Billy Childs

Born in Los Angeles, March 8, 1957, Billy Childs is a Los Angeles native. Childs was a natural pianist from the age of six. He began playing piano at the age of sixteen and enrolled in the USC-sponsored Community School of the Performing Arts. There, he studied theory with Marienne Uszler, and piano with John Weisenfluh. He entered USC in 1975 as a composition major and graduated four years later with a bachelor’s degree in music composition from Robert Linn. He has been commissioned by many orchestras since then, including Esa-Pekka Salen and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Also, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra was under Leonard Slatkin’s direction, as well as the Los Angeles Master Chorale and The Kronos Quartet. The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, American Brass Quintet and Dorian Wind Quintet. Childs began his solo jazz recording career in 1988 after he had worked with J.J. Johnson and Freddie Hubbard in the late seventies, and early eighties. The album was followed by Twilight Is Upon Us (1989), His April Touch (922) and Portrait Of A Player (93). In 1995, his next album, I’ve Known Rivers (now Stretch/GRP), was released. The Child Within, which was released by Shanachie in 1996, was followed by the same album in 1995. Recently, Mr. Childs recorded two volumes of jazz/chambermusic – Lyric, Vol. 1 (2006) and Autumn, In Moving Pictures Vol. 2 (2010) – Music that combines jazz and classical elements. It was created with his ensemble over ten years of rehearsals, performances, recording, and performance. Childs has received ten Grammy nominations so far and three Grammy Awards. Two for best instrumental composition (Into the Light From Lyric and The Path Among The Trees From Autumn: In Moving Pictures), and one for best arrangement accompanying a singer. Childs received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2009 and a Chamber Music America composer grant in 2006. Childs is a pianist who has performed recently with Yo-Yo Ma and Sting. He also performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Symphony, the Kronos Quartet as well as Wynton Marsalis, Jack DeJohnette and Ron Carter. The Detroit Symphony conducted Leonard Slatkin’s Concerto For Violin and Orchestra in January 2010. Regina Carter was the soloist. The Ying Quartet will receive a new piece and the Kronos String Quartet will be receiving a new work. bio from

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