Bard Faculty

Susan (Botti) Vazquez

Visiting Artist in Residence

Primary Academic Program: Music


BM, Berklee School of Music; MM, Manhattan School of Music. Susan (Botti) Vasquez is a composer and performer whose musical explorations have encompassed traditional, improvisational, and nonclassical composition and singing styles. She is the recipient of numerous honors, including the Goddard Lieberson Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Guggenheim Fellowship, Rome Prize, and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Aaron Copland Fund, New York Foundation for the Arts, Greenwall Foundation, and ASCAP, among others. EchoTempo (for soprano, percussion, and orchestra) was commissioned and premiered by Kurt Masur and the New York Philharmonic, featuring Botti and Christopher Lamb as soloists. A commissioned work from the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra for solo violin and chamber orchestra, Within Darkness, premiered at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center. Cosmosis, a work for wind ensemble, soprano soloist, and women’s voices, was commissioned by a consortium of universities and performed at Carnegie Hall, with the composer as soloist. In addition to performing her own works, Botti specializes in the performance of contemporary music by composers including Gubaidulina, Crumb, Kurtág, Cage, Pintscher, and Partch. Composer/conductor Tan Dun created several major works featuring Botti’s voice, including Orchestral Theatre III: Red Forecast, which she premiered with the BBC Scottish Symphony; and Marco Polo (Sony Classical), an opera which she has performed at the New York City Opera and throughout Europe and Asia. She can also be heard as a vocal soloist in Tan Dun’s soundtrack for The Banquet. Recordings on Naxos, Albany Records, and New World/CRI. In 2017–18 she was composer in residence with the Alabama Symphony Orchestra. She previously taught at the University of Michigan, Manhattan School of Music, and Vassar College. At Bard: Spring 2019.