The New York Times wrote, "With a bow and fingers as light as feathers Stephen Katz makes a cello bring out meanings you might not have suspected were there."
Cellist and award-winning composer Stephen Katz has defied the laws of gravitational musicianship for over forty years. His latest leap across stages in the US and Europe, titled Angels in the Engine Room, is a solo cello concert/theater work that offers a full-scale experience of the sources and goals of his creative quest.
Stephen has premiered his cello compositions at Carnegie Recital Hall in New York City, and performed internationally as a soloist, and with the Paul Winter Consort, Rachael Sage, and the Essex String Quartet. He is a veteran cello teacher and has been a regular workshop presenter at the New Directions Cello Festival since it’s inception in 1994. He also has the distinction of being the most frequent guest performer at the Fest.
Stephen has charted new territory for the rhythmic potential of the cello with the groundbreaking approach he calls Flying Pizzicato. His compositions juggle two or three “voices” at a time, making music that simultaneously lays grooves, weaves tunes, and lifts spirits.
Stephen is a National Endowment for the Arts grant recipient through the SUNY/Buffalo Arts in Healthcare Initiative. As a film composer, his score for The Rich Have Their Own Photographers won the Jury Prize Gold Medal for Best Impact of Music in a Documentary at the Park City Film Music Festival. He also scored Two Square Miles, a film about Hudson, NY, which has been broadcast nationally on PBS/Independent Lens.
An improviser and composer in the Dance world, Stephen has collaborated and performed with Andrew Harwood, Chris Aiken, members of Pilobolus and Beverly Blossom dance companies, and has been a Visiting Artist at Amherst College (Massachusetts). As a co-founder of the movement/theater company Seen & Heard with the late dancer and monologist BJ Goodwin, he literally danced with the cello while accompanying the dramas they played out on stage.
A native of San Francisco, Stephen received a Master of Music degree from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. He lives in Western Massachusetts with his wife Beth and son Olin.