Michael Gordon was born in Florida in 1956 and grew up in Nicaragua and an Eastern European community in a jungle on the outskirts of Managua.
His music is an outgrowth of his experience with underground rock bands in New York City and his formal training in composition at Yale where he studied with Martin Bresnick. Tuneful, rhythmic and raw, Gordon has embraced elements of dissonance, rigorous minimalism, modality and popular culture in a bold and direct sound.
His orchestral works include Rewriting Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony, a radical reworking of the original, commissioned by the 2006 Beethoven Festival in Bonn and premiered by Jonathon Nott and the Bamberger Symphony; and Sunshine of your Love, written for over 100 instruments divided into four microtonally tuned groups, and performed by the Ensemble Modern Orchestra conducted by John Adams.
He has worked extensively with Icebreaker. His work Yo Shakespeare was recorded by Icebreaker on their debut album Terminal Velocity and has been performed more than 50 times.
Photo by Peter Serling