Dr. Nick Virzi (b. 1991) is a composer from New York City living in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. His work includes acoustic, electronic, and electroacoustic music, as well as intermedia pieces and multichannel installations. His recent pieces explore the relationships between humans and the natural world, numerology and rhythmic structure, and ethnography and identity. His practice includes field recording in nature preserves, orchestration of rhythmic frameworks based on complex numerical systems, and ethnographic research focused on collecting and adapting archival media as an exploration of his identity as an Italian-American. In addition to composing, he is an electric guitarist, conductor, photographer, researcher, and educator. He also hosts the international composer interview series Composer OverTime.
Nick’s music has been performed throughout the USA and internationally by established artists such as cellist Séverine Ballon (France), soprano Tony Arnold, the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, the JACK Quartet, the Spektral Quartet, Splinter Reeds, Quince Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, Ensemble Liminar (Mexico), Distractfold (United Kingdom), the Ekmeles Vocal Ensemble, the TAK Ensemble, and Ensemble Dal Niente. His work has been featured at such venues as the Juilliard School at Lincoln Center, the Center for New Music in San Francisco, and the Royal Academy of Music in Aarhus, Denmark. His recent projects include “Convergent Boundaries” for Percussion Trio and Electronics, an electroacoustic piece featuring field recordings from Kopački Rit Nature Park in Croatia, Crater Lake National Park in Oregon, and Mt. Etna in Sicily, Italy. This piece was commissioned by the Novalis Music and Art Festival and premiered by Line Upon Line Percussion in October 2022.
Virzi has been a featured composer at international festivals such as Gaudeamus Muziekweek (The Netherlands), the Impuls Academy (Austria), and Festival Ecos Urbanos (Mexico). He has been awarded fellowships by the Imani Winds Chamber Music Festival (NYC), the Cortona Sessions for New Music (Italy), the soundSCAPE Composition and Performance Exchange (Italy), and the New Music for Strings Festival (Denmark). He has won festival competitions including the Black Bayou Composition Award, 2nd Prize at the New Music on the Bayou Festival in Louisiana. He has held residencies at the Academy of Arts and Culture and Kopački Rit Nature Preserve in Osijek, Croatia, the Sagehen Experimental Forest and Landels-Hill Big Creek Reserve in the UC Reserve System, and the Poto Festival in Grass Valley, California.
He has presented his music and given lectures at universities such as UC San Diego, UC Berkeley, and UC Santa Barbara. He has presented his research in music theory and analysis at conferences hosted by the American Beethoven Society, the California Interdisciplinary Consortium of Italian Studies (CICIS), and the Society for Electro-Acoustic Music in the United States (SEAMUS). He has presented his research in acoustic ecology at NYU’s Steinhardt School as part of the Precarious Sounds/Sounding Sanctuary Conference (NYC), The Catholic University of America at the Eleventh International Conference on Climate Change: Impacts and Responses (Washington, D.C.), and the Centro Cultural Vila Flor at the Ninth International Conference on the Constructed Environment (Guimarães, Portugal).
Dr. Virzi completed his D.M.A. in Music Composition at Stanford University, where he studied with Mark Applebaum and Brian Ferneyhough. He also completed his B.M. at the SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Du Yun, Huang Ruo, Laura Kaminsky, and Suzanne Farrin. He recently completed the H&S Dean’s Fellowship at Stanford University, where he was a Lecturer in the Department of Music and the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA).
Dr. Nick Virzi
Biographies: Long + Short [updated 8/30/23]
Curriculum Vitae [updated 8/30/23]