Thomas, Augusta Read
- Stephen Ferre
(b Glen Cove, NY, April 24, 1964). American composer. She composed prolifically as a child and later studied composition at Northwestern University, Yale and the RAM. Thomas's principal teachers were William Karlins, Alan Stout and Jacob Druckman. She has won numerous awards and fellowships, including a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1989. Wind Dance (1989) brought Thomas wide acclaim when it was performed in the New York PO's Horizons '90 series. Several commissions followed, notably from the Cleveland Chamber SO (Vigil, 1990) and the National Symphony Orchestra (Air and Angels, 1992; Manifesto, 1995). Her first full-scale chamber opera Ligeia (1991–4) won the International Orpheus Prize. In 1994 she married the composer Bernard Rands. She became professor of composition at the Eastman School of Music in 1995; in 1997 she was appointed composer-in-residence with the Chicago SO. One of the most sought-after American composers, she has fulfilled commissions from Rostropovich (...