Ricardo Lorenz’s compositions have received praise for their fiery orchestrations, harmonic sophistication, and rhythmic vitality. These impressions have accompanied performances of the Venezuelan-born composer’s works at prestigious international festivals such as Carnegie Hall’s Sonidos de las Amèricas, Ravinia Festival, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, France’s Berlioz Festival, Spain’s Festival Internacional de Musica Contemporanea de Alicante, the Festival Cervantino in Mexico, and many more. Lorenz’s orchestral compositions have been performed domestically by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, American Composers Orchestra, New World Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, and the Dayton Philharmonic, and internationally by premier orchestras in Germany, Spain, the Czech Republic, Mexico, and Venezuela. One of his latest compositions, Rumba Sinfûnica, is a concerto for Latin ensemble and symphony orchestra commissioned by a consortium of major orchestras and festivals, and composed in collaboration with Grammy-nominated band Tiempo Libre. Featured in NPR’s All Things Considered, Rumba Sinfûnica has been performed by Minnesota, Detroit, Dallas, and National Arts Center (Ottawa) orchestras, among others.
Lorenz has served as Composer-in-Residence in several programs and presenting organizations, such as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Armonìa Musicians Residency Program (1998-2003), the Billings Symphony (1998-1999), and Music in the Loft chamber music series (1999-2000). He has also been the recipient of several other distinctions and awards including the American Bandmasters Association, National Flute Association, Civitella Ranieri Foundation, Organization of American States (OAS), Concert Artists Guild, Meet-the-Composer, Barlow Endowment for Music Composition, the Newhouse Foundation, Illinois Community College Trustees Association, and ASCAP.
Although Lorenz has resided in the United States since 1982, he has always maintained close ties with Latin America. Between 1987 and 1992, he held the position of Interim Director of the Indiana University Latin American Music Center. During this time he established a network of composers from the continent and compiled the sourcebook Scores and Recordings at Indiana University’s Latin American Music Center (Indiana University Press, 1995), nominated to receive the 1996 Best General Reference Source Award by the Association of Recorded Sound Collections. As a performer/arranger, he has worked with well-known Latin American musicians such as Tito Puente, David Sanchez, Claudia Pèrez, Farred Haque, and with the bands Folkloristas de Mèxico, Tiempo Libre, and Sones de MÈxico. Between 2003 and 2005 Lorenz went back to Indiana University to serve as Visiting Director of the Latin American Popular Music Ensemble. Lorenz holds a Ph.D. degree in composition from The University of Chicago and a Master of Music degree from Indiana University. He studied composition under Juan Orrego Salas, Shulamit Ran, and Donald Erb. He has taught at Indiana University, The University of Chicago, City Colleges of Chicago, and he is currently Associate Professor of Composition at Michigan State University. His compositions are published by Lauren Keiser Music and Boosey & Hawkes. Past works can be heard on the Arabesque Recordings, Albany Records, Indiana University LAMC Series, Doublemoon Records (Turkey), Urtex Digital Classics (Mexico), SOMM Recordings (UK), and Cedille Records (US).