The Philip Glass Ensemble (PGE) comprises the principal performers of the music of Philip Glass. In 1968, Glass founded the PGE in New York City as a laboratory for his music. Its purpose was to develop a performance practice to meet the unprecedented technical and artistic demands of his compositions. In pioneering this approach, the PGE became a creative wellspring for Glass, and its members remain inimitable interpreters of his work.
The artists of the PGE recognize their unique position in the history of music of the past half-century, and passing on that legacy is part of their practice. A deep dedication to educating the next generation of musicians is integral to the PGE’s work, both on tour and as the Ensemble-in-Residence at The Philip Glass Institute at The New School.
The PGE debuted at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1969, and in its early years performed primarily in the galleries, artist lofts, and museums of SoHo’s then-thriving artistic community. In the five decades since, the PGE has performed in world-renowned music festivals and concert halls across five continents, and has made records with Sony, Nonesuch, and Orange Mountain Music.
Many of Philip Glass’s most celebrated works were expressly composed for the PGE: its core concert pieces Music in Twelve Parts, Music in Similar Motion, and Music with Changing Parts; the opera and musical theater projects Einstein on the Beach, Hydrogen Jukebox, 1000 Airplanes on the Roof, Monsters of Grace; and the full-length dance works Dance (Lucinda Childs) and A Descent Into the Maelström
(Australian Dance Theater). The PGE is most widely acclaimed for its
soundtracks to Godfrey Reggio's trilogy of wordless films: Koyaanisqatsi, Powaqqatsi, and Naqoyqatsi. It is also featured in Glass’s operas La Belle et la Bête and The Photographer.
"The PGE represents the most authentic performance practice of my music in our time. I am looking forward to championing them as they carry it forward and bring its unique repertoire to new generations." – Philip Glass
The Philip Glass Ensemble is the exclusive performer of its repertoire and is dedicated to bringing it to audiences worldwide. Philip Glass does not personally appear with the Ensemble unless otherwise noted on the tour calendar.
By special arrangement with Philip Glass and Dunvagen Music Publishers, Inc.
Composer-vocalist-producer Lisa Bielawa is a 2009 Rome Prize winner in Musical Composition and the recipient of the 2017 Music Award from the American Academy of Arts & Letters. In 2018, she was named a William Randolph Hearst Visiting Artist Fellow at the American Antiquarian Society and received a Los Angeles Area Emmy nomination for her made-for-TV-and-online opera Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch's Accuser. Vireo was released on CD/DVD in 2019 (Orange Mountain Music) and she is also recorded on the Tzadik, TROY, Innova, BMOP/sound, Sono Luminus, and Cedille labels.
Bielawa began touring as the vocalist with the Philip Glass Ensemble in 1992 and in 2019 she became the inaugural Composer-in-Residence and Chief Curator of the Philip Glass Institute at The New School. In 1997, Bielawa co-founded the MATA Festival, which celebrates the work of young composers and she was Artistic Director of the San Francisco Girls Chorus from 2013-2018. lisabielawa.net
is a producer, engineer, and sound designer of albums, film scores, and live sound. Dan has worked with Marina Abramovic, Laurie Anderson, Anohni, Howard Shore, The Magnetic Fields, Nico Mühly, Michael Nyman, Sufjan Stevens and many others. His credits include Academy Award winning Fog of War, the Academy Award nominated The Illusionist, as well as the revival of Robert Wilson’s Einstein on the Beach, and the Life and Death of Marina Abramovic. Dan’s live work has been praised as “deft”, “provocative and even poignant…” (New York Times).
(woodwinds) is, in addition to the PGE, a member of Slavic Soul Party, Bang on a Can’s Asphalt Orchestra, and Barbez, and was a part of Balkan Beat Box for a decade. He appears on over 100 recordings and can often be heard coming out of your television. He performs all over the world, in concert halls, festivals, prisons, and dives. He’s appeared and/or recorded with David Sanborn, Alarm Will Sound, David Byrne, Big Lazy, Guignol, Tony Visconti, Songs:Ohia, the Brooklyn Philharmonic, Tim Berne, Jabbo Ware, Jack McDuff, Dirty Projectors, Darcy Argue’s Secret Society, Devotchka, TV on the Radio, Spiritualized, Wu Tang Clan, ICE, the Hold Steady, Son Volt, AntiSocial Music, and dozens more.
