KEVIN KASKA

Composer, Producer, Conductor

Kevin Kaska, American composer, arranger, record producer, and conductor, was born in Seattle, Washington in 1972. During his high school years he studied with famous Hollywood composer-arranger Vic Schoen (arranger for the Andrew Sisters, Irving Berlin, Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Danny Kaye, and Dinah Shore to name a few). He came to Boston to study film composition at Berklee College of Music. While in Boston he formed his own jazz orchestra playing the music of Stan Kenton. His big band arrangements have been played by the Harry James Orchestra, Boston Big Band (recorded on CD), the Buddy Rich Ensemble at Berklee and several other big bands throughout the country. Mr. Kaska’s orchestral compositions, arrangements, and orchestrations have been played by many orchestras including the Seattle Philharmonic, Port Angeles Symphony, Springfield Symphony, Berkshire Symphony, Cape Ann Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, New Mexico Symphony, Jacksonville Symphony, Wichita Symphony, Long Beach Symphony, Modesto Symphony, Buffalo Symphony, Glens Falls Symphony, Orchestra X in Houston, Boston Metropolitan Orchestra, Saint Louis Symphony, London Symphony Orchestra (four CDs), Royal Scottish National Orchestra (recorded on CD), Maynard Ferguson and the Big Bop Nouveau Band, Skitch Henderson and the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, as well as John Williams and Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Orchestra.


In 1998, Varèse-Sarabande Records asked Mr. Kaska to re-orchestrate the music to Superman the Movie for an album with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra conducted by film composer John Debney (the score and parts to most of the music were lost). He was commissioned in 1997 to write a twenty minute work for narrator and orchestra commemorating the 150th anniversary of Thomas Edison’s birth called The Wizard of Menlo Park. This work was premiered by the Boston Pops Orchestra conducted by Ronald Feldman on Father’s Day, 1997. In 1996, the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Campaign 2000 commissioned Mr. Kaska to compose a new fanfare; the result was BSO 2000 Fanfare. He was also asked to write a new arrangement of the Star Spangled Banner for Seiji Ozawa and the Boston Symphony Orchestra brass and percussion section for the opening of a New England Patriots football game. In addition to composing, Mr. Kaska has orchestrated off-Broadway musicals. In 1993, he produced and directed his own show at the Boston Conservatory of Music entitled The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Stephen Sondheim. He has also given clinics on orchestration and film music, most recently to a master class at Berklee College of Music and the University of Southern California.


Mr. Kaska’s most recent work includes producing an album with the Old South Brass, Organ, and Timpani ensemble, composing a score to the documentary film Bearing Witness: American Soldiers and the Holocaust, and composing a work for the Scottish Rite Freemasons of the Northern Jurisdiction. The award-winning, Grammy-nominated Eroica Trio recently commissioned him for a triple concerto premiered with the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, November of 2001. A documentary is also being produced about the composing of this work for PBS by Arts Access, Inc. He has produced albums for Boston classical label Denouement Records, conducted numerous concerts including albums with the London Symphony Orchestra, and is music director and conductor of the Boston Metropolitan Orchestra. In September of 1999 he produced an album with the London Symphony Orchestra at Abbey Road Studios with Ronald Feldman conducting. It consists of a Harp Concerto commissioned by the Boston Symphony Orchestra principal harpist Ann Hobson Pilot, and a Song Cycle in collaboration with lyricist, Cliff Schorer. John Williams’ Essay For Strings was also recorded as well as his Trumpet Concerto (Arturo Sandoval, soloist).

 

For more information on Kevin Kaska visit www.kevinkaska.com