Drew Schnurr

Drew Schnurr is a composer, sound artist, and performer blurring traditional lines in media and musical genre. His unique approach is informed by extensive and diverse experience as both composer and performer, as well as his modern expertise in sound design, music production, and audio technology.

An artist on the international stage, Drew explores and illuminates human experience through music and sound. Revered by his peers, industry professionals, and critics, his work has been called both “rare” and “remarkable.”

“This composer bends and stretches rules within his own aesthetic, weaving his musical ideas in harmonious waves that threaten to drown, yet gently tumble the listener forward with intrigue and anticipation.” -Adam Rosenthal review for Persee: Orchestrated Perception


Hyperventilations (2015)

for Piano with Four Hands


Hyperventilations of a Fire Dragon harnesses music from my early career as a performer in latin bands, jazz ensembles, funk bands, and rock and metal bands. The underlying fervency of these influences is felt throughout the work, leveraged by the power and agility of the piano, driving the performance often to the edge of playability. This piece initiates a compositional renaissance, a drilling down into the musical cores of “fire” that constitute the music of my youth. It comes from the gut—quite literally, was breathed into life. The melodic and rhythmic motives are all derived from vocal inflections (and hyperventilations) improvised, recorded, transcribed and re-composed by the composer.


Premiered by Vicki Ray and Aaron Kallay — Hear Now Festival, Los Angeles, May 2015.
Video performance by pianists Kookhee Hong and Minji Noh.

Of Mother and Daughter Recording Session


Of Mother and Daughter for soprano, violin, and harp recording session at Robert Irving’s studio in Los Angeles, August 13, 2013.

Guillaume Sutre (and his daughter), Drew Schnurr, Kyunghee Kim-Sutre, Jamie Chamberlin, and Richard Sparks.


providence7 AGES: Of Mother and Daughter premieres at Providence New Music Premieres in Providence, RI.

Soprano – Blithe Walker
Violin – Alexey Shabalin
Harp – Hyunjung Choi

Program notes:

This collaboration with Richard Sparks comes to fruition just weeks before another life begins, that is the life of my first born child. I cannot help but wonder how this pending event worked in my subconscious while setting Richard’s text to music. However it may be, the music came, and in the best way for a composer where it feels like the ideas and words speak the music unto themselves. I’m so grateful to Richard for his artistry in creating such a beautiful text.

The important women in my life: my wife, my mother, step-mother, mothers-in law, and grandmothers all speak through this music which is dedicated them in honor of who they are as mothers, daughters, grandmothers, and all women of heart and substance. My love and gratitude goes to them as their influence undeniably resonates in this work.



IN MEDIAS RES for Clarinet, Cello, and Amplified Guitar was premiered at UCLA Schoenberg Auditorium on May 9, 2012.

Bass Clarinet – Phil O’Connor
Cello – Erika Duke-Kirkpatrick
Amplified Guitar – Justin Smith

Program notes:
The composition in five movements, each one is inspired by a sculpture by the great artist Rodin. I love the movement in Rodin’s work. It may seem strange to describe statues as having “movement,” but I think it applies. Rodin’s works seem alive to me – reaching, breathing, groaning, and also in a state of suspended life. It is this feeling that inspires the music. It also inspires the title for the piece, which is a Latin expression meaning “…into the middle of things.” The phrase IN MEDIAS RES denotes a Greek literary technique where a dramatic tale is told starting not from the beginning, but rather from the middle or end of a story. This is just as Rodin’s statues seem to me. They are frozen in time, but alive in the midst of their own narratives.

This piece was a commission by clarinetist Phil O’Connor, and is dedicated to him with sincere gratitude for his friendship and inspiring musical collaboration.

May, 2012 by Drew Schnurr


CONFESSIONS OF AN ECO-TERRORIST, an environmental documentary produced and directed by Peter Brown with music by Drew Schnurr, premiered in the U.S. on Hulu, iTunes, Amazon VOD, and Cable Video-On-Demand on Earth Day, April 22.



Hyundai premiered their new Sonata Hybrid at auto shows in Los Angeles and Detroit in November 2011 and January 2012. Drew Schnurr collaborated with visual design firm WILDLIFE to create the interactive “UI” presentation for Hyundai.

Music and sound design elements for interactive interface composed and produced by Drew Schnurr.

http://wildlife.la | http://www.hyundaiusa.com


AT ANY GIVEN MOMENT by Rebeca Mendez with sound and music by Drew Schnurr was exhibited at Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Oaxaca (MACO) on August 5th to October 3rd 2011.



LUNE for Clarinet, Violin, Cello, and Piano was premiered at UCLA Popper Auditorium on November 15, 2011.

Clarinet – Phil O’Connor
Violin – Searmi Park
Cello – Giovanna Moraga
Piano – Randy Kerber

Program Notes:
This piece represents the sequential progressions of tension and harmony found in dialogue. In experiencing the piece the listener with an affinity to metaphor can choose one of their choice: dialogue between lovers, dialogue between parents and children, dialogue between humanity and nature, dialogue between intellect and instinct, dialogue between body and sprit, or any other binary relationship that requires dialogue and synthesis. Whatever the context chosen for listening, the musical composition is structured by motivic interaction between “characters” in the piece forming points of musical tension and subsequent syntheses of new meanings or “LUNES.”

LUNE: “…a crescent-shaped figure formed on a sphere or plane by two arcs intersecting at two points.”

November, 2011 by Drew Schnurr


THE BRIDGE, written and directed by Andrés Torres-Vives with music by Drew Schnurr premiered at the Los Angeles International film festival on the evening of Friday, June 24 with much acclaim. The film was one of seven short films sponsored by Film Independent and Project: Involve.

“Project:Involve is Film Independent’s signature diversity program, dedicated to increasing diversity in the film industry by cultivating the careers of under-represented filmmakers. The program, which runs from October through June, selects filmmakers from diverse backgrounds and filmmaking tracks. During the nine-months, the Fellows are paired one-on-one with a mentor from the film industry, assigned to a team to make a short film incorporating a given theme, and attend monthly filmmaking workshops and other educational seminars.”



Peter Brown’s CONFESSIONS OF AN ECO-TERRORIST with music by Drew Schnurr was featured in the LA Times on April 12. Interviewed by Dean Kuipers, Peter Brown discussed the film and his 30 years of work as an environmental activist:

“I’m a guy who likes to act a little crazy, poke fun at everyone. But…I want to see real change.”



Peter Brown’s CONFESSIONS OF AN ECO-TERRORIST was reviewed by Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times on Feb 7. Ebert reviews a number of films from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival giving special praise to CONFESSIONS.

“…provocative, informative, laugh out loud funny.”





Warning: Use of undefined constant order - assumed 'order' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /nfs/c04/h02/mnt/85205/domains/drewschnurr.com/html/wp-content/themes/drewschnurr/index.php on line 3198
Wednesday, November 1st, 2017

Planning underway for 2017 exhibition of Circumsolar, Migration 3, a collaboration by Drew Schnurr and visual artist Rebeca Mendez.

video @ rebecamendez.com

Friday, March 23rd, 2018

Opera project in development with African American soprano Karen Slack and Affrilachian poet Bianca Spriggs. Operatic aria Prayer to Oya premiere in Spring 2018.


DREW@SCHNURR.COM 323.243.7653