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UMBC Department of Music
Contact Information:
Dr. Stuart Saunders Smith


Director of the UMBC New Music Ensemble
Director of Reds, The Improvisation Ensemble
Theory I

Research Interests:



Berklee School of Music (1966-7)
B.M.A. Hartt School of Music (1970)
M.Mus. Hartt School of Music (1972)
D.M.A. University of Illinois (1977)


Stuart Saunders Smith's compositions fall into four areas of creative research:

  1. Inventing music of extreme rhythmic and melodic complexity
  2. Making musical mobiles where there is no fixed musical score but rather instrumental parts that freely interact
  3. Composing for spoken texts
  4. Creating trans-media systems for groups of performance artists (dancers, mimes, actors, etc.).

Smith's music is regularly performed throughout North America, Western Europe, and has had notable performances in Asia. His music is recorded on O.O. Discs, Capstone Records, and on European labels in Austria, France, and Germany. He has received the East/West Artist Award, the Maryland State Artists Fellowship, the Pittsburgh Film Forum Grant, the National Endowment for the Arts Composer's Fellowship, and the Atlantic Center for the Arts Master Artist Award. Smith's music is published by Sonic Art Editions. Articles on Stuart Saunders Smith's music have appeared in Percussive Notes Research Edition, Perspectives of New Music, Interface, and Ex Tempore. In 1997 The Music of Stuart of Saunders Smith, by John Welsh, was published by Excelsior Press, NYC, NY. For further information see The New Groves Dictionary of Music and Musicians.

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