I avoid fads and gimmicks in my writing, concentrating instead on the time-honored principles of craft. My style is influenced by the music of Hindemith, Stravinsky, Ravel, and Copland. I rely on traditional forms, imitative counterpoint, and clear literal repetitions. For me, the heart of composition is in development. The challenge is to let the music unfold logically and seamlessly, as though it is driven by the laws of nature. During exposition, I strive to present basic thematic material clearly so that the audience can assimilate it and vicariously participate in the act of composing.


  • Modern Music Festival 2000 Film Scoring Prize
  • VMTA Commissioned Composer Awards (1992, 1994, 2004, 2012, 2016)
  • ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards: Bronze Medalist (2003)
  • Delius Vocal (1992) and Keyboard (1995) Category Awards
  • Grants from the American Music Center and Meet the Composer
  • iUniverse Editor's Choice and Reader's Choice awards (2004, 2005)
  • JPF Classical Orchestral Album Award (2006)
  • ASCAP Plus Awards every year since 1994

John's Blog