David Del Tredici, born March 16, 1937 in Cloverdale, California, is a contemporary composer.
After making his piano debut with the San Francisco Symphony at 17, he went on to receive a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley, and an M.F.A. in 1964 from Princeton University, studying with composers Earl Kim, Seymour Shifrin and Roger Sessions.
His early work drew from Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland for inspiration, covering a wide variety of musical styles and forms. He was awarded a Pulitzer prize in 1980 for "In Memory of a Summer Day", the first part of Child Alice. Themes of his later works include literature -- notably, Victorian works, contemporary poets, and the works of James Joyce, Allen Ginsberg, Rumi, Federico García Lorca, Thom Gunn, Paul Monette, Colette Inez, and Bram Stoker -- his own personal stories, and his life as a homosexual.
While trained in serial technique, Del Tredici's works are rooted in tonality; he is one of the most adamant proponents of neoromanticism, with a desire to revive tonality in contemporary music.
In addition to the Pulitzer Prize, he is also the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and Woodrow Wilson fellowship, a Brandeis Creative Arts Award, a Friedheim Award, grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, and election to the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. His works are regularly commissioned by major orchestras in America and abroad.
Notable works include:
Six Songs for voice and piano (text by James Joyce) (1959)
An Alice Symphony (1969)
Final Alice, an opera in concert form for soprano, folk ensemble, and orchestra (1976)
Child Alice ("In Memory of a Summer Day", "Happy Voices", "In the Golden Afternoon", "Quaint Events") for soprano and orchestra (1980 - 81)
The Spider and The Fly for high soprano, high baritone, and orchestra (1998)