Randall West, Artistic Director

Randall West is a composer, artist, software developer, and leader in arts and technology management.

As a composer, Randall writes music in order to tell stories; his music is about color, theater, games, and choice. Originally trained as an economist and computer programmer, he draws from behavioural models and decision trees, and he often asks performers to interact through games and systems. He writes for the concert hall as well as electroacoustic, vocal, and experimental music. He is inspired by the gamut of 20th century modernism, Indian classical, Japanese folk, electronic, avant-garde, and popular music.

In the arts community, Randall is committed to promoting and producing new music in Chicago. In 2010, Randall co-founded the Chicago Composers Orchestra and serves as co-artistic director and vice-president of its board of directors.  He also serves as the president of the board of directors for Access Contemporary Music, which advances contemporary music as a living, thriving art form through its music school, ensemble-in-residence Palomar, and composer membership program.

As a technology leader, Randall develops software and explores interactive music, algorithmic composition, and sound design. His interactive and electronic work has been presented in concert halls, galleries, and abandoned warehouses. By day, Randall manages a software development team.

Randall has been awarded fellowships by the Seasons Music Festival and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.  His works have been read or performed by the Chicago Composers Orchestra, Palomar, the Yakima Symphony, the University of Illinois New Music Ensemble, VOX 3, Chicago Opera Vanguard, UnTwelve, and S.O.N.G. among others. Recordings of his work have been featured on Chicago’s WFMT and released on commercial CD by VOX 3. He also enjoys studying and performing piano and Japanese taiko drumming.