Brad Lubman, composer & conductor

Brad Lubman headshot_credit Peter Serling

Brad Lubman, American conductor and composer, has gained widespread recognition for his versatility, commanding technique and insightful interpretations over the course of more than two decades.

A frequent guest conductor of the world’s most distinguished orchestras and new music ensembles, Lubman has led performances with orchestras including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Filarmonica della Scala, SWR Symphonieorchester, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, WDR Symphony Orchestra, hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt, and the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, among others.

In addition, he has worked with some of the most important European and American ensembles for contemporary music, including Ensemble Modern, Musikfabrik, Ensemble Intercontemporain, Klangforum Wien, and London Sinfonietta. He was the recipient of the 2019 Ditson Conductor’s award, in recognition of his distinguished record of performing and championing contemporary American music.

Lubman is founding Co-Artistic Director and Conductor of the NY-based Ensemble Signal. Since its debut in 2008, the Ensemble has performed over 350 concerts and co-produced ten recordings. Their recording of Reich’s Music for 18 Musicians on harmonia mundi was awarded a Diapason d’or in June 2015 and appeared on the Billboard Classical crossover charts.

Brad Lubman has recorded for harmonia mundi, Nonesuch, AEON, Kairos, Mode, NEOS, and Cantaloupe. In 2017, he was Composer in Residence at the Grafenegg Festival; his compositions have been performed by acclaimed ensembles such as the Tonkünstler Orchester Austria and musicians from the Los Angeles Philharmonic. 2020 featured the premiere of a new piece written for Rudolf Buchbinder, premiered at the Vienna Musikverein, which Buchbinder also recorded for Deutsche Grammophon.

He is also Professor of Conducting and Ensembles at the Eastman School of Music, as well as on the faculty at the Bang on a Can Summer Institute.

Brad Lubman's piece quiet the mind... premiered with the Grossman Ensemble on September 30, 2023. 


Program notes:

If I were to talk about the piece in detail, it might give away certain aspects that I’d rather have the listener experience in real time (as opposed to being told what they’re going to hear). What I would like to say about the piece is that I was extremely happy to have been asked by my longtime wonderful friend and colleague, Augusta Read Thomas, to write the piece, and to be commissioned by the Chicago Center for Contemporary Composition. It is indeed an honor. Thus it was with great joy and enthusiasm that I composed …to quiet the mind….

When one practices meditation, one is hoping to quiet the mind. However, it is a well known fact that it can be very difficult to achieve this quieting of the mind.

Very often as we begin to practice meditation, we find that our mind immediately wanders, and often we view that as a failure. Interestingly enough, that is not a failure, rather it is part of the process of staying on the path to finding a way to quiet the mind. As we improve our ability to mediate and to find those moments of quiet or emptiness of thoughts, we naturally begin to wonder when the next wave of intrusive thoughts will come and wipe out our inner stillness of quiet mind!

Be open. Have no pre-conceived notions. Is stillness actually still, or is it energy that has been slowed down beyond perception?