School of Music

James Romig

James Romig, Ph.D.
Professor, Theory and Composition
Sallee Hall 222

James Romig (b.1971) responds to an increasingly fragmented and accelerated world by creating highly isomorphic works that evolve slowly and reveal themselves gradually. Endeavoring to reflect the intricacies of the natural world, his compositional designs exert influence on both small-scale iteration and large-scale structure, obscuring boundaries between form and content. Critics have described his music as “rapturous, slow-moving beauty” (San Francisco Chronicle), "developing with the naturalness of breathing" (The New Yorker), and “profoundly meditative... haunting” (The Wire). His Still, for solo piano, was a finalist for the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Romig's works have been performed — in 49 states and 34 countries — by such notables as the Quad City Symphony, Talujon, Duo Harpverk, Iktus, JACK, Khasma Duo, Ensemble Chronophonie, Altered Sound, Suono Mobile, Cadillac Moon, Due East, Collide-O-Scope, flutists John McMurtery and Harvey Sollberger, percussionists Tom Kolor and Doug Perkins, and pianists Louis Goldstein, Taka Kigawa, and Ashlee Mack. Recordings have been released by New World, Navona, Blue Griffin, and Perspectives of New Music. Guest-composer visits include Eastman, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Bowling Green, Illinois, Northwestern, and the American Academy in Rome. Artist residencies include Copland House, Centrum, and Everglades, Grand Canyon, and Petrified Forest National Parks. He holds degrees from the University of Iowa (BM, MM) and Rutgers University (PhD), where he studied with Charles Wuorinen. Milton Babbitt provided additional mentoring and served on his dissertation committee. Romig has been on faculty at Western Illinois University since 2002. His music is published exclusively by Parallax Music Press (ASCAP).