He is a graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and his work composing and arranging for winds and strings can be heard on many records, as well as HBO's Bored to Death, PBS’s Make 'em Laugh, the feature documentaries Art and Craft and Maineland: much of that arranging and studio work goes on in his own little studio Fort Saint Marks. He holds a deep love of the music of the Balkans, which he has researched and studied in Roma villages in southern Serbia. His own records can be found at diskonife.com, the imprint he co-runs.
was a composer, multi-wind instrumentalist and visual artist active in new music since the 1960s. His output includes music for solo instruments, various ensembles, dance, music theater, film and opera. His music has been performed worldwide by his own groups and others.
He performed and collaborated with a host of musicians, choreographers and artists, including Merce Cunningham, Nancy Topf, Nina Winthrop and Dancers, Lucinda Childs, Harold Budd, Thomas Buckner, David Behrman, Petr Kotik, Alvin Curran, Ralph Gibson (no relation), and JoAnne Akalitis. Gibson was involved in the early work of Steve Reich, Terry Riley, LaMonte Young, and Philip Glass and was a member of the Philip Glass Ensemble since its beginnings. Gibson also performed in a solo/duo setting with Glass where both composers performed their own and each other's music.
Activities and performances included an extensive International tour organized by Britton Powell with the Jon Gibson Group of Gibson's early work "Visitations," a string orchestra performance of "Chorales for Relative Calm" at the New School, conducted by Lisa Bielawa, the re-issue of Gibson’s early LPs (1971) entitled “Visitations” and “Two Solo Pieces” by Superior Viaduct Records with other LPs in the works. In 2006, Gibson’s opera entitled Violet Fire, about to inventor Nikola Tesla with libretto by Miriam Seidel, received its world premiere at the National Theater of Belgrade, and the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival. A recording of VF is now available on Orange Mountain Music.
His visual work, which was closely related to his work in music, manifests itself in various media, including drawings, videos, books and prints— and has been exhibited in solo and group exhibits worldwide.
After graduating from Full Sail University Ryan began his career at the renowned Legacy Recording Studios in New York City. Since then he has worked on live performances across five continents alongside artists including Paul Simon, Philip Glass Ensemble, Solange, Eighth Blackbird, Nico Muhly, yMusic and Son Lux. He began working with the Philip Glass Ensemble for the revival of Robert Wilson’s Einstein on the Beach and joined the Ensemble in 2014. Recent studio work has seen him has producing film scores and recording albums with Beyoncé, Roomful of Teeth, Marc Ribot, and Booker T Jones ft. The Roots. His sound design credits include multiple shows with the Steven Petronio Company, Dream’d in a Dream with the Sean Curran Company, and The Dorothy K with Saint Genet ft Zac Pennington & Brian Lawlor.
is a composer, conductor, keyboardist, record producer, and is the Music Director of the Philip Glass Ensemble, which he joined in 1974. He has conducted and performed on many recordings of works by Glass, including most of his film soundtracks. He has recorded five albums of piano arrangements of Glass film music: The Hours, Dracula, Philip Glass Soundtracks, Beauty and the Beast, and Philip Glass Soundtracks Vol. 2 , He has conducted major ensembles including the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Toronto, Sydney, and BBC Symphony Orchestras, and has appeared as a piano soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Milwaukee Symphony. He has conducted and performed on albums by Paul Simon (Hearts and Bones) and David Bowie (BlackTie/White Noise). Mr. Riesman's work Formal Abandon, a commission by choreographer Lucinda Childs, is available on iTunes. Visit michaelriesman.com for more information.
Mick Rossi’s career has long been defined by the inability to comfortably define him or his work, revealing a commitment to a strong classical foundation and rigorous approach to improvisation. Rooted in the New York Downtown scene, Rossi is celebrated as "one of the most lucid, original and creative minds of the New York scene," “an exemplar of the cross-fertilization between jazz and classical music worlds," and "Bartokian and energetic” (AAJ / NY Times). He is simultaneously a member of the Philip Glass Ensemble and the Paul Simon Band as pianist and percussionist, showcasing not only technical proficiency but capable of divergent idiomatic disciplines.
