index bio works operas performances recordings commisssions and awards contact
Commissions, Honors and Awards

Elected to membership in the Association for the Promotion of New Music (APNM).

Named New Music Champion by New Music Connoisseur magazine. "Richard Brooks [was awarded] for his energetic enterprise, the establishment and successful realization of Capstone Records, a great medium for the propagation of living compositions, and for his teaching and all of his various activities and offices on behalf of the cause of new music." New Music Connoisseur

The State University of New York Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Creativity.

Four Miniatures, for viola and quitar, commissioned by The Lark Ascending.

Commission from the Lark Ascending (NYC) for two organ preludes inspired by Milton's Paradise Lost.

Commission from Harpsichord Unlimited for Cassation, for harpsichord, strings, and percussion.

NCC Dean of Instruction's Faculty Distiguished Achievement Award.

Commission from the Kent Philharmonic Orchestra, Grand Rapids, MI, for a new work for their 20th Anniversary (premiere April 21, 1996)

Commission from Ron George for a new work for his percussion instrument Ballade Console (Trilogy).

Commissioned by the Music Teachers Association of New York State for Quintet for Oboe (Saxophone) and Strings.

NCC Dean of Instruction's Faculty Distiguished Achievement Award.

Member of the Board of Directors, New York State Association of College Music Programs.

Member of the Junior/Community College Commission on Accreditation, National Association of Schools of Music.

Participated in training session to become a Visiting Evaluator for the National Association of Schools of Music.

Fall semester sabbatical leave from Nassau Community College to pursue development of a production of Moby Dick.

1989 and 1991
Advisory Committee for the Symposium on the Arts in the Two Year College, Teachers College, Columbia University.

1984 and 1985
Comite d'Honneur, Concours International d'Interpretation de Musique Contemporaine pour Piano, St. Germaine-en-Laye, France.

Invited to St. Germaine-en-Laye, France, for a full concert of my works presented by the Atelier pour Musique Contemporaine (December 8).

Composer Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts for the composition of Trio, for violin, cello, and piano, and Fantasy-Impromptu, for solo piano.

Spring semester, one of twelve Fellows in the Arts in Society program of the Community Colleges Project at the City University of New York Graduate Center (funded by the Mellon Foundation); participated in weekly colloquia, audited graduate seminar in music theory with Carl Schachter.

Serenade, for flute, cello, and piano, one of three works selected for presentation at the Da Capo Chamber Players Symposium on New Music, May 21-22, New School for Social Research, New York, New York.

Collage, for wind ensemble one of eight works selected for the Seventh Annual Symposium for New Music for Band, Virginia State Band Directors National Association, held at Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia.

Selected for participation in the First Annual Composers Forum held at Indiana University.

Fall semester sabbatical leave from Nassau Community College to initiate the composition of an opera, Moby Dick.

Composer Assistance Program grant from the American Music Center to prepare parts for a performance of Rapunzel at Wolf Trap Farm Park.

Major grant from the Research Foundation of the State University of New York for an orchestral work, Symphony in One Movement.

Residence scholarship to the Composers Conference, Johnson, Vermont; String Quartet premiered.

Commission from Mr. and Mrs. Edward Pettengill for a full-length operetta for elementary school performance, The Wishing Tree.

Commission from Tri-Cities Opera, Binghamton, NY, for a one-act opera for young audiences, Rapunzel.

First Prize, SUC Potsdam MENC Chapter Composition Contest for Variations, for piano.

Recipient of several Meet the Composer grants.


...and the eagle flies...

New Music Connoiseur
Volume 5 Number 3

With so much to say and so few resources around (particularly orchestral resources) to give them a hearing, American composers must be thankful to the likes of Richard Brooks and the mere handful of serious new-music entrepreneurs in the record business. Of course Brooks has given himself an outlet for his own orchestral work, as in this album, but let us grant him credit for all of the CDs he has produced championing the work of many living composers. [...]

The thematic element of the natural world is picked up by Brooks in his two tone poems. Seascape is subtitled Overture to Moby Dick and is actually the prelude and epilogue to the composer's opera based on the Melville novel. A fresh listener may immediately find the piece comparable in power and spaciousness to Wagner's famed operatic seascape, and Brooks convinces us he has his own ideas about setting the stage for such a massive literary work. The vastness of the sea is there, as well as the tragic climax of Captain Ahab's quest. And just to impress us with his emotional range, he is able to paint a quiet landscape of Western Michigan using "Amazing Grace" as the sinewy thread of his second selection. Well, maybe the music does sound a bit like Wagner's Forest Murmurs and has a distinctly European sound much of the time, but the great American Protestant hymn eventually takes over to cap the work in a blaze of spiritual glory.

-Barry L Cohen