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Nathan J. Stumpff (born 1978) is a musician, builder and solar energy professional from Maine, currently living and working in Vermont. Nathan holds the degree of Master of Music from The Manhattan School of Music, where he studied with Nils Vigeland and Julia Wolfe. As a Fulbright Scholar, Nathan taught and studied with composer Mist Þorkelsdóttir at the Listaháskóli Islands (Iceland Academy of the Arts) in Reykjavík, Iceland. Nathan completed his undergraduate degree with honors at Brown University, where his principal teachers were Gerald Shapiro and Elaine Bearer.
Over the past six years Nathan has built solar energy and remote power systems across the Mid-Atlantic, Alaska and now in his native New England; indeed, Nathan has embraced a diverse career, discovering the music of manual labor and bringing the mindset of a craftsman to composition. The Icelandic word for composer is tónsmiður, or ‘sound-builder.’ It is from this spirit Nathan’s work has evolved.
Recent commissions include those by The Esoterics choir of Seattle, WA. As 1st Prize winner in the 2006 Washington International Prize for Composers, Nathan's string quartet The Righteous and the Wicked was premiered by the Peabody Quartet at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC. Other recent honors include 1st prize in the 2006 Cappella Gloriana Competition for Composers for his a cappella choral work Four Rumi Songs, and residency with the California E.A.R. Unit in Arcosanti, AZ, where his work Volkswagen Hobo for vocalist and sextet was premiered. Nathan's work Subtleties Lost: prelude and fugue for orchestra was selected for the 2002 Minnesota Orchestra Composer’s Institute and Reading Sessions.
An active performer and conductor, Nathan recently made his operatic debut in Opera Fairbanks' production of Carmen. Other guest engagements include performances with Alarm Will Sound, the Manhattan School of Music Percussion ensemble under Steven Schick, and with the new music ensemble TACTUS, playing the hammered dulcimer in a performance of George Crumb’s Quest. Recent conducting engagements include numerous premieres of new works, including appearances at the DUMBO Dance Festival in Brooklyn, NY.