James Kurtz, born in New York City, trained as a composer earning a BS from Juilliard, MA from Harvard, and PhD from Brandeis. He studied composition with Peter Mennin, Walter Piston, and Arthur Berger, and has written for orchestra, chorus, chamber ensemble. He composed four children’s operas produced at the Vineyard Theatre in New York from 1990-96. His most recently composed pieces for recorder have been published by Peacock Press in the U.K.
Kurtz has taught on the Graduate Studies faculty at Juilliard since 1982. He has been on the Evening Division faculty since 2002, and is a professor emeritus at Fordham University, where he taught for 35 years and served as chairman of the Department of Art and Music. Kurtz conducted the American premiere of Donizettiʼs Gianni di Parigi in 1985.