Lecturer in Music, Sacramento State School of Music
Sarah Wald was born in Chicago. She attended Columbia University in the City of New York for her bachelor’s degree in music with a focus in composition. While at Columbia, Sarah studied composition with Tristan Murail and Arthur Kampela, as well as with Robert Lombardo in Chicago. She also studied flute with Sue Ann Kahn. Sarah then studied with Conrad Susa and David Garner at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music for her master’s degree in composition. For her master’s thesis, she composed and produced Elegy for a Lady: a Music Drama in One Act. As a graduate student at the University of California, Davis, Sarah was awarded a Graduate Scholars Fellowship for her first year. She recently finished her PhD in composition and music theory. Her dissertation advisor was Kurt Rohde.
Over the past several years, Sarah's music has been featured at various festivals and other programs, including the nief-norf Summer Music Festival, the Brevard Music Center, the TALIS Festival, the Oregon Bach Festival, the Bowdoin International Music Festival, the SPLICE Institute, the Sofia Symphonic Summit, and the Composers Conference. Her work was also performed at Sävellyspaja in Finland and has been featured on radio stations such as WFMT (Relevant Tones) and CJSR.
Sarah has received several honors, awards, and commissions. She graduated from Columbia magna cum laude and also received Columbia’s Rapaport Prize in 2012. In 2015, she was awarded professional development grants from the Illinois Arts Council Agency and Chicago's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. Her percussion quartet, Pas de Quatre, was selected by the University of Tennessee Knoxville for performance at PASIC 2015's New Literature Showcase Concert. Sarah has also received several individual commissions as well as commissions from Access Contemporary Music, the University of Tennessee at Martin Contemporary Music Group, and the Saint Xavier University Flute Choir. In 2016 and 2017, she was selected in calls for scores from New Music on the Bayou and Vox Musica. Since then, she has been a selected composer in calls for scores from North/South Consonance in 2018, the Sewanee Summer Music Festival in 2020, the Sound of Silent Film Festival in 2020, and the EDME New Music Festival in 2022.
During the 2021-2022 season, Sarah was a Resident Artist with the concert platform Sparrow Live. She currently teaches orchestration and music theory at Sacramento State.