Composition Department

Jay Hurst, Current DM Student

Still Lives (2014)
for orchestra



Program Note

I see Still Lives as two musical still lifes of the Internet age. The first (“reunion”) is anxious and blurry, a meditation on the illusion of anonymity generated through screens. The second (“wire tap”) crackles with energy as noisy lines permutate throughout the ensemble, combining into a wide web of sound.

Originally scored for solo electric guitar, the orchestra version of Still Lives was completed in July of 2014 in Brevard, North Carolina.


Jay Hurst (b. 1989) is a composer from Cape Canaveral, FL. His music has been heard at the International U.S. Navy Band Saxophone Symposium, Music11 at the University of Cincinnati, Midwest Composers Symposium, Brevard Music Festival, and has been featured on the digital magazine I CARE IF YOU LISTEN.

His work Still Lives for orchestra has been recognized with the Indiana University Dean’s Prize in Composition, the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award, and was selected for the American Composers Orchestra Earshot New Music Readings where it was read by the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. His recent work kodama for sinfonietta was commissioned and premiered by the Indiana University New Music Ensemble under director David Dzubay.

Jay is pursuing his doctorate and serves as an associate instructor in composition, teaching courses in notation and counterpoint. His teachers include Sven-David Sandström, Claude Baker, and P.Q. Phan. He also holds degrees from Indiana University (M.M. '13) and Stetson University (B.M. '11) in DeLand, FL, where he studied with Sydney Hodkinson. Jay is a member of ASCAP and is the co-founder of These Hands Publishing. Learn more at and