Demetrius Spaneas

Award winning composer and performer Demetrius Spaneas travels the world as a musical ambassador, connecting classical, jazz, and traditional music throughout the US, Eastern Europe, and Asia to create international dialogue through artistic collaboration. He has worked with such diverse artists as John Cage, Ray Charles, and Kyrgyz traditional musicians, and has been featured soloist and composer at major concert venues and international festivals in the three continents. 

He currently has two solo recordings on Capstone Records, When Wind Comes to Sparse Bamboo (2003) and From a Far-off World (2006), both of which will be rereleased by the Naxos Online Library. In 2010 he released Sfumato, a collection of improvisations with vocalist Galina Parfenova under his own label, DSM.

In demand as a composer, performer and guest lecturer, Spaneas has been a guest of Harvard University, California Institute of the Arts, Tanglewood, New England Conservatory, American University of Bulgaria (Blagoevgrad), University of the Arts (Belgrade, Serbia), the Xenakis Center for Creative Research (Athens, Greece), Beethovenhaus (Bonn, Germany), Uzbekistan State Conservatory, Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan) College of Music, Mikhail Chemyakin Foundation (St. Petersburg, Russia), Dnipropetrovsk Conservatory (Ukraine) the Latvian Academy of Music (Riga), the National Conservatory of Tajikistan, the Baku (Azerbaijan) Music Academy, the Piaget Institute (Portugal), and many others. He has presented numerous talks and concerts for the US State Department in Moscow and St. Petersburg as part of the American Centers program, and has received grants from the US State Department and the Fulbright/Hayes Act to present his music and lectures on composition and performance throughout the CIS. He has also received a special certificate from the Russian Duma (senate) for enriching the cultural life of St. Petersburg. He has recently been appointed to the Fulbright Specialist Roster in American Studies, Music, for 2012-16 (inclusive), and has just received his first Fulbright grant to teach jazz studies, composition, and music business in Dushanbe, Tajikistan in summer 2013. His teaching methods were featured in an interview in the March 2013 issue of Jazz Inside magazine.

In 2009, he has been awarded a Meet The Composer Global Connections Grant to be Composer-in-Residence at the Black Box Music and Vision Festival in Tashkent, Uzbekistan and was the featured soloist and resident composer for the Musicacoustica Festival in Beijing, China. In 2010, he was the Artist-in-Residence for the 2nd Dushanbe International Jazz Festival (Tajikistan), worked with the US Embassy and local organizations as a guest artist in Tajikistan, Azerbaijan, and Latvia, and was the guest soloist for the Mozartiana Festival in Gdansk, Poland. He has been the recipient of the ASCAPlus Award in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 and also has won the American Music Center CAP Grant Award for 2010. He has just recently completed his residency as the 2011-12 New York City Con Edison/Exploring the Metropolis Composer-in-Residence, at Flushing Town Hall, Queens. 2012 has also seen the premiere of his saxophone concerto Three Dialogues for Saxophone and Orchestra in which he was soloist with the Greater Newburgh Symphony Orchestra (NY), and his chamber opera Lilith: Mother of Dreams at Flushing Town Hall in Queens, NY.

Mr. Spaneas, a New York City-based artist, is a native of Lowell, MA and holds both bachelor and master of music degrees from the New England Conservatory of Music where he studied classical and jazz performance, composition, and world music. He plays exclusively on Gonzales Reeds on clarinet and saxophone and was the cover story for the July/August 2008 issue of Saxophone Journal, which included an 8-page interview.

Mr. Spaneas was Composer-in-Residence with the Bay Area Chamber Symphony (CA) for 2007-09, and is currently Adjunct Assistant Professor of Music at Five Towns College in NY, where he is teaching performance, composition and arranging, and directs the big bands.