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Arthur Gottschalk

Professor of Music, Rice University

A man whose music is described as “infectious, loud, and fun,” (Gramophone Magazine) and “fascinatingly strange,” (BBC Music Magazine) award-winning composer Arthur Gottschalk is Professor of Music Composition at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, where he founded and directed the school’s electronic music laboratories until 2002 and chaired the composition and theory department for 15 years. He was given the Meritorious Service Award by the Association of Rice Alumni in 2016, and in 2023 he was given the Presidential Award for Mentoring.

Gottschalk’s early work as a studio musician led to his co-founding of Modern Music Ventures, Inc., a company which held a recording studio complex, a record production division, four publishing firms, and an artist management division, and for whom he produced records for the PolyGram and Capitol labels, among others. Still conducting occasional work as an expert witness and forensic musicologist in music business trials, Gottschalk serves as a judge for many prominent competitions, including the Marvin Hamlisch International Music Award, the Cintas Foundations Awards, the McKnight Fellowships, the Grawemeyer Award, and the Piazzola International Music Competition, among others.

Gottschalk is a recipient of the Charles Ives Prize of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, annual ASCAP Awards since 1980, and has been a Composer-in-Residence at the famed Columbia/Princeton Electronic Music Center, the Piccolo Spoleto Festival, and a Visiting Artist at the American Academy in Rome. He received the Gold Medal and Record of the Year in Music Composition from the Global Music Awards, for his Requiem: For the Living, and was honored with a prestigious Bogliasco Fellowship, as well as the First Prize of the Concorso Internazionale di Composizione Originale of Corciano, Italy for his Concerto for Violin and Symphonic Winds. The Association of Rice Alumni honored him with their Meritorious Service Award, the highest honor given to a non-graduate of Rice University.

In 2018, Gottschalk’s music was presented at Carnegie Hall by a group of Italian virtuosi; he was featured composer at the Thailand International Festival and was a Fellow at The MacDowell Colony. He was a featured composer at the 2019 China-ASEAN Festival in Nanning, China and guest clinician and composer for the 2019 International Trombone Festival. His work for baritone soloist, choir, and orchestra, Tebe Boga, was premiered in 2020 in Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium. With his catalog now containing over two hundred compositions, his music is regularly performed domestically and overseas, with over 45 recordings on such labels as Navona, Crystal, Naxos, Amirani (Italy), and RMN Classics (United Kingdom).

His orchestral works have been performed by the symphony orchestras of Charleston, New Jersey, Vienna, Bratislava, Galicia (Spain), Fargo-Moorehead, Indianapolis, Houston, Pacific, Atlanta, Thailand, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Guangxi (China), and more. His music is published by Subito Music, Shawnee Press, European American Music Distributors, the International Horn Society, Potenza Music, SMP Press, Alea Publishing, TrevCo Music, The Spectrum Press, and Delage Music (France).

Now entering its second edition, Gottschalk’s book, Functional Hearing, is published by Routledge Press, a division of Taylor & Francis. He was a student of renowned American composers William Bolcom, Ross Lee Finney, and Leslie Bassett, and studied with Mario Davidovsky and Aaron Copland. Gottschalk explores the interstices between popular and art music, between the sacred and profane.


  • –present
    Professor of Music, Rice University