J. Robert Floyd

Title/Position: Professor Emeritus, Keyboard Performance

Profile:

 
What would you say are the outstanding highlights of your professional life?

Graduating on my 19th birthday with a Bachelor of Music Degree in performance from the University of North Texas

Winning the National Guild of Piano Teacher’s Young Artist the at Town Hall in New York.

Performing in joint recitals with violinist Roman Totenberg and cellist Raya Garbousova

Studying with Sidney Foster—Distinguished Professor of Piano at Indiana University

Participating with my group, Electric Stereopticon, in the International Carnival of Experimental Sound in London

Performing as soloist with the Houston Symphony for a festival audience of 10,000

Which music do you listen to in your car? (or What’s on your iPod?)

My iPod is stuffed with: Boulez, Miles Davis, Glenn Gould, Thomas Ades, Herbie Hancock, Bartok St. Quartets, Ligeti Etudes, Brad Meldeau, Kurtag, John Scofield, Schoenberg, Radiohead, Xenakis, Rzewski, and Bill Evans.

How were you influenced by your teachers?

My teacher Sidney Foster taught me to listen analytically to the sounds I made and to construct and communicate the essential musical thoughts of the composer to others

Career Highlights:

Transporting Transmittance, one of Professor JB Floyd’s recent CDs contains his newest compositions that were premiered in New York at Merkin Hall and features flutist Lisa Hansen and baritone Thomas Buckner.

His latest CD, Suitable for Framing, is a re-release of an improvisational performance with David Rosenboom featuring South Indian Mrdangam master, Trichy Sankaran. Suitable for Framing was selected by the Wire Magazine as one of the best recordings of 2005 in the Modern Composition category.

Tribute, his composition for piano and computer music performance system, was released on CD as part of the CDCM Computer Music Series, Vol. 18, and is available on the Centaur label. Another recording of his piano music by Salvatore Martirano is available on the New World label.

Prof. Floyd’s compositions include solo piano pieces, works for piano / Disklavier and computer assisted electronic instruments, as well as works for chorus, orchestra and jazz ensembles. His compositions have been performed in Europe, Canada, South America, Taiwan and South Korea, and throughout the United States.

Floyd performed his compositions for Disklavier in New York’s Merkin Hall on the “Interpretations” series of the World Music Institute in 1997 and again in May of 2002, when he presented new works for soloists and Disklavier.

Prof. Floyd has frequently collaborated with David Rosenboom in concerts of two-piano improvisations throughout North America and Europe. Their most recent work together found them performing simultaneously on Yamaha Disklaviers from “virtual stages” in Santa Monica and New York City via the Internet Electric Cafe International—a network of sites around the world linked by teleconferencing systems, videophones and computers.

Short Biography:

JJB Floyd is professor emeritus of keyboard performance at the University of Miami Frost School of Music, where he served as department chair for many years. He retired in May 2013 after 32 years at UM. JB Floyd’s musical interests are diverse. As a pianist, composer, and improviser, his music making includes classical piano recitals and solo appearances with orchestra; new music performances as a soloist and collaborator; and jazz concerts. His compositions include solo piano pieces, works for piano/Disklavier and computer assisted electronic instruments, and works for chorus, orchestra, jazz ensembles and chamber music combinations. He received B.M. and M.M. degrees from the University of North Texas, and a D.M. in Performance from Indiana University. JB Floyd was awarded a Town Hall (NYC) debut recital by the National Guild of Piano Teachers competition and received a Fulbright scholarship for study in Vienna. He also received an artist-in-residence appointment to Hawaii by the Ford Foundation and numerous grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. Floyd has collaborated on many occasions with David Rosenboom in concerts of two-piano improvisations; they have also performed simultaneously on Yamaha Disklaviers from “virtual stages” in Santa Monica, CA and New York City over Internet Electric Cafe International, a network of sites around the world linked by teleconferencing systems, videophones and computers.


« Back to Frost Profiles
Floyd_242_x_350.JPG

"Mr. DeMare sits down and starts to play the wildly compelling Solos and Sequences (1995), by JB Floyd, music spiked with zigzagging 12-tone riffs and propulsive chordal outbursts." —Anthony Tommasini, New York Times


Contact Information:

  • J. Robert Floyd