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Stuart Dempster

About this Artist

STUART DEMPSTER, sound gatherer: trombonist, composer, didjeriduist, et al., and Professor Emeritus at University of Washington, has recorded for numerous labels including Columbia, Nonesuch, and New Albion. His New Albion recording In the Great Abbey of Clement VI at Avignon has become a cult classic. Also on New Albion is Underground Overlays from the Cistern Chapel consisting of music sources for a 1995 Merce Cunningham Dance Company commission. His grants include: Creative Associate at SUNYAB (1967-68); Fellow, Center for Advanced Study, University of Illinois (1971-72); Fulbright Scholar in Australia (1973); NEA Composer Grant (1978); US/UK Fellowship (1979); Guggenheim Fellowship (1981). Dempster, a leading figure - indeed, a pioneer - in development of trombone technique and performance, published his landmark book The Modern Trombone: A Definition of Its Idioms in 1979. As a regular member of Cathedral Band, and founding member of Deep Listening Band, he has toured extensively and produced the first three DLB recordings including the award-winning Deep Listening CD on New Albion, the first CD made in the now infamous Fort Worden (Port Townsend, WA) cistern with its 45-second reverberation. Dempster is also known for soothing aches, pains, and psychic sores with his healing, yet playful, Sound Massage Parlor. These and other environmental/site specific works, including SWAMI (State of Washington As a Musical Instrument), have earned him a reputation as a composer/performer whose work is at once deep, meditative, and amusing. Stuart Dempster played in the premiere performance of In C in 1964 and organized and played for the premiere recording of In C for Columbia Records in 1968.