John Mitchell (composer)


John Mitchell (composer)

John Mitchell (born in Hollywood, California on April 26 1941) is an American classical composer. He is the son of John Stewart Mitchell, pianist and cousin of Canadian novelist W. O. Mitchell and Hungarian-born singer Teresa Hideg Mitchell. He studied music composition at the University of California, Los Angeles with Dr. John Vincent, who succeeded Arnold Schoenberg as professor of composition there. In 1965 Mitchell left UCLA, but he and Dr. Vincent remained close friends until Vincent's death in 1977. Since 1962 Mitchell has been a church music director, organist, and opera coach.

His compositions include works for solo piano and organ, choral music, chamber music, operas, and more than 380 art songs. In 2000 - 2004 he composed two piano sonatas, a song cycle based on T. S. Eliot's "Four Quartets", a setting of Robert Browning's "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came" for vocal quartet, a quartet for flute, viola, bassoon and piano (world premiere by The Field Quartet, Oxford Music Festival, 2007), a dance suite for piano, a requiem mass, and song settings of poet of Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, Federico García Lorca, Jorge Luis Borges, William Blake and Delmira Agustini. Current projects include an opera based on Emily Brontë's "Wuthering Heights". A CD of his art songs was produced in 2001, and a CD of chamber music, Mitchell in Moscow, was recorded in Moscow in 2002.

Mitchell is a member of the American Guild of Organists, the American Music Center, and the Center for Promotion of Contemporary Composers. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, artist Vicky Brago-Mitchell, a dog named Chelsea, and five cats (Elizabeth, Adolf, Shelley, Isolde and Babalou).


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