Travis Alford (b. 1983) is a composer, trumpeter, improviser, educator, amateur woodworker, dog owner, husband, and father (not exactly in that order). He has worked with a number of ensembles and musicians, including the Meridian Arts Ensemble, the Lorelei Ensemble, Talujon Percussion, ECCE, the Boston New Music Initiative, the North Carolina NewMusic Initiative, Christopher Grymes (clarinetist), Sharon Harms (Soprano), and Benjamin Herrington (trombonist), on the creation and performance of his music, which has been described as "graceful" (NY Times), "truly sublime" (Boston Classical Review), and "overwhelming and other-worldly" (Boston Music Intelligencer). Travis was recently awarded the Goddard Lieberson Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters (2019). Past recognition for his work includes the American Prize in Music Composition (2015), the Sandra Shea Fisher Prize for Exceptional Achievement in the Creative Arts (2014), the League of Composers/ISCM Composers' Prize (2012), and the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award (2010).
In addition to his formal studies, Travis has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, the Composers Conference at Wellesley College, New Music on the Point, June in Buffalo, the Oregon Bach Festival, and the Summer Institute for Contemporary Performance Practice. He has been a Composer-in-Residence at the North Carolina NewMusic Initiative, the Nief-Norf Summer Festival, the SCI National Conference, and the FSU Festival of New Music.
As a performer (trumpet), Travis is committed to the promotion and conservation of music both old and new, and has performed with the New England Philharmonic, the Boston New Music Initiative, the Equilibrium Concert Series, New Music Brandeis (co-director, 2011-13), The Gentlemen's Very (Very) High Art Society of South Waltham (composer/performer/improv ensemble, co-founder and director, 2011-2015), both the brass ensemble and orchestra at Boston's historic Park Street Church (co-founder/director, 2008-2015), the Northeast Italian Band, the Triangle Brass Band, the Tar River Symphonic Band, and the ska/reggae band The Allstonians. As a North Carolina native, Travis can also be found blowing on the harmonica from time to time.
Travis is currently an Assistant Professor of Music Composition and Theory at East Carolina University, where he is also a member of the Faculty Brass Ensemble. Prior to ECU, he held positions at MIT, Brandeis University, and Gordon College. He holds degrees from Brandeis (PhD, Music Composition and Theory, '14), the New England Conservatory (MM '08), and East Carolina University (BM '05), having studied with Yu-Hui Chang, Eric Chasalow, Lee Hyla, Edward Jacobs, David Rakowski, Mark Richardson, Britt Theurer, and Melinda Wagner. Travis and his wife, Lauren, live in Clayton, NC with their son, Owen, and their dog, Toby.