Matthew Barnson

Music Theory & Composition Chair


Matthew Barnson composes for orchestras, choirs, string quartets, voices, chamber ensembles, dancers and computers. Recently, his music has been performed at Carnegie Hall, the Centre Pompidou, the Museum of Modern Art, the Kennedy Center, the Aldeburgh Festival, the Royal Academy of Music, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, ISCM World Music Days, MATA, Wigmore Hall, Aspen, Heidelberger Frühling, ManiFest, the San Francisco War Memorial and other venues throughout the United States and Europe.

Large-scale works have been commissioned by, and performed in recent seasons by Third Coast Percussion, the Yale School of Music, the JACK Quartet, Volti and Heidelberger Frühling. He is currently composing works for the Dublin Laptop Orchestra, the Mivos Quartet, DuoZwei and New Morse Code.

In February, Tzadik released his album of string quartets performed by the Arditti and JACK Quartets.

Barnson teaches composition, electronic music, theory and the history of music after 1945. In addition to chairing the Theory and Composition Department at Third Street, he has taught at Yale College and served as assistant professor of composition at Trinity College Dublin and the State University of New York, Stony Brook.


Eastman, the University of Pennsylvania, IRCAM and Yale.


Christopher Rouse, Joseph Schwantner, Steven Stucky, Augusta Read Thomas, Martin Bresnick, Ezra Laderman, Ingram Marshall, Wolfgang Rihm and David Lang.


Matthew's work has been recognized with awards and commissions from the Barlow Endowment, Aaron Copland House, NewMusicUSA, Jerome Foundation, Yale University and the American Academy of Arts and Letters, among others and in addition to residencies at a number of artist colonies in the United States and abroad.