William Brittelle is a North Carolina-born, Brooklyn-based composer of genre-fluid electro-acoustic music. His work is increasingly multi-disciplinary and often focuses on the intersection of music, technology, environmentalism, and secular spirituality. His compositional style is characterized by a refusal to acknowledge traditional genre boundaries, a trait perhaps most evident in his most recent commercial releases: the digital single Dream Has No Sacrifice (featuring Jenn Wasner on vocals) and the full album Loving the Chambered Nautilus. Written specifically for the players of ACME (the American Contemporary Music Ensemble), Nautilus is a series of electro-acoustic chamber music pieces melding classic synthesizer sounds and drum programming with virtuosic and textured acoustic strings. Following an All Things Considered feature, Nautilus hit #1 on Amazon’s Classical Music Chart. The New York Times labeled the work “bright and joyous”, and MUSO dubbed it “a fast, fun, freedom-fueled flurry of a record”. Perhaps most powerfully, Classical TV stated: “William Brittelle is creating a body of work that has no precedent, and marks him as a one of the most promising heirs of the vital American maverick tradition.” Amid the Minotaurs, a piece commissioned and premiered by Roomful of Teeth, was featured on the group's Grammy-winning debut album.
Brittelle’s work has been the subject of features in The New York Times (Sunday Arts & Leisure), The Nation, the Los Angeles Times, the Oxford Culture Review, Minnesota Public Radio, and NPR’s All Things Considered. His compositions have been presented at venues across the world, including the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Da Camera in Houston, Seattle's Town Hall, the Ecstatic Music Festival in New York, the Kahserne in Switzerland, the Gothenburg Symphony Chamber Series in Sweden, the Freemantle Arts Center in Perth, and the Liquid Music series in Minneapolis. His music has been commissioned by the Seattle Symphony, the Indianapolis Symphony, the Baltimore Symphony, the North Carolina Symphony, the Walker Art Center, the Alabama Symphony, the Basel Sinfonietta and the Eastern Connecticut Symphony. Recent commissions include Spiritual America, a series of electro-acoustic orchestral art songs featuring the band Wye Oak, the Metropolis Ensemble, and the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Love Letter for Arca, piece for synthesizer and orchestra with the Seattle Symphony, Oh Albert: An LSD Oratorio for the Basel Sinfonietta, Psychedelics for Roomful of Teeth and full concert choir, and a collaborative project with wild Up and Zola Jesus for the Ecstatic Music Festival. Past collaborative works include orchestral arrangements for the bands Lower Dens and WRAY and electronic artists Oneohtrix Point Never and Son Lux. Upcoming and recent performances include dates with the Kennedy Center, the Ecstatic Music Festival w/ wild Up and Zola Jesus, the Grand Rapids Symphony, the North Carolina Symphony, and the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles.
Brittelle has been the recipient of grants and awards from the National Endowment of the Arts, American Music Center, American Composers Forum, the Jerome Foundation, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, NYSCA, and ASCAP. Along with composers Judd Greenstein and Sarah Kirkland Snider, he co-founded and co-artistic directs New Amsterdam, a vital Brooklyn-based record label and presenting organization. He is a passionate promoter, presenter, and producer of new and adventurous music in New York City, having overseen the release of more than 100 critically acclaimed recordings. Along with his partners, Brittelle also co-produced and co-presented more than 90 live music events throughout the U.S. in the last nine years. Brittelle is also co-founder, along with composer/curator Daniel Wohl and curator/producer Kate Nordstrum, of Infinite Palette, an electro-acoustic music collective. He formerly served on the faculty of The New School in New York City, teaching courses in Post-Genre Music and the Ethos of Punk.