William Bolcom (born 1938) is an American composer of chamber, operatic, and symphonic music.
Bolcom was born in Seattle, He entered the University of Washington at age 11, where he studied piano and composition. He later studied with Darius Milhaud and Olivier Messiaen.
His opera, A View from the Bridge, with libretto by Arthur Miller and Arnold Weinstein, was premiered October 9, 1999, at the Lyric Opera of Chicago,
As a pianist, Bolcom has performed and recorded his own work frequently in collaboration with his wife, mezzo-soprano Joan Morris. Bolcom and Morris have recorded twenty albums together.
Bolcom's setting of William Blake's Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience, a full evening's work for soloists, choruses, and orchestra culminated 25 years of work on the piece. Its premiere at the Stuttgart Opera in 1984 was followed by performances in Ann Arbor, Chicago's Grant Park, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, St. Louis, Carnegie Hall, and London's Royal Festival Hall, the latter performed by the BBC Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Leonard Slatkin.