photo: Diana Ming Jeong

Gustav Hoyer was born in Denver CO in 1972. His musical pursuits began in high school following a life-changing encounter with the music of Beethoven and Mozart. He subsequently studied music theory, piano, and violin and pursued collegiate degrees in composition. He has written music for a wide variety of ensembles, media, and settings. His recorded music has been heard in film, on radio, and in performance around the world. He continues to create new orchestral music that draws on the tools of classical vocabulary while fully modern in their contemplations. 

Rich in musical narrative, his works have been described as evocative, accessible, and powerfully emotional. He was the Artistic Director for Los Angeles-based Orchestra Unleashed, Artistic Director of contemporary classical ensemble NoCo Artists, and now serves as the Associate Director of the Loveland Opera Theatre. As a conductor he has performed over 20 new compositions by composers from around the world. He continues to record and release new works with recent album releases Witness (2018), The Gilded Age (2020), The Mental Cartographer (2021), A Winter Journal (2023), and Conversations (2023).


The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Release Date: February 2, 2024
Catalog Number: NV6590
21st Century
Renowned composer Gustav Hoyer comes to Navona Records with an ambitious and harrowing seven-part orchestral setting of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s THE RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER. Hoyer melds the spoken word and musical text-setting traditions into a hauntingly atmospheric narrative concerto, the Budapest Film Orchestra coming to life as supernatural forces and creatures in the text. Meanwhile, the narrator speaks of the Mariner’s eternal penance, a stark contrast to the roiling orchestral timbres that puts listeners in the shoes of the frightened wedding guest fated to hear the Mariner’s tale. An undoubtedly ghoulish but incredibly sophisticated musical illustration of Coleridge’s famed narrative, Hoyer is no-holds-barred in his talent for the narrative orchestra, producing a musical journey packed with all the intensity and horror of the text from which it hails.