Samuel Jones Composer

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—Julian Schwarz gives brilliant performance


Samuel Jones’ Cello Concerto has received signal recognition as one of the works performed on the inaugural series of the All-Star Orchestra, the innovative and award-winning television project conceived and conducted by Gerard Schwarz now being aired on PBS stations all over America and streamed on WNET’s website.

The soloist in the concerto is Julian Schwarz, one of the finest cellists now before the public and, at age 22, clearly destined to be among the most outstanding cellists of our age.

Composed in 2010 to honor Gerard Schwarz at the beginning of his final season as Music Director of the Seattle Symphony, Jones’ Cello Concerto was premiered on September 11, 2010 at the gala opening concert of the season, with the Maestro’s son, then 19 years old, as soloist, for whom the work was written. He played the concerto (and all the rehearsals) from memory, a most unusual feat for the premiere of a contemporary work, and he dazzled the audience with the depth of his maturity and the brilliance of his technique.

As if to underscore that promise, Julian Schwarz recently won the $25,000 first prize in the professional cello division of the Alice and Eleanor Schoenfeld International String Competition.

Both Schwarz, son and father, collaborate with the top-of-the-line musicians of the All-Star Orchestra in a performance of unusual emotional depth and communicative power. Please visit for a list of stations carrying the broadcasts. This list is constantly being updated to include new additions to the list.

Besides the American Public Television broadcasts, the All-Star Orchestra series will be released as a DVD on Naxos. The Cello Concerto is on Program 6, "The Living Art Form." The program also includes works by Richard Danielpour and Joseph Schwantner.

The Cello Concerto received its second performance on April 18, 2013 by the esteemed cellist Norman Fischer accompanied by the Rice Shepherd School Orchestra, conducted by Larry Rachleff.

[Program Notes]

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 The Shoe Bird - A musical fable by Samuel JonesTHE SHOEBIRD nominated for a Grammy!

Samuel Jones' The Shoebird has received a nomination from the 51st annual Grammy awards in the category of "Best Musical Album for Children." 

Fabulous New Recording of THE SHOE BIRD features JIM DALE!

In the tradition of Peter & The Wolf, Seattle Symphony Composer in Residence Samuel Jones’ The Shoe Bird brings Eudora Welty’s unforgettable fable to life! In celebration of the release of The Shoe Bird audiobook, Seattle Symphony is excited to present this whimsical tale LIVE, narrated by Jim Dale, award-winning voice of the Harry Potter audiobooks. Join conductor Carolyn Kuan, Seattle Symphony, the Northwest Boychoir and Vocalpoint! Seattle for this no-miss event! (Nov. 1, 2009, two performances)

The Seattle Symphony’s new recording of Samuel Jones’ THE SHOE BIRD has just been released (September, 2008) by Brilliance Audio, one of the nation’s leading publishers of audiobooks. The narration is brilliantly performed by JIM DALE, beloved for his inimitable narrations of the Harry Potter audiobooks. With the inspired musical performance of Gerard Schwarz and the Seattle Symphony, together with the Northwest Boychoir and VocalPoint Seattle led by Joseph Crnko, this magical collaboration between Eudora Welty and Samuel Jones is destined to reach a new generation of music lovers.

The audiobook is available for purchase online at, and at bookstores that offer audiobooks for children.

The audiobook features an extended narration, with a total duration of 58 minutes. The concert version is 48 minutes; all the music is present in both versions, but the narration of the concert version is shortened to comply with the standard length of most children’s concerts. Conductors and Orchestra Librarians contacting the publisher (Carl Fischer) should specify which version of the work they wish to perform. For further information on this work, click here.

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A Trifecta of Lower Brass Concertos!
Samuel Jones is currently completing the third in a much-anticipated series of concerti written for the principal players of the Seattle Symphony’s lower brass section.

- His Concerto for Trombone and Orchestra will be premiered on April 2, 2009 with Ko-ichiro Yamamoto, soloist.
- The Horn Concerto, written for John Cerminaro, received its premiere on February 14, 2008.
-  And the Tuba Concerto, written for Christopher Olka, was premiered on January 5, 2006.

All of the concerti were or will be accompanied by Gerard Schwarz and the Seattle Symphony.

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Tuba Concerto Given Triumphant Premiere! View press articles

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Selected past events:

  • Gerard Schwarz conducts the World Youth Symphony at Interlochen in A Symphonic Requiem (Variations on a Theme of Howard Hanson).
  • New Jersey Symphony performs Eudora’s Fable: The Shoe Bird.
  • Seattle Symphony opens its 100th anniversary season with the premiere of Chorale-Overture for Organ and Orchestra, commissioned for the occasion.
  • Jones is named Music Alive Composer in Residence with the Meridian Symphony Orchestra by Meet The Composer and the American Symphony Orchestra League.
  • Jones begins twelvfth season as Composer in Residence of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.
  • Perusal scores for the newly-revised A Symphonic Requiem (Variations on a Theme of Howard Hanson) are now available from Carl Fischer.
  • The Knoxville Symphony (Kirk Trevor) performs Symphony No. 3 (Palo Duro Canyon).
  • Elegy is performed by L'Offerta Musicale di Venezia (James Setapen).