Devin Maxwell, PhD, is a composer, percussionist, and music technology entrepreneur. His chamber music has been described as “amiably strident…clusters hammered insistently” by the New York Times and orchestral works “a beautiful puzzle, … fitting between plucks and pedals that build pyramid melodies” by the American Record Guide. As a composer, he has recently been commissioned or presented by the Next Ensemble (Utah), the Unheard-o//Ensemble (NYC), MMM… (Tokyo), Bent Frequency (Atlanta), Ensemble Dedalus (France), the Deer Valley Music Festival Emerging Quartets and Composers for the Skyros Quartet (Seattle) and featured at The Stone (NYC), Abron’s Art Center (NYC), the Ontological Theater (NYC), BLIM (Vancouver), ARTSaha (Omaha), the Wulf (Los Angeles), Monkeytown (NYC), Dartmouth College, NYU, Columbia University, Kenyon College, Boston Conservatory, Tage Aktueller Music (Germany), SEAMUS, ICMC-SMC (Greece), Ostrava Days (Czechia), among others.
Awards for composition include the Nief-Norf Composition Prize, the Leroy Robertson Prize, “Best Experimental Film” New York Independent Film Festival, New Music USA/Commissioning Music USA and an Honorable Mention at the American Composer’s Orchestra 2013 Underwood Readings. His creative work is critically examined in the book Boring, Formless Nonsense; Experimental Music and the Aesthetics of Failure by Eldritch Priest, and the 2012 journal Postmodern Culture. Maxwell has collaborated with choreographer Jessica Gaynor Dance (NYC), filmmaker Rollin Hunt (Los Angeles), graphic designer Phillip Niemeyer (Austin), photographer Svavar Jónatansson (Iceland), clarinetist Katie Porter, and violist/songwriter Anni Rossi (NYC).
As a percussionist, Maxwell’s eclectic output includes performing in venues and festivals including the Tippet Rise Art Center, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Columbia University, SOUND at the Schindler House, the LA Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella Series, Roulette, the Utah Arts Festival, Issue Project Room, St Marks Theater (NYC), The Armory, The Kitchen, Joe’s Pub, Monolith, Mercury Lounge, South by Southwest, String Theory, CMJ, and The Stone, among many others. He has recorded with record labels including 4AD, Polyvinyl, Parlophone, Cantaloupe Records, and Mode and can be heard on music for TV, film, and video games including Grand Theft Auto IV, The Whitest Kids ‘U Know, Grey’s Anatomy, and Essex Bangers on the BBC. An avid supporter of new music, Maxwell has commissioned and premiered numerous solo or chamber compositions throughout the course of his career.
He is currently an adjunct assistant professor at the University of Utah, applied instructor of composition and percussion at Westminster College, Co-Founder of the VU Symposium for Experimental, Electronic and Improvised Music in Park City, and composition instructor for Utah Youth Orchestras and Ensemble’s Young Composers Project. Maxwell is a graduate of University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, California Institute of the Arts, and the University of Utah School of Music. The first album dedicated solely to his compositions Devin Maxwell: Works 2011-14 was released on Infrequent Seams (NY) in June, 2016 and features new works for orchestra, electronics, string quartet, solo and chamber ensembles and Seven Hills, OH for saxophone and percussion was released on the Bent Frequency Duo’s CD Diamorpha, released by Centaur. His compositions are published by Good Child Music New York and Éditions musique SISYPHE.