photo: Jason Wolters

Timothy Kramer’s music reflects his fascination with motivic patterns, cyclical relationships, and musical gestures that unfold in a variety of changing speeds and textures. Originally from Washington State, Kramer (b. 1959) began playing the piano at an early age, and, although trained as a pianist, organist, and harpsichordist, he spent many years as a youth playing bass guitar in jazz and rock ensembles. His music reflects this influence, and he sometimes integrates various aspects of American popular music into his pieces. 

His works have been performed widely throughout the United States and Canada — from Carnegie Hall to college campuses, and in Europe, South America, and Asia — with performances by major symphony orchestras (Indianapolis, Detroit, Tacoma, San Antonio), chamber groups (North/South Consonance, SOLI Ensemble, ONIX Ensemble, Luna Nova, Detroit Chamber Winds, Mise-en Ensemble, ~Nois, Hub New Music), and university ensembles (Michigan State, Arizona State, Indiana University, Florida State). 

He has received grants from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the MacDowell Colony, Meet the Composer, Broadcast Music, Inc., ASCAP, the American Guild of Organists, and the American Music Center, and commissions from the San Antonio International Piano Competition, the Midwest Clinic, the Utah Arts Festival, and the Detroit Chamber Winds, among many others. He also served as the Composer-not-in-Residence with the San Francisco Choral Artists for the 2019-2022 seasons. His degrees are from Pacific Lutheran University (B.M.), where he studied composition with David Robbins and organ with David Dahl, and the University of Michigan (D.M.A.), where he studied composition with William Albright, William Bolcom, Leslie Bassett, and George Wilson. He was also a Fulbright Scholar to Germany in 1988-89 studying with composer Martin Redel. 

He then taught at Trinity University in San Antonio for 19 years, where he also founded CASA (the Composers Alliance of San Antonio). In 2010, he accepted a post as Professor of Music and Chair of the Music Department at Illinois College, where he was named the Edward Capps Professor of Humanities in 2013 and Professor Emeritus in 2020. His works are commercially published by Southern Music, Earnestly Music, Hinshaw, and Selah and are recorded on Calcante, North/South, Capstone, and PARMA Recordings.


Lock & Key Vol. III

Release Date: October 27, 2023
Catalog Number: NV6561
21st Century
String Quartet
The critically acclaimed LOCK & KEY series once again opens its doors in this third installment, featuring an all-new roster of contemporary composers with an emphasis on new music and its connection to our ever-evolving ethos. Clever arrangements and unique compositional personalities are met with impeccable performances in this release, touching on wide-ranging themes from turmoil to introspection, meditation, and ultimately, unity in the human experience. In an exhilarating burst of energy, LOCK & KEY VOL. III resonates with raw authenticity, a testament to the depth and complexity of our shared humanity.

Moto Eterno

Release Date: March 26, 2021
Catalog Number: NV6341
21st Century
Piano Trio
Ten international composers showcase their respective styles on MOTO ETERNO, the latest installment of NAVONA's successful MOTO chamber music series. Like the previous MOTO releases, MOTO ETERNO is the result of a wide-ranging Call For Scores and a scrupulous selection process. Acclaimed piano trio Trio Casals (Ovidiu Marinescu, cello; Alexandr Kislitsyn, violin; Anna Kislitsyna, piano), masterfully perform their favorite picks.


Release Date: June 12, 2020
Catalog Number: NV6284
21st Century
Timothy Kramer has recorded and released a full album of his orchestral works with Navona Records. The result: SENTINELS, an evocative representation of Kramer’s compositions that span several decades, with influences ranging from Baroque to rock.


Release Date: October 14, 2016
Catalog Number: NV6061
21st Century
Vocal Music
CADENCE, the new vocal music compilation from Navona Records, offers a set of inspired, emotive premiere recordings by composers Christopher J. Hoh, David Kirtley, Joanne D. Carey, and Timothy Kramer in works juxtaposing the ethereal and the earthy, the diaphanous and the muscular, and the serene and the agile.