David Ludwig

Dean of Artistic Programs, Gie and Lisa Liem Chair of Performance Studies, Composition Faculty, Artistic Director, Curtis 20/21 Contemporary Music Ensemble


David Ludwig is a member of the composition faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music, where he serves as the Dean of Artistic Programs and director of the Curtis 20/21 contemporary music ensemble. His music has been described as “arresting, dramatically hued...” (The New York Times) and “supercharged with electrical energy and raw emotion” (Fanfare). NPR Music listed him as one of the Top 100 Composers Under Forty in the world in 2011. Amongst many significant premieres and performances in 2013, his work “The New Colossus” was performed for the President at the 57th Inauguration morning worship service.

Ludwig has written for many prominent artists, including soloists Jonathan Biss and Jaime Laredo, ensembles like eighth blackbird and ECCO, and orchestras including the Philadelphia, Minnesota, and National Symphonies. He has won numerous awards and honors from nationally recognized arts organizations, including the Theodore Presser Foundation, the Independence Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

An accomplished film composer, Ludwig most recently scored Michael Almareyda's adaptation of Shakespeare's "Cymbeline" (released in 2015). The film, starring Ed Harris, Mila Jovovich, Ethan Hawke, Penn Badgley, and Dakota Johnson, was produced by Anthony Katagas ("12 Years A Slave")

Dr. Ludwig has held residencies with the Marlboro Music School, the Isabella Gardner Museum, and the MacDowell and Yaddo artist colonies, as well as international residencies at the Shanghai International Music Festival and at the Seoul National University. He is the artistic director of the Curtis Young Artist Summer Program, directs composition programs at the Atlantic and Lake Champlain festivals, and has been guest faculty at Yellow Barn and the Ravinia Steans Institute.

Dr. Ludwig holds degrees from Oberlin, The Manhattan School of Music, Curtis and Juilliard, as well as a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. For more information, visit