Maria Schneider’s music blurs the lines between genres, and she is among the few artists who have received Grammy Awards in both jazz and classical. Her “evocative, majestic, magical, and heart-stoppingly gorgeous” compositions distinctly highlight the unique voices of her 17-member collective, which includes some of the finest jazz musicians today.
Schneider and her orchestra’s distinguished recording career have earned them ten Grammy nominations and three Grammy awards. They emerged in 1994 when they released their first recording, Evanescence. Since that time, they have performed at festivals and concert halls in Europe, South America, Australia, Asia, and North America.
Maria Schneider has received numerous commissions and guest conducting invitations from such organizations as the Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, the American Dance Festival, Kronos Quartet, Metropole Orchestra, Danish Radio Orchestra, and Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.
Her most recent commission, Winter Morning Walks featuring soprano Dawn Upshaw, was written for the Ojai Music Festival, the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Cal Performances. The piece earned three 2014 Grammy Awards, in Best Contemporary Classical Composition, Best Classical Vocal Performance, and Best Engineered Recording.
Through her trend-setting company, ArtistShare, Schneider documents her creative process for participants who “fan-fund” her recordings through pre-orders. She has now completed four works for her own orchestra from her ArtistShare website fan base. Her 2004 album Concert in the Garden was the first recording to win a Grammy with Internet-only sales.