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Performing Arts

SMTD Professors Daugherty and Gramley receive GRAMMY Awards

By Marilou Carlin

University of Michigan Museum of Art, "Orion" sculpture by Mark Di Suvero in the foreground, Photo by Leisa Thompson

Two University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance (SMTD) faculty members were named GRAMMY® Award-winners at the 59thAnnual GRAMMY Awards, held on Sunday, February 12, 2017.

Michael Daugherty (composition), received the GRAMMY for Best Contemporary Classical Composition for his work Tales of Hemingway, featured on the Naxos album of the same name. The album, recorded by the Nashville Symphony under conductor Giancarlo Guerrero, also won Best Classical Compendium and Best Classical Instrumental Solo; the latter was awarded to cellist Zuill Bailey for his performance on the title track.

As a member of Yo Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble, Joseph Gramley, associate professor of music and director of percussion studies, was part of the winning ensemble for Best World Music Album, for Sing Me Home, on the Masterworks label. The album features original and traditional folk tunes interpreted by Silk Road, Yo-Yo Ma, and a range of guest artists. Gramley is both percussionist and associate artistic director of Silk Road.

This is the second time that Daugherty took home a GRAMMY Award for Best Contemporary Classical Composition; he won the category in 2010 for Deus Ex Machina.

Tales of Hemingway, for cello and orchestra, evokes the turbulent life, adventures, and literature of author Ernest Hemingway. The other works on the album are also musical portraits based on larger-than-life personalities: American Gothic is a concerto for orchestra, reflecting on the creative world of Iowa artist Grant Wood; and Once Upon a Castle is a sinfonia concertante for organ and orchestra, inspired by the rich history of the Hearst Castle, built by billionaire newspaper publisher Randolph Hearst, the inspiration for Orson Welles’s film Citizen Kane. The work features GRAMMY Award-winning organist Paul Jacobs.

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