Huck Hodge writes music that explores the liminality of perceptual illusion and the threshold between design and intuition. A composer of “harmonically fresh work", "full of both sparkle and thunder” (New York Times), his music has been praised for its “immediate impact” (Chicago Tribune), its "clever, attractive, streamlined" qualities (NRC Handelsblad, Amsterdam) and its ability to "conjure up worlds of musical magic” with “power and charisma" (Gramophone Magazine, London). Uniquely Northwestern light patterns act as an inspiration in much of his music — the way that a piercing slant of light, breaking through a dreary cloudscape, casts an intense, otherworldly chiaroscuro on the landscape — the ethereal yellowness of the light in bas-relief against the yawning darkness of the sky. These stark contrasts find their way into his striking combination of pure and dissonant harmonies, widely spaced orchestrations and vast, diffuse timbres.
This year Hodge was honored with the Charles Ives Living, the largest and most prestigious music award conferred by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Other major awards include the Rome Prize, the Gaudeamus Prize, a Guggenheim Fellowship, as well as multiple grants, fellowships, awards, and commissions from the Fromm Foundation at Harvard University, the Bogliasco Foundation (Aaron Copland Fellowship), the American Composers Forum (JFund), the Barlow Endowment, ASCAP (Rudolf Nissim, ASCAPlus), New Music USA, Music at the Anthology, the American Academy of Arts and Letters (Goddard Lieberson Fellowship), the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst, and the Siemens Musikstiftung.
His music has been performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and at numerous major festivals — the New York Philharmonic Biennial, Berliner Festspiele, Gaudeamus Muziekweek, Shanghai New Music Week (上海当代音乐周), the ISCM World Music Days, and many others in over twenty countries on five continents. His musical collaborations include those with members of the Berlin Philharmonic and Ensemble Modern, the Seattle Symphony, and the Orchestra of the League of Composers. His chamber music has been premiered, performed and recorded by a long list of notable soloists and ensembles such as the Daedalus, JACK and Pacifica string quartets, the Aleph, Dal Niente, Divertimento, SurPlus and Talea ensembles, the Taipei Chamber Singers, Volti, Tony Arnold and Majella Stockhausen. Hodge has been featured in numerous international radio and television broadcasts (among them, Radio Netherlands, WNYC, WQXR, Taiwan Broadcasting System, Australian Broadcasting Corporation). His published music is licensed and distributed by Alexander Street Press and Babel Scores (Paris). Recordings of his music appear on the New World and Albany record labels.
Hodge has been a guest lecturer on music and aesthetics at a variety of institutions including the University of Chicago, Columbia University, Eastman School of Music, Manhattan School of Music, and the Universität der Künste in Berlin, among others. Before joining the University of Washington, he taught compositon at Columbia University in New York City, where he earned his MA and DMA studying with Tristan Murail and Fred Lerdahl. Prior to this, he studied Composition, Theory, and Computer Music at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Stuttgart, Germany, where his teachers included Georg Wötzer and Marco Stroppa. He also received formative instruction from Mario Davidovsky, Georg Friedrich Haas, Robert Kyr, George Lewis, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Walter Zimmermann, and many other notable composers. He currently serves as Associate Professor and Chair of Composition in the School of Music.