John Aylward's music comprises solo works, chamber music, orchestral work and music for film. Current projects include commissions from members of Klangforum Wien, new works for Amanda Bartlett, Samuel Solomon and Keiko Murakami. Aylward's recent opera, Switch, was premiered in February at Le Laboratoire, Cambridge. Recently completed commissions include those from Sound Icon, the Washington Square Contemporary Music Society and Open Space.
Aylward regularly advocates for composers of all stripes as a performer (pianist) and as a director of the Etchings Festival for Contemporary Music. He is also the Artistic Director of Ecce, a contemporary music ensemble. Aylward was born and raised in the Southwest US, and so often his music takes on concerns related to that landscape and culture: ancestral concepts of time, appropriations of indigenous cultures into surrealism and impressionism, and the connections between native traditions and Greek and Roman mythology. Currently, he lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and teaches music composition at Clark University.
Awards and fellowships include those from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University, the Koussevitzky Commission from the Library of Congress, the Fulbright Foundation (Grant to Germany), the DAAD (residency in Berlin) the MacDowell Colony, Tanglewood, the Aspen Music School, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, First Prize from the International Society for Contemporary Music, and many others.