Douglas J. Cuomo has composed for the concert, operatic and theatrical stage, as well as for television and film. His expressive musical language, with its arresting juxtapositions of sound and style, is a natural outgrowth of his eclectic background and training. He became a professional guitarist while still in his teens, alternating years of college – studying jazz, world music and ethnomusicology at Wesleyan University in Connecticut – with years on the road playing in jazz, pop and funk bands.
Recent works include: the chamber opera Savage Winter at Pittsburgh Opera in 2018, the opera Doubt, with a libretto by John Patrick Shanley, commissioned and premiered by Minnesota Opera and (2013) with a cast that included Denyce Graves and Christine Brewer. Objects in Mirror, a companion piece to Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 premiered by The Orchestra of the Swan (2016); The Fate of His Ashes: A Requiem for Victims of Power, for chorus and organ, premiered by Seraphic Fire (2016); Deliquescent for solo cellist, premiered by Ashley Bathgate (2016). Other works include the songs Sorry for Your Loss, for Christine Brewer and Our Vision for the Future for Lyric Fest; Black Diamond Express Train to Hell, a double concerto for cello and sampler, commissioned by the American Composers Orchestra and The Orchestra of the Swan, premiered at Carnegie Hall; the opera/oratorio Arjuna's Dilemma, premiered at the BAM Next Wave Festival; Only Breath, commissioned and performed by Maya Beiser, at The International Festival of Arts and Ideas, Ravinia, Carnegie Hall and others; Kyrie, commissioned and performed by Chanticleer, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Temple of Dendur; and Fortune, commissioned and performed by The Young People’s Chorus of New York City.
Work for television and film includes: themes for Sex and The City (HBO), NOW with Bill Moyers (PBS) and Wide Angle (PBS), music for Homicide: Life On The Street and many others. His theme for Sex and The City was chosen by TV Guide as one of the top 50 television themes of all time.
Upcoming projects include La Cita, a song cycle setting Spanish love poems for Denyce Graves and the Romero Guitar Quartet. Cuomo’s work has been generously supported through grants, awards and fellowships including: Opera America’s Opera Fund Grant; Two National Endowment of the Arts awards for Artistic Excellence in the Creation and Development of New Work; American Music Center's Composer Assistance Grant; Resident Artist Fellow at The MacDowell Colony The Hermitage Foundation and Blue Mountain Artist Colony; New York State Council for the Arts recording grant; Argosy Foundation Grant; Mary Flagler Carey Charitable Trust for development and others.
He has lectured widely on music, collaboration and creativity at numerous universities including New York University, Wesleyan University (CT), The Henry Mancini Institute at the University of Miami (FL), University of California at San Diego, Hunter College, Vermont College of Fine Arts, as well as at The Grant Park Music Festival, where he was composer in residence in 2015, The Asia Society, the Rubin Museum and Guggenheim Museums, Opera America, the Carnegie Hall Choral Institute and The US Navy CNO Strategic Studies Group.
Cuomo also co-leads the band Turquoise Lake with the Afghani singer Humayun Khan, and has performed as a guitarist at venues including National Sawdust, The Beacon Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Birdland, Roulette, The Knitting Factory and others.
He is managed by Michael Henson at Blu Ocean Arts and his music is published exclusively by Schott Music.
NYSCA Composer Commissioning Grant (2009, 2011)
OPERA America Opera Fund Grant (2008)
National Endowment of the Arts award for Artistic Excellence in the Creation and Development of New Work (2008)
New York State Council on the Arts recording grant (2007)
Argosy Foundation grant for Arjuna's Dilemma (2007)
Mary Flagler Carey Charitable Trust development grant (2007)
National Endowment of the Arts award for Artistic Excellence in the Creation and Development of New Work (2006)
BMI Television Music Awards (2001, 2000, 1999)
Resident Artist at Hermitage Artists Retreat (2008), Blue Mountain Center for the Arts (1994), and Mabou Mines (1992)
One of the Top 50 Television Themes of all time - chosen by TV Guide for theme to Sex and the City