Trailblazing cellist and award-winning composer Stephen Katz has charted new territory for the rhythmic potential of the cello with the groundbreaking approach he calls Flying Pizzicato. His compositions juggle two or three voices at a time, making music that simultaneously lays grooves, weaves tunes, and lifts spirits.

Stephen has premiered his cello compositions at Carnegie Recital Hall and performed internationally as a soloist, and with the Paul Winter Consort, Rachael Sage, the Essex String Quartet and Susan Werner. 


He is a National Endowment for the Arts grant recipient through the SUNY/Buffalo Arts in Healthcare Initiative. As a film composer, his score for The Rich Have Their Own Photographers won the Jury Prize Gold Medal for Best Impact of Music in a Documentary at the Park City Film Music Festival. He also scored Two Square Miles which has been broadcast nationally on PBS/Independent Lens. Stephen’s performances have been broadcast on PRI’s Performance Today. 


An improviser and composer in the Dance and Theater worlds, Stephen has collaborated and performed with Andrew Harwood, Chris Aiken, members of Pilobolus and Beverly Blossom dance companies, and has been a Visiting Artist at Amherst College (MA).  He has made music for hundreds of “movement jams” using digital looping hardware to weave dynamic tapestries of sound.  As a co-founder of the movement/theater company Seen & Heard with the late dancer and monologist BJ Goodwin, he literally danced with the cello while accompanying the dramas they played out on stage. 


As a teacher, Stephen has been a regular workshop presenter at the New Directions Cello Festival since it’s inception in 1994. He also has the distinction of being the most frequent guest performer at the Fest.


A native of San Francisco, Stephen received a Master of Music degree from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. He lives in Western Massachusetts with his wife Beth and son Olin.

© 2019 by Stephen Katz