Columbia To Honor Pauline Oliveros with William Schuman Award

Columbia University School of the Arts has announced its plans to honor composer Pauline Oliveros with the William Schuman Award, a major recognition given periodically over the past twenty-eight years. According to the school’s dean, Carol Becker, Oliveros is “a truly adventurous artist, who has contributed so much to redefining the boundaries and potentialities of contemporary music.”

Named for its first recipient William Schuman, the award, in the form of a direct, unrestricted grant of $50,000, is one of the largest to an American composer. In the language of the gift establishing the prize, the purpose of the William Schuman Award is “to recognize the lifetime achievement of an American composer whose works have been widely performed and generally acknowledged to be of lasting significance.” Previous winners have included Schuman, David Diamond, Gunther Schuller, Milton Babbitt, Hugo Weisgall, Steve Reich, and, most recently in 2006, John Zorn.

Columbia University’s Miller Theatre will host an awards ceremony and concert in honor of Oliveros on Saturday, March 27, 2010.