Born in Detroit, Daniel Steven Crafts is a self-taught composer whose work has consistently emphasized tonality in a dialectic between form and content.
The first of his collaborations with opera singer Jerry Hadley, a setting of poetry by Carl Sandburg The Song & the Slogan, was premiered in 2000. The work has been made into a TV program for the PBS network.
In his opera and vocal music, he has collaborated with writers Rudolfo Anaya, V.B. Price, Benedict and Nancy Freedman, Erik Bauersfeld, poet Adam Cornford and cartoonist Shannon Wheeler.
With the opera Too Much Coffee Man, he created what he calls Gonzo Opera, a new sub-genre of classical opera. While using the vocal techniques of traditional opera, Gonzo Opera uses wildly comical and satirical plots and situations, and is designed for small ensembles.
Crafts has received commissions from the Berkeley Symphony Orchestra and Kent Nagano (My Mistress Suite, based on medieval melodies), the Northwest Symphony (for its 50th anniversary celebration), and the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra (for its 75th anniversary).
In 1980, Crafts released an LP of tape composition, Snake Oil Symphony / Soap Opera Suite, which has subsequently been used as course material in university electronic music programs.
His work has received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts (once in collaboration with poet Adam Cornford), and numerous awards from ASCAP.
Having spent most of his life in the San Francisco Bay Area, Mr. Crafts moved to New Mexico in 1999.
–biography from Daniel Steven Crafts’ Official Website, edited by Christie Finn
For more information and to obtain sheet music, please contact the composer at the following email address: [email protected]