David Marenberg was selected as the initial Steinhardt Songwriting Scholar. An evening featuring an interview with the venerable tunesmith Jimmy Webb, by Steinhardt Songwriter-in-Residence Phil Galdston, was followed by an awards ceremony and concert. Writers and performers presented by BMI, SESAC, ASCAP, SHOF (The Songwriters Hall of Fame), and The Songwriters' Guild of America then performed before a packed audience in NYU Steinhardt's Frederick Loewe Theatre. Marenberg performed his song "We'll Catch Fire" with David at the piano and Hugh Wilson as vocalist.
The evening marked the first of a series of collaborations between NYU Steinhardt's Music Department and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, with two more master classes scheduled for the Loewe Theatre during the 2011-2012 academic year.
Born March 6, 1987, David Marenberg began to seriously pursue composition upon attending Amherst College, an elite liberal arts institution in Western Massachusetts, where he wrote his first symphony, “Symphony No. 1 – California”. Eager to continue collaborating with visual artists, David has now enrolled in the NYU Steinhardt School of Scoring for Film and Multimedia. He is currently scoring commercials and films, but still maintains a healthy interest in the concert world.
In the recent summer of 2010, David was invited, as one of 5 composers worldwide, to spend a month in Aspen, CO, composing and studying with major film composers Jeff Rona, David Newman and Jack Smalley. His score, “My City, She Never Sleeps,” was performed and recorded by the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen Orchestra.
In addition to film, David has scored trailers, dance, arranged for a cappella voices, and produced various synthetic tracks. His newest work, “Ave Maria”, commissioned by the Amherst College Choral Society, was performed in early May 2010. The piece, written for 8-part chorus and 3 soloists, juxtaposes phrases of Gregorian chant with neo-tonal and neo-modal harmonies.
Even in his concert works, David writes with the purpose of evoking emotion from the listener. Although subtle in his use of fluid meter and structure, David uses a decidedly accessible harmonic palette to reach a more diverse audience. Taking elements from turn-of-the-century French impressionism and post-modern Romanticism, David places strong emphasis on melody and orchestral color.
David currently splits his time between New York and Los Angeles. To view a portion of David's acceptance performance, click the video below.