(Above) Photo by E. Carlson
Taken at the Aaron Copland House in Cortlandt Manor, New York

Contact: composer (at) angellam.com

Composer Photos:   1    2   


Creative Minds, a featured interview with Best Buy, Inc.

Dr. Angel Lam is a music composer and writer who uses the beauty of soundscape, instrumentation and language to express refined emotions and her passion for life. Her compositions reflect not only her own life, but are also evidence of humanity where time and space interfere with each other in an uncertain, timeless manner.

Her compositions are praised as "An otherworldly, dreamily poetic short story...rich, singing tone and sense of drama...fanciful music" (New York Times), "An unusually affecting piece, filled with luxuriant chords, tender string songs and sensuous glissandos" (TwinCities Pioneer Press), "Mesmerized...dazzlingly gifted" (Financial Times headline news), "A born storyteller" (Financial Times), and "Precious, soaring lyrical lines." (Metropolitan Opera, Opera News)

She has received three Carnegie Hall commissions, including a cello concerto performed by solo cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and commissioned by Carnegie Hall in the Festival "Ancient Paths, Modern Voices". Another composition of hers was featured in the Silk Road Ensemble album "Off the Map" and nominated for a GRAMMY Award for Best Classical Crossover Album. She was voted "Artist of the Month" by Musical America and "Yalie of the Week" by Yale University Yale Alumni Magazine. She was interviewed and featured on Best Buy Inc.'s "Creative Minds", the interview filmed the Minnesota Orchestra performance of her orchestral work In Search of Seasons, conducted by Osmo Vanska.

Her music commissions include performances by multiple GRAMMY-nominated Yale Cellos directed by Aldo Parisot, Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Minnesota Symphony Orchestra, Yale Philharmonia, Hong Kong Sinfonietta, New York Greenwich Village Orchestra, NYU Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Northwest Symphony, Oak Park and River Forest Symphony Orchestra, University of California Irvine Symphony Orchestra, Aaron Copland House Foundation, Orange County Women's Chorus, Los Angeles Loyola High Men's Chorus, Aspen Music Festival, Pacific Music Festival, Yale Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, among others. Her awards include five ASCAP Morton Gould Awards, Macdowell Colony Margaret Lee Crofts Fellow Award, two NACUSA Young Composer Award and Audience Prize at the Seoul International Competition for Composers.

She first received a Carnegie Hall commission writing a composition for Yo-Yo Ma and his Silk Road Project, then again working with GRAMMY Awards-winning composer Osvaldo Golijov and renowned vocalist Dawn Upshaw. One of her composition, Empty Mountain, Spirit Rain, is on the worldwide touring repertoire of Yo Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble since 2007, performing at prestigious concert halls around the world, including London's BBC Proms and Switzerland's Lucerne Festival. This work was released by Sony/BMG on Silk Road Ensemble's CD New Impossibilities as an exclusive bonus in 2007, and recorded again in the CD Off the Map in 2009. Off the Map was nominated for a 2011 GRAMMY for Best Classical Crossover Album.

As composer, librettist and artistic director, she premiered her full-length musical June Lovers commissioned by the internationally known Hong Kong Arts Festival. Recently, she also received the Hong Kong Arts Development Council Literary Award to develop and publish her literary works. Her new play with music, Lost in Shanghai, is now under development with New York Off-Broadway theater company Pan Asian Repertory Theatre. Her other theater works has been staged and publicly presented in New York at Here Arts Centre, The Tank, The China Institute of New York, The Museum of Chinese American (MOCA), and at Theatre Row. In 2013-15, she was commissioned to compose the multimedia dance work Dear Mother for the centennial celebration of the historic dance institution Peabody Dance, Of Days and Nights for the 30th anniversary of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, and wrote the music and story to the film Color of the Mind, commissioned and performed live by the Interlochen Center for the Arts Symphonic Band, directed by award-winning director Mida Chu (Interlochen alumni). It was an official selection at the Monarch International Film Festival, Montery Bay, California.

When not doing creative work, she is a staff writer critic for the New York theater review organization Theasy.com. She also teaches a private studio of music composition, theory and piano performance students in Manhattan, with regular concert recitals at Steinway Hall, New York. She is honored to be a member of the Distinguished Artist Council of the Johns Hopkins University, the Hong Kong Jockey Club Music and Dance Fund Awardees Association, and the Yale Alumni Association of New York City.

Lam received her Doctorate degree from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University, and is the recipient of a Henry and Lucy Moses full scholarship Artist Diploma from Yale University. She received her Bachelor's degree with Honours from The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, and as a child she attended Pui Ching Primary School 香港培正學校.

Lam's compositions feature a blend of evocative expressiveness and East Asian sensitivity and femininity. She is passionate about Asian esthetics and Chinese literature, and often places her work in historical context. Her music ranges from the delicate depiction of a drop of water for an unconventional instrumentation: guitar, harp, vibraphone, crotales and double bass, to the story of a forgotten warrior in history in a piece for narrator and orchestra, or a piece about a recent age of darkness where emperors committed acts of evil that to this day, haven't been confronted by any serious criticism. She loves to write stories that form an inseparable component of her creative process.

Other Collaborations: (show) (hide)
Her other collaborations include performance by Greenwich Village Orchestra (New York), NYU Symphony Orchestra, Northwest Symphony (Chicago), Hong Kong Sinfonietta and Grainger Quartet (Australia), University of California Irvine Symphony Orchestra, Orange County Women's Chorus (Los Angeles), Loyola High Men's Chorus and Orchestra (Los Angeles), Northwest Symphony and Symphony of Oak Park and River Forest (Chicago), Peabody Dance (Baltimore), and a theater composition created under the mentorship of renowned theater artist Martha Clarke, among others.
Awards: (show) (hide)
She is the recipient of the prestigious Hong Kong Jockey Club Music and Dance Fund Scholarship, Composers and Authors Society of Hong Kong Scholarship for Overseas Studies, Aaron Copland House Award 2012, MacDowell Colony Margaret Lee Crofts Fellow Award 2011-2012, Pacific Music Festival Fellowship, Aspen Music Festival Fellowship and Scholarship Award, among others.
Notable Performances: (show) (hide)
Mentors: (show) (hide)
Her mentors were Christopher Theofanidis, Aaron Jay Kernis, Martin Bresnick, Ezra Laderman, Robert Sirota, Law Wing Fai, Clarence Mak and Lo Hau Man.

She also attended masterclasses and lessons by George Crumb, Poul Ruders, Christopher Rouse, George Tsontakis, Detlev Glanert, Ingram Marshall, James Primosch, Joel Hoffman, John Harbison, Brian Ferneyhough, Marc-Dalbavie
Scholarships and Grants: (show) (hide)