Press Room


Davies Symphony Hall
201 Van Ness Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94102

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Key Leadership Biographies

Bryce Dessner

Collaborative Partner

Bryce Dessner has won Grammy Awards as a classical composer and as a founding member, guitarist, arranger, and co-principal songwriter of the band The National. He is regularly commissioned to write for the world’s leading ensembles, from Orchestre de Paris to the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and is a high-profile presence in film composition, with credits including The Revenant, for which he was Grammy and Golden Globe nominated; Fernando Mereilles’s The Two Popes; Mike Mills’ C’mon C’mon; and Bardo by Alejandro González Iñárritu.

Mr. Dessner collaborates with some of today’s most creative and respected artists, including Philip Glass, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Paul Simon, Alejandro González Iñárritu, Sufjan Stevens, Fernando Mereilles, Thom Yorke, Bon Iver, Nico Muhly, and Steve Reich. Dessner’s orchestrations can be heard on albums of Paul Simon, Bon Iver, and Taylor Swift.

In addition to his role as a Collaborative Partner with the San Francisco Symphony, Mr. Dessner is currently artist in residence at London’s Southbank Centre and with Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra. Major works include Concerto for Two Pianos premiered by Katia and Marielle Labèque, London Philharmonic Orchestra and recorded for Deutsche Grammophon; a Violin Concerto premiered Pekka Kuusisto; a Trombone Concerto for Jorgen van Rijen; Voy a Dormir for mezzo-soprano Kelley O’Connor and Orchestra of Saint Luke’s and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra; Skrik Trio for Steve Reich and Carnegie Hall; the ballet No Tomorrow co-written with Ragnar Kjartansson; Wires for Ensemble Intercontemporain; The Forest for large cello ensemble, Gautier Capuçon and Fondation Louis Vuitton; and Triptych (Eyes for One on Another), a major theatre piece integrating the photographs of Robert Mapplethorpe and premiered by Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Dessner’s recordings include El ChanSt. Carolyn by the Sea (both Deutsche Grammophon); Aheym, commissioned by Kronos Quartet; Tenebre, an album of his works for string orchestra recorded by Germany’s Ensemble Resonanz and which won a 2019 Opus Klassik award and a Diapason d’Or; When we are inhuman with Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and Eighth Blackbird (2019) and Impermanence (2021) with the Australian String Quartet. 

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