vercruysse and pianist Alexander Besant (Helix Duo), violist Brett Deubner, violinist Helen Hwaya Kim and clarinetist Ted Gurch. Most recently, his piece for unaccompanied cello, "As Guilty as the Artist, No. 1," was premiered on May 11, 2012 by Sarah Kapps.
Internationally, his work has been heard in such far-flung places as Indonesia, Estonia, South Africa, Belgium, Hong Kong and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Gresham is a three-time recipient of individual artist grants from the Georgia Council for the Arts and was among the first round of composers selected for the “Faith Partners” composer-in-residence programs sponsored by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund under the auspices of the American Composers Forum.
In June 2012, Gresham was awarded an Honorable Mention in the “In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores” composition contest for his "Café Cortadito" for violin and piano.
Violinist Hilary Hahn and pianist Cory Smythe recorded Gresham's Café Cortadito as a bonus track for the Japanese market only SHM-CD release of their “In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores” album, released in November 2013 on DG/Universal-Japan. Soon following its release the album reached No. 10 on Billboard-Japan's classical music charts.
Hahn and Smythe gave "Café Cortadito" its official live premiere as the encore for theor recital on April 25, 2014 at the Maison symphonique de Montreal, Montreal, Canada.
Gresham began writing music in his teens, when he also studied conducting with Michael Palmer, then associate conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. He also performed as a member of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus under the direction of the late Robert Shaw.
In addition to being a composer and conductor, Mark Gresham is a writer and music journalist. His book of interviews, Choral Conversations, is scheduled for re-release in an expanded second edition later this year. He has been a contributing writer for Creative Loafing-Atlanta since 2002, subsequently winning an ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award in music journalism in 2003.
Mark Gresham's music is published by Lux Nova Press.
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