2019-20 Honored Artist of the American Prize

Oliver Caplan, Composer

Award-winning American composer Oliver Caplan offers a voice of hope in an uncertain world. Inspired by the resiliency of the human spirit and beauty of the natural world, his music celebrates stories of social justice, conservation and community.

Mr. Caplan’s works have been performed in over 200 performances nationwide. He has been commissioned by the Atlanta Chamber Players, Bella Piano Trio, Bronx Arts Ensemble, Brookline Symphony Orchestra, Columbia University Wind Ensemble and New Hampshire Master Chorale, among others. Winner of a Special Citation for the American Prize in Orchestral Composition, additional recognitions include two Veridian Symphony Competition Wins, the Fifth House Ensemble Competition Grand Prize, eight ASCAP Awards, and fellowships at Ragdale, VCCA and the Brush Creek Foundation. Recordings of Mr. Caplan’s music include his 2017 release You Are Not Alone, which has been featured on Apple Music’s Classical A-list and streamed over 200,000 times; 2021 album Watershed; and tracks on Trio Siciliano’s Exploring Music (2018, U07 Records) and the Sinfonietta of Riverdale’s New World Serenade (2016, Albany Records).

A leader in the field of contemporary classical music, Mr. Caplan is the Artistic Director of the American Prize-winning Juventas New Music Ensemble, the only professional ensemble of its kind devoted specifically to the music of emerging composers. He also serves on the Ragdale Foundation’s Curatorial Board and is a voting member of the Recording Academy.

Mr. Caplan holds degrees from Dartmouth College and the Boston Conservatory. He resides in Medford, Massachusetts.


  • Atlanta Chamber Players
  • B3LLA Piano Trio
  • Bronx Arts Ensemble
  • Brookline Symphony Orchestra
  • Chagall Performance Art Collaborative
  • Columbia University Wind Ensemble
  • Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble
  • El Sistema Somerville
  • Firebrand Concert Series
  • Indiana Wind Symphony
  • Lorelei Ensemble
  • New Hampshire Master Chorale
  • Schola Cantorum of Boston
  • Sinfonietta of Riverdale
  • Washington & Jefferson College Wind Ensemble
  • White Snake Projects

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