He is currently in-residence at The New School and the Philip Glass Institute. Rossi can be heard on eleven recordings with Glass, and eight with Simon including Koyaanisqatsi Live with the NY Philharmonic, Einstein On The Beach and Austin City Limits respectively. Rossi has conducted for Mr. Glass, including Book of Longing (Sydney Opera House) and Dracula.
New releases include Drive, Live At Barbes, Cut The Red Wire, Variant (film score), Songs From The Broken Land (“virtuosic, intense and humorous - a master improviser is at work” - AAJ), and his thirteenth solo album “160” (“A masterpiece difficult to label” - AAJ). Recent features include The Sydney Morning Herald (“A prodigiously gifted musician and composer”) and Keyboard Magazine (“Pyrotechnics with Paul Simon”).
Since moving to New York in 2002, multi-reedist Sam Sadigursky continues to make a mark as both a leader and sideman across a broad spectrum of musical landscapes. His series of four albums of original music based on poetry and text for New Amsterdam Records, entitled The Words Project, have been acclaimed internationally. Following the 2015 release of his album Follow the Stick, he was named a rising star on clarinet in the Downbeat Magazine Critic’s Poll, on which he has continued to appear annually. His latest work, a three album set with accordionist Nathan Koci called The Solomon Diaries, was released in early 2022 on Adhyaropa Records, along with a set of original music for piano released later that year entitled Figures/Broken Pieces.
A member of the Philip Glass Ensemble since 2020, Sam has also toured and recorded with artists as diverse as Brad Mehldau, Fred Hersch, Lucia Pulido, Gabriel Kahane, Tom Jones, Edmar Castaneda, Katrina Lenk, Linda Oh, The Mingus Orchestra, Rufus Reid, Jamie Baum Septet+, David Yazbek, Ljova, Pablo Mayor’s Folklore Urbano, La Cumbiamba eNeYe, and is featured on three Grammy-nominated albums with Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society as well as Taylor Eigsti’s Grammy winning album A Tree Falls. He appears on over fifty albums as a sideman, and from 2017-2019 was the onstage clarinetist for the Grammy, Tony and Emmy Award winning show The Band’s Visit on Broadway.
Multi-instrumentalist Andrew Sterman (NYTimes: "beautiful, sensitive, and high-energy playing") has been a member of the Philip Glass Ensemble since 1992, touring and recording extensively with the Ensemble. A recipient of a commission from the NEA, Sterman has presented two solo concerts at MoMA, performed with the NY Philharmonic, LA Philharmonic, and numerous orchestras in Europe. From 2012 through 2014 he was featured in the world tour of Glass’s Einstein on the Beach, including the only improvising role in the work (Of Sterman’s ‘Einstein’ performance: Wall Street Journal: “Powerful, standout moment”; National Post Canada: “Searing”; London Observer: “Virtuosic”). He has also performed and recorded with major jazz and pop artists including Frank Sinatra, Bruce Springsteen, Freddie Hubbard, Dizzy Gillespie, Sarah Vaughan, Aretha Franklin, Fred Hersch, Rashied Ali, Buddy Rich, Kelly Clarkson, Tony Bennett, and countless recordings, theater and concert performances in NYC. His 2007 CD The Path To Peace was called “A major conceptual work, whose exquisite ebb and flow merits listening by a worldwide audience (All About Jazz: New York). Sterman’s third solo CD, Wet Paint, was praised as “Questing, devoid of self-indulgence, emotionally flexible…” (Jazz Times), “...emotive lyricism, inventively architected, superb compositional pen…” (JazzReview.com).
Andrew plays a collection of rare flutes and saxophones, the earliest dating back to 1875. Of these, some quite rare, Sterman says, “They’re not really a collection, they’re just the instruments I play…each one is like a person, complex and sometimes mysterious. Over the years, a family of them developed.”
Sterman is a practitioner/teacher of tai chi, qigong and Chinese dietary medicine, currently completing a book on the energetics of food. He has taught on diet and music in America, Europe, Asia and Australia.