The music of American composer Bruce Stark (born in San Diego) reflects the varied elements of his musical upbringing: studies in percussion, jazz piano, and classical composition. He began formal studies in composition at California State University, Northridge studying with Aurelio de la Vega and Daniel Kessner, twice winning the school's composition prize, and went on to complete a masters degree in composition at the Juilliard School as a student of Roger Sessions and Vincent Persichetti. Thereafter for more than 20 years Stark resided in Tokyo, producing a collection of works that reveal a compelling musical voice, drawing from a multiplicity of disciplines and sensibilities. In 2013 he returned to the U.S. and joined the music faculty of DigiPen Institute of Technology (Seattle area).
Recent commissions include the Washington State Music Teachers’ Association, Friends of Today's Music, Megumi Kanda and Dietrich Hemann (Milwaukee Symphony), pianist Kai Schumacher, trombonist Don Lucas and Eastern Standard Trio.
From piano and chamber works to choral and orchestral pieces, Stark’s music has been performed on the concert stages of four continents, recorded on numerous CDs and broadcast on radio programs worldwide. Awards include First Prize in the Composers Guild Contest, Second Prize in the Barlow International Competition, ASCAP composer awards and others. His compositions have been featured in the National Flute Association Convention, American Piano Festival, International Trombone Festival, Canberra International Chamber Music Festival, and BluePrints series in New York City. Other performances have included the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra under Timothy Muffitt, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra under David Charles Abell, Rapides Symphony under Joshua Zona, Jakarta Symphony under Rebecca Tong, Westwood Wind Quintet, Paula Robison and numerous pianists including Anthony De Mare, Lisa Moore, Yuko Mifune and Chika Nagisa. Recordings of his works have been released by Victor Entertainment (Japan), Hanssler Classic (Germany), Centaur Records (US), Red Kite Records (Seann Alderking's performances of his piano works), and separate pieces are included in releases by vocal group Ars Nova, Tokyo Clarinet Ensemble and many